Designing GutterMelt Systems

When planning a Heat Tracing system for your home or business, it is important to consider all of the factors to ensure you purchase the correct quality and quantity of components. Let’s take a look at the information and decisions needed to design a GutterMelt self regulating roof deicing system.

First, the cable selection must be made. Warmquest carries GutterMelt in both 120 and 240/208/277 volt options, the appropriate voltage for your project should be selected. Generally 240V power allows for longer lengths of cable to be installed per circuit.

In addition to voltage, the heating output should be considered. GutterMelt is a self regulating cable, meaning the heat output adjusts based on ambient air temperature. Warmquest offers 2 different heating outputs, both measured in the watts per foot generated at 32 degrees Fahrenheit in water. Our 9W cable is suitable for many residential installations, while the 12W is a great fit for colder climates and commercial projects.

Once you have selected a cable, a decision on how it will be powered should be made. While a hard wired connection may be tidier, many homeowners may opt to have a plug installed at the end of the cable for ease of use and installation. If a plug is selected, the outlet and plug need to match the voltage of cable used. Ground Fault protection will be required, this can be integrated into the plug assembly or provided at the circuit to meet code requirements.

To plan the appropriate amount of heat tape, the locations for installation will need to be selected and measured. Gutters and downspouts are easily measured for lengths, when installing in downspouts consideration should be made as to whether the cable will use a “T Kit” to send a single cable down the spout or if a loop down the spout back up to the gutter will be made. This will determine the number of T Kits and Downspout Brackets needed.

Eaves and valleys are commonly heated as well. When planning for these spaces, Warmquest recommends the cables be extended up the roof beyond the interior wall. With the length of the space and the height up the roof our team can calculate the cable needed for effective coverage. This will also take into account the spacing between the zig zag pattern of cable which typically runs from 18”-24”.

Once the lengths needed are determined, our team can design the system and identify the correct number and size of circuits for the project. This will determine what other components are needed for connections. GutterMelt can be activated in several ways. We’ve already discussed plugs, but there are dozens of switches and sensors that can operate the heat tracing cable based on temperature, snowfall, and other factors. Warmquest’s experts can help you identify the best options for your project based on usage and the icing issues being addressed.

Lastly, the system will need to be attached to the roof. Based on your roofing material (asphalt shingles, metal, etc), your Warmquest salesperson can identify the most suitable selection of clips or adhesives for anchoring the system to the roof.

Contact us today for a complimentary quote and learn more about how GutterMelt can help you manage ice dams and other winter woes.

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