Retro-Line ®

Retro-Line is an advanced, self-regulating heating cable system that is used for safe, efficient and reliable internal pipe freeze protection. Retro-Line is designed to provide internal freeze protection for new or existing, water supply pipes and sump pump line systems without the need to excavate. As one of the few internal heating cable systems certified Drinking Water Safe as per NSF/ ANSI 61 regulations the Retro-Line system is a perfect solution for potable water supply pipes. Retro-Line systems are supplied complete with the necessary plumbing components and heating cable factory terminated for fast and simple installation. Retro-Line is the most advanced internal heating cable system available on the market as it is the only internal system that offers advanced self-regulating technology. Retro-Line can be used in all pipe types with inside dimensions ranging from 3/4 inch to 2 inch including all metal and non-metal pipes such as Polyethylene, PVC, ABS, Galvanized, Copper, PEX, Iron, and Ductile steel. Retro-Line can be used in a variety of water supply pipe applications including, cottages, homes, resorts, farms, exploration and mining camps, and commercial/ industrial facilities.

Features

In order to make Retro-Line easy to install, Heat-Line developed a unique, patented dispensing system called "Retro-Reel" to protect the heating cable and fittings from mechanical injury while the product is deployed into the pipe with absolute ease. It is not uncommon to push systems in up to 150 ft. (46m).

The Retro-Line heating cable system is supplied in a pre-determined length with all necessary components for a complete job-ready system. Retro-Line is a safe and reliable solution to internally freeze protect many fluid pipe applications. This includes but not limited to: residential water supply from wells, lakes, rivers, building to building and sump pump discharge lines and pressurized or high volume water drain pipes which may consist of either metal and non-metal piping material. For polyethylene pipe applications Retro-Line is supplied with a compression style fitting for easy connection to the pipe. Retro-Line can also be ordered with a threaded male adapter to allow easy interfacing with other pipe types and sizes such as ABS, PVC, PEX, copper, galvanized and steel.

Retro-Line can be used as a system to prevent freezing or as a precautionary system to use only if a freeze-up occurs. Even in applications where the pipes are intended to be dry for short or extended periods of time such as sump pump lines, the Retro-Line presents no danger of overheating or melting the pipe. This makes the Retro-Line suitable for all pipes, even plastic which do not always contain liquids.

The Retro-Line system is constructed using high quality, industrial grade heating cable which is robust and flexible, making installations easy, even in long length applications. Short Retro-Line systems can simply be pushed into the pipe while longer systems may need to be pulled in using a fish tape, string or small rope. Retro-Line systems 40 ft. (12m) and longer are supplied on a dispensing reel to protect the heating cable and fittings from mechanical injury while the product is simply deployed into the pipe. It is not uncommon to push systems in up to 150 ft. (46m). Another advantage of the heating cable durability is the downward end of the cable does not need to be fastened as it will never move or slide up the pipe with the flow of the water. This feature is extremely important as it renders the system fully serviceable. The system can easily be removed and replaced should it ever become necessary. All of the installation work can be performed at the entry point of the pipe without needing to access the far end in most applications.

Retro-Line has the most advanced end seal technology making it the most reliable internal heating cable on the market. Retro-Line is suitable to be installed inside potable water supply systems which have water pressure of 75 PSI or less. For higher pressure systems see CARAPACE, RETRO-FM or contact Heat-Line and speak with an application specialist.

Retro-Line employs the unique and advanced performance of self-regulating heating cable technology. The Retro-Line system can effectively increase heat and energy output to every point microscopically along its length which are cold and simultaneously reduce heat and energy output to points which are warm. You never have to worry about the Retro-Line heating cable overheating causing risk of melting and fire because of the self-regulating heating cable technology. Retro-Line gives you the peace of mind of reliable freeze protection without the risk. It has become an essential product for home owners, engineers and building maintenance professionals to provide safe and reliable freeze protection in most applications.

An important feature and certification of the Retro-Line product which is sometimes overlooked when investigating and purchasing an internal heating cable is that the Retro-Line system is NSF/ ANSI 61 certified Drinking Water Safe. This means that the Retro-Line system complies with all the required health effects criteria set by NSF for products that are part of a potable water supply system.

