Insulated Band Heaters vs. Traditional Band Heaters

If you’ve dealt with traditional band heaters, then perhaps you have some reservations regarding the usefulness, efficiency, and safety of such a solution. If you’ve never heard of insulated band heaters, then you’re in for a treat. Here we compare the two to see who comes out on top.

 

Insulated band heatersInsulated Band Heaters vs Traditional Band Heaters

In one corner we have the long-standing, often-used traditional band heater, and in the other corner, we have the heavy-hitting, highly efficient insulated band heater. Let’s start with comparing maximum temperatures. Traditional band heaters can heat as high as 400° F, insulated band heaters, well, they can too. Here’s what that looks like:

 

Traditional Band Heater Insulated Band Heater
Heats as high as 400° F Heats as high as 400° F

 

Traditional Band Heaters: 1 pt.

Insulated Band Heaters: 1 pt.

 

Next, we look at heating efficiency. Traditional band heaters use anywhere from 600-1200 watts of electricity to heat the material inside a barrel or drum. What’s more, a good portion of this is wasted as heat is lost to the air around the heater. Insulated band heaters, on the other hand, don’t lose as much energy to their surroundings. With insulated band heaters, much more heat is channeled into the product, and much less into the thin air.

 

Traditional Band Heater Insulated Band Heater
Wastes a lot of energy Delivers energy to the load

 

Traditional Band Heaters: -1 pt.

Insulated Band Heaters: 2 pt.

 

And finally, when it comes to that most important topic of safety, insulated band heaters win out here too. Traditional band heaters can be extremely hazardous. Since they’re heating as high as 400° F, this means their non-insulated, external temperature is about the same. Essentially, you have a belted band of silicone wrapped around your drum or barrel that is as hot as 400° on the surface. If something touches this on accident, it could mean fire or third-degree burns. Insulated band heaters are a lot safer. Since they’re insulated, the surface that is exposed to the user  is safe to touch.

 

Traditional Band Heater Insulated Band Heater
Hazardous (fire hazard and burn hazard) Safe to touch when installed and running

 

 

Traditional Band Heaters: -1 pt.

Insulated Band Heaters: 2 pt.

 

So this puts the final score of the comparison at…

 

Traditional Band Heater Insulated Band Heater
Heats as high as 400° F (1 pt.) Heats as high as 400° F (1 pt.)
Wastes a lot of energy (-1 pt.) Delivers energy to the load (2 pts.)
Hazardous (fire hazard and burn hazard) (-1 pt.) Safe to touch when installed and running. (2 pts.)

 

Traditional Band Heaters: -1 pt.

Insulated Band Heaters: 5 pts.

We’ll let you do the math from here.

 

 

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Product Use Case: Drum and Barrel Heaters for Viscosity Maintenance

Powerblanket® drum heaters and barrel heaters have uses beyond mere freeze protection. For example, viscosity maintenance, a year-round problem, is easily handled by one of our ready-to-ship or custom built solutions.

 

Product Use Case- Drum and Barrel Heaters for Viscosity Maintenance

From Freeze Protection to Heating Applications

One of the primary concerns we hear of from individuals and companies ordering our drum heaters or barrel heaters is the need for adequate protection against freezing temperatures. While this is a huge part of what our solutions offer, it’s not the only trick in the hat. You might actually be surprised to find that Powerblanket technology is used for a myriad of heating needs. And one of those has to do with viscosity maintenance.

Regardless of what you’re storing in your drums or barrels, if it needs to remain at high temperatures to maintain a certain level of liquidity, then you need to pile on the heat. The problem is that often times manufactures or operators don’t have a simple means of adding heat to their storage. The procedure, then, usually involves moving the stored liquid from a storage unit to a heating unit. However, this extra, time-consuming step is NOT necessary if you have a good drum or barrel heater.

Powerblanket drum and barrel heaters are easily installed, removed, and reinstalled for convenient storage and transportation. What’s more, Powerblanket technology evenly distributes a regulated flow of heat, preventing the problems associated with band heaters. So if you’re in need of viscosity maintenance, look no further. We’ve got you covered.

 

Powerblanket Features:

  • Our heaters work with both steel and poly containers
  • Full wrap-around design provides complete insulation and ensures equal heat distribution
  • Drum warmers deliver safe, uniform heat to expensive materials without overheating or burning
  • Drum heaters design decreases and prevents product waste among temp-sensitive materials by maintaining consistent storage temperatures without significant fluctuations
  • Highly energy-efficient GreenHeat Technology™ and design lowers energy-related expenses and overall project and equipment costs

 

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A Drum Blanket Done Right

Of all the heating devices out there for the protection of drums and barrels, there’s one drum blanket that’s done right. With even heat distribution and temperature regulation, Powerblanket has a solution fit for any occasion.

 

A Drum Blanket Done Right

The Powerblanket Difference

Storing materials in drums is a simple idea. They hold a lot and offer a durable storage structure for liquids, chemicals, food product, and so much more. However, when it comes time for temperature regulation, they don’t provide any capabilities on their own. For this reason, some manufacturers have created elaborate insulation blankets to ward off the effect of cold temperatures. As much as these insulation blankets may seem to be a good idea, or as much as they might be able to help with a mild difference in temperature, they can’t adequately protect against extreme winter cold.

In addition to inadequately protecting your materials against savage cold, traditional insulation blankets also lack the ability to bring material to working temperature. Take, for example, the need for bringing certain types of product to temperatures above the ambient air around it. A typical insulation blanket has no way to accommodate this.

However, Powerblanket has created a drum blanket that can work in a myriad of applications. It can protect your most temperature-sensitive products against the coldest cold. What’s more, the Powerblanket drum heater also has the ability to bring your product up to working temperatures. With a thermostatic controller and innovative heat-spreading technology, you can wrap your drum and forget about it.

The ability to automate your freeze protection is a huge benefit once the cold weather rolls around, and the capability of bringing liquids and other products to higher temperatures for viscosity maintenance, chemical-property enablement, or characteristic integrity is of equal importance. So whether you need a drum blanket for insulation, temperature regulation, or a combination of the two, Powerblanket is the clear answer.

Winter Preparation: Now’s the Time

As the temperatures around the nation rise into the hundreds, cold-weather preparation may be the furthest thing from your mind. What’s more, there are plenty of warm-weather applications that Powerblanket technology is used for. But we would be completely remiss if we didn’t say enough of proper winter preparation. After all, when it comes to preparing for winter, you don’t want to be a grasshopper…

Aesop’s Fable: The Ant and the Grasshopper

Perhaps you’re already familiar with the old fable of The Ant and the Grasshopper from Aesop. If you’re not (and even if you are) we’ve recited it here. Below follows the most popular English renditions of the story:

“In a field one summer’s day a Grasshopper was hopping about, chirping and singing to its heart’s content. An Ant passed by, bearing along with great toil an ear of corn he was taking to the nest.

‘Why not come and chat with me,’ said the Grasshopper, ‘instead of toiling and moiling in that way?’

‘I am helping to lay up food for the winter,’ said the Ant, ‘and recommend you to do the same.’

‘Why bother about winter?’ said the Grasshopper; we have got plenty of food at present.’ But the Ant went on its way and continued its toil.

When the winter came, the Grasshopper found itself dying of hunger, while it saw the ants distributing, every day, corn and grain from the stores they had collected in the summer. Then the Grasshopper knew it is best to prepare for the days of necessity.”

Of course, the implications of this story can go far deeper than the need for good winter preparation. But for the sake of comparison, the story’s plot is rather poignant for the industries we serve. When cold weather does hit, it’s best to already have the systems and products you need in place to brave the effects of winter. So if you have assets to cover come late October, now’s the best time to start getting together the protection you’ll need.

