The shielded end keeps it away from the pail. I make sure the heating element is totally submerged in syrup.
Pushing it into the granulation it will heat up quickly. I never leave it unattended while it is heating.
I use a drywall mixer on a drill motor to stir it. This mixer also works great for mixing sugar and water in a 5 gallon pail.
When I add fumigillan to syrup this works great for mixing it in.
I have to feed my bees. All my HFCS high fructose corn syrup has granulated since spring. I use my bucket heater to liquefy the syrup. The heater in the pail took about 2 hours to liquefy stirring it a couple times. This heater is not to be used on honey as it is not approved to use with food.