Traditional Relays Fail
Kilns have long been designed and built with traditional, mechanical relays. These relays are fairly inexpensive, they work reasonably well and are easy enough to design into control systems. Not to mention they provide a steady relay replacement business.
The problem is that mechanical relays fail. When they fail the kiln is down and so is your work.
Simply by their nature, mechanical relays fail. It's a given and it's expected. They usually fail when you need the kiln the most and they're not much fun to replace. Kiln owners have been putting up with this for decades.
Solid State Relays Don't Fail
Starting in 2016, Evenheat kilns are offered (as an option) with solid state relays instead of mechanical relays. A solid state relay is a semiconductor and has no moving parts which means nothing to wear out and nothing to replace, ever. We firmly believe that our solid state design will last the life of the kiln.
And that's not even the best part!
Unlike the mechanical relay, a solid state relay can be turned on and off very quickly, much faster than a mechanical relay could ever dream of. This translates into very precise temperature control as temperature adjustments can be made within fractions of a second. This type of temperature control resolution is not available using mechanical relays.
Solid state relays can also be turned on and off precisely when the AC voltage is at Zero (which happens 120 times a second in North America). It's called "Zero Crossing" and this keeps the solid state relay running cool. An unintended and very healthy consequence of this Zero Crossing is that heating elements love to be turned on and off at Zero volts as well. They show this love by lasting longer. It's a win, win.
There's more to our Quiet Drive design than simply dropping in a different relay and calling it good. It's a complete system that takes physical and load factors into account.
We position our solid state relays as low as possible on the exterior of the control enclosure for maximum cooling. We also standoff the solid state relay using low heat conducting steel and air gaps to avoid even the slightest hint of heat transfer.
The solid state relays we have chosen are capable of carrying 30 amps. We limit the amperage we put through them to 15 amps. We do this to provide an incredible amount of headroom as well as guaranteeing that we stay well below the derating curve. We're not even close to over-stepping any limits.
The entire design of our Quiet Drive Solid State Relay System started from the point of view of keeping the solid state relay happy. Our ultimate design resulted in creating the most overbuilt, reliable and precise power control system available in the kiln market.
Our Quiet Drive Solid State Relay System is available as an option on almost every model we offer. You want this!
Evenheat - Better by Design.
Traditional Mechanical Relay
Solid State Relay