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Participation at the 2015 Global Petroleum Show

Our recent attendance at the 2015 Global Petroleum Show was a real blast. It was great to meet so many of our customers and members of our network. We also came away thrilled about the interaction we had with those who stopped by to see our new technology. Read on to learn a little more about what took place.

 

Powerblanket Team at the 2015 Global Petroleum Show

Powerblanket Technology at This Year’s Show

The Global Petroleum Show (GPS) is one of the most prestigious venues for showcasing the technologies and services related to the oil and gas sector. This year was a huge success, and we were glad to be a part of it.

Our booth showcased some of the most reliable and innovative products we offer for the oil and gas industry, and the interaction we saw from visitors was exciting. However, equally as exciting to us is the inclusion we offered of our most recent, game-changing technologies. GPS was the perfect venue for us to talk about our new smart controllers, our video scanning capabilities, and our anticipation for our CID1 certification.

Our new video scanning capability makes our technologies all the more accessible to those in need of them. Imagine the ease of submitting a 2D image (via video) to us to simplify the customization process. Add to this the fact that we now offer smart controllers for many of our products, and heating assistance and freeze protection have never been so easy and so helpful.

So now it’s time for us to ask you for your feedback. In the comments below, let us know which of these technologies you’re anticipating most: our video scanning addition, our smart controllers, or our anticipation of our CID1 certification. What’s more, if our recent strides have inspired some thoughts of your own, let us know by accessing our idea board.

 

 

Maintaining Viscosity in Your Oil Stores

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Temperature plays a vital role in maintaining viscosity in the storage of many types of liquids and chemicals. But when it comes to storing your liquid in lower ambient temperatures, you could be playing a catch up game when it comes to maintaining ideal viscosity, especially with oil and oil-based lubricants.

 

Oil Pouring

Viscous Oils Run Slow

Why does the viscosity of oil or other liquids matter? Asking such a question to a mechanical engineer may start an impassioned conversation on the matter. As for the rest of us, it may be helpful to revisit some simple principles of physics. When your lubricant is too viscous, it affects the ability the liquid has to flow easily. When you’re dealing with small engine parts, using a lubricant that is too high in viscosity could restrict its access to smaller parts within your engineer or mechanism. And, of course, restricted flow to vital elements of your machinery could cause drastic problems.

Another problem posed by overly viscous lubricants comes from the incurrence of excessive torque in your machinery. If the oil in your machine is too thick, it’s going to tax your engine all the more to push the lubricant into all the necessary places. Not only does this cause undue torque on the system, but it also cause more friction than is necessary. The moral of the story: this all means more wear and tear.

Oil lubricated machines will usually have a low-temperature limit for startup. This restriction is sometimes referred to as the pour point. It’s true that once an engine has time to run and warm up, it returns the oil to the proper viscosity, but adding a lubricant at a temperature far below ideal could cause startup problems. With this in mind, maintaining viscosity in your lubricant storage becomes vitally important.

Powerblanket and Our Contribution

When it comes to storing liquids at ideal temperature, Powerblanket has a myriad of products perfectly suited for your needs. Whether you need a customer application or one of our ready to ship heating blankets, we can help you maintain viscosity in your lubricant storage.

Though the weather is warm right now, colder temperatures will sneak up on us faster than we wish. Getting prepared for that time now is important. That’s why we’re running a 15% off incentive for our forward-thinking customers.

The 2015 Global Petroleum Show Starts Today!

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It’s finally here. Today marks the beginning of the 2015 Global Petroleum Show in Calgary, Alberta. This annual show accommodates the world’s biggest gathering of companies, contributors, and benefactors from the oil and gas sector.

 

The 2015 Global Petroleum Show

The 2015 Show

This year marks the 25th running of the Global Petroleum Show (GPS), a show that now runs every year at Stampede Park in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. The 2015 edition of the GPS looks to be the biggest yet. With thousands of participants from over one-hundred countries, the show offers a wide scope of demonstrations for the oil and gas sector. This year includes a mock drill site that allows attendees to see firsthand the process of oil drilling. The site will showcase a drilling rig, mud unit, and a well head and command center.

In addition to this, the show will accommodate the Safety Zone, a destination for professionals to explore the industry’s latest in safety and health. What’s more, the Manufacturing Zone showcases live demos and simulations of manufacturing processes related to oil and gas. All this, along with the Capital Forum and Global Energy Career Expo, shapes up to produce another great year for the Global Petroleum Show.

 

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Don’t Forget to Come See the Powerblanket® Demos

Of course, we would be completely remiss if we didn’t mention one of the most intriguing of all demos going on at the show. Powerblanket will be in halls D,E at booth 7852 showcasing our latest technologies for the oil and gas sector. We’ll be running a demo related to piping applications where we showcase the capabilities of our instrumentation heaters, as well as our valve and manifold heaters. The ability these products have of protecting piping assets against the ravages of cold weather are of significant importance to the industry.

In addition to this, we’ll also be displaying our video scanning demo (which allows you to submit a video of your equipment in order for us to create a custom heating solution for it). We’ll likewise be showing off our smart controller (allowing you to remotely monitor and control your Powerblanket products) and we’ll be discussing our latest certification. So come join us at our booth for all of this and more.

 

 

Product Spotlight: Drum Heaters

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What’s the best way to heat large amounts of liquid? What’s the best way to keep large quantities of your product at the ideal temperature? Well, if you’re storing that material in drums, the answer is a simple one, and it’s very cost effective too.

 

Powerblanket Drum Heaters

Outdated Technology for Drum Heaters

Whether it’s chemicals, food product, oil, admixtures, or any other temperature-sensitive substance, storing your product in the typical drum is common but also problematic, problematic if you need to heat what’s inside that is. Perhaps we should be more specific in this statement. The need to heat substances stored in drums is only problematic if you’re using old or traditional approaches to the problem.

Think about the costs associated with employing large ovens to keep your drums at the right temperature. Not only are these ovens costly, cumbersome, and non-mobile, but they also limit how many drums you can store simultaneously. At best, you may have a large oven that keeps three to four drums at their ideal temperature. But what happens if you need to transport those drums while still maintaining the proper temperature range? You can see how limited this approach can be.

Another old and inadequate method of heating drums is the use of band heaters. Band heaters work on the principle of spreading heat through a metal drum as a hot band is attached to it. However, band heaters can’t regulate their own temperature and often end of spreading heat very unevenly, causing hot spots that scorch the product. In addition to this, what happens if you need to heat a high-grade, plastic drum? Well, you can’t use a band heater on that thing. Thankfully, there is a much better option to all your drum heating needs.

 

Powerblanket Drum Heaters

Powerblanket drum heaters work on an entirely different principle. Powerblanket patented technology wraps the drum in a protective, insulating blanket that heats the drum to a controlled, pre-set temperature. This allows for even heat distribution like you’ve never seen. Since the Powerblanket solution spreads heat evenly and with the use of thermostatic controls, you can wrap the drum and leave it be, without any concern for scorching or overheating. Additionally, Powerblanket works with plastic drums as well as steel.

Comparing Powerblanket heaters to the oven option offers a clear advantage too. Powerblanket heaters are mobile and easy to install and remove. What’s more, they offer extreme cost savings when compared to how much you’d be spending on an oven. Think about the space you’d save too.

 

Featured Highlights:

  • Work with both steel and poly containers
  • Full wrap-around design provides complete insulation and ensures equal heat distribution
  • Delivers safe, uniform heat to expensive materials without overheating or burning
  • Design decreases and prevents product waste among temp-sensitive materials by maintaining consistent storage temperatures without significant fluctuations
  • Highly energy-efficient GreenHeat Technology™ and design lowers energy-related expenses and overall project and equipment costs

 

 

The Powerblanket Idea Board For Heating Solutions

Can you imagine a company that is always looking for revolutionary ideas to better serve their customers? Well, so can we. That’s why we have the Powerblanket suggestion forum for. We value our customers’ feedback, and who knows, yours may produce the beginnings of a new Powerblanket product, offering heating solutions for your specific need.

