Heat Tape

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Old 03-17-06, 11:29 AM
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Heat Tape

Ok, not sure if this is under the right forum but I thought this is probably a fairly easy question for someone? I live in a trailer and am getting very tired of my pipes freezing up. Ok, there is some heat tape clearanced at Walmart for like $8. It's only like 12 foot lengths and has the thermostat and 110 plug in on it. My question is, how would I plug in all the 12 foot lenths that I would need safely under my trailer? I 'm almost positive they don't plug into each other? Thanks in advance, Jack
 
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Old 03-17-06, 12:08 PM
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The proper way is to run a receptacle to each location where you need to plug in a unit. Make the receptacle switched and mount the switch in a convenient location.

Depending on the power requirements for each unit and the number of units you plan to use, you will need more than one circuit.
 
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Old 03-17-06, 12:26 PM
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raychem makes a far better product then what is at wal mart. depending on the length or how many circuits you need you can buy the heat trace to any footage you want and use it without a splice. they also have splice and tee kits if needed, end fittings, box entry fittings. you can by a whip that splices to the heat trace and plugs in to an outlet and it includes a gfpe which is required. or it can be hard wired to a box where the power is and a switch for disconnect but then you would need a gfpe breaker. i cant picture wal mart selling anything of quality and i dont shop there. the last thing you want to do is have 12 foot lengths all over the place. i forgot the actual number but a 15 or 20 amp circuit can handle many feet of heat trace. different heat traces have different ratings of watts/foot.
 
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Old 03-17-06, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by tach
raychem makes a far better product then what is at wal mart. depending on the length or how many circuits you need you can buy the heat trace to any footage you want and use it without a splice. they also have splice and tee kits if needed, end fittings, box entry fittings. you can by a whip that splices to the heat trace and plugs in to an outlet and it includes a gfpe which is required. or it can be hard wired to a box where the power is and a switch for disconnect but then you would need a gfpe breaker. i cant picture wal mart selling anything of quality and i dont shop there. the last thing you want to do is have 12 foot lengths all over the place. i forgot the actual number but a 15 or 20 amp circuit can handle many feet of heat trace. different heat traces have different ratings of watts/foot.
Thanks everyone! I did see some heat tape at a hardware store that was sold by the foot. Just wasn't sure how good it was where it doesn't have a thermostat. But, I could just shut it off in the warmer weather! Thanks again!!! Jack
 
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Old 03-17-06, 03:35 PM
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Never use heat tape that doesn't have a thermostat. I'm curious why you need so much. The only vulnerable section of pipe should be the one between the water connection and the home and it shouldn't be that long. The rest of the pipes should be above the insulation where they will stay warm. Do you have skirting on? Is all the insulation in place on the bottom of the home?

The plug used for this doesn't have to be switched (but it wouldn't hurt). The built in thermostat will only run the tape when it's needed. You can unplug it in the summer if desired. Don't overlap the tape anywhere and be sure to wrap everything well with fiberglass insulation (follow the manufacturer's directions).

Doug M.
 
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Old 03-17-06, 11:43 PM
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Originally Posted by dougm
The only vulnerable section of pipe should be the one between the water connection and the home and it shouldn't be that long.
Well, yeah, in Texas.
Around here even drain lines can freeze. When it's -20F outside with 30 mph wind, a little furnace in a 12'-wide trailer probably can't stop frost from forming on the walls.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 05:18 PM
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bolide, My experience with mobile homes comes from many cold days spent with my uncles (thawing people's pipes) at their trailer park in eastern PA. A properly set up mobile home with skirting and insulation should not have problems with freezing pipes. The only section that needs heat tape is the one between the water connection in the ground and the home, and the mobile home should be set in such a way that it minimizes this distance. The key is usually the skirting which many people seem to think is optional. Even one section out of place will cause endless problems with freezing. Every new tenant seemed to have to ignore my uncles' instructions for set up for the first winter. After that they usually never had a problem again.

Doug M.
 
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Old 03-19-06, 08:45 PM
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I want to let you know that most mobile home do have a outlet below of it and it will be near the water pipe inent area and gernally it will be proteced with GFCI device useally founded in bathroom et the other thing is the heat tape i used for mobile home they are " self regulated heat tape"

just dont buy very cheap heat tape it will not work with both copper or plastic pipe at all.

i did see few busted pipes due using wrong heat tape so just watch out with it.

make a habit every fall just before frezzing temp you can tell if heat tape is working is feeling it. it should be luke warm not cold at all.

Merci, Marc
 
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