Voltage Controlled Infrared Heater

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Eddie_T

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Here's a photo showing my quartz heater emitting a constant glow on one tube. I set the heater's controller to max and use a Chinese voltage controller to get a constant glow at the level I choose.

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ajaynejr

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Does the heater make a distinct although not necessarily loud click when it kicks on or kicks off as you slowly turn the termperature knob back and forth (manually) with or without the heater plugged in?

If not then the heater may be one of the few models that does not have a snap action thermostatic controller. This makes for a longer arc at every kick on and every kick off and more internal wear and tear. For this the external voltage controller may make sense.

Or do you notice more even room heat with the external voltage controller in use?

Otherwise the external voltage controller, even a cheap Chinese model, is an unnecessary expense item.

Except for the situation I mentioned, resistance electric space heaters do not need voltage regulators let alone regulators that anticipate and/or second guess the heater's behavior to reduce the need for the heater to kick itself on or off.

That said, I have made "portable thermostats" in the form of an "extension cord" (of suitable amperage) with a box in the middle holding the line voltage wall thermostat. The purpose was to operate an electric space heater whose controller had failed (stuck on) for the above discussed reason.
 
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Eddie_T

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I wanted a quartz tower heater but they all seemed to use the snap (off/on) thermostats. IMO a snap thermostat defeats the purpose of an infrared heater by operating it as a space heater.

When I saw the heater on sale for $15 I knew it was time to experiment. I first took a burner out of my cooktop and wired the heater in. That didn't work as the simmerstat depends on the mass of the element to smooth the heating cycle.
I looked on aliexpress.com and found the voltage controller for less than $10. It serves as an infinite heat control, I rotate the heater snap thermostat to the max position, select one tube operation and adjust the voltage controller for the amount of constant heat I want by the glow of the tube. I keep room temp at 68°F with the heater illuminating my easy chair and all is well.

As a side benefit I suspect the quartz tube will last much longer w/o the element stress of the off/on cycling. Plus I have a built in spare tube. Should that tube ever fail I will switch the heater to select both tubes and the other tube will operate.
 

Eddie_T

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When I think of infrared I invariably recall the Amish infrared heater scam which must have peaked and now be on the downslope. Or maybe gullible herd immunity ws achieved. I haven’t seen any ads or infomercials this season. The heaters were hyped as infrared but the tubes were imprisoned in a box, used to heat a magic copper heat sink and the heat was fan forced out of the box. Unfortunately I had some friends that fell for the scam. I have noticed that they don’t use them anymore.
 

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