The Complete Guide To Siser HTV: Heat Press Settings
by Todd Foster,
5 min reading time
Heat transfer vinyl, popularly known as HTV among the crafting community, is a fantastic material. It can be cut and applied to a wide variety of materials, including polyester and cotton shirts, even combination polyester-cotton blends. It is a fantastic way to add a unique design to any material. But, before you break out your Cricut or Silhouette cutter, you need to know how to use your heat press machine properly. Improper use—including pressure, temperature, and time settings—can cause your vinyl to burn or not stick. We do not want your craft going wrong! In this blog, we will provide a complete guide to how to use heat transfer vinyl (HTV) successfully.
The Different Kinds of Heat Transfer Vinyl
There are a variety of types of heat transfer vinyl products available. Each type of HTV has its own pressure, time and heat settings to get the perfect results.
Most heat transfer vinyl is hot peel. Hot peel HTV requires the carrier sheet to be removed immediately after using your heat presses high heat to stick to a garment and should be peeled when hot. Siser Easyweed, ThemoFlex Plus, and Siser Easyweed Glow in the Dark are just a few examples of hot peel HTV.
Warm peel HTV is much the same as hot peel HTV. This heat transfer vinyl transfer needs to be removed warm, after you have adhered it with hot temperatures to cling to the fabric or other material. Make sure to let this HTV cool slightly before peeling.
Despite being titled a "cold peel" this vinyl still uses heat transfer technology for application purposes; cold HTV vinyl has "cold" in its name because the carrier sheet needs to be cold before removal.
Low Temp Peel
Low temp HTV is a perfect option for pressing heat-sensitive materials like rayon, 100% polyester or silk. You should use low temp HTV on any shirt or fabric that says "cool iron only" on its tag.
Heat Press Temperature Application Instructions
Continue reading for our step-by-step guide to HTV application.
1. Set up your heat press machine
First, you will need to find a good workspace. Set your heat press machine on a flat, sturdy surface. Make sure the surface can handle more than the weight of the machine. You will need to add additional pressure when using a handheld iron or cricut easy press and the last thing you want is the table collapsing underneath it.
2. Select the right amount of pressure
Plugin your heat-press, but do not turn it on yet. You will want to adjust the pressure settings to ensure that you have the right amount of pressure for your choice of material. Too little pressure will mean that the vinyl will not attach to the material, whereas too much pressure will cause your material to burn. Medium pressure is a safe bet for most vinyl.
You can find the perfect, medium pressure setting by following these steps:
Place your shirt or garment on the press
Close the heat press by pushing down on the handle
Keep pressing the handle until the apparatus locks close
Open the press back up, then turn the knob tighter by 4 or 5 turns
Close the heat press until the apparatus locks close
Repeat the process until you cannot lock the press when it is closed
3. Turn on the machine and set the temperature
Once you have set the press to medium pressure, you can turn on the machine. Most heat presses will start heating immediately. You will need to adjust the heat press temperature to the correct setting. Check the chart to find the correct temperature for your vinyl.
Before you lay down your HTV, you should press the fabric that you will be applying the HTV to. You can press the fabric by closing the heat press machine for 5 seconds. It is so fast you won't even need to set a timer! Lift the lid and your base is primed and ready for HTV application.
Note: Remember to be mindful of the heat recommendations for cotton and polyester. If you are printing on either of these materials, make sure to avoid high heat. We recommend that you test the tip of your cotton or polyester with an iron before pressing.
5. Place your HTV
After your shirt is on the press, lay your HTV over the shirt. Make sure to adjust the fine lines of the vinyl until the design is perfect.
6. Press the vinyl
Once the vinyl has been placed, close the heat press and let it sit for the designated amount of time. Check the chart below for time recommendations.
Sister Heat Transfer Vinyl Time Guide
Siser Easyweed: 10-15 seconds
Sister Glitter: 15 seconds
Siser Easyweed Glow in the Dark: 2 seconds, then 10-15 seconds
Siser Sparkle: 15 seconds
Siser Holographic: 15-20 seconds
7. Remove the Carrier sheet
Remove the carrier sheet by peeling it away from the vinyl. The end result is a stunning vinyl design!
Hi Ruth, Yes by pressing or ironing for too long can have the same effect. HTV works by using a heat activated adhesive so too little time and it won’t heat enough to stick. Too long and it can actually burn the adhesive off and or push it out from underneath the HTV
Can you heat press too long? I’m having trouble with the vinyl coming off when washed. What can cause this problem