Category: Electric Heating

The Best Heater For Toasty Toes In 2022 – Gas or Electric?

Have you noticed your heating system grumbling and groaning during the cold snap this year? Maybe you struggled with it over Christmas, and now you’re thinking it might be time to retire the old and bring in something new? You’re not the only one! Lots of people upgrade their heating systems at this time of year to make sure they can stay warm through until the springtime sun. But rather than just going a like-for-like upgrade, we recommend you look at all of the options on the market, and see what suits you better – gas or electric heating?

Energy Efficiency

We’re currently living through not only an energy crisis, but an environmental crisis, which means choosing an energy-efficient heating system has never been more important. Ideally, you want to choose something that has an as little environmental impact as possible while still providing you with the warmth you need at low costs. Unfortunately, gas heating loses both of those battles right away. Fossil fuels are a big contributor to greenhouse gases and are one of the least energy-efficient heat sources on the market. Electric heating however is 100% energy efficient, since energy is immediately converted to heat and none is lost in production (so you’ll save money on your bills right away), while also moving away from fossil fuels and reducing your home’s carbon footprint.

Lifespan

As a general rule, gas heating systems have a much shorter lifespan than their electric counterparts. There are a couple of reasons for this, including electric heaters having fewer moving parts (so less to go wrong), higher safety regulations, better energy efficiency ratings, less environmental impact and the ability to be placed anywhere in your home and moved if needed, ensuring continued use over the years. So if you want to upgrade your heating system to something that will last for decades to come with minimal upkeep, electric heaters are the way to go.

Control

There’s nothing worse than feeling uncomfortable in your own home, but that’s what many of us go through on a day-to-day basis. Gas heating systems don’t have a hugely sophisticated control mechanism, meaning you’re often either too hot or too cold and spending more money than needed to find the balance. There’s a reason your mum always told you to put a jumper on rather than mess with the heating! Once again, electric heaters win the battle, because they give you a level of control over your home heating never seen before. A few of the features you’ll find on electric heaters include:

  • Smart thermostats with WiFi connectivity, allowing you to control your heating from your phone.
  • LCD displays.
  • Frost protection.
  • Remote control access.
  • Automatic climate control.
  • Cold air settings.

Let’s face it, you’ll never find all that on a gas heater!

Choosing The Best Electric Heater

So if the future is electric heaters, then how do you choose the best one for your home in 2022? The bad news is there is no ‘one size fits all solution for electric heaters – what suits you best will be what fits in with your home and your lifestyle. So we can’t just tell you ‘this is the best electric heater’. What we can do is tell you some of the things you need to think about before you buy, so you can make the most informed decision before you buy.
Choose your type: There are multiple types of electric heaters to choose from, so narrowing down the list will make your search a lot simpler. The main types include convection heaters, fan heaters, oil-filled heaters, night storage heaters and towel rails. You’ll also need to decide if they will be free-standing or wall-mounted, as this can affect the price.

Decide what’s important: Electric heaters come with all sorts of bells and whistles, so before you start looking try and decide which features are ‘must-haves, and which are only ‘would like’. For example, do you need your electric heater to have a timer switch? Is frost protection necessary or important where you live? Do you really want it to be WiFi-enabled, or does that not bother you? The only thing we would recommend you definitely look for is a cold air setting, since UK homes are designed to keep the heat in, and we know how hot it gets in summer!
Set a budget: Electric heaters come in all shapes and sizes, which means they come in all budget ranges as well. Knowing what your budget is for a new heating system will help you narrow down your search and find something that fits the bill in your price range the first time around.

Still not sure where to start looking for your new electric heater? At Electric Heating Expert, we’re, well, the experts in all things electric heating! If you would like to know more or have any questions, we’d be happy to help. Just get in touch with the team today.

What’s Inside An Electric Radiator?

We talk a lot about the benefits of switching your home to electric radiators. They save space, look great, are much more efficient than water-based radiators and heating systems, and can even save you money. But while most people know how a standard water radiator works (with heated water from a boiler flowing through it), the same can’t be said for their electric counterparts. So, if they don’t use heated water, what do electric radiators use, and how do they work?

What’s Inside?

