Radiant Tube Heater Tips
From contributor S:
I am currently in my second shop with radiant tube heaters. We installed them originally for code compliance, but the quality of heat and the fuel savings easily pay for themselves in five years. Radiant creates a heat sink in the floor and the objects in your shop. Open the bay door and close it an hour later and everything will still be warm to the touch and the shop will feel warm much quicker. Also, it is quiet and no dust is blown around.
Both times I have used Superior Radiant Products. They are a Canadian supplier. Another supplier is Schwank, a German firm. SRP has a much more elaborate reflector, whereas Schwank is just half a hexagon. This gets more heat to the floor, apparently. Be sure to use a good installer. Mine were hung on jack chain and vibrated until I replaced it with welded chain, as per the instructions. I also added turnbuckles to get them perfectly level and in line. When that pipe heats up, it expands, so if it is not hung level, it will start bridging supports and vibrating. Also, make sure you get the right number of BTU's. Like with AC, bigger is not better. If they are too big, they will not cycle enough and you will feel either too hot or too cold.
From contributor J:
I have a Sterling unit. I have a two story shop. The second story is an observation mezzanine and retail sales area. It is a historic building, not insulated, and the150,000 BTU unit has been fantastic. 84,000 cubic feet to heat. I could not be happier. Work benches warm, floor warm, equipment warm. I set it on 58 and do not touch it. Very comfortable.
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