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Heat presses are most used in garment manufacturing businesses and are available in a variety of different styles and sizes. The price range of heat presses can also vary dramatically, starting from under 300 dollars, going all the way up to 3000 dollars. Selecting the wrong type of heat press could mean a waste of money and also lead to inefficiency in production. Both these mistakes can impact business growth.

Here are a few guidelines to help you pick the right heat press for your business.

Types of Heat Presses

There are basically three kinds of heat presses available in the market. Your choice of heat press will largely depend on two factors: the kinds of jobs that need to get done and the work space area. The three heat press options include the following:

Clamshell Heat Press

The clamshell heat press operates exactly how the name suggests, like a clam shell. You can place the substrates and application materials on the lower platen. As the top platen closes, suitable pressure and temperature is applied on the underlying materials. This is a straightforward and single-step operation machine that offers perfect results with every use.

Draw Heat Press

The operation of a draw heat press is much like the opening of an actual drawer. The lower platen of the heat press will come out (in the direction of the operator), allowing for a heat-free work space. This style of heat press saves quite a bit of space. Since the lower platen of a draw heat press isn’t stationary, it might not be the most appropriate option when dealing with delicate materials which demand a stable work space.

Swinger Heat Press

The third option is the swinger heat press in which the upper platen swings away from the bottom platen. This makes the design and substrate completely accessible.


As discussed earlier, the work space area is a major consideration when it comes to selecting a heat press style. For instance, with a swinger heat press, greater floor space is necessary as compared to the clamshell model since the top platen requires room for swinging freely. Also, the swinger heat press is excellent for decorating bulkier and thicker items. It is easier to load and unload with minimal burn risks in a swinger heat press.

The manually operated clamshell heat press is perhaps the most commonly used heat press and is considered to be a great entry-level machine among operators. When choosing a heat press, it is also vital to consider the muscle strength required by the operator for using the machine.

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