To further increase the energy efficiency of your Retro-Line heating cable system, it is recommended to add thermal insulation and a thermostat. The additional thermal insulation works to reduce heat loss, and the thermostat allows you to duty cycle your Retro-Line system based on pipe temperature. Both accessories combined can increase energy efficiency by as much as 80%.

  • For non-pressurized sewage pipes and large culverts and drains see Retro-DWS.
  • For pressurized sewage forced mains and large diameter potable water supply pipes see Retro-FM.
  • For applications also requiring polyethylene water pipe see CARAPACE.
  • For high pressure or constant pressure water supply pipes see CARAPACE.
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Retro-Line is an internal heat tracing system designed to provide reliable freeze protection. Examples include but are not limited to:

  • Lake and river water supply
  • Well water supply including dug, drilled and artesian wells
  • Building to building water supply
  • Sump pump discharge pipes
  • Commercial/ Industrial Facilities
  • Large drains
  • Suitable for jet pump and submersible pump applications
  • Safe for use with metal and non-metal pipes

Suitable pipe types for Retro-Line include but are not limited to:

  • Polyethylene (ID and OD controlled)
  • ABS
  • PVC
  • PEX
  • Copper
  • Galvanized
  • Ductile Steel

Retro-Line can be found providing freeze protection in many of the following places:

  • Homes, cottages, resorts and farms
  • Municipal homes and buildings
  • Mining and Exploration Camps/Outposts
  • Commercial/ Industrial Facilities

Retro-Line is a unique high quality product, which may be adapted to fit a variety of specialized applications not listed above. If you feel you have a special or unique application for Retro-Line please contact Heat-Line directly and speak with one of our knowledgeable product specialists.

Special Considerations

Special considerations should be made if the pipe contains any fittings which the heating cable is expected to pass through. The heating cable is not engineered to insert and push around any 90 degree elbow fittings. Should you have any abrupt fittings that turn 90 degrees or more, they must be replaced with pipe to create sweeping bends which will allow the heating cable to pass through. In the event you have any straight couplers within the pipe, the heating cable should be able to pass through. It is however recommended to expose these fittings and check the inside to make sure there are no rough edges or burrs which may potentially injure the heating cable during installation. Any current fittings can be replaced with Heat-Line approved Philmac fittings if suitability of the current fittings is a concern. If you have questions or apprehension of current fittings, contact Heat-Line and speak with a technician to help determine suitability and options.

As Retro-Line is an internal heating cable, special attention to the application should be planned prior to ordering a system. The length of the Retro-Line system can be adjusted if too long, however it is important to note additional heating cable cannot be added if the original system is too short. Please see HOW TO MEASURE for important information.

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Features

  • 5 year limited warranty, 10 year extended warranty available
  • Cord set (hard wire) connected models available upon request
  • No other product combines these features or offers the reliability and flexibility
  • Simply plugs into a 120V or 240V receptacle (GFC models only). No extra electrical work is required
  • Available in 5 ft. (1.5 m) increments up to 100 ft. (30m) and increments of 10ft. (3m) to a maximum length of 550 ft. (168m), custom lengths are also available
  • Can be supplied with male adapter fitting ranging from 1 inch to 2 inch MIPT to suit various pipe types
  • Can fit existing polyethylene pipes ranging from 3/4 inch ID up to 2 inch ID
  • Polyethylene pipe can be installed and tailored to suit requirements before Retro-Line length is determined, allowing installation flexibility
  • Customizable for various application requirements
  • Can be fully insulated to increase energy efficiency
  • Can be used with various optional control devices including timers and thermostats
  • Self-regulating/conductive polymer heating cable
  • Suitable for installations inside metallic and non-metallic pipes (with proper fitting)