Unlike standard radiators, electric radiators aren’t filled with water. Good thing too, as water and electricity don’t really mix! Instead, electric radiators contain 2 distinct components. The first is a heating element, which is a type of electrical resistor that can be submerged in a liquid and transform electrical energy into heat energy. And the second is either oil or more commonly a substance called glycol. The electrical resistor uses power from your home and turns every single unit of energy into heat. That heat is conducted through the glycol or oil and spread through the surface of the radiator, allowing it to circulate through the room.

The Lowdown on Glycol

Glycol might sound like a big scary word, but honestly, it’s perfectly safe and an incredibly useful little chemical. Essentially it’s a thermodynamic fluid (which means it’s good at conducting heat) that has natural anti-freeze and anti-corrosion inhibitor functions, which have been specifically designed for heating systems and sealed radiators. What all of that means is that glycol has a low freezing point and doesn’t cause the metal to rust, while transferring the maximum possible heat in the most efficient way. It’s used in all sorts of industries, from HVAC to food and even pharmaceuticals.

Some of the main benefits of using glycol in electric radiators include:

  • It retains heat for longer, providing ambient heat for your room
  • There will be no build up of limescale, rust or corrosion within the radiator
  • Thanks to it’s prevention of ruse and limescale, it transfers heat just as well, if not better, than water
  • Reduces noises
  • Removed the need to bleed or balance your radiators
  • It has a low freezing point, so the system won’t freeze over during harsh winters

There are two types of glycol on the market, called ethylene glycol and propylene glycol, but 90% of the industry has now moved away from using ethylene glycol as it can be incredibly toxic. Instead, we use propylene glycol, which has been approved by regulators and is proven to be a safe, non-toxic compound.

Getting Wired In

So how does all of that run? On electricity! There are several different types of electric radiators, from wall-mounted units to little ones on wheels, and all of them are powered by electricity. The only difference is how they access it. You can get models that plug into a mains socket, making them portable, which can be useful in the depths of winter if you need to heat a room you don’t often use. But the best way to power your electric radiators is to have them wired into your mains. This is simple to do, and you can have your new radiators up and running in no time.

So now you hopefully know a little bit more about how electric radiators and how they work. At Electric Heating Expert we can supply a wide range of electric radiators and heating solutions, to bring you all the benefits of electricity with none of the downsides.

If you would like to know more, contact us on 01252 560770 or email the team at enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk.

Winter Heating Tips

We are now coming into the coldest part of the year, and in just a few weeks we may well be seeing snow settle on the ground at temperatures continue to fall. By now you’ve probably already turned your heating on and are enjoying feeling toasty warm while you watch the night draw in. But did you know that you may be wasting a lot of money, or potentially causing yourself a lot of problems further down the line, just in the way you’re heating your home? To help you out, here are 4 winter heating tips to help you beat the cold and the heating bill.

Keep Radiators Clear

We all know that things get moved around a lot at Christmas. We need to make room for the Christmas tree, all the presents, and the extended table so the family can gather around for Christmas lunch. But you must make sure that nothing gets shoved in front of a radiator, or placed there for decoration around the festive period. Desks, chairs, sofas, trees – anything placed in front of your radiator is going to do 2 things. The first is it is a potential fire hazard, which is the last thing you want at any time of year! The second is that it will significantly reduce the efficiency of your radiators since the heat will accumulate behind the object and it won’t be able to disperse evenly into the room. Instead, keep all radiators clear and with a good amount of space around them so that they can do their job properly.

Don’t Keep the Heating On

It can be incredibly tempting to keep the heating running 24/7 and make sure your house never feels even slightly cold. Or to crank the heating up even higher than you normally would, and leave it running all day long. But this approach will cost you a tremendous amount of money (especially with energy prices on the rise), will cause more damage to the environment through increased carbon emissions, and isn’t good for your system in the long run. To give you an idea of just how much this could cost, every degree you increase your heating by adds around 6% to your heating bill each month. So if you nudge the heating from 20°C to 24°C, you’re increasing your heating bill by 25%. So if you’re only feeling a little bit chilly, your first option should be a jumper and thick socks, before turning the heating up.

