A heat press is an important tool for transferring logos or graphics onto textiles. In addition to textiles, heat presses can also be used to print graphics onto packaging, signs, koozies, and more! If you are shopping for a heat press for your apparel business, you will find that there are many options to choose from—and it may be difficult to know where to start. We want to show you how to choose the right heat press for your business.
Quality Heat Press
The quality of the heat press can affect your ability to learn the craft. If you have an issue, a bad heat press will be more difficult for you to troubleshoot. Even if you have been in the business many years, a bad heat press can potentially lead to issues that could cost you your reputation. The amount it will cost to fix a problematic order could be the difference in price between a good and bad heat press.
Heat, Time, and Pressure
One of the main things you want to consider about a heat press is its heating performance. You will want a heat press machine that has an even temperature throughout. The last thing you want are cold spots. Cold spots occur when there are not enough heating elements used in the manufacturing of the platen. Another factor is control. A heat press must accurately control temperature. When you apply transfers, you need the correct temperature in order to prevent issues with your transfers. It's also important to choose a machine with adjustable time and pressure settings. Make sure your heat press has even pressure throughout the entire platen. Uneven pressure will lead to application issues.
Volume and Growth of Business
The size of both your current output and the projected growth of your output should have a deciding factor on which heat press you buy. It is easy to think that a single station heat press will suffice if you are just starting out or are a small operation. However, it is important to consider your marketing and your projected business growth in 5 years. Remember, these machines are investments and the workhorses of your apparel business, so you need to think long-term. If you are really looking to grow your apparel business, you should consider East West Machines. We have a 4 Station Automatic Rotating Table Heat Press that is capable of pressing over 360 heat transfers per hour.
Heat Press Size
If you plan on working on large applications, you will want a heat press machine big enough to do the job. With a larger heat press, you can print larger designs. For example, we have the Pneumatic Dual Station Heat Press (Large) - EW-HP4050LH. This pneumatic dual station heat press was designed to transfer onto larger apparel and can produce over 350 units per hour with a single operator.
Even though you may want a larger heat press to have more capabilities, it won’t matter if it does not fit into your workshop. That is why it is important to not only consider the size of the applications you will be working on, but the physical size of your workshop and workflow as well.
Digital Settings and Readouts
Once you determine a time and temperature that works for the transfers and graphics you apply most often, you want to replicate the settings exactly, every time you print. Having digital settings and readouts significantly reduces the margin of error per order.
Customer Services and After Sell Care
Customer Service is important. Whether you have a question about the machine before you purchase, or have a question after you purchase it, the company you purchase with should have excellent customer service and be willing to answer any questions you may have. You will also want to know what the machine’s warranty is and if they stand behind the quality of their heat press machines. If the need arises, you will want to know if the company will service the machines it sells.
We hope this helps you to understand what you need to consider in buying a heat press for your apparel business. Here at East West Machines, we set out to build a better solution for the North American market. Our heat presses are built with the highest quality standards, making our machines run smoothly and efficiently day after day. If you have any questions about our heat press machines, email us at Sales@eastwestmachines.com.