The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

1st Usage Century Digital Heat Mat Thermostat Controller

bbqnpizza's picture

1st Usage Century Digital Heat Mat Thermostat Controller

Hi all,

This is half a review based on 1st usage of the "Century Digital Heat Mat Thermostat Controller".  The 2nd half of the review will follow 2 or 3 months of usage.

My purpose for the electric controller usage is current and future, how I  proof now and a future proof box.

This is a 120VAC 60Hz, Max Load: 8.3A 1000W digital controller allowing one to control either a heating element or electric light temperature, in a proof box, and maintain a constant temperature.

This does NOT include a timer if you need a timer Amazon has digital 24-hour timers for $12+.

Note, my initial breadmaking was using a breadmaker which heated the pan.  I never baked the loaves in the bread maker, instead after the 2nd proof, I would turn the dough out shape put in a slightly warm loaf pan, and use a slightly warm roasting pan, covered with wet wrung out tea towel, heated by a 60w work light.  (I used a coat hanger wire shaped to keep the towel above the pan).  I could monitor the temp inside with my Maverick Digital Thermometer with dual remote probes # ET 732.

I wanted a more "set it" and "forget it" setup.  With the new Century Controller, my current temporary setup uses the microwave as my box with a light & the controller sensor inside the microwave.  

1st impressions

Build Quality:  For the price, I am surprised by the quality, it feels solid even though it is a hard plastic housing. The gauge of the electric cord is at least 12 ga.  The buttons feel right not sloppy.

Initial setup: was very simple, had I no trouble.

Usage: I set the temp did a trial test to see if the temp sensor worked ok, it did. Put 2 loaf pans in the micro with light and sensor.  One might ask, "wasn't the light too warm on the nearest pan"?  I used a plastic plate as shield that directed the heat up at angle toward the pans, so the heat would bounce off the microwave roof and down onto the pans.

I am looking forward to building a proof box and using the Century Controller for heat control. $19 is a pretty decent price if it holds up for 3 to 5 years.

julie99nl's picture

How much overshoot in temp is there? I use something similar and it was hard to find one that didn't overshoot temp by as much as 5C/41F.

barryvabeach's picture

Nice find for a proofer controller at a great price.  It looks far more compact that buying the digital controller and wiring it ,  as I did, and the temp range looks great for a proofer. 

gerryp123's picture

Works just fine -- as advertised; good quality build.  Holds temp to about 1 deg C (about 2 deg F)

Using this as the heat controller for easy-to-build proofer (large plastic storage box with cover ; 2x25w ceramic heater lamps plugged into controller; small pan of water; blanket over entire unit for added insulation.  Able to proof large mixing-bowl of dough or 2 10" round bannnetons.  No need for built-in timer -- just come back and take a look when wall clock says about 90 min.