The TUTCO difference
Since its inception in 1978, TUTCO has been and continues to be the leading innovator in the electric open coil heating industry. TUTCO has accomplished this leadership role by ensuring that its technical development efforts and sales effort are coordinated with marketplace needs. Through this coordination the development staff at TUTCO are able to continually create systems to best meet customer and market needs. TUTCO’s development staff has been able to directly communicate with customers and have even been part of customer development teams that are responsible for creating new customer products incorporating open coil electric heat. This intimate knowledge of the industry have allowed TUTCO’s development personnel to create innovative systems that have enhanced the entire open coil heating industry. Over its 30 plus year history, TUTCO personnel have concentrated upon creating developments that improve the product life, product safety of its offerings to the industry. As a result TUTCO’s development group has brought new heating element alloys innovative heating element support ceramics to the marketplace. As a result of its development efforts TUTCO holds over 30 US and foreign patents relating to the open coil heating element industry.
TUTCO Heating Solutions Group is committed to doing our part to positively impact the environment by limiting the negative effects human activity has on the world around us. The world has seen a shift to sustainability, especially in engineering, manufacturing, construction, and energy acquisition. In this month’s Feature Video, TUTCO Vice President Dane Owen talks about TUTCO’s efforts to tackle sustainability in the materials we use and the products we produce. As TUTCO continues to help customers improve their products and processes through electrification, we will continue to champion sustainability through innovation and green technology.
Research & Development
We have the most comprehensive development and testing lab in the industry. Our cutting-edge facility can determine the durability of an element design, analyze material and production costs, and test and qualify new materials, all while providing our customers with cost-effective solutions that meet their performance requirements. TUTCO is capable of running all tests required for UL and other key certifications, but we are also able to evaluate alternative designs to determine which one best meets our customer requirements.
Our staff works with you to ensure that your design development is well-supported and as efficient as possible. As a result, our engineers have developed designs from start to production in as little as six weeks. And since we custom-design to our customers’ specs, our end products are characterized by functional integrity, performance and cost-efficiency.
Due to its understanding of the open coil heating element market TUTCO realized there was the need for a heating element material that could be made into open coil resistance wire that could be used in heater design to create products that would be safer. The safer designs would be less susceptible to the heating element coil deflecting under the high temperatures generated in use (referred to as gravitational movement, sag or form stability). TUTCO approached its heating element wire supplier and laid out the requirements for a new alloy. A development effort between TUTCO and the wire supplier ensued with TUTCO taking the lead in establishing the requirements of the new alloy and in determining the characteristics of the new alloy in applications. Over the period of the ensuing decade following TUTCO’s proposal, a new alloy was developed and approved for TUTCO in its open coil heaters. Heaters designed with this new alloy exhibited heater coils that exhibited less gravitational movement in application than the predecessor element materials resulting in safer operation. Further as well as being used in new designs, the new alloy could be substituted one for one for the predecessor material in existing heating element designs. This meant customers did not have to go through extensive test routines to approve heaters made with the new alloy. The new alloy used less critical materials than the predecessor element alloy thus it could be produced at a lesser cost than the predecessor material.
Resistance Wire Evaluation High Temperature Test
A combination of specialized alloys creating NXT wire as tested by TUTCO’s R&D shows proof to have equal or better performance than N60 and far superior performance than N40
TUTCO also realized a need for an innovative heating element support ceramic for support heating element coils having coil diameters smaller than the diameters that are supported by its “Arrowhead Insulator”. The ceramics that were standard in the industry for supporting the smaller diameter coils as noted above could not be assembled onto metal support frames using automation. These insulators were commonly referred to as round bushing insulators. A further complication was that those vendors supplying round bushing insulators were raising the round bushing insulator price in an attempt to recover escalating costs for the special manufacturing processes required by the ceramic part. TUTCO’s development group set about the task of creating a replacement insulator for the round bushing insulator that could manufactured by the ceramic suppliers using conventional ceramic manufacturing processes as well as be able to automatically assembled the resultant part into its metal support structures. Thus the Flat Bushing Replacement insulator and associated support clips resulted. The innovation was awarded a US patent as it represented an innovative way of attaching the metal clip. Also, the insulator could be assembled in such a fashion to prevent short paths to ground, which is an unacceptable condition in open coil heating element design.
The Highest Standards
Tutco techniques incorporate Six Sigma and Lean to ensure product quality, and have resulted in zero defects for many of our customers over multiple quarters. Tutco has also earned Outstanding Quality awards and Certified Supplier status from the largest home appliance and air conditioning manufacturers in the world.