Benefits

  • Electrically Certified by cCSAus (Canada and USA)
  • Certified Drinking Water Safe NSF/ANSI 61 (Canada and USA)
  • Approved for potable water applications
  • Manufactured in North America
  • Ground fault protection is integral to the system (GFC models only)
  • Philmac adapter fittings ensure pressure connections are simple, secure and leak proof
  • Suitable for above ground applications when properly insulated
  • No need to excavate below the frost line, thus saving costs on installation
  • Supplied job-ready based on specific freeze protection requirements
  • Completely serviceable
  • Heating cable is durable enough to stay in place within the entire length of pipe without the need of a downward hooking or latching device
  • Most reliable and energy efficient system on the market
  • Ease of installation – can commonly be pushed in pipe up to 150 feet (46m)
  • Long systems can be drawn in with fish tape or rope
  • Proven performance in cold climates (even in above ground applications)
  • Provides reliable freeze protection for many pipe diameters
  • Easily and quickly installed in most existing pipes without their removal
  • Fast installation, lengths greater than 35 feet (10.5m) are supplied on a patented dispensing reel
  • Will never melt or burnout the pipe, even if the pipe is dry
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Approvals

  • cCSAus Certified (Canada and USA) LR85446
  • NSF/ ANSI 61 Certified Drinking Water Safe
  • Designations P and X Canada
  • Installation Type D USA

Electrical Specifications

  • Self-regulating/conductive polymer heating cable
  • Fluoropolymer Outer Heating Cable Jacket
  • 120 Volt systems – 3 watt /ft. (9W/m) at 50°F (10°C), maximum length 220 ft. (67m)
  • 240 Volt systems – 3 watt /ft. (9W/m) at 50°F (10°C), maximum length 550 ft. (168 m)
  • 4 ft. (1.2 m) power supply lead with built-in 27 milliamp ground fault circuit interrupter plug-in device (120 volt GFC model only)
  • 6 ft. (1.8 m) power supply lead with built-in 27 milliamp ground fault circuit interrupter plug-in device (240 volt GFC model only)
  • 6 ft. (1.8 m), 12- 14 AWG SJEOOW supply cord for direct hard wire connection, GFCI must be field installed, (CS model only, custom request)


Plumbing Specifications

  • Freeze Protected Water Supply
  • Nominal heating cable thickness 0.25 in (6.4mm) / width 0.425 in (10.8mm)
  • Nominal end seal ‘boot’ technology thickness 0.55 in (14mm), available with small geometry boot size of 0.48 in (12mm) upon special request
  • Suitable for pressure systems 75 PSI or less. For higher pressure systems see CARAPACE (link word to web page), Retro-FM (link word to web page) or contact Heat-Line directly for further advice
  • Minimum internal pipe size required is 3/4 inch
  • Supplied complete with Philmac compression style fitting adapter
  • Can be ordered factory installed inside either 1 inch or 1 ¼ inch, CSA approved, 75 PSI polyethylene pipe for new installations (custom request, this product is called Heat-Line)

Available Philmac fittings for Retro-Line:

PIPE TYPE

FITTING TYPE

WATER CONFIGURATION IN TEE

SIZES AVAILABLE

NOTES

ID Controlled Polyethylene Pipe

Compression Style Tee

Water straight through (electrical connection out tee branch)

¾ inch, 1 inch, 1 ¼ inch, 1 ½ inch, 2 inch, NI (kit which includes both 1 inch and 1 ¼ inch)

Pipe recommended to be certified, 75 PSI or greater

ID Controlled Polyethylene Pipe

Compression Style Tee

Water passes through at 90 degrees (electrical connection out tee end)

¾ inch, 1 inch, 1 ¼ inch

Pipe recommended to be certified, 75 PSI or greater

CTS Controlled Polyethylene Pipe

Compression Style Tee

Straight through water (electrical out branch)

1 inch, 1 ¼ inch, 1 ½ inch

Pipe recommended to be certified, 75 PSI or greater

All Pipe Types

Male Adapter (MIPT)

N/A

1 inch, 1 ¼ inch, 1 ½ inch, 2 inch

For all thin wall polyethylene pipes and other pipe types including metal (Copper, Galvanized, Ductile Iron, etc.)

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Measuring Recommendations for Retro-Line

Always measure prior to ordering, do not assume or estimate the length required.

-The Retro-Line is an advanced internal self-regulating heating cable system factory finished and supplied job-ready to a pre-determined length provided at time of order. 

-Retro-Line systems are priced in standard lengths of 5 ft. (1.5m) increments up to 100 ft. (30m), then in 10 ft. (3m) increments from 100 ft. to 550 ft. (30m – 168m).

