Category Archives: Company News company news – hear the latest news from Kirkby based heating element specialists here.

Repair or New?

Here at TPFay we are looking to save our customers time and money.

Therefore we offer a repair service for old obsolete or burnt out heating elements. If you need to replace an old immersion heater or formed element, in many cases we can repair or rebuild your old heating element offering you considerable savings.

If you are looking for a repair or replacement please contact us for more information.

We always look to see if we can repair heaters, we do not like to waste materials or resources. Re-use is a valuable saving, in financial and environmental considerations, in some instances.

However, the construction of some existing heaters do not match our design and assembly criteria.

In these instances we use our judgement to determine, if repair of the existing heater is possible but may carry a great deal of risk of failure in service and during manufacture / repair process.

A contingency cost may be required to cover such risk.

The risk, combined with the time and resource required to attempt any repair, may be much greater than the material cost to manufacture a new heater, at this point we will offer the best alternative or replacement design.

Farewell to Brian

After over 27 years Brian Mitchinson has decided to retire from TPFay Ltd. Joining us when we only numbered 3 including the 2 directors. Brian has been an integral part of the DNA of this company.

We have made some tremendous changes in the intervening years, Most have been positive, and some were less so, but we all survived and continually learned and improved, though it all Brain was a steady and constant presence.

Brian would comment frequently on the “Time Machine” feeling of working here. It always seemed like five minutes since he started, but years had passed.

Now he has reached the time when he would like to stop. With the minimum of fuss and fanfare he has gone.

We wish him well and hope he enjoys his 7 day weekend.

Thank you Brian, we will miss you.

BSP Thread Sizes – A constant source of frustration for our customers

Brass Heads for Industrial Immersion Heaters

Industrial Immersion Heater Brass Screw Plug Head Components in various BSP Sizes from (¾”) 0.75″ to (2½”) 2.5″

It should be simple.

You measure something, and that is the size.


Not if you are measuring a thread, especially if it is a B.S.P. (Bristish Standard Pipe) thread……The size was originally based on the inner diameter measured in inches of a steel tube for which the thread was intended. This often causes confusion, as people think the size refers to the outside diameter of the male thread.

For example, the most common BSP Size for UK Immersion Heaters is 2¼” BSP.
However, if you measure roughly across the threads to check the diameter, it looks closer to 2½”, 2.58″ or 65.71mm, to be precise. But, how can you be precise when you have just struggled to remove an old immersion heater and you might be using a tape measure to try to gauge the thread?

If you ask for a 2½” BSP immersion heater to be made, it will arrive with a thread size of almost 2.96″ or 75.18mm, which will be really annoying as there is no way it will fit, it will be the thread size you asked for but not the size you need. It is the same for all other BSP threads so caution is required.

We at TPFay will try our best to guide you when you ask for a particular BSP size on a heater you would like us to make for you. We may seem to ask you to check the size you need, to the point of annoyance, but we are trying to guide you. We have encountered so many customers who have unwittingly ordered an immersion heater with the wrong size, it can be an expensive and frustrating experience.

Below is a table of common BSP sizes we use for TPFay Immersion Heaters and Element Fittings. Because we use it all the time it is simple for us, but we know it is less than straightforward if you are unfamiliar with the sizes, so was have a handy tip to help you identify the thread size you need if you are trying to measure around a male thread, it is almost impossible with a tape or desk rule.

BSP Thread Form

BSP Thread form

Nominal Size BSP  Thread Form Type  Major Diameter mm d=D  Pitch mm p  Threads per inch tpi 
C= circumferunce
¼” BSP 13.16 1.337 19 41.3
3/8 “ BSP 16.66 1.337 19 52.35
½” BSP 20.96 1.814 14 65.83
¾” BSP 26.44 1.814 14 83.07
1 “ BSP 33.25 2.309 11 109.45
1¼” BSP 41.91 2.309 11 131.66
1½” BSP 47.80 2.309 11 150.18
1¾” BSP 53.75 2.309 11 168.85
2 “ BSP 59.61 2.309 11 187.28
2¼” BSP 65.71 2.309 11 206.43
BSP 75.18 2.309 11 236.2
  1. Cut a strip of paper that you can wrap around the thread you want to measure.
  2. Draw a Line across it with a pen or pencil.
  3. Wrap the paper strip once around the thread and make a second mark where the paper overlaps the first mark.
  4. Unwrap the paper and measure the distance between the marks. This should correspond to one of the measurements on C=Circumference (C)  mm  above.

