oil filled electric radiator
solarvic Solar Expert Posts: 1,071 ✭✭✭✭
Can anyone answer my question? I have an oil filled electric radiator I use at times I want to burn off my excess electric. There is a thermal disk fuse that is blown. Been looking for a new one but don,t know what high limit temp I could use. Thinking about 180 degree F. Does that sound about right? It looks a lot like the one I put in my friends electric cloths dryer. When that blows on a dryer it will not turn out. The appliance dealer told me a lot of dryers get junked when that is all that is wrong. Imput would be appreciated.
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This is one common type:
One guy said his was set to 167C -- Sounds pretty hot. Your best bet is to see if you can read the number off of the device.
Around $1.11 from Newark (if link works).
If you cannot read the ratings--Don't guess. I would hate to read about the results if you guess wrong.
I think anything hotter than 140F would be enough to get a burn from.
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"normal" hot water boiler temp is ~180f, so hot water radiators might run that hot. Nowadays with modern condensing boilers, they are designing around a 140f range for condensing efficiency. So some where in that range should be about right.
In general, "oil filled" electric heaters don't get "hot". Instead of being like a small heater that needs to get quite hot, the oil filled units have a relatively large surface area that gets warm, not hot, which is great for a home with children.
Those are the same thermo fuses a Kill a Watt meter has in them to limit current over time. Are they used to protect the unit from a excess current draw over time ? If it's that, they would not have much to do with the temperature of the heater it's self, but used because of the heating element being submerged in oil as a fail safe.
The Kill A Watt will handle 1500W, but > 1300 W over time will blow it on a heating element. Been there , done that.
No, it's a click type bi-metal disc that makes and breaks contact as it's temp rises and falls. Normally they re-close on temp falling to a safe level. But as the OP states, his is "blown". I suspect that means it's either not re-closing mechanically, or it's contacts are burned so bad there's no electrical contact. As the OP stated, they are very common in clothes dryers etc.
From reading through my first link, it appears that the device only trips on its temperature.
A combination of ambient temperatures and any heat from electrical connections/splices are what the device is calibrated for.
There is no rating for tripping at a specific current level. And they appear to be rated to break at operating current, and do not support any surge current (i.e., if you need over current protection, a separate fuse/breaker is needed in the circuit).
If exposed to too much current, they can weld shut, or worse.
Got you now, the disk type is available everywhere from 95° to 400° for less than $10. Furnaces use them for fan and limit. I was pulled into BB's post. I use one for the fan in my battery box.
The one I pointed at is a "one time" use device. Over heat, permanently opens.
There are many "simple/cheap" snap action switches--But for many uses, they have a very wide temperature range between "trip" and "reset" and may not be a good use for places where you are trying to keep the temperature in a narrower range (20F or larger reset range).
If you need a tighter range (5F to 2F or so), then you need a true "thermostat".
These one time Thermal Fuses are quite common, and are there to protect against FIREs. Almost always these units fail when something else breaks, like a Thermostat. Typically, if one were to replace this thermal fuse with a new one, it, too, will open, as there is something else wrong.
These fuses are often the reason that Coffee Makers stop working ... the main thermostat welds in the ON position, causes overheating, and the thermal fuse opens. Replace that fuse with the correct new one, and it, too opens, as the main thermostat is stuck ON.
My opinions, Vic
It is a snap fuse that is normaly closed and is supposed to melt internaly if a set temperature is exceded. That is to backup the thermostat if the thermostat fails and stays on. I connected the 2 wires together that connected to the thermal switch and the heater and thernistat seemed to work OK but I do not want to use it that way without the snap disk backup. It has a 150 in it and I think that might be the temperature. Them heaters get hot enough that you couldn,t keep your hand on them for long but I do not think you would get burned if you momentarily touch it. Thanks for the replies. I will check them out. Solarvic