-While most Retro-Line systems are manufactured in standard lengths, special lengths of any measurement can also be requested within the maximum lengths allowed for 120 and 240 volt systems. For example, if an 18ft. (5.5m) system was required for a drilled well application, instead of purchasing a 20 ft. (6m) system, a special order could be placed for an exact length of 18 ft. (5.5m).

-When measuring the length of an internal heating cable system such as Retro-Line extreme care should always be taken to ensure that the ordered length is as specific to the exact length as required. There is no way to lengthen Retro-Line kit when on site.

-It is important to remember when measuring that the intention is to provide freeze protection along the entire section of the water supply pipe or sump pump line that is in danger of freezing. For example, in a lake home or cottage application it is best to have the Retro-Line protecting the pipe from within the house to the required depth of water in the lake.

-In a lake and/or river installation, the Retro-Line system should start in the heated building or room and end (terminate) in the lake at a minimum total water depth of 6 ft. (2m) at LOW water mark when a surface ice thickness of 3-4 ft. (1m -1.25m) is expected. The total depth of water required may decrease and or increase depending on the depth of ice.

-A special benefit of Retro-Line often overlooked, is the fact that entire piping systems can be pre-installed and tailored to size, prior to determining Retro-Line length. An example of this flexibility would be; purchasing and installing 200 ft. of pipe to the intake or pump location deep in the lake. After this is accomplished the required length of Retro-Line can be measured and installed to freeze-protect the pipe to a point below the lake ice near the shoreline. In other words, 200 ft. of pipe may be installed, while only 100 ft. requires freeze-protection.

-In a drilled well application, the heater can run the length of the pipe, but cannot enter the pitless adapter or it may sustain damage. If the pitless adapter is above grade, Heat-Line suggests installing a well tile around the steel well casing and filling with earth. There are other methods of protecting these applications; consult Heat-Line for specific application requirements.

-In a drilled or dug well application the Retro-Line system should start in the heated building or room and end (terminate) at the well casing. In drilled well applications, the Retro-Line system will end at the edge of drilled well casing just prior [2-3inches (51-76mm)] to the pitiless adapter at the well head.

-In applications where pipes will be exposed to atmosphere (free air), installed over rocky terrain or under buildings, insulation is required to maintain heat within the pipe and ensure energy efficiency and reliability.

-In applications where the existing problematic potable water supply pipe is exposed and above ground, the simplest method of measuring is with an external measuring device such as a measuring tape and/or flexible ruler.

-In some applications where the nomenclature (writing) on the exposed pipe is visible there will be measured increments marked on the pipe. You can use these increments markings to find the total distance between the two points, thereby providing a length of the Retro-Line that is required.

-In applications where the existing problematic, potable water supply pipe is buried it is beneficial to internally measure the length of heating cable required with an electrical or plumbers fish tape.

As in all cases, if you are unfamiliar or uncomfortable with the measuring and or installation of a Heat-Line product please consult directly with a Heat-Line application specialist or contact a qualified local tradesperson.

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Retro-Line is covered by a 5 year limited warranty set forth below. A 10 year extended warranty is also available.

Warranty Application Form

During the time periods and subject to the conditions hereinafter set forth. Heat-Line will repair or replace to the original user any portion of your Retro-Line product which proves defective in materials or workmanship of Heat-Line. Contact Heat-Line or your installer for warranty service. At all times Heat-Line shall have and possess the sole right and option to determine whether to repair or replace defective equipment, parts or components.

Damage due to natural events or conditions beyond the control of Heat-Line are NOT COVERED BY THIS WARRANTY. 

STANDARD WARRANTY PERIOD: 60 months from date of purchase or 63 months from date of manufacture, which ever occurs first.

EXTENDED WARRANTY PERIOD: 120 months from date of purchase or 123 months from date of manufacture, which ever occurs first. 

ACCESSORIES, COMPONENTS, ELECTRONICS: Not manufactured by Heat-Line, are warranted only to the extent of original manufacturer’s warranty.