If you have any difficulty, give us a call 03703 505058.

1978 to 2018 Forty Years of TPFay.

2018 is a big year for TPFay (Kirkby) Limited as we’ve reached the impressive milestone of 40 years in business. We were incorporated on 27 July 1978.

TPFay 40 years Trading 1978 to 2018

TPFay Certificate of Incorporation  -But, Companies House spelled our name incorrectly, Kirby not Kirkby, so we were re-named later in 1978.

Certificate of Incorporation

Over the last four decades we may have come a very long way from our humble beginnings.The business was founded by Terry Fay, manufacturing in his garage, accompanied by his father Peter.

Terry and Peter (TPFay) began by purchasing elements manufactured by others and custom forming and assembling them to bespoke designs and repairs of existing heater units. With stock stored in all corners of the house, including the loft, the whole family was always always closely involved with the business, day and night. The dining room was used as the office, even the kitchen oven was used to dry elements before sealing.

Our present 12,000 square foot facility couldn’t be more different! We now have purpose built production to manufacture our own heating elements from scratch.

A long and eventful journey, but we are still located next to the house where it all started.

In our 40 years of trading, we have always worked hard to ensure our products stay at the forefront of the market and put this success down to a combination of innovative design, technical and delivery services, developed with our customers in mind.

We continue to invest time and money to improve our products and services to make the best products for each customer and their particular requirement.

flange heater manufacture

Water Boiler Element Production8mmLOY800AfterRollingImmersion Heater Stainless Steel




We’re incredibly proud to be a forward thinking, family run business with family values which remain true to this day.

We would like to thank; our customers and suppliers (past and present), from every part of the UK, and Worldwide, for continued support.

Our customers, for continually challenging us, making each day different, not allowing us to stand still.

Our suppliers who help us select the best products and services to enable us continually improve everything we do.

Last, but not least our team members, the entire TPFay family, past and especially present. You make us what we are.

We use all of the experiences gained over the past 40 years every day, and we use them to power forward for the next.

Here’s to another 40 years of success!

Farewell to Paul. Greetings to Alan.

It is with regret that we said goodbye to Paul Robertson in December. After 13 years he has decided to move on to another challenge with good company in the area, we wish him well.

With the start of 2018 we welcome Alan Daly to take up the role, of Packing operative, “Tzar of shipping Despatch and many things”. As with everything at TPFay, it will involve doing a bit of everything. We’re sure he will settle in quickly. Welcome to the team!

We will be recruiting again, for other roles very soon. We will post the roles and requirements shortly.

We Make-up for Make-up

Recommended to contact us by a friend (Our favourite kind of advertising) Mike Dargan of Dashbo Ltd, brought another new application for us.

Dashbo are a manufacturer of Theatrical and Special FX makeup. A new formulation needed to be heated in an insulated container, then maintained at a constant temperature.

Mike visited our factory bringing the container, and explaining the requirement.

Dashbo needed something that was hygienic, low watt surface temperature and easily removable to permit easy cleaning of the container and the element after use.

After discussing various options we designed a heater to fit the container for the first trial production batch.

Image of Heater design

Image of Heater design

A few simple designs were sent for approval. A pocket was incorporated for simple plug in digital controller.



Make-Up Heating Element Dashbo

Make-Up Heating Element Dashbo

If we can assist with the “Make-up” of bespoke heaters for your application please get in touch, call +44(0)3703505058 or email or fill in our contact form here. We will be pleased to help.

Question Mark Brewery Kettle Heater

Here we have a “Question Mark” shape brewery immersion heater. For a leading London Micro-Brewery.

Designed to create a rolling boil in your Brewing Kettle – removable for cleaning when required.

Easy fit and easy removal. Heat is concentrated around the lower circumference of your kettle / copper.

If you are puzzled by the question mark and have some of your own?

Just ask us we will show you how we can make one for your kettle.




Saving your bacon.

Saving Old Equipment, making customers happy by helping save cost. Mercury Rangemaster cooker.