 

The Powerblanket Idea Board For Heating Solutions

Your Ideas For Our Business

Powerblanket works to achieve heating solutions that serve the needs of multiple industries. We know there are problems yet to be solved by our patented heating products, and that’s why we work with our customers to serve all their heating needs. So, if you can think of something that Powerblanket should do that we currently don’t do, please let us know.

Your ideas are taken to heart by us. And we would love to hear about the heating problems you’re having so that we can help you solve them. With that said, there are certainly multiple ways to get in touch with us to let us know about your ideas. Talking to your Powerblanket sales rep is one great way. Sending us an email is another. But did you know that you could post your idea on our suggestion forum and have others vote for it?

Here’s how it works. Go to Powerblanket.com, navigate to the “About Us” tab, choose the link to “Idea Board”, and offer your suggestion in the window. Yes, it’s really that simple. In fact, to make it even simpler, you can just click on the action tab below, and it will take you right to the page. Once your idea is on the idea board, others can second your suggestions and add their own voice to your same dilemma or proposal. You can rest assured we take this forum very seriously, and we use it as a way to keep our valued customers a part of the generation and progression of our products. So, let us know what you think, and help us bring the heat to your problem.

 

 

Custom Heating Solutions for Any Time of Year

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Many industries find themselves in need of heat applications throughout the year, not only in the cold months. Epoxy, chemicals, bulk food preparations, concrete, and many other such examples require temperature regulation above the common ambient ranges. So whether you’re working in construction, chemicals, food, spray foam, epoxy, or some other industry, custom heating solutions likely play a big role in the continuity of your business.

 

Custom Heating Solutions for Any Time of Year

Custom Heating vs. Prefabricated Products

If you have to store temperature-sensitive materials in drums, barrels, or totes, likely case is you’ll do just fine with a ready-to-ship product that’s already built to accommodate the common storage unit. But when it comes to totes or barrels that are bigger than the norm, or other storage units that are outside of the common shape or size, you’re going to need a custom approach to your heating solution.

In order to limit downtime and expedite turnaround, you’re going to need to find a company, manufacturer, or distributor that can engineer a solution and ship it to you in a reasonable timeframe. The amount of time it takes for many manufacturers to provide a custom answer to your needs is part of the reason why so many become frustrated with finding a properly tailored solution. Most people equate “customized” with expensive products and long wait times. While this is the case with many, it certainly isn’t the case with all.

 

Shopping For a Provider of Custom Heating Solutions

If you’re in need of a customized approach to heating a large propane unit, a frac tank, a glass walkway, a truck-mounted water cylinder, or any other device or unit that could possibly need insulation or heat to perform at its best, then you need to find a solution that isn’t going to compromise your equipment or cut into your bottom line. Searching for a manufacturer that can build a cost-efficient, application that is made to fit precisely as it ought to is of paramount importance. Don’t be fooled by companies that tout custom items that are actually just rebranded examples of the common product line.

 

Here are some things to keep in mind when shopping for a custom heating solution:

  • Reasonable window for completion
  • Ability to answer varying levels of customization
  • Certified to universal safety standards
  • Easy to install and use

 

 

The Frac Tank Dilemma

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Long term construction projects can often necessitate the need for frac tanks, especially when those projects take place in remote areas. But storing water and other temperature-sensitive materials in these mobile units can pose a real problem when the weather doesn’t cooperate.

 

The Frac Tank Dilemma 1

Freeze Protect Your Frac Tanks

If you’ve ever worked on a construction site that made use of a frac tank, then you know how integral they can be to the continuity of the operations. If your frac tank fails, then the project could very well fail itself. Truthfully speaking, these large-quantity storage tanks are built to last. Their durability and dependable functionality are certain to weather tough conditions.

However, there is one condition that few, if any, frac tanks are equipped to deal with on their own. And that condition is freezing temperatures. Of course, the obvious question becomes what to do about a frac tank left out in the cold. Well, here’s where Powerblanket® can help.

The Frac Tank Dilemma 2

If you’re familiar with the common, ready-to-ship products that Powerblanket produces  for drums, totes, barrels, buckets, valves, manifolds, and other seemingly small applications, then you may be surprised to learn that Powerblanket heating products are used for large scale uses as well—even frac tanks. That’s right, frac tanks. The ability Powerblanket has to customize its patented heating solutions has fewer restriction than some may think. So even if you need to protect an entire frac tank from freezing, Powerblanket can help you do just that.

The Powerblanket solution offers insulation and heat distribution, allowing your tank to function well below freezing. Powerblanket patented technology provides even heat distribution over the whole surface area. This allows for consistent, regulated heat to be distributed without the fear of hot or cold spots developing. So if you have the need to mobilize a frac tank to a region that experiences cold weather, you no longer have to worry about what to do when the needle drops. Powerblanket has you covered, quite literally.

 

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Product Spotlight: Tote Heaters

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Imagine hundreds of your IBC / tote tanks sitting outside, your costly products exposed to the sporadic and unpredictable elements of weather. At the very best, you have your IBCs in a storage facility somewhere, but maintaining a consistent temperature in a large storage facility can be very expensive and inexact. Fortunately, Powerblanket® offers a cheaper, more efficient solution.

 

Powerblanket Tote Heaters

Powerblanket Tote Heaters

The importance of keeping IBC / tote tanks within strict temperature conditions is vital for many chemicals, food ingredients, solvents, pharmaceuticals, etc. And as described above, keeping those IBCs at a consistent temperature can be difficult and expensive. However, with Powerblanket industry-leading IBC heaters, you can safely and easily maintain proper and even heating of your IBC storage containers. There will never be any cold or hot spots with Powerblanket heaters.

Powerblanket® tote/IBC heaters are durable, easy-to-use, and highly-effective.

Powerblanket heaters are constructed with a rugged vinyl shell that wraps around the corresponding IBC effortlessly, precisely, and securely, so that each and every one is fully enshrouded and protected. The vinyl shell itself makes the unit easy to maintain and clean. Powerblanket tote heaters can be used in temperatures up to and including -20º F, and they’re water-resistant, so that outdoor storage is no longer an issue.

Powerblanket tote heaters will fit any size IBC, and they come in two standard sizes: 275 gallons and 330 gallons. However, if you need a more specific size, Powerblanket can also custom-design tote heaters to fit your needs. Every tote heater comes with a pre-adjusted thermostat for convenience or an adjustable thermostat for more control. Either way, you’re getting a quality, dependable thermostat that secures your unit against overheating, giving you the assurance that your products are being stored properly, and that saves you time, money, and hassle. And let’s not forget to mention that all Powerblanket heaters are certified to UL/CSA/CE standards.

So, whatever your tote storage needs are, Powerblanket has the optimum solution for you.

 

Standout Features

  • Install easily
  • Safely heat a wide variety of materials
  • Distribute heat evenly
  • Are certified to UL/CSA/CE standards
  • Include a thermostatic controller to prevent accidental overheating

 

 

Certification Labels From Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories

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With so much emphasis put on certification labels from Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTLs) it becomes just as important to emphasize how much effort it takes to get such certifications. Knowing a little bit more about the ends and outs will help any consumer feel great about the quality control associated with certified products.

 

Certification Labels From Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories

Partnering With NRTLs

The certification that comes from working with an NRTL is more than just a mere label. In fact, when considering the steps it takes to get such a label, it’s kind of a like a diploma. For those manufacturers whose products are certified by UL, Intertek, CSA, or any other reputable testing laboratory, certification amounts to certain rigorous steps and continuing protocol.