LABOUR, COSTS, ETC.: Heat-Line shall in NO EVENT be responsible or liable for the cost of field labour or other charges incurred by any customer in removing and/or reaffixing any Heat-Line product, part or component thereof.

THIS WARRANTY WILL NOT APPLY:

(a) to defects or malfunctions resulting from failure to properly install, operate or maintain the unit in accordance with printed instructions provided,

(b) to failures resulting from abuse, accident or negligence;

(c) to normal maintenance services and

(d) to parts not used in accordance with applicable local codes, ordinance and good trade practices;

(e) if the unit is moved from its original installation location or

(f) if the unit is used for purposes other than for what it was designed and manufactured,

(g) to the integral ground fault device and related electronics.

PRODUCT IMPROVEMENTS: Heat-Line reserves the right to change or improve its products or any component thereof without being obligated to provide such a change or improvement for units sold and/or shipped prior to such change or improvement.

WARRANTY EXCLUSIONS: As to any Heat-Line product after the expiration of the time period of the warranty applicable thereto as set forth above. There will be no warranties including any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for any particular purpose. No warranties or representations at any time made by any representative of Heat-Line, shall vary or expand the provisions hereof.

LIABILITY LIMITATION: In no event shall Heat-Line be liable or responsible for consequential, incidental or special damages resulting from or related in any manner to any Heat-Line product or parts thereof. In the absence of suitable proof of the purchase date, the effective date of this warranty will be based upon the date of manufacture plus 90 days.

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Click here to request a quote.

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PRICING

Retro-Line systems are priced in 5 ft. (1.5m) increments up to 100 ft. (30m), then in 10 ft. (3m) increments from 100 ft. to 550 ft. (30m – 168m). Note longest available length on a 120V circuit is 220 ft. (67m).

Retro-Line can be manufactured as per custom requests. For a quotation on a custom Retro-Line system please contact Heat-Line directly or request a quotation online through email.

AVAILABILITY

As a manufacturer of advance freeze protection systems Heat-Line does our very best to provide customers with products in a timely fashion.

Retro-Line systems are commonly stocked in product lengths ranging from 6 ft. (1.8m) to 200 ft. (61m) in, 1 inch and 1 ¼ inch tee sizes in 120V GFC models.

For product lengths and sizes not in stock or for custom orders, lead time can vary depending on time of year, volume and product requested. 

Normal production time is 2-3 days however longer times should be expected through the months of September to February.

Even for commonly stocked product lengths we recommend contacting Heat-Line for current availability and specific lead times as inventory can change on a regular basis.

SHIPPING

All products are shipped FOB (Freight On Board) from Heat-Line – Algonquin Highlands - Central Ontario CANADA
Heat-Line sources the best service and rates to ship your package. Couriers most commonly used are Purolator and FedEx. We negotiate great deals with our freight carriers and we do not add handling charges.

PART NUMBERS

Retro-Line Accessories

HLJ-STAT NEMA 1 General Purpose 120V only plug-in Thermostat
HLA-120
Ordinary dry location, general purpose 120 V, 15 amp plug-in thermostat
GF-STAT NEMA 4X Ground Fault Protected Thermostat 120V /240V 30amp
MA-10 GFCI/ELCI Electrical Equipment Protection Device
NSUL-1.00
Closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeve for 1.00" ID pipe (6’ long, 1 5/8” ID, ¾” thick wall)
INSUL-1.25 Closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeve for 1.25" ID pipe (6’ long, 1 7/8” ID, ¾” thick wall)
INSUL-2.00 Closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeve for 2.00" ID pipe (6’ long, 2 5/8” ID, ¾” thick wall)
HLP-TAPE Black wrap tape for sealing insulation ends together 2" x 100' (50.8mm x 3m)
FOIL-TAPE Professional Grade All Weather Foil Tape 2.83’’ x 150’ (72mm x 46m)
WARRANTY Extended 10 year limited product warranty
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Retro-Line is supplied job-ready for installation. Heat-Line also supplies additional accessories depending on your application requirements.