Is it infuriating when you have a piece of equipment or an appliance you like or need to use, with time and use one component on it stops working properly or fails completely?

You contact the manufacturer and they advise the part is obsolete or discontinued. You search the internet for other suppliers of the part but there are none; what do you do?

That is just what happened to some of our customers recently. Within a few days we were contacted by two customers who have a very expensive range cooker.

These Mercury Rangemaster Cookers were integral to the kitchens of the customers and functioned very well but eventually the grill elements failed. It is a necessary function of radiant grill elements that they have high watt density elements that glow red when in operation; they will fail generally faster than elements used for other lower temperature operations (if elements never failed we would be soon out of business). This, expensive, and much loved and much used range cooker was now out of service for the sake of a grill element.

Hello David,

As promised, I’ve followed up on your request for some further information:

Does it Cook / Grill evenly?     YES

Does it Cook / Grill faster?      Not really sure, since we regulate the power to cook things at the right temperature/speed.  I can’t measure against the old element, because you have it, but it certainly has a much brighter glow and is hotter.

Is it fully controllable with the Existing controls?  YES.  The controls show no signs of excessive arcing/wear as a result of the increased current.

Did the element fit easily as a direct replacement? A better question is “Was the element an accurate replica of the original?” – the element is a complete pain to fit, but that’s due to the oven design not your handiwork!  The old element was difficult to remove.  However, I didn’t have to bend/cut/adjust/grind anything for your one to fit.  The original element screwed to a small plate that provided the earth post, and this plate then screwed to the back of the grill.  I think this is due either to an element change by design or the element coming from another application.  A small improvement would be for your mount-plate to be full size to save having to get the plate off the old element.

Would you recommend others to use this Replacement element?  YES, definitely.  This model of Mercury cooker was hand-made by Lincat.  The newer Mercury cookers are mass produced by Rangemaster and are nowhere near as solid/good quality.  It was a £3k cooker, so replacing an element for your cost after ten years seems to me to be perfectly reasonable.  Plus, you chaps are the only ones that (now) supply the elements – you’re onto a winner! (except that there probably aren’t that many of these cookers around).

My biggest concern was the increased current draw and how the house wiring handled it.  The cooker is on a 10mm cable and a 40A RCD, so the cable’s fine and the MCB can just about take it.  Some customers might have it on a 6mm cable and a 32A MCB – the cable will be fine but the MCB would need to be changed.  Current draw:

Small oven: 11.7A
Large oven: 9.7A (odd, I know, but it’s fan assisted).
Grill small: 7.8A
Grill full: 16A
Max draw with all elements lit (cold): 37.7A

These are measured at the consumer unit with a clamp meter.  The grill seems low based on the simple P=VI formula, but we do have slightly high voltage (c 250v) because we’re rural so are fed by transformed 11kV supply.  I’m not complaining, since I’ve not had to change the MCB!

Anyway, I hope this information if of use.



Another day, more happy customers. And best of all their bacon cooks evenly across the grill.

If you need an identical element you can purchase one on our product page here

Mercury Rangemaster Dual Grill Element Replacement

Mercury Rangemaster Dual Grill Element Replacement

Going the extra Mile.

Going the extra Mile.

Once again we seem to have managed to delight another customer, this very kind lady has gone out of her way to remember to send us an email of thanks from a job we did a few weeks ago for a Hotplate Element for an old Moorwood Vulcan MasterChef PLUS E90-R-15. There was no identification on the equipment but we managed to recognise the element from a photograph emailed from Claire at Elevenses Bakery in County Armargh or

She needed the element in a hurry, so we made a special trip to the Post Office to help get it there on time. Good Luck with your new venture Claire.

From: Claire Keenan 
 Sent: 06 December 2016 09:48
 To: Sarah Fay
 Subject: Re: Sales Invoice. From T.P. FAY (KIRKBY) LTD.

Hi Sarah

I have meant to email back before now, just wanted to thank you 
for going out of your way to post the element Royal Mail for me 
(based in northern Ireland), saved me making an extra payment 
and meant we had a working hot plate for the opening of our new bakery, 
many thanks for the help from you and the team at 
TPFay who identified the element we required from a photo, it was much appreciated.


Claire Keenan

We were really glad to have helped and it gives us a warm fuzzy feeling to get recognition for doing our job the best way we know how.