Ventilate Your Home Properly

Common sense might say that you want to keep all of your windows and doors shut as much as possible during this time of year. After all, opening them up will let all of the hot air out, as your mum always said! But the problem with that is your home needs proper ventilation, especially in winter. At this time of year, the humidity in your home will skyrocket, mainly due to you having the heating on and more people in the house. So to avoid the problems that come hand in hand with high humidity (mould, breathing problems, etc.), you need to open your windows fully for a few minutes each day. Opening them just a crack won’t cut it – fling them open and let the air in for around 5 minutes once a day. This is particularly important in the bedroom, where a lot of humidity will gather overnight and over time will actually make it harder to sleep. Opening your windows for just 5 minutes a day won’t significantly cool down your home, and your heating will soon pick up the difference and get you feeling warm again.

Switch to Electric Heating

Electric heating is an incredibly versatile heating method, and it can be a huge benefit in the winter. Not only is it more energy-efficient and carbon-neutral, but it can be pre-programmed with smart heating controls to turn on and off even if you aren’t home, so you can make the most of your heating. Electric radiators will also bring your energy bills down, and if you decide to zone your home so that you’re only heating the rooms you need to use, you can save even more money!

If you’re interested in switching to electric heating this year, we would love to help. We sell a wide range of electric radiators and heaters, so we can always find something that matches your needs, décor, and budget. If you would like to know more, just get in touch with the team today.

Contact us by calling 01252 560770 or you can e-mail us at enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk to find out more about our product range and services.

Top 7 Reasons Why Electric Heating is Better Than Gas


During the winter months, there’s nothing better than snuggling up at home, warm and cosy with your loved ones. Of course, keeping your home toasty comes with a cost. It’s not just the price of your energy bills you need to consider when picking the perfect fuel source, but the impact on the planet, and even on your family’s health too.

If you’re struggling to choose between gas or electric-based heating, you’re in the right place. We’re going to cover some of the most important reasons why electric generally beats gas as a more efficient, effective, and reliable heating system.

What are the Main Reasons to Choose Electricity over Gas?

  • Electricity is More Efficient

With energy prices on the rise, it only makes sense to ensure your pick of the perfect heating solution is as efficient as possible. An average of 64.7% of the heating in households throughout the UK and EU goes towards heating, and electricity is generally more efficient than gas at keeping your energy prices as low as possible. While gas heaters can only convert a portion of fuel into heat, electric heaters convert 100% of electricity into heat energy. This means you get the best bang for your buck. What’s more, because electricity is versatile (capable of performing a range of tasks), it’s being used in a larger number of homes. This means companies are spending more money on the development of energy-efficient electric heating systems for the future.

  • Electricity doesn’t pollute

If you’re committed to protecting the planet, switching to an electric heating system could be a good first step. Look at it this way – electric cars are more environmentally friendly than those running on petrol and diesel. It only makes sense that electric heaters would be cleaner than gas alternatives too. Gas is one of the cleanest fossil fuels we have – but it’s still not the best substance for the environment. There are no by-products produced by electricity, unlike gas, which operates based mainly on combustion. There’s also no risk of carbon monoxide poisoning with an electric heating system.

  • Easy installation

Electrical heating systems are simpler, and often cheaper to install than a full gas central heating system. This is because your gas central heating system would require a number of ducts, vents, and pipes, which involves far more work. With electric heating systems, there’s no flue or pipework to worry about, and you won’t have to stress over building layout restrictions. All that an electric heating system needs is a connection to the electrical circuit. For new-build properties, this means it’s easy to add electric systems during the second wiring stage. If you’re installing a new heating system in an existing home, it can also be less disruptive and destructive than implementing a gas system.

  • It’s safer for your health

As mentioned above, an electric heating system doesn’t use combustion or burn fuel to generate heat. This eliminates a range of safety and health risks, from poisoning to explosions. With electric heating systems, there are also no water-filled pipes to worry about, so you’re not going to have to deal with sudden leaks or burst pipes. An electric system could even have a positive impact on your mental health. Because these systems are cheaper, easier, and safer to run, you don’t have to go to bed each night worrying about what happens if something goes wrong with your technology.