The Design Phase: When a company decides to seek the assistance and support of an NRTL for safety and quality assurance, the partnership begins at the drawing board. That’s right, if a manufacturer of electrical products is going to keep things completely safe and as efficient as possible, then everything begins in the design phase. Regardless of whether you’re paying Under Writers Laboratories (UL), Intertek (the organization behind the ETL mark), or Canadian Standards Association (CSA) to help with the process, every one of them is going to start by first assisting in the creation of the product. Before your product is even testable, an NRTL is going to help you design a product that will function as well as it should, and do so in a completely safe and acceptable manner.

The Testing Phase: Once an NRTL has helped a manufacturer design a product that meets all the national and international safety standards (standards that are determined by consensus among NRTLs and OSHA—in the case of the United States) they then begin a long and rigorous testing process. This is where the distinction, Nationally Recognized TESTING Laboratories, comes from. Because that’s the very thing they do. They send every single product with their label on it through a considerable amount of testing to determine that it is durable, safe, and efficient enough to don their distinctive stamp of approval.

The Audit Phase: Even after a detailed design phase and an extensive testing phase, the work isn’t done for those manufacturers that partner with an NRTL. It’s not a one-and-done approach. For any company to maintain the mark of UL, Intertek, CSA, or any other of the testing labs, they have to maintain protocol with all their standards. This is accomplished by completely unannounced audits on production procedures and compliance with standards.

In other words, for any manufacturer wearing the label, there are regular checkups from the respective NRTL officials to make sure the company is still complying with all the protocols addressed and tested in the design and testing phases. These audits happen at random and are executed to ensure that all products bearing the NRTL’s mark are keeping with the standards that warrant it. How often these audits occur depends on the standards associated with the manufacturer’s product type. For Powerblanket, this means the company is audited extensively four times a year by Intertek.

 

Powerblanket and Intertek

Powerblanket is proud to be associated with Intertek and to bear the laboratory’s ETL mark. Our company and engineers pass through the extensive steps and expenses necessary to warrant this label because we care about offering efficient and safe products. At Powerblanket, we don’t cut corners or go with the cheapest parts and labor. Because if we did, we wouldn’t be ETL certified.

As much as we know about what we’re doing, which is more than anyone else, we’re happy to work with a third party entity that checks our work and verifies its quality. So here’s to NRTLs everywhere for helping companies maintain the highest level of quality and safety for their valued customers.

 

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Product Spotlight: Barrel Heaters

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Do you use steel or plastic barrels to store chemicals, food stuff, water, or any other type of sensitive material? Then you know how difficult it can be to maintain the proper temperature in steel or poly drums. This is where the Powerblanket® innovative drum and barrel heaters come in handy.

 

Powerblanket Barrel Heaters

Barrel Heaters: Their Real Value

Picture, if you will, the following scenario: It’s been a wonderful, mild autumn day. The leaves have changed and are beginning to fall. The smell of Thanksgiving is in the air. Then with little to no warning, the weather pulls a quick 180 and a terrible freeze sets in overnight, suddenly, you’re worried about the hundreds of barrels of temperature-sensitive material you have out in storage.         

If you’re equipped with Powerblanket® barrel and drum heaters, on the other hand, then there isn’t anything to worry about. You’re covered…literally. If you’re using a standard band heater, then the chances are you might need to go check and hope nothing is frozen or starting to freeze. Wouldn’t it be nice knowing that your valuable materials, the materials you’ve already stored in expensive steel or poly barrels or drums, are protected against the worst cold Father Winter can dish up?        

When dealing with temperature-sensitive materials it is vitally important to maintain a constant and reliable temperature, and Powerblanket® state-of-the-art barrel and drum heaters are superior to band heaters, or to any other type of heating system for that matter. For one, the Powerblanket® heaters encompass the barrel or drum entirely, providing overall convection to the drum/barrel – no hot or cold spots; you won’t have to worry about uneven heat distribution with Powerblanket® heaters.          

Furthermore, Powerblanket® heaters comes equipped with an external thermostatic control. The heaters utilize the highly, energy-efficient GreenHeat Technology™, consuming less energy than a normal band heater or storage heaters, invariably saving you money in the long run on heating costs. Powerblanket® barrel/drum heaters can also be much more cost effective than trying to maintain a steady temperature in a large storage facility, for example.         

In short, Powerblanket® takes care of all your heating needs in one easy-to-use, cost-effective device i.e. storage, reliability, consistent, overall heating of your barrels/drums and the invaluable materials stored within.

          

Powerblanket BH55-Pro Standout Features

  • 3 Individual Heat Zones
  • Automatically Adjust to Varying Fluid Levels
  • Adjustable Thermostatic ControllerHeats from ambient temperatures up to 145º F
  • Greenheat Technology™ spread heat evenly
  • Heats from ambient temperatures up to 145º F

Drums Totes and Barrels: Protecting Your Bulk Storage

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Whether it’s food, paint, chemicals, or spray foam, storing your business assets in bulk containers has its limitations. Dependent on the characteristics and sensitivities of your material, some bulk-storage options have to be chosen very carefully, especially when you consider the problems that cold temperatures can pose.

 

A stack of blue oil barrels with one red barrel. 3D rendering with raytraced textures and HDRI lighting. Attached file by mark evans -- purchased from istockphoto.com OIL DRUM BARREL
A stack of blue oil barrels with one red barrel. 3D rendering with raytraced textures and HDRI lighting.
Attached file by mark evans — purchased from istockphoto.com OIL DRUM BARREL

Bulk Storage in Drums Totes and Barrels

What do the three items above have in common? They’re all typical solutions for storing materials in bulk. Whether you use drums to store cheese sauce, barrels to store paint, or totes to store spray foam, each scenario has specific requirements for optimal storage and usage of the material harbored within. In the case of food stored in drums, well, freeze protection might not be a real concern. After all, you’re going to need to keep whatever’s in there refrigerated until it’s ready to be consumed. However, bulk heating of large quantities of stored food may be a matter of consideration for you.

On the other hand, if you’re storing paint or a temperature sensitive chemical in barrels, then freeze protection may be a potential concern. In the case of something like spray foam stored in totes, maintaining ideal temperature ranges becomes vital. Ultimately, regardless of what you’re storing, preserving, or preparing in your drums, barrels, or totes, it’s important to know that there are contributing solutions beyond the mere storage unit. And these solutions will help you maximize your storage and application efficiency.

Whether it’s for freeze protection or prep heating, drum heaters, barrel heaters, and tote heaters offer the ability of keeping your storage at ideal temperature ranges. They also provide a means for heating your material to the proper level for application or preparation. When making use of such heating solutions, you don’t have to rely alone on your storage unit’s limitations. Some products merely offer insulation for drums, barrels, or totes, but there are others that offer both insulation and heat-transfer capabilities that work to maintain a desired temperature range or help to heat a product to a desired temperature.

 

Drums Totes and Barrels- Protecting Your Bulk Storage 2

The Powerblanket Solution

The effective drum, tote, or barrel-heater solution will eliminate waste and lower costs that arise from damaged materials cause by freezing temperatures. If you have temperature-sensitive products that spend time outside of the ideal temperature zone, you’re going to have a real mess on your hands. The longevity of your material will be drastically reduced, and the inevitable result will be wasted product, inflated costs, and strained budgets.

This is why Powerblanket focuses on offering a simple, easy-to-use solution that will protect your material from the ravages of cold weather. All Powerblanket heaters are manufactured with patented GreenHeat Technology™ in order to provide an even distribution of heat throughout the entire surface area. This is more than a nice convenience, though; it’s a necessity if you’re going to avoid hot and cold spots and the potential scorching of your product. In addition to this reality, Powerblanket® GreenHeat Technology™ also enables   the proper heating necessary for prep and application of foods or temperature sensitive chemicals.

