What is a PTC heating element? And other FAQs
February 6, 2022 at 7:00 AM
What is a PTC heating element? And other FAQs

You might have heard of a PTC heating element and wondered what it is, how it works, and what it’s made of. At Sisler Companies, we specialize in component services for PTC heating elements. You can learn more about the components for these heating elements as well as the answer to the burning question, “What is a PTC heating element?”

What does PTC mean?

PTC stands for “Positive Temperature Coefficient,” which is a reference to the resistance that it takes to put enough energy into an object before it starts to feel like it’s heating up, then displays an increase in electrical resistance. When it comes to making a heating element, the electrical resistance is essential because it means that as energy is pumped into the material, there’s a decreased risk of the electricity continuing to flow into the heating element and overheating it. Instead, the current is maintained and warms the ceramic material used in the heating element more efficiently.

How does it work?

Traditional heaters radiate heat directly from heating coils to warm the oxygen around them. Electricity continues to flow into the heating elements as long as it’s turned on, which can lead to overheating and fires. PTC heating elements use barium titanate as a conductor to get electricity flowing through ceramic stones, which are heated as a result. Ceramic is a material that prevents the flow of electricity as it heats up, so the stones will never overheat and cause problems with whatever materials happen to be nearby.

How durable are PTC heating elements?

PTC heating elements are made from materials that can withstand high levels of abuse. Everything from bending to chemical exposure to water, your heating element will continue to function properly. What’s more, PTC heaters typically run cooler than other heating elements that use wires, so the materials aren’t exposed to extreme conditions that can cause premature corrosion or other damage.

Why is it better than other heating elements?

Ultimately, the greatest benefit of using a PTC heating element is that it’s safer than other options. You can also enjoy uniform heating, energy efficiency, greater durability, and no controls. Your heating unit will uniformly heat as electricity flows into the ceramic stones, so you can enjoy equal distribution of heat without having to locate “hot spots.” A PTC heater self-regulates, so you never have to worry about it running too long or messing with controls. Each heater is designed to withstand harsh conditions without damaging the materials. Ceramic materials have been used throughout history and proven to be resistant to chemical or natural erosion.

Are PTC heaters safer than other options?

PTC heating elements are safer than comparable options primarily because of their built-in self-regulation. As we previously established, the ceramic stones used in the heater become resistant to electric conductivity as they get hotter. A radiator heater many homes have in them will turn on until either the air around it reaches a specific temperature, or it’s turned off. You could have a fire hazard on your hands if you forget to turn it off. Your PTC heater will never reach this point because it will essentially shut itself down if it gets too hot.

Get in touch for more

You can get more answers to “What is a PTC heating element?” and other questions by reaching out to us at Sisler Companies. We’re specialists in component services and can help you get the parts that you need for PTC heating elements. Contact us today by calling 740-777-6560 or sending a message using our online contact form.

We look forward to working with you.