INCLUDED IN A RETRO-LINE SYSTEM:

  • Factory finished, self-regulating internal heating cable of pre-determined length complete with required Philmac Compression Tee or MIPT Adapter
  • 4 ft. (1.2 m) power supply lead with built-in 27 milliamp ground fault circuit interrupter plug-in device (120 volt GFC model only)
  • 6 ft. (1.8 m) power supply lead with built-in 27 milliamp ground fault circuit interrupter plug-in device (240 volt GFC model only)
  • 6 ft. (1.8 m), 12- 14 AWG SJEOOW supply cord for direct hard wire connection, GFCI must be field installed (CS model only)
  • Retro-Reel (lengths 40 ft. (12 m) and longer only)
  • 6 ft. (1.8m) pull string leader (lengths 40 ft. (12 m) and longer only)
  • 5 year limited warranty
  • Clear, concise installation and support documentation

Available Retro-Line Plumbing Adapters:

PIPE TYPEFITTING TYPEWATER CONFIGURATION IN TEESIZES AVAILABLENOTES
ID Controlled Polyethylene Pipe Compression Style Tee Water straight through (electrical connection out tee branch) ¾ inch, 1 inch, 1 ¼ inch, 1 ½ inch, 2 inch, NI (kit which includes both 1 inch and 1 ¼ inch) Pipe recommended to be certified, 75 PSI or greater
ID Controlled Polyethylene Pipe Compression Style Tee Water passes through at 90 degrees (electrical connection out tee end) ¾ inch, 1 inch, 1 ¼ inch Pipe recommended to be certified, 75 PSI or greater
CTS Controlled Polyethylene Pipe Compression Style Tee Straight through water (electrical out branch) 1 inch, 1 ¼ inch, 1 ½ inch Pipe recommended to be certified, 75 PSI or greater

All Pipe Types

Male Adapter (MIPT) N/A 1 inch, 1 ¼ inch, 1 ½ inch, 2 inch For all thin wall polyethylene pipes and other pipe types including metal (Copper, Galvanized, Ductile Iron, etc.)

ADDITIONAL ACCESSORIES:

HLA-120
Ordinary dry location, general purpose 120 V, 15 amp plug-in thermostat
GF-STAT NEMA 4X Ground Fault Protected Thermostat 120V /240V 30amp
MA-10 GFCI/ELCI Electrical Equipment Protection Device
NSUL-1.00
Closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeve for 1.00" ID pipe (6’ long, 1 5/8” ID, ¾” thick wall)
INSUL-1.25 Closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeve for 1.25" ID pipe (6’ long, 1 7/8” ID, ¾” thick wall)
INSUL-2.00 Closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeve for 2.00" ID pipe (6’ long, 2 5/8” ID, ¾” thick wall)
HLP-TAPE Black wrap tape for sealing insulation ends together 2" x 100' (50.8mm x 3m)
FOIL-TAPE Professional Grade All Weather Foil Tape 2.83’’ x 150’ (72mm x 46m)
WARRANTY Extended 10 year limited product warranty

THERMOSTATS

Thermostats are not required to operate the Retro-Line system as they are assembled with Heat-Line’s advanced self-regulating heating cables and do not require a high limit protection device. A thermostat however can be added to duty cycle the heating cable in an on/off operation saving power consumption. 

Click here for thermostats.

INSULATION

Insulation is recommended for all new pipe installations, even where the pipe is to be buried. For existing pipe applications, insulation is only required where the pipe is exposed to ambient outdoor temperatures, and/or where the pipe is above the ground. Insulation aids in heat retention making the heating cable more energy efficient and providing cold weather reliability.

Click here for insulation.

TIMERS

Similar to thermostats, timers are not required to operate the Retro-Line system as they are assembled with Heat-Line’s advanced self-regulating heating cables. A timer however can be added to increase your energy efficiency as the system will duty cycle based on the preset inputs.

MILLIAMP GFCI Device

According to the Canadian and National Electrical Codes all heating cable systems are required to be protected by a GFCI device for safe operation. All GFC model heating cable systems manufactured by Heat-Line are supplied with a 27 milliamp GFCI. In applications where a hard-wired or CS model Retro-Line is required, GFCI protection must be supplied and installed by the installing professional. For hard-wired or CS model installations Heat-Line offers the MilliAmp GFCI device, which is an external enclosure complete with a Class A certified GFCI for both 120 volt and 240 volt applications.