 

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The Legal Liability Associated with Non Certified Electrical Products

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Do you use electrical products in your operations? Who doesn’t, right? Have you ever stopped to consider what sort of liability you might be held to if these products failed? If you haven’t, then this article can clue you into some interesting information. If you have, perhaps you should read on anyway.

 

The Legal Liability Associated with Non Certified Electrical Products

Non Certified Electrical Products

What’s in a certification? Well, if you’re working with electrical products, then there’s a lot. The idea of using electrical devices that haven’t been held to any third-party standard should concern us. If it doesn’t, then perhaps we’re putting too much trust in the manufacturer. True, there are great companies out there manufacturing great products, the sort of companies that we can trust, but guess what? They’re the kind of companies that get their products certified.

Does your business or facility answer to OSHA standards? If so, you’ll want to keep something in mind. OSHA safety standards for electrical equipment are as follows: Approved and acceptable equipment is defined in two ways. Either it is certified by an NRTL (Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory), or else it is the kind of product or equipment that NRTLs don’t certify. If the equipment isn’t certifiable under an NRTL, then to meet OSHA standards, it must be proven to have been inspected and tested by another federal agency. If not federal, then it has to be represented by a state, municipal, or other legal authority responsible for compliance with occupational safety.  

In other words, OSHA doesn’t consider any electrical equipment safe that doesn’t use legitimate third-party verification and certification. If you’re using non-certified electrical products then the safety hazard and failure rate could be a real gamble. What’s more, if you end up with an incident, you could find yourself answering to OSHA on the matter. However, there is an easy solution to this dilemma, and it’s this: don’t buy or work with non-certified electrical product. It’s not worth the risk.

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Why The Warm Winter?

Have you been asking yourself: where did winter go this year? Well, it seems a natural question to ask, considering the uncommonly warm winter much of the United States and Canada have been experiencing. However, this winter and the warmer weather it brings, isn’t due to climate change; it’s a bit simpler than that.

 

Why The Warm Winter?

Suspect #1: The Jet Stream

That’s right, the Jet Stream. If you’re not familiar with what the Jet Stream is, here’s a simple definition: The Jet Stream is a fast, high-altitude, westerly wind. As shown in the image to the right, there are two types of jet streams at work in both the northern and southern hemispheres. These two types of jet streams, polar and subtropical, play a large role in weather patterns worldwide.

Now, when you ask yourself: what has caused this bizarre winter, you have the answer—the Jet Stream. Apparently, this year the Jet Stream has played farther north than it has in a while, and we’re talking the polar jet stream in this case. Usually this time of year, the polar jet stream dips south and brings with it that freezing arctic air. But with the polar jet stream maintaining more northerly latitudes over the last few months, it has allowed the subtropical jet stream to move farther north than it usually is this time of year—bringing with it the warmer, subtropical air.

 

What Does This Mean In the Long Run?

Naturally, the next question to follow would be something to the effect of next winter’s forecast. Can we expect this trend to follow into next year? Well, it doesn’t take a meteorologist to tell you that weather can be a very difficult thing to predict. For all we know, next winter could be the coldest one yet. The key, then, is to be prepared. As a case in point, in 1962 a huge artic blast (via a plunging polar jet stream) dipped into the northwestern US—dropping temperatures as low as -40° F in the southwestern United States. Evidently, this cold blast eventually caused snow fall on the Gulf Coast. Now who would have predicted that?

1962 was a year that set many records, but the truth remains, and it’s as pertinent today as it was then. Whenever winter approaches, it’s best to play it safe. Plan for the worst, and if the weather throws a surprise your way in the form of warm temperatures, then you’ll still be ready for next winter. Besides, while winters like 1962’s are rare, what’s even rarer is a winter like 2015.

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Beware Of Self Proclaimed Certification Labels

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It’s great to have a product that boasts some seemingly reputable validation from a third-party source, but not all certifications are created equal. In fact, some are entirely misleading. When it comes to purchasing products with certification labels, you need to beware of the self-proclaimed certifications being used by some manufacturers.

 

Beware Of Self Proclaimed Certification Labels

The CE Offender

CE, you’ve probably seen the mark before. You’ll find this mark among certification labels on a myriad of electronics. But how many of us know what it is? For example, did you know that CE isn’t a certification at all?

The CE marking is a self-identifying mark that manufacturers place on their products to declare that they are in compliance with the standards of Conformité Européenne (meaning: European Community). The CE mark is used to identify electrical products that are said, and the keyword here is “said”, to fall under the expectations set by European legislation.

However, the unfortunate downside for consumers is that some manufacturers will use this mark as a pseudo certification. Remember, CE is a self-proclaimed mark of compliance. There are no protocols, no testing, and no third-party validation necessary for a product to bare the CE mark. Any manufacturer can stamp it on their product as a claim to safety, but that claim only goes as far as the manufacturer’s word. In other words, the CE mark alone should offer no reassure to a consumer that the product is safe or efficient at what it does. So if you’re considering the purchase of a product that boasts nothing more than a CE mark, you should really reconsider ever getting it in the first place.

 

The National Electrical Code (Another Misused Mark)

It sounds very legitimate; doesn’t it—the National Electrical Code? But the misuse of this code is even more ridiculous than the first. This common reference is abbreviated as NEC, and is also used by some manufacturers to provide customer assurance where it isn’t warranted. The problem with touting compliance with the National Electrical Code for electronics is the simple fact that it is entirely irrelevant.

The reason for the irrelevance is the fact that the National Electric Code is used as a compliance measure for wiring commercial and residential buildings with electricity. That’s right, buildings. Now how absurd would it be for an electronics manufacturer to say their product complies with the National Electrical Code? The moral of the story, beware of self-proclaimed certification labels.

 

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What is Powerblanket?

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If you’re a part of any business that operates in cold weather, you understand how plummeting temperatures can take a toll on your equipment, efficiency, and yield. But what if you could put an end to lost time and lost profits? That’s where Powerblanket comes in.

Powerblanket is the leading provider of standard and custom-designed industrial heating blankets. No matter what industry you’re in, Powerblanket can help you improve your business. Watch the overview video to learn more.

 

 

Transcript: Working in an extremely cold climate, you know that mother nature shows no mercy. Freezing temperatures cause equipment failure, product waste, missed deadlines and decreased profits.

Powerblanket patented technology delivers just the right amount of heat to safely and affordably solve your temperature problems. If you can build it, haul it, or store it, Powerblanket can heat it.

In the railroad business, propane tanks play a critical role in powering generators and equipment. When temperatures drop, so does the pressure in the propane tanks. No propane means equipment malfunctions, downtime and ultimately lost revenue. Powerblanket custom heating blankets ensure the proper pressure is maintained in the tanks so your team can keep working, even in the coldest temperatures.

Industrial companies operating in cold climates can lose thousands of dollars a day from shutdowns due to sub-zero temperatures. Full sections of piping systems freeze up, shutting down that section or sometimes the whole operation. Powerblanket® custom heating blankets can be wrapped around pipes, valves, and instrumentation, preventing downtime and costly repairs.

Powerblanket drum heater blanket

Polyurethane spray foam is highly temperature-sensitive. Powerblanket heaters keep spray foam containers heated to the perfect temperature–allowing higher yields, fewer delays, and decreased product waste.

Cold weather can cause major delays on construction projects. Powerblanket heaters can thaw frozen ground quickly and cure concrete almost 3 times faster than standard curing blankets. Powerblanket heaters are easily installed, moved, and reinstalled. If one of our standard-sized heaters won’t meet your needs, we can design and build you a custom heater. No matter the size or shape, we can wrap it, heat it, thaw it and protect it.

