IBC Heater

An IBC heater (also container heater) is an uncomplicated and efficient solution for keeping an intermediate bulk container (IBC) including its contents warm* on site. In industry, there are a number of different substances that are stored in IBC tanks. Many of these substances are solid or viscous at ambient temperature, so they cannot be easily pumped out of the IBC. With the assistance of the IBC heater, the container material can be removed with little or no product loss. A container heater often also serves as a frost protection. By keeping the container contents warm, crystallization or flocculation of the contents can be avoided.

*For further requirements, please contact our service technicians.

Comparison of the different IBC materials

A distinction is made between the plastic and metal container. Depending on your needs, the right material plays an important role.

Synthetic Material

  • Poor heat conductivity: thermal conductivity of approx. 0.5 W/mK
  • Acts as an insulation between tank contents and IBC heater
  • Temperature maintenance of substances with the help of heating jackets


  • High thermal conductivity: 50 W/mK
  • Can resist temperatures up to 200°C
  • Heating of substances depending on substance data and time

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Design and functional characteristics of an IBC heater

With an IBC heater, a distinction is made between two variants.

1. Heating by means of a heating sleeve including insulating cover for the standard plastic IBCs 1000l with a power of 2kW for a temperature maintenance of up to 90°C

The heating is effected by a siliconized resistance heating element which is monitored by a capillary tube thermostat with a control accuracy of +/- 5K. The heating system is connected to the power supply via the thermostat, where the required set temperature can be adjusted. The heating sleeve is suspended to the metal frame of the IBC container by means of mounting hooks and fastened by means of the nylon straps including quick-locking fasteners.

2. Permanently installed heating of stainless steel IBCs, mostly round containers, from 500l to 1500l (capacities may vary depending on size and required holding temperatures).

Heating is effected by means of resistance heating cables, which are installed on the surface of the container by means of self-adhesive aluminum foil for an improved heat distribution. The system is regulated by a central control unit equipped with electronic thermostats including a PT100 sensor with a regulation accuracy of +/- 1K. At this point, a separate insulation is required, which is usually realized by means of a perlite fill. For this purpose, a fixed outer jacket is mounted and the space between the vessel wall including heating and the outer jacket of the insulation is filled with the material. The connection of the control unit in the lower area of the container is made via a 230V CEE wall device plug.

Important note: The temperature of the tank contents is not regulated. If such regulation is desired, an additional temperature sensor is needed to be plugged into the IBC, as well as an electronic temperature controller. It will limit the temperature of the heating jacket and regulate the temperature of the tank contents. The container heater will heat the air located between the heating jacket and the tank wall, which in turn will heat the tank wall. At this point, an insulating cover is recommended, which not only prevents energy loss to the top during heating, but at the same time reduces energy consumption.

Thermal conductivity of the IBC outer shell 

Wall thickness of the IBC outer shell 

Size of heated area/outer shell - Capacity installed 

Quantity of tank contents 

Specific heat capacity and density of the tank contents 

Temperature difference between required and existing temperature 

Does a phase change take place? 

How much insulation does the heating jacket have?

How much heat does it lose to the environment? 

Ambient temperature

Quick and easy installation 

Possibility to heat the IBC on site 

Container can be transported even with mounted heater 

Low total weight 

Less expensive investment compared to a heat bath or heat chamber

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Contact Person

Thomas Stuff

eltherm GmbH (Headquarters)
Ernst-Heinkel-Straße 6-10
57299 Burbach

Phone: +49 2736 4413 8155

Frank Vogel

eltherm GmbH (Headquarters)
Ernst-Heinkel-Straße 6-10
57299 Burbach

Phone: +49 2736 4413 8158

On the move globally
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Phone: +49 (0) 27 36 / 44 13-0

Fax: +49 (0) 27 36 / 44 13-50


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