Water Based Heat Transfer Printing at Superior Ink
The Future is now!
With the use of water-based heat transfers, we can now print millions of colors to reproduce any logo, no matter how complex. There is no setup cost with a 20 unit MOD. This process is tested to last 50+ washes and has a durable stretch and rebound to match.
Why choose water-based heat transfers?
Water-based heat transfers are a vibrant, soft, and lightweight alternative to traditional screen printing. They are an ideal way to print complex, multi-color designs on apparel, hats, tote bags, and coolers. Another advantage of heat transfer printing is the easy setup. Since this process doesn’t involve the use of screens, there are no setup fees. This process allows us to provide you with high quality, eco-friendly prints on practically any material.
Additionally, water-based heat transfers are PVC free, so you can feel good about wearing an eco-friendly print. This form of printing is suitable for all fabric types without water proof coating; cotton, polyester, blends, and nylon.
We add a dye blocker to transfers that will be applied to materials that lose their dye with heat, like 100% polyester and nylon. With the soft shell blocker, you can feel confident in knowing the garment’s dye will not bleed through light color inks!
Although water-based heat transfers are tested to last 50+ washes, we recommend washing your garment inside out in cold water and tumble dry on low heat. Please make sure to avoid bleaching and ironing the surface of the print!
Water-based heat transfers are priced based off of sizing. Below are the different size breakdowns that are available. Artwork has to be sent in as an AI (Illustrator) file to determine pricing, especially if we are doing multiple locations!
|Small||Left Chest||Medium||Large||Extra Large|
|2.5 x 2.5||4 x 4||
5.8 x 8.3 /
11.7 x 4.25
8.3 x 11.7 /
16.5 x 5.85
11.7 x 16.5
Why Heat Transfers work better for smaller Order quantities with high color counts.
Heat-transferring is the only service we offer that allows for both a minimum of 20 pieces and an unlimited amount of colors. Our standard minimum for standard screen printing services is 24 pieces for a one color print and an additional 12 shirts per each additional color after that. Pricing for ultraprints is based on the size of the graphic and not the colors within the design. This is huge when the artwork has too many colors for us to screen print or if you are looking for solid pantones instead of halftones.
Printing on Soft Shell Materials
Printing on soft shell materials like coaches jackets and windbreakers used to be nearly impossible, especially with multiple colors. We typically source Independent coaches jackets that have a polyurethane coating that is typically unfriendly for screen printing.
Thankfully, we are able to use water-based heat transfers because they require a lower temperature to produce the final product as well as not needing a flash or multiple registration points. That means less shrinkage, stress on the garment, and a higher quality finish.
Why Heat Transfers are a great replacement for Embroidery on Hats
Hats are such a necessary portion of creating a clothing brand. They always seem to be the least profitable garments, because order quantities tend to be lower and the process takes longer. While embroidery does offer the option to create raised and lifted textures, heat transfers can offer unmatched detail and an ultrasmooth feel. Embroidery also has the additional cost of digitizing the file to be sewn which typically costs $50 per design. Based on 50 units, this process tends to cost around $2 less per item to produce.
Timing is everything in the garment industry. Water-based heat transfers jobs can be turned around 3-5 days earlier than embroidery jobs. Based on the project and quantity, we can even rush heat transfer jobs that we typically wouldn’t be able to fit into the production schedule with traditional screen printing. As far as decorating snapbacks and other hats that do not have a seam running down the front panel, this is the fastest way to produce a fully decorated hat. While we do have the ability to bridge a seam with heat transfers, it is not recommended because the seam creates gaps for the transfer to bridge. The off-contact creates a point where the print can fail and weaken. Embroidery is still the best option for applying artwork that needs to go over a seam.
Why Heat Transfers are a great replacement for DTG Printing
DTG printing has long been the solution for small orders and high color/full color artwork. DTG printing is a service that we no longer offer based upon the waste created with the process as well as not have any eco-friendly ink option. While DTG printing may the answer for minimum order quantities under 20 pieces, heat transfers are a direct replacement for the complex colors involved with most DTG printing. The process uses more eco-friendly materials and allows us to offer a better finished product.
In closing, water-based heat transfers are a permanent solution to creating complex and colorful designs with a smaller order quantity required.
- There are no setup fees
- Eco-friendly water-base technology uses no PVC
- Suitable for most fabric types
- Durable with excellent stretch and rebound with no cracks or fading
- No limit on colors
- Can print white (most DTG printers cannot print white/ a base)
- Can be used on less conventional surfaces like ski bags, koozies, backpacks, tote bags, and coolers
Interested in using heat transfers for your next project?