Click here for GFCIs.

TAPE

HLP-TAPE is used to tape the butt-ends of the INSUL insulation sleeves together so they do not slide apart which would result in a cold spot in the pipe.

EXTENDED WARRANTY

Extended 10 year limited product warranty, see warranty tab for additional information.

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Q - What is the difference between Retro-Line and Retro-DWS?

A – Retro-Line is a cCSAus and NSF/ ANSI 61 approved system for internally heat tracing potable water supply pipes and sump pump lines. Retro-DWS is designed for safe and approved installations inside non-pressurized septic pipes and or in large drains where mechanical protection of the heater is desired.

Q - What is the difference between Retro-Line and Retro-FM?

A – Retro-Line is a cCSAus and NSF/ ANSI 61 approved system for internally heat tracing small diameter potable water supply pipes and sump pump lines. Retro-FM is designed for safe and approved installations inside pressurized septic pipes and large diameter water supply pipes. The Retro-FM system is also cCSAus and NSF/ ANSI 61 certified, and is commonly recommended for potable water supply pipes 2 inch or greater in diameter.

Q – Will Retro-Line restrict the water flow in the pipe?

A – The Retro-Line internal heating cable system is designed for minimal if any impact on water flow through a pipe. In common water supply pipe applications the Retro-Line system has been shown not to provide any measureable effect.

Q – Can Retro-Line be installed inside septic pipes?

A – No. Similar to other internal heating cable Retro-Line is not electrical certified to be installed inside septic pipes as methane gasses may be present. For septic pipe applications Heat-Line has developed the Retro-DWS for non-pressurized septic pipes and the Retro-FM for pressurized septic pipes.

Q – I have straight couplers in my pipe, will Retro-Line pass through?

A – In the event you have any straight couplers within the pipe, the heating cable should be able to pass through. It is however recommended to expose these fittings and check the inside to make sure there are no rough edges or burrs which may potentially injure the heating cable jacket. Any current fittings can be replaced with Heat-Line approved Philmac fittings if suitability of the current fittings is a concern.

Q – I have elbows in my pipe, will Retro-Line pass through?

A – No. The heating cable is not engineered to bend its way around any 90 degree or 45 degree elbow fittings. Should you have any abrupt elbow fittings, they must be replaced with pipe to create sweeping bends to allow the heating cable to pass.

Q – My pipe has sweeping bends along its length, will Retro-Line pass through?

A – Yes. The heating cable is engineered to bend its way through the pipe. As long the water supply pipe is making the sweeping bends without the need of a abrupt 90 or 45 degree pipe coupler the Retro-Line unit will pass.

Q – What length of Retro-Line can be pushed in the pipe?

A – It is not uncommon for a Retro-Line system to insert and push into a pipe for distances as long as 150 ft. (45.5m). In some cases experienced tradespeople have reported inserting Retro-Line units of longer lengths without the need of a pull cord or plumbers fish.

Q- What length of Retro-Line will I need?

A – The length of Retro-Line heating cable that will be required can change from application to application. In most applications the entire pipe length is protected to prevent any chances the pipe could freeze further down the pipe. With help determining the total length required, please see the HOW TO MEASURE tab or contact Heat-Line to speak with a product specialist.

Q - What do I do if I have extra Retro-Line heating cable?

A - Care should be given when determining product length required however if required length is less than what was ordered contact Heat-Line to speak with a product specialist for details on a procedure to reduce the length of heating cable within the pipe. DO NOT CUT HEATING CABLE

Q – Can Retro-Line be cut if too long?

A – No. The Retro-Line system manufactured by Heat-Line is a pre-assembled factory terminated advanced self-regulating heating cable system that is not designed to be field terminated and or tailored to length. Contact Heat-Line to speak with a product specialist for details on a procedure to reduce the length of heating cable within the pipe. DO NOT CUT HEATING CABLE

Q – My Retro-Line system is too short; can I add a small section onto the end? If not, what can be done?