  • Electric heaters are quieter

The last thing you want is for your heating system to be keeping you and your loved ones awake at all hours of the night or distracting you during a movie marathon. Although all kinds of heaters can be designed with quiet operation in mind, gas systems can be a lot noisier due to the movement of hot water running through the pipes. Many people who have lived with gas heating systems before say they often hear the sound of something similar to a “kettle boiling” when they’re running their heaters.

  • Innovation opportunities

As electricity continues to emerge as the preferred choice of heating technology for a wide range of new and existing homes, the number of companies investing in electric technology is growing. These days, it’s becoming increasingly easy to find a range of innovative electrical tools for your heating needs, including solutions you can control with smart thermostats. Electric heaters can easily be linked to your smartphone and Wi-Fi connection, so you can control the heating in different rooms of your home, or simply turn your heating off when you’re outside of the house. While a handful of these options are available for gas heaters, they’re often less common.

  • Better long-term value

Finally, not only is electricity more efficient, but it delivers more value in the long term too. Gas might be cheaper than electricity in some situations, but when you consider things like running expenses, maintenance, installation, and even the average life of the product’s lifespan, it becomes evident that electricity is clearly the better choice. The majority of electric heaters require very little maintenance and can last for a lot longer than the average gas system. Combine all this with a cheaper installation process, and you have plenty of ways to save money on energy.

Electric Heating Makes the Most Sense

Though gas heaters can have their benefits in certain circumstances, the majority of homeowners will benefit from better savings, improved health, and even a reduced impact on the environment with electric heating. An electric heating system will make your home as energy efficient as possible while making sure you’re not wasting money on a complex installation and maintenance system. If you want the most cost-effective way to keep your home warm and comfortable during the colder months of the year, it only makes sense to consider using electricity as your heating fuel.

Contact us by calling 01252 560770 or you can e-mail us at enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk to find out more about our product range and services.

Top Health Reasons to Convert to Electric Heating

As autumn moves toward winter, and the temperatures drop, many of us are now turning up the thermostat. For many years, we’ve not thought too much about the fuel we’re burning. Just whether the boiler has been serviced, and then letting it heat our homes throughout the winter months. 

However, we’re now seeing a shift in the type of heating homeowners want to use. More and more people are looking for heating alternatives, and switching to all-electric heating systems. Not only is there a strong incentive to move away from fossil fuels, to help reverse climate change, but electric heating systems actually come with a range of other benefits. These include monthly savings – as electric heating is 100% energy efficient, no energy is wasted moving hot water through pipes. But just as importantly, electric heating is also far better for your health. 

Here are the top health reasons you should convert to electric heating:

No combustion involved

Unlike gas boilers, electric heating doesn’t rely on the burning of fuel to generate heat. Gas is highly flammable and if a boiler isn’t maintained properly, there’s a risk of gas leaks, fires or even an explosion. Indeed, this means that not only is your boiler a risk to your health and safety, but all gas appliances can be lethal. For this reason, gas boilers and appliances need to be serviced annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer.

No risk of carbon monoxide poisoning

A faulty gas appliance isn’t just a fire risk. When gas doesn’t burn properly, it creates carbon monoxide. This lethal gas is silent, has no odour and can build up over time without you realising. Symptoms of low-level carbon monoxide exposure include:

  • Tension headache
  • Tiredness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Confusion
  • Shortness of breath
  • Stomach pain

Prolonged or acute exposure causes vision, memory and balance issues as well as loss of consciousness. Indeed, within minutes of high exposure, carbon monoxide poisoning can be lethal. As a result of this risk to health, homes with gas boilers and gas appliances must also have carbon monoxide monitors. Just like the appliances themselves, these need to regularly be checked as well. So the obvious benefit here is that there is zero risk of carbon monoxide poisoning with an all-electric heating system.  

No risk of water pipes bursting

Unlike electric heating systems that plug directly into a power supply, gas heating systems rely on a series of water pipes to transport the heat energy from the boiler to radiators. However, in freezing temperatures the water in the pipes will freeze. As water freezes, it expands. This puts pressure on the pipes, causing them to fracture. As the water thaws, it leaks through the burst pipes, potentially causing a lot of damage within the home. This is bad for your health in so many ways. It’s not only stressful, it’s also expensive to fix and can ruin precious items that are irreplaceable. 

