Designed by a Swedish inventor in the 1990s and manufactured in Sweden, the first Speedheater Infrared Paint Remover was released in the United States in 2002. The original U.S. importer was Viking Sales of New York. Viking changed the name of the product to Silent Paint Remover. Although Eco-Strip started in 2003 as a dealer for Viking Sales, we sold the product using the original name of Speedheater™ not Silent Paint Remover.
In 2006, Viking Sales created, manufactured in the U.S. and started selling a copy of the Speedheater but continued using the name Silent Paint Remover on their copycat unit. The new Silent Paint Remover was designed to look identical to the Speedheater™. In 2006, Eco-Strip withdrew as a Viking Sales’ dealer, began purchasing directly from Speedheater Systems in Sweden, and continued using the Speedheater™ name. The close appearance and function of the two infrared paint removers continue to confuse consumers.
However, there are differences you can note.
Differences Between Infrared Paint Removers
There are major differences between the two look alikes.
- Since its 2002 U.S. debut, the Speedheater™ has undergone several upgrades: shock absorbers were added to stabilize the infrared bulbs; the infrared bulbs themselves were replaced with higher quality, more durable and more longer-lasting bulbs; and, the electric cord was upgraded and strengthened.
- In 2006, these improvements and enhancements enabled the Speedheater™ to pass international, electrical and safety testing and to achieve Underwriters Laboratory (UL) no other infrared paint remover has passed the rigorous UL testing and is certified.
- In addition to UL Listing, the Speedheater™ passed independent testing in Sweden for safe removal of old, lead-based paint . The blowing hot air from high heat guns must heat paint to 1000F for the paint to release from the wood. At this temperature, lead paint releases invisible, toxic, lead fumes. The Speedheater™ infrared rays only need to heat paint to 400-600F to release it from the wood for fast scraping. Because of the laboratory test results, the Speedheater™ is the only infrared heat remover brand compliant with the rigorous U.S. EPA RRP (Renovation, Repair and Painting) safety standard. This standard prohibits the use of paint removal tools that create lead fumes. https://www.epa.gov/lead/lead-renovation-repair-and-painting-program
- There are several visible distinctions to help determine which machine is the original Speedheater™ and which is the knockoff Silent Paint Remover.
A. The Speedheater™ 1100 continues to have the name Speedheater embossed on the metal endplates of the units. Silent Paint Removers are embossed with the word heater
B. Only the Speedheater™ is labeled with the UL and CE The Silent Paint Remover only has CE on its labels.
C. All Speedheater™ products continue to be manufactured in Sweden with most parts sourced in Sweden following the high-quality, European standards. Silent Paint Removers are manufactured in the U.S.A.
Viking Sales developed and manufactures in the U.S. other models of infrared paint removers using the two-bulb design. None of these models are tested and UL listed. In 2017, Speedheater Systems in Sweden released to the U.S. a totally new design for an infrared paint remover, the Speedheater™ Cobra. This model has a small head which heats a smaller area than the Speedheater™ 1100. However, it heats paint and separates it from wood in less than 5 seconds. There is no heat stripper in the world works as fast, as thoroughly and as safely as the Cobra. It is also quality and safety tested and has received the UL Listing.
Safe Paint Removal
When choosing an infrared paint stripper, it’s extremely important to consider the safety of yourself and others. This is especially true when working indoors with little ventilation and when dealing with lead paint.
In addition to choosing a high quality infrared heat stripping product, the type of paint scraper used makes a big difference. Speedheater™ paint scrapers remove paint quickly and efficiently without damaging wood or intricate details. These pull-type scrapers make quick work of even large stripping projects. The spring steel blades of the Speedheater™ scrapers resist chipping and bending and do not damage wood like dull, uneven putty scraper blades can. Eco-Strip offers several different Speedheater scrapers with different edge profiles, ensuring fast and easy paint removal on a variety of surfaces. Unlike other, inefficient paint scrapers like putty scrapers Speedheater scrapers allow complete paint removal down to the bare wood in just a few strokes.
Although alternatives exist, nothing beats the original Speedheater™1100, the new Speedheater™ Cobra and the Speedheater™ paint scrapers when it comes to quality, efficiency, and safety. Don’t settle for anything less.
 “Test for Lead Exposure at Paint Removal with Speedheater Infrared System; November 2005”: IVF Industrial Research and Development, Independent Industrial Research Institute of the Swedish Manufacturing Industry jointly owned by the Swedish Government and an association of manufacturing Companies
 CE marking is a certification mark that indicates conformity with health, safety, and environmental protection standards for products sold within the European Economic Area.