Don’t let the elements get the best of you. Give us a call to learn how Powerblanket can meet your heating needs.

Want to see more about Powerblanket and the products offered? 

 

 

UL vs. Other Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories

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Perhaps you’ve heard of UL before. Maybe you’ve seen their insignia on the electronics you use at work and at home. You might even know what the “U” and “L” stand for. And if you are aware of what Underwriters Laboratories does, then you’re ahead of the average American. But did you know that they aren’t the only show in town?

 

UL vs. Other Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories 1

UL and Its Competitors

UL (hereafter referred to as Underwriters Labs) is a Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL) that works as a third-party, quality-assurance organization devoted to science safety testing.  A lot of what Underwriters Labs does involves electronics. While many may be familiar with their stamp or organizational mission, Underwriters Labs isn’t the only NRTL in the world. In fact, they’re only one among several. As far as North America is concerned, there are three major companies geared toward enhancing the safety and efficiency of industrial and commercial products.

Of these three, Underwriters Labs is one, CSA (Canadian Standards Association—roughly the Canadian equivalent of UL) is another, and Intertek (also labeled as ETL) is the third. These three organizations are the major forces behind safety certifications for North American based manufacturers, and while manufacturers aren’t required to adhere to their stringent guidelines, all the most reputable businesses do. In other words, if you see products of an electrical nature without one of these important stamps of approval, run from it, and run far.

UL vs. Other Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories 2

The Advantages of Intertek (ETL)

While all three of these organizations are great resources for proper safety certifications, Powerblanket works with Intertek for certain reasons. The primary purpose behind the company’s decision to go with Intertek stems from the locales of industries we serve. With customers throughout the US and Canada (as well as overseas) Powerblanket needed a testing laboratory that met both Canadian and US certification standards. Of the three major Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories mentioned here, Intertek was the clear choice.

While Underwriters Labs strictly adheres to US standards and can couple with Canadian standards, like Intertek, and while CSA is equally supportive of the same expectations in Canada, Powerblanket chose Intertek becuase of how helpful and supportive they are through the certification process. After all, gaining third-party validation from an NRTL isn’t a trite exercise. As is the case with UL and CSA, Powerblanket works with Intertek because of its commitment to quality and safety. All of Powerblanket products have undergone their stringent testing protocols for safety, which means our customers can rest assured they have both an efficient and entirely safe heating solution.

 

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Product Spotlight: 5 Gallon Bucket Heater

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What can you put in a five-gallon bucket? The simple answer is a lot! The use people make of five-gallon buckets is substantial, and it’s not only during the warmer months of the year. If you’re storing temperature-sensitive products in buckets, then you need Powerblanket® 5 Gallon Bucket Heaters.

 

Product Spotlight- 5 Gallon Bucket Heater 1

The Real Cost Savings

Perhaps you’re thinking: how much is it going to cost me to wrap my buckets in a heating solution? It will cost you much less in the long run. If you use band heaters or crank up the ambient temperature around your buckets and pails, then you’re going to lose a lot of energy to inefficiency. With Powerblanket bucket and pail heaters, you get an even distribution of heat without sacrificing efficiency.

Powerblanket bucket heaters are more efficient than the traditional band heater, and they don’t run the risk of overheating or burning the product in your bucket. What’s more, with the Powerblanket solution, you have the ease of use that comes with a thermostatic controller. With our Pro Series heaters, the temperature adjusts from ambient up to 145° F. And with the RR Series, you can adjust the heat anywhere from ambient to 100° F. The Powerblanket solution offers both versatility and flexibility.

 

Product Spotlight- 5 Gallon Bucket Heater 2

Features of Powerblanket® Bucket Heaters:

  • The warmers are easy to install and remove.
  • The full wrap-around design ensures equal heat distribution and proper insulation.
  • The design prevents product waste to temperature-sensitive materials by maintaining consistent storage temperatures.
  • Powerblanket® GreenHeat™ Technology uses less energy and saves you money in the long run.

 

 

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Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories

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Have you ever noticed these strange marks branded on your electronics devices, the marks pictured below that is? If you have, have you ever wondered what they mean? Well, they happened to be the insignias of the three most notable Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories.

 

Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories 1

NRTLs?

NRTLs is simply a shorter way to say Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories. And of those that exist, the three major NRTLs are UL (Underwriters Laboratories), ETL (once ETL Labs –Electrical Testing Laboratories—now the mark of Intertek), and CSA (Canada Standards Association).

All three of these marks represent an independent and globally recognized laboratory dedicated to the safety of technologies. The common thread all these laboratories have is that they test and help regulate the safe implementation of electrical technologies. From computers to the electronics in vehicles, there laboratories have a hand in it all. In fact, if you’re reading this on a mobile device or a laptop, take a second to look underneath the keyboard or on your tablet or phone and see if you can find one of these insignias somewhere embedded in the plastic. Likely case is that you’ll see one of them, if you’re using a reputable product manufactured in the US or Canada, that is.

UL, ETL, and CSA help to ensure that the product in your hands is safe and efficient. In order to land one of these certifications, manufacturers undergo rigorous measures to meet the guidelines of safety and quality set by these laboratories. Some companies and manufacturers choose to work outside of their guidelines, but if they do, they can’t ensure that they are offering their customers a safe and reliable product.

This is why it’s important for consumers to understand the value of a product that harbors one of these stamps of approval. Any product with a UL, ETL, or CSA stamp means that it has undergone the nationally and globally-recognized standards for health, safety, and environmental concerns.  Any electrical product you buy or operate should have one of these marks on it.

 

Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories 2

Powerblanket and Intertek (ETL)

We here at Powerblanket® fully back the efforts of these laboratories and work specifically with Intertek to ensure safety and efficiency in our technology. Powerblanket chooses to work with Intertek because of the compliance they offer for products sold and manufactured in both the US and Canada. (If you look at the logo, the “C” stands for Canada, and the “US” stands for United States). That’s why Powerblanket works through all the qualifications necessary to brand all our products with the ETL mark of approval. Powerblanket engineers know what it takes to makePowerblanket heating solutions both efficient and entirely safe.

Thanks to organizations like Intertek and the others, manufacturers are held accountable for the safety they either do or don’t offer in their products. Powerblanket has always had safety as the primary concern in the production of our standard and custom heating solutions. In other words, Powerblanket offers the safest and most efficient heating blankets on the market.

So from all of us here at Powerblanket, here’s to organizations like Intertek that keep us all a little safer.

 

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Product Spotlight: IBC Tote Heater

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style Tote Heaters

When it comes to storing chemicals and industrial materials during cold weather, you have to make sure you keep your products at an ideal temperature. Many chemicals are particularly sensitive to temperature and require stringent guidelines for storage. That’s why Powerblanket produces a top-of-the-line tote heater.

 

Powerblanket IBC Tote Heater

The Proper Tote Heater

If you’re already familiar with storing chemicals and other temperature-sensitive materials but have never heard of a tote heater (aka IBC heater), then perhaps you’re storing your products in tote or drum ovens. But ovens are pricy and can only hold so many totes. A far more economical option comes by making use of tote heaters (hereafter referred to as IBC heaters).

The proper tote-heating solution comes in the form of a simple vinyl blanket that allows for equal, consistent, and regulated heat distribution. In contrast to an oven, IBC heaters provide an equal amount of heat control, but at a fraction of the cost. However, not all IBC heaters are created equal. The absence of certain features can make or break the product’s efficiency.

