How to prevent cartridge heater failure and extend heater life

September 4, 2018

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Premature failure of cartridge heaters can occur either when the heat generated in the internal resistance wire is not efficiently dissipated or when moisture or foreign substance seeps inside the protective sheath, creating a short circuit. Inadequate heat dissipation results in an elevated internal temperature, which can rapidly deteriorate the heating element. This can occur when machined tolerances are outside of an accepted range, if the watt density is too high or when powered by an incorrect supply voltage.


Download the report and learn more about causes of cartridge heater failure in our downloadable report on preventing cartridge heater failure.


Topics in the report include:

  • Cartridge heater Fit
  • Moisture or Ingress
  • Incorrect Watt Density
  • Incorrect Supply Voltage


We also cover Cartridge Heater Watt density selection and thermal cycling. We have also included forumulas to estimate cartridge heater life based on internal wire temerature as well as empirical guidelines for cartridge heater life.


Ignorning thermal requirements can lead to limitations and obstacles that inhibit device functionality and manufacturabilty. With over 65 years, Backer Hotwatt is an industry leader dedicated to the design and manufacture of resistive heating elements for OEMs. Backer Hotwatt provides heating solutions for a wide range of industries including industrial, medical, commercial, aviation, refridgeration/air conditioning and military applications.


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