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Infra red tube heaters

Wayco Wayne_2
Wayco Wayne_2 Member Posts: 2,479
I've been asked to heat a small airplane hanger. It's about 5000 sq ft with 16 foot high ceilings. I remember working on some infra red tube heaters in car service bays years ago. Are they a good reliable product? Who sells them?


  • tim smith
    tim smith Member Posts: 2,501
    edited November 2010
    Re: infrared tube heaters

    Roberts Gordon / Coray vac.  I have another name in my head that we just had new tube delivered 2 days ago for. One of the main players in the game. Based out of florida. Why? I don't know. I will be at office in about 1 hr if you want to call and I could give you the name. Tim 206-283-1239  Found it! Spaceray, good product.
  • Brad White
    Brad White Member Posts: 2,393
    I agree with Tim,

    Co-Ray-Vac is our office standard, not that we design too many warehouses. But in general, there are two types, the vacuum type (Co-Ray-Vac being one) in which the entire system is under negative pressure up to the vacuum blower. The others are more of a natural/forced draft type, with combustion products more or less "pushed", but terminate with a slight negative draft, often via AGA mushroom caps.

    The vacuum types cost more and are more suited to larger systems, sharing a common trunk with several zone branches for example. The Co-Ray-Vac in particular lends itself to custom designs. What I like about these is superior control. By varying the vacuum, you can keep one or two burners out of several, "on" and stage on the others as needed. This prevents the chill/warm/chill pattern of on-off or staged burner firing.

    The natural draft types tend to come in fixed sizes, right out of the catalog. For these we often specify Re-Verber-Ray, a brand from Detroit Radiant. Some have two firing rates. These cost significantly less than the vacuum styles. Still, Low-High-Off is better than on-off, so go for dual firing rates when you can.

    Some tips:

    1. If possible, duct in your combustion air right to the unit. You cannot control what is in the space in terms of solvents, cleaners and the like. Keep chlorides out, that is the idea. But also not to impose the combustion air load as unwanted parasitic ventilation, if that matters.

    2. Seek special coatings, porcelain is common, if the environment is corrosive.

    3. Watch your heights. Don't blister the paint of planes or vehicles.

    4. Controls- if these run by thermostat, I favor the vacuum style for reasons stated above. The staged or on-off ones, sometimes those are run manually as a baseline with other interior heaters filling in. When they cycle off, man, it gets cold in there fast.
    "If you do not know the answer, say, "I do not know the answer", and you will be correct!"

    -Ernie White, my Dad
  • HDE
    HDE Member Posts: 225
    2 brands

    Roberts Gordon is out of Buffalo, NY, Space-ray out of North Carolina, Charlotte I think

    Both great manufacturers.

    Co-Ray-Vac, is a type or model which is a system that typically incorporated multiple burners and exhaust ventilators throughout the continuous serpentine installation. Both companies make great straight and u-tube hi and low intensity units.
  • clammy
    clammy Member Posts: 2,896
    chek for hanger approval

    hello wayne ,i would want to be certain that they are approved to be used in a airplane hanger ,i have seen them in airraft type hangers that where used for other purposes and have replaced hanging steam coils in hangers that where still be used as hangers never installed tube heaters or infra red heaters in a air plane hanger maybe things have changed but when the hanging steam coil heaters die at a small local airport we do some service at we are told to replace them with simalar equiptment ,also make sure that they won,t damage the paint jobs (big bucks) Don't mean to sound hard just fiqured i would put that out to you peace and good luck clammy
    R.A. Calmbacher L.L.C. HVAC
    NJ Master HVAC Lic.
    Mahwah, NJ
    Specializing in steam and hydronic heating
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