Water infiltration can also lead to a build-up of damp. This in itself is bad for your health, as it can cause respiratory problems, make asthma worse and exacerbate allergies. 

In contrast, with electric heating systems such as electric radiators and heaters, there’s no water being pumped around, just energy converted directly to heat within the home.

Silent running

Ah, the sound of silence. There’s a reason sound can be used for torture. Old gas boiler systems have many moving parts that can disturb the peace. These include creaking pipes, dripping water and clicking radiators. All of this noise pollution can actually be really bad for your mental health. It can also keep you awake at night, disturbing your sleep, which in itself is incredibly bad for your general health. However, electric systems are completely silent. Just switch it on, relax and bask in the luxurious ambient heat.

Financial benefits lower stress levels

Traditionally, electric heating systems were seen as less economical than gas boilers. However, modern electric radiators and heating systems have blown this myth out of the water. 

Firstly, electric heating systems such as electric radiators and heaters are far cheaper to install than a boiler-fed heating system. There’s no pipework, no flue and no planning considerations. All you need is a power point and you’re good to go. 

Secondly, as there are less moving parts, no danger of fire or carbon monoxide poisoning, electric heating systems don’t require annual servicing. This means year-on-year you’ll make significant savings. 

Thirdly, with an electric heating system each unit runs independently of each other, so if one fails you don’t lose the heating in your whole house. Excellent warranties also mean that parts and units are quickly and easily replaced, as opposed to costly engineer visits and boiler repairs associated with gas systems. 

Finally, electric heating systems now come with state-of-the-art programming, innovative components and amazing thermal heating elements. This means that you’ll instantly have heat exactly where and when you need it. No more cold mornings or freezing evenings, waiting for the temperature to come up, which is far better for your health. Also – and most importantly – electric heat is 100% efficient. This means all of the energy you use is converted to heat, and your monthly bills will reflect this. Monthly outgoings are the biggest worries for homeowners, so having superior control of this will definitely give you peace of mind and lower stress levels within the household. 

We hope this article has helped you to understand the health benefits of converting to an electric heating system. As you can see, it’s definitely good for body, mind and soul. It will also ultimately be good for the environment, which is also key to a brighter, safer future for us all. 

If you’re in the middle of home renovations, are planning a new build or just switching from a gas boiler to an electric heating system then get in touch today. We have a fantastic range of products, including premium electric radiators and electric heaters that provide superior comfort, unrivalled programmability and excellent cost benefits. Whether you’re looking to heat one area or a whole home, we can help you move toward a greener, cleaner home heating system. Get in touch today on 01252 560770, or email us at enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk to find out more.

Cheap Ways to Save On Apartment Heating Costs

As summer gives way to autumn, many of us are already reaching for the thermostat and turning on our central heating. But with budgets tight this year and costs for goods spiralling, it’s more important than ever to keep your monthly bills down to a minimum. Given the fact that heating accounts for a large proportion of household energy expenditure, it’s a great place to start making savings.

So to help keep your energy costs down to a minimum, we’ve put together some top tips for minimising your heating costs down this winter. Some require the help of a professional tradesman, but there are many that you can implement yourself.

Switch providers

When it comes to energy suppliers, there are no rewards for loyalty anymore. The best deals tend to be for new customers only while existing customers languish on costly tariffs. Changing suppliers might sound daunting, but it’s actually straightforward to do. Check out Uswitch for the best deals. Tariffs are continually fluctuating, and even if your fixed deal isn’t about to expire, you may still make annual savings if you switch.

If your fixed deal has already expired, you should definitely check that you’re on the best rate, as you’ve probably moved on to a standard variable tariff. Switching to a new energy supplier could save you over £200 a year – the price of a weekend away! So it’s definitely worth looking into cutting your monthly energy bills.

Install electric radiators

OK, so this may not be the cheapest option, but it definitely won’t break the bank as a new gas boiler will.

Many apartments share a central heating system, with warmth delivered via radiators or underfloor heating. While landlords will generally have to maintain such systems in rented apartments, if you own your apartment you’ll have some autonomy over the decision making. If you feel your gas heating system is no longer fit for purpose – be that spiralling fuel costs, inefficiency or unreliability – then you can choose to switch to an electric heating system. Indeed, given the impact of climate change, all homeowners are now being encouraged to move away from heating systems that use fossil fuels. New low-carbon options and those that use renewable energy will definitely be the future for home heating.