A – No. The Retro-Line system manufactured by Heat-Line is a pre-assembled advance self-regulating heating cable system that includes a proprietary end-seal termination. As such the Retro-Line system cannot be spliced together or altered in the field. If greater length of the Retro-Line is required you may purchase a single continuous product of the proper length, and or relocate a second power source and install an additional Retro-Line system to complete the required freeze protection. DO NOT CUT HEATING CABLE or POWER LEAD

Q- Is there a maximum length of Retro-Line heating cable systems?

A – Yes. The maximum circuit length of Retro-Line that is allowed on a 120V circuit is 220 ft. (67m), and 550 ft. (168m) on a 240V circuit.

Q – Where do I purchase the Retro-Line heating cable system?

A – The Retro-Line heating cable system manufactured by Heat-Line is available directly through Heat-Line and or any of our Heat-Line product distributors. For a list of Heat-Line product distributors in Canada and the United States please contact Heat-Line directly on our toll free number at (800) 584-4944.

Q - Does a 240-volt system use less power than a 120-volt system?

A - A common misconception is that a 240V electrical appliance consumes less energy than a 120V electrical appliance. Power consumption is measured in watts, not voltage. Whether you are consuming 500W at 120V or 500W at 240V you are still consuming 500W of energy.

Q - Can I (the homeowner) install Retro-Line?

A – Heat-Line provides proper and easy to follow installation instructions with all of our products, and offers market leading technical support. As a result, most Heat-Line systems, including Retro-Line can be installed by homeowners; however, Heat-Line commonly recommends that a qualified tradesperson complete the installation process

Q - How much power does a Retro-Line consume?

A- All Heat-Line brand systems including Retro-Line employ Heat-Line’s advanced self-regulating heating cable technology which operates to deliver energy and heat output to areas of the pipe that are cold and reduces energy and heat output to areas which are warm. While the overall amount of energy consumed depends on multiple factors you can be assured that you are installing the most energy efficient heating cable system available. If you would like to reduce your energy consumption further you can investigate the addition of a thermostat, timer, and or other control device.

Q - Is Retro-Line safe for use with plastic pipes?

A- The Retro-Line system is safe for use with all metallic and non-metallic pipes. The advance self-regulating technology employed in the Retro-Line product renders it safe for use with plastic pipes even when dry as it can never overheat and damage the pipe.

Q - Does the Retro-Line come with a thermostat?

A - A thermostat is not included with the Retro-Line product as they are not required for proper and safe operation; however, a thermostat can be purchased as an additional accessory. Depending on system applications, or where automatic operation is preferred, a thermostat can be used to switch the system on and off to help conserve power or to duty cycle the system. When combined with insulation thermostats can substantially increase energy efficiency.

Q – Do I have to use insulation with the Retro-Line system?

A – Insulation is highly recommended when using the Retro-Line system, especially if the installation is above ground in ambient outdoor air. Insulation helps reduce the overall heat loss and therefore reduce the amount of energy the Retro-Line heating cable must consume. If the pipe is already buried, there is no need to dig up and expose the pipe to apply insulation.

Q- What type of insulation should I use with the Retro-Line system?

A – Heat-Line recommends to use insulation that is best suited to the environment in which it is going to be installed. A common type of insulation employed with Retro-Line heating cables is closed cell polyethylene insulation sleeves.

Q - Does the unit shut off when not required?

A – No. Retro-Line self-regulating heating cable systems increase heat output with cold but more importantly, decrease heat output with warmth. As a result, Heat-Line brand products are very energy efficient to operate, but do not completely shut off as they can only idle their output to a minimum amount. To completely shut off the system it must be unplugged or installed with a thermostat. Heat-Line brand systems should be unplugged or shut off when not required (summer months) and tested each year before use.

Q - If the power fails do I have to reset the unit?

A - Heat-Line products including Retro-Line are designed to turn back on as soon as the power to the unit is supplied. Once re-energized the Retro-Line system has the ability to increase its output to immediately begin to defrost any section of the pipe that has or was close to freezing during the power outage. In many instances defrosting the pipe can take as little as an hour or less.

Q – What is the indication light on the GFCI on Retro-Line models for?

A – The indication light located on the GFCI device included with all GFC model Retro-Line systems verifies that power is provided to the GFCI device and that the GFCI is allowing power to pass through to the heating cable device.

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