One primary characteristic to look for in an IBC heater is a simple electrical plugin. The ability to use a common outlet for your heater is essential for the product to prove convenient. And even more important than this is to have an insulated lid. An IBC heater without an insulated lid won’t work efficiently. This is due to the gap that exists between the support cage and the tank. Without an insulated lid, you will lose a lot of heat through the top of your heater.

 

Powerblanket Insulated Lids

Powerblanket® IBC Heaters

Some manufacturers will sell the lid to their IBCs as an add-on feature, requiring an additional purchase, but all Powerblanket® IBC Heaters come as a complete package—lid included. When you purchase an IBC from Powerblanket, you don’t need to worry about any add-ons, accessories, or additional components. Our IBC heaters are ready to use to their full potential right away. What’s more, only Powerblanket® IBC heaters are equip with our patented technology—offering an even and consistent distribution of heat that is far more efficient than traditional heat trace technology.

 

Powerblanket IBC / Tote Heaters Standout Features:

  • Easy installation
  • Safely heats a wide variety of materials
  • Distributes heat evenly
  • Certified to UL/CSA/CE standards
  • Includes a thermostatic controller to prevent accidental overheating

 

 

Preparing Your Warehouse for Winter

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When the temperature drops, you can end up losing a lot of money to heating an inefficient warehouse. So instead of throwing money away this winter, make sure you prep your warehouse for the cold weather. After all, there are several low-cost actions you can take to make any storage facility more winter friendly.

 

Preparing Your Warehouse for Winter 1

Windows and Doors

One of the main reasons for losing heating efficiency in your warehouse (or any other room for the matter) is due to inadequate insulation around windows and doors. If you have windows in your warehouse, make sure they’re properly insulated. Check for cracks around the paneling, hinges (if they have any), and the glass itself. The same applies to doors, especially the bigger they are. If you’ve experienced high heating costs in the past, you may find this an easy remedy to your problem.

On a separate note, having windows in your warehouse can actually help with heating costs, provided they are properly insulated, of course. This is simply because windows will let in natural light and offer the heat that comes with it. This is especially true with large skylights.

 

From Ceilings to Floors

Here’s another reality to keep in mind. Because hot air rises, the ceiling of your warehouse may be more adequately heated than the floor. In order to solve this problem, make certain you have the proper means in place for good air circulation. In fact, before winter even starts, you should check the status of your heating and duct system to ensure that everything is operating to full efficiency. An old furnace and plugged air ducts can cause as much heat loss as poorly insulated doors and windows.

What’s more, you should segment areas of the warehouse that don’t need as much heat regulation from areas that do. In other words, only heat what needs to be heated. If a certain section of your warehouse is used for storing materials that aren’t in need of temperature regulation, then partition it from the rest of the warehouse and don’t waste any heat on it.

 

Preparing Your Warehouse for Winter 2

Protect Your Storage

Anyone who stores temperature-sensitive products in their warehouse knows how ambient temperatures affect the material stored within the same space. If you need your storage to remain at room temperature, then the air around it is going to need to be even warmer. This could amount to elevated heating costs and a significant yearly investment. But there are few things that can be done to limit this exchange.

To start with, if you’re storing metal containers full of temperature-sensitive material on a cement floor (common in most warehouses) then you are going to lose a lot of heat through the floor. Think about how well cement keeps in the cold and think about well metal transfers temperature. So to help solve this problem, you can keep something between your storage and the floor, such as a wooden board or pallet for example.

Additionally, it would be very wise to insulate your storage against the cold. Wrapping your barrels, drums, totes, and other storage units in a sufficient insulator can help them maintain their temperature without the need for turning up the heat.

 

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6 Ways To Use A Barrel Heater

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If you store materials in barrels or drums have you ever stopped to consider how you can protect them from freezing? Then again, perhaps freeze protection is no real concern of yours, for whatever reason; maybe it doesn’t apply to your circumstances. In this case, you would have no need for barrel or drum heaters, right? Think again. What serves most often as a means for freeze protection also has a myriad of other uses.

 

Barrel Heater

The Barrel Heater: A Versatile Product

So perhaps you’ve determined that you don’t need any barrel heaters for freeze protection. But have you ever stopped to consider what other uses they may have? Barrel heaters, drum heaters, and other like products aren’t used just to keep materials from freezing. Take a look at these six ways to use a barrel heater:

 

  • Melting and Preheating

If you have a product that needs to be brought from a highly-viscous or solid state to a liquid, why bother transferring the product from its storage unit to some melting device? With an adequate barrel heater, you can melt and preheat your product to whatever temperature you need, all the while keeping it in the same barrel you store it in.

  • Temperature Maintenance

Maybe your case isn’t so much a matter of melting or preheating, but a matter of temperature maintenance instead. This is often the case with certain resins and epoxies, even during storage. A drop below ideal temperature could compromise the nature of certain chemicals and other liquids.

  • Viscosity Regulation

This use case is akin to the idea behind melting and preheating your product. If you have a product that needs to remain at a high temperature to avoid becoming too viscous, then you could drastically benefit from a product like a drum heating blanket.

  • Chemical Reaction Enablement

What if you could use your storage barrel or drum for chemical mixtures that need a certain level of heat? Well, you can. Barrel heaters can be very useful in providing heat for chemical reactions.

  • Decontamination

In order for some liquids and resins to keep from becoming contaminated, they have to constantly sit at degrees higher than common room temperature. If this is the case with your product, you can easily accommodate this need through the application of an efficient barrel heater.

  • Freeze Protection

And of course, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention freeze protection as one of the major uses for a barrel heater. If your product will become compromised as the temperature of the ambient air drops, then a barrel heater is a simple solution to your dilemma.

 

Product Spotlight: Bucket Heater

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It’s that time of year again. The cold weather is on its way, if not already here (at least in the northern parts of the Northern Hemisphere), and you have to start worrying about all the product you have stored in buckets. Well, stop worrying. There’s no need to if you have bucket a heater.

 

BH05-Bucket-HeaterPowerblanket® Bucket Heater

Whether you’re storing paint, water, food, or industrial supplies in buckets, those buckets will need to be protected from the cold.  Of course, you can address this problem by keeping your product in a heated warehouse, but if your warehouse is large and you’re storing a lot of product, it’s going to cost a lot to keep the temperature of the ambient air high enough that your buckets don’t drop below their ideal range.

But never mind all of that, Powerblanket® has you covered. With Powerblanket® bucket heaters, you can deliver an even distribution of heat across the entire surface area of each bucket—keeping your product not only protected from freezing, but also at its ideal temperature year round. What’s more, you can set the temperature to whatever you need with the Powerblanket® Pro Series thermostat controller. And all comes at a price that can save you a lot of money in the long run.

 

Powerblanket® Bucket Heater Standout Features:

  • Easy to install and remove
  • Full wrap-around design ensures equal heat distribution
  • Design prevents product waste to temperature-sensitive materials by maintaining consistent storage temperatures
  • Patented technology uses less energy and saves money

 

Bring the Heat!

With Powerblanket® patented technology, you can warm, heat, and protect just about anything from the ravages of cold weather. If you can build it, produce it, or store it, Powerblanket® can cover it.

 

 

Do I Really Need A Custom Heater?

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You may be inclined to ask yourself the question posed as the title of this piece, and it’s a fair question to ask. Some manufacturers offer only standard product lines for heating solutions and you might be wondering whether you should try and make do with them. On the other hand, some manufacturers provide both standard and customized products—offering options that will work specifically for your application.

 

Space heater

Standard vs. Customized

Most of the time, people equate standard products with invariable pricing and low cost. Conversely, people often think that customized products, like a custom heater, are certain to be time consuming to produce and costly to purchase. This preconception is a fair estimation in many cases. But it’s certainly a generalization too, and it may not serve you well when considering the proper solution for your heating needs.

