How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Phil Your Own Question
Phil, Mechanical Engineer
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 8768
Experience:  Retired HVAC/ Electrical & Boiler contractor. Industrial
Type Your HVAC Question Here...
Phil is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Phil - Are you familiar with the heatrex product line?

This answer was rated:

Phil - Are you familiar with the heatrex product line?
Welcome to Just Answer!.

I will stay with you until the situation resolves.
I hold questions open after positive ratings to allow for unlimited follow up.

These products come and go from the market, and change every few years as well.. I have worked with hundreds of them in my 52 years in the business as a contractor and systems design engineer and consultant... I work from a basic understanding and extensive experience with the physics.

Tell me what the problem is with Heatrex if you like, we can go from there,

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I want to understand the product reputation and what portion of the market it serves.

Hello again, looking at their web page it is apparent that they are an industrial specialty manufacturer. Very few engineers will know all of these specialty manufacturers and those that do will have limited experience with just one or two jobs as a rule.


A company does not survive however in that market unless they are competent, and honest... that market segment tends to attract high quality people.

The bad companies in this business tend to be in the residential market selling light weight, inexpensively built equipment...

Heatrex products are industrial quality. The chances you be hurt by a company like that are slim.

However your engineering and specification to them need to be accurate in order for them to build the heating element or heat exchanger you need... ideally you will run the heater well above its minimum flow rate to avoid edies and hot spots in the heating element. And you will need good controls to kill power to the heating element as it approaches 80% of its maximum operating range.

The materials selected for the heaters need to be compatible with the fluids being heated...and the reliability of the design needs to comport with the damages and costs related to the heating element failure. (all systems fail sooner or later).

If you can tell me a bit about what you are heating and to what temperatures and which flow rate and how much the flow rate varies from minimum to maximum flow rate I can give you a better feel.


These custom build companies can easily be 2 to 3 times more expensive than a standard off the shelf heating element... if you can use an off the shelf heater you will save money.

Let me know more about your need, fluids being heated, and budget constraints. We can go from there. I will keep working with you until you get the answers you need. As long as you rate my ongong remarks positively I will hold the question open.

Phil and other HVAC Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

What types of engineers would use this product and how often would the product be specified for commercial construction?

Hello again, thanks for the positive rating!

Mechanical engineers specify this kind of equipment, sometimes chemical engineers.

Generally commercial construction uses mass produced equipment, not these custom built sorts of equipment.

It is industrial manufacturing, food processing and military projects that tend to use this kind of equipment.... I tend to be a bit exotic in some of my larger commercial designs and will occasionally specify a specialty item such as those this company builds.... useful in retrofit projects mostly. Generally not in new construction, where complete packages of equipment are most common..all made to bolt together and using compatible controls etc.

If you were going to advertise this product (or any product) , you would search the files for who bought the equipment, and advertise to those markets in those industry trade journals for instance.

Let me know more about your purpose for asking the question and I can be more specific.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Purpose is background information for an interview discussion.

Hello again,

Sales is a primary interest of these sorts of companies.

Offering applications engineering assistance is one of the key ways a company can get its equipment specified into a project or some other companies limited production line... the company probably offers some sort of applications engineering assistance now... but that can always be upgraded into a better more advanced range of free services.

For that they need to hire or train progressively more innovative sales engineering staff.

.... especially applications engineering that gives the client engineering firm or
on-site engineers some kind of advantage they can brag about... such as calculation sheets showing lower heating element temperatures that will extend the product life cycle.

One thing I have not seen done, but could be done is CAD drawings and calculation sheets done for the client, that have the customers name and/or logo in the title block as the design engineer... so that the clients engineer or manager can flash those drawings around, and put them in his proposal as his own work (and it is, to the extent that he assisted in the selection)... this would work well with lower level plant engineering people who don't have the skills themselves to produce such work.

The company can also bundle its current line of products with those of other manufacturers, such as temperature controllers and pumps etc to make the clients engineering job easier. It can sell its products already mounted on frame in stand alone operating modules. That has been a very successful approach for a few companies. (such notions can be seen as radical to some companies so have to presented gingerly.... those companies who do not constantly change and adapt will have a hard time staying in business however.).

Complete stand alone packages solve all sorts of problems for todays often not so skilled engineers, and allow the firm you are in discussions with to increase its profit margins.

The terms for such practices are 'aggregating, bundling, and modular systems'

You will not go wrong researching those terms.

Stay in touch as you need to. There are no time limits here. Thanks for the excellent rating.