Qualities to look for in your heat shrink connectors


When choosing between various heat shrink connectors, it’s important to understand what makes a durable, long-lasting and effective connection. Getting to know the unique features that contribute to a high-quality connection can help you determine which heat shrink connector to use.

Here are six characteristics to look out for when selecting the right heat shrink connector for your application:

1. Strength

Heat shrink connectors must be strong enough to hold all their wires without letting them shift around or pull out. Connectors can be constructed with a few different types of material, most commonly PVC or polyolefin. The latter is often the strongest, with Master Appliance’s connectors surpassing the typical PVC connector’s strength by as much as 80 percent, depending on the model.

Additionally, polyolefin can withstand higher temperatures than PVC, which is often necessary for the application of the heat shrink connector. Polyolefin can withstand temperatures as high as 275 degrees Fahrenheit, according to ConnectorSupplier.com. Heat is used to size the connector to the wire bundle, but these materials are also often used in automotive and other industrial applications where they will be exposed to heat regularly.

2. Adhesive lining

Adhesive lining and seals add a layer of protection to wires enclosed in heat shrink connectors. As the heat shrink connector is warmed up during the shrinking process, the adhesive softens, closing up gaps and thoroughly encasing the wires with a protective outer layer. This helps to deter moisture infiltration and prevent corrosion.

3. Crimping

Not all heat shrink connectors are outfitted with crimps, and not all applications call for them. When crimps are necessary, however, it’s important that they’re present and effective. A poor crimp may hold the wires loosely, providing little security or hold. A good crimp will keep wires secure and provide mechanical reliability.

4. Transparency

The ability to review your work is important, especially when trying to ensure electrical connections are effective. Many heat shrink connectors come in opaque colors, making it difficult to ensure the wires are properly placed within the connector. Using transparent tubing lets users applying connectors examine their work. Anyone who reviews the work later on can also clearly see the integrity of the connection.

It’s also important to be able to identify details about the wire. Color coding provides clarity, indicating wire gauge size and where the crimp is located.

5. Current flow

When making electrical connections, you want to be confident that electricity will continue to flow between the joined wires. Heat shrink electrical connectors outfitted with solder offer high-quality current flow, making them perfect for LEDs and other similar uses.

6. Wire capacity

Joining multiple wires can be difficult with an inadequate heat shrink butt connector. All wires must be supported by the connector. When joining multiple wires, adhesive lining can help fill any gaps between wires and maintain a stronger connection. Additionally, features like a tapered barrel allow for a stronger crimp.

Master Appliance offers several types of high-quality and long-lasting heat shrink connectors. Options include sealed crimp connectors, sealed solder connectors and sealed crimp and solder connectors.

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