2 Key Benefits of Self Regulating Heat Cable over Constant Wattage


Many homes in Park City and the surrounding area have heat cable installed to eliminate ice dam problems and to prevent ice buildups in gutter systems. Not every home has the same type of heat cable installed though.

When companies and homeowners install heat cable on a home, they can choose between self-regulating heat cable and constant wattage heat cable.

The type of cable that is installed on a home will have noticeable impacts on the overall quality of the system.

in this article, we will look at the advantages of having self-regulating heat cable installed on your home instead of constant wattage heat cable.

1. Improved Durability and Warranties

One of the main differences between constant wattage heat cable and self-regulating heat cable is manufacturing quality.

Most consumer grade heat tape that you can buy at store’s like Home Depot is constructed to be replaced every couple of years.

The coating and protective layers have shown to not last the test of time and our harsh Utah winters.

Most self-regulating heat cable is made for the commercial application. Because of this, the protective coatings and layers are much thicker and more durable.

The improved construction of self-regulating heat cable makes the cable more durable than constant wattage heat cable.

The durability is also reflected in the increase product warranties offered on premium self-regulating heat cable like Raychem.

Raychem offers a 10-year product warranty on their cable vs. most constant wattage cables 1 to 3-year product warranties.

2. Reduced Operating Costs

One of the great things about self-regulating heat cable is its ability to reduce the amount of power it is drawing as the temperature warms up. Self-regulating cable is made up by two wires that have a conductive layer separating them.

This conductive layer changes with the temperature; the colder it is, the more conductive and more power it will draw, and the warmer it is, the less conductive it becomes.

This layer runs the length of the entire cable and can operate differently throughout the cable. Meaning that one area could be drawing more power than another if it were covered by ice.

The ability of self-regulating heat cable to vary the power that it draws makes it operational costs lower than constant wattage heat cable.

As the name implies, constant wattage heat cable draws a consistent amount of power when it is turned on. That means that while many constant wattage cable brands draw less power at any given time; when you add the total time that your cable will be running during the winter constant wattage heat cable ends up consuming more electricity.

Randy Jimenez