Now, ask yourself these questions: If I can’t find the custom approach I need for my heating problem, what am I doing alternatively? If I’m doing nothing, am I risking the products, assets, or capital I wished I could protect. If I’m using less-than-favorable options for heating are these options costly? Are they safe?

 

A Case for Customization

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, then it would be a good time to assess your approach. Instead of using workarounds like straw and visqueen for insulation, or tarps and space heaters, consider using a product that is made for the job. Ready-to-ship, heating products will work in many instances. But when they don’t, it’s not the end of the road. Think customization.

If you have a unique apparatus or product that needs heating or protection from the cold, and you can’t find a pre-made product to cover it, then you’ll need to go with a customized solution. Find a reputable company that produces customized heating solutions that can be produced in as little as two weeks or less. Applying a custom heating solution that delivers both heating and insulation in one product through an even and regulated distribution of heat will pay for itself in the costs it saves you in no time at all.

 

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5 Ways to Use a Tank Heater

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Storage tanks are used for many different purposes, from large water tanks, to portable frac tanks, to small propane tanks. But in any case, cold weather can pose serious problems to any type of storage tank left to brave the elements alone. Read on to find out how the proper tank heater can help protect your storage and increase the efficiency of your tank.

 

500 pound gas cylinder

  1. Insulation & Temperature Maintenance

Perhaps the most essential element to any tank heating solution is the ability it should have to insulate the tank and help to maintain the proper temperature of whatever is being store in it. However, though insulating qualities are important, they are never enough on their own.

  1. Regulated Heat Application

Even with really good insulation applied to your tank, extreme cold can still affect the temperature of your storage. When mere insulation isn’t enough, a good tank-heating solution will possess the ability of applying heat to the tank in order to keep the temperature of the liquid or whatever is being store in it optimal. But more important than just applying the heat is the need for regulating it. In other words, the proper tank-heating solution will be able to keep the temperature of your storage within a certain range—rather than risking the possibility of overheating it.

 

Powerblanket Tank Heater

  1. Optimize flow

Though tank heating solutions are of considerable value when it comes to protecting your tank against the cold, their usefulness doesn’t stop there. In fact, a good tank-heating solution is equally important for optimizing the flow of viscous liquids—whether during cold weather or not. Keeping your storage at the proper temperature in order to lower a liquid’s viscosity is another major benefit of a tank heater.

  1. Maintaining Pressure

If you’re storing pressurized gas in your tank, then keeping the right pressure is essential to limiting depletion. Cold weather can cause your tank pressure to drop considerably—hindering the flow of your gas and the overall quantity that remains. Apply a heating solution to your tank, however, allows you to maintain the right temperature and thus the proper pressure.

Powerblanket Gas Cylinder Heaters

  1. Freeze Protection

You might be thinking that this matter was addressed in the first part of this post, but a tank-heating solution doesn’t only protect tank storage from freezing during cold weather. It protects against freezing during rapid extraction. If you store highly pressurize gas in your tanks and have the need to extract it quickly, then you know how this process can cause freezing and inevitable depletion in your storage. With a good tank heater, you can keep this from happening.

 

 

Find Out How Much Money You’re Losing to Heating Problems

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Whether you’re in the business of petroleum, wind power, wax, chemicals, construction, railroad, epoxy, spray foam, or some other industry where heating problems are present and freeze protection is a must, you know how much it can cost you if you don’t have the proper solution in place…or do you?

Pipes outdoors in Winter

Heating Costs vs. Heating Problems

Powerblanket® heating products serve a wide variety of industries, and when it comes to the heating problems associated with each, the costs and risks are as varied as the applications themselves. With this in mind, determining how much you might be losing to heating problems becomes a very specific endeavor. Nonetheless, regardless of your industry or heating needs, remember that preventing a problem is always cheaper than attempting to resolve a problem that’s already occurred.

To help illustrate this point, here are some examples of questions you might ask yourself if you’re in the respective industries listed below. If you’re not, then you can imagine what similar questions you might ask for your particular scenario.

 

Oil and Gas Piping

  • If my valves, manifolds, or other instruments freeze, do they become dysfunctional?
  • How much would it cost me to repair a frozen valve, manifold, or other instrument?
  • Are there other assets that could be damaged by a malfunctioning valve or other component?
  • How much would additional damages cost me?
  • Would these potential failures cause significant downtime?
  • How much would it cost me in downtime?

 

Frozen Sidewalk

Construction

  • How much time could I save if my concrete could cure faster and more efficiently?
  • What would be the monetary value of the time I save?
  • How much could it cost to replace concrete that doesn’t cure properly during colder weather?
  • How much downtime would this represent?
  • How much would that downtime cost me?

 

Spray Foam

  • How much more business could I gain if I could keep my spray foam operational during cold weather?
  • What are the costs associated with spray foam that has been damaged by the cold?
  • Could this translate into costly downtime, lost business, and failed business continuity? If so, what how much could it cost me?

 

Workers Spraying Foam Insulation

The Solution

From examples such as these, you can see that there is a lot at stake when you consider the adverse effects of cold weather. This is why heating solutions and freeze protection for such industries have been around for a while now. However, traditional forms of heating and freeze protection, while still better than risking the value of your materials and time, have often been a bit expensive—or else ineffective.

Powerblanket®, on the other hand, offers economical, effective, and easy to use heating products that can keep anything safe from the debilitating effects of winter. With Powerblanket®, you can rest assured that your investment in our products is well worth the cost-saving results you gain from it. After all, none of your valuable assets should be left out in the cold. Cover your bases with Powerblanket®

 

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Everything You Need to Know about Class 1 Division 2 and Powerblanket®

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When working in a Class 1 Division 2 hazardous location, the idea of a heating element usually brings more concern than comfort. That’s why Powerblanket® produces products that are Class I Div. 2 certified and entirely safe for the industries we serve.

 

Everything You Need to Know about Class I Div. 2 and Powerblanket® 1

Class I Division 2 and You

If the title of this article caught our interest, perhaps it’s because you already know a thing or two about Class I Division 2 certification, or maybe it’s a new term to you. Either way, here follows a general breakdown:

Hazardous locations are defined by the risks that are present. Some of the most common risks to property and person account for damage or injury through fire, explosion, electrocution, and other similar causes. Based on stipulations outlined by the NEC (standing for National Electrical Code) hazardous locations are defined by certain categories, or classes, and divisions.

Class I (and that’s a Roman-numeral one) is made up of risks posed by gases, vapors, and liquids, Class II is dusts of any sort, and Class III accounts for fibers and flyings. So in the case of a CID2 environment, we’re talking gases, vapors, and liquids that could be potentially dangerous. How dangerous is answered by the division with which the area is coded.

There are two divisions that define a classification under the NEC. If an area is classed under Division 1 (and they use Arabic numerals on this part) it means that the materials onsite are normally explosive and hazardous. Conversely, if an area is classed under Division 2, it means that the materials present are not in a flammable or explosive form in most cases but that they could become flammable or explosive by accident. Now, combing the class and division in CID2 means that the area has gases, vapors, and/or liquids present that could become flammable or explosive by accident but are not under normal circumstances.

 

Everything You Need to Know about Class I Div. 2 and Powerblanket® 2

Powerblanket® and the Industries We Serve

Powerblanket® serves the freeze-protection and heating needs of many industries—such as the construction, chemicals, wax, oil and gas, railroad, spray foam, wind power, and epoxy industries to name several. Keeping in mind that many of the customers we serve have to deal with potentially hazardous locations and situations, Powerblanket® custom designs Class I Div. 2 (CID2) certified products to meet its customer needs. So if you need heating solutions for your industry, Powerblanket® is the right choice, even if there are potential hazards involved.

 

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