The best and most straightforward option for all-electric home heating is electric radiators. Not only are they easy to fit, but they also provide amazing functionality to make your home comfortably warm, with heat supplied just when you need it. In terms of installation, electric radiators run independently of each other, so there’s no pipework or fiddly connections. Many simply require an electrical plug for installation and can be fixed to the wall using a set of brackets. They’re amazingly energy-efficient, converting 100% of the energy they use into heat. They also come packed with additional features, including WiFi connectivity, open window detection and 24/7 programming, to fit your lifestyle.

Even if you rent your apartment and can’t persuade the landlord to update a tired central heating system, you can easily install supplemental heating, in the form of electric radiators and electric heaters. Use these new radiators and turn down the existing heating system, to instantly start making savings.

Turn down your thermostat

Apartments are unique from houses in that they can benefit from the heat in surrounding units. Indeed, if you’re on the top floor, you could profit from the heat rising from apartments below. So check your thermostat setting, and see if you can dial it down a bit. Even if you can only manage a 1-degree drop, this could save you up to £80 a year. Again, you can boost your heating using electric heaters. Fan heaters can be more expensive to run, so look for convection models to ensure lower energy costs.

Check your insulation

Gaps in windows are the main culprits for heat loss from apartments, and there are two solutions to drive energy savings here. Firstly, you can install draught-proofing strips to seal cracks around windows. These can be bought at any DIY store and are a quick and easy solution, Secondly, you can install double glazing. This may be more costly, but it will deliver instant energy savings and is also a great way to cut noise pollution.

Use a smart control heating system

With the easing of restrictions, society is opening up again and many of us are now returning to the workplace. Smart controls – or smart thermostats – are a great way to take back control of your heating system. With a smart thermostat, you can control your heating from wherever you are, at the touch of an App. They can be fitted to most home heating systems and will drive energy savings as you can ensure the heat is on just when and where you need it. This is especially useful if your daily schedule isn’t consistent, and if you travel, as the system can be controlled from anywhere in the world. Some even include a feature called geofencing. This nifty piece of tech creates a boundary around the property, sensing when you’re leaving and approaching the property, and turning the heating on or off as required.

Here are some of our favourite models:

  • Hive Active Heating 2
  • Google Nest Learning Thermostat (3rd Generation)
  • Tado Smart Thermostat V3
  • Drayton Wiser Multi-Zone Smart Thermostat
  • Honeywell Evohome

Zone your heating

This is where smart thermostats come into their own. You can control which rooms receive heat, and when. You don’t need the bedrooms to be heated during the day. Likewise, you won’t need the kitchen heated during the late evening. So choose which rooms you want to use and when, and zone you're heating. This will ensure the heat is in the precise rooms that it’s needed, depending on your routine and the time of day.

Shut the doors and use the power of the sun

Zoning heat will only work if you shut the doors. This will prevent heat loss, ensuring warm rooms remain warm, and unused rooms stay cool. Also, use the power of the sun. Open your blinds and curtains during the day to let the light in and use the sun’s rays to heat your home. There really isn’t a cheaper way to save on heating costs.

Add soft furnishings

This may feel completely low-tech compared with smart thermostats, but it really is an easy way to make your apartment warmer and cosier. Plush curtains and deep-pile rugs are great for creating a feeling of warmth, and insulating space.

Simple heating hacks

We’ve already published a great post on heating hacks that you can easily implement yourself. One of our favourites is in fact the most simple, using residual oven heat to warm the home. Yes, that’s right! Rather than close the oven door after cooking a meal, leave it open and let that warmth flow through your kitchen and into the rest of the apartment. The thermostat will detect the increase in heat and dial down your energy use, instantly saving you money.

If you’re interested in investing in electric heating options to lower your energy bills, then get in touch today. We sell premium electric radiators and electric heaters that utilise the best energy-saving features to ensure you’ll stay warm this winter and save money on your apartment heating costs. Contact us by calling 01252 560770 or you can e-mail us at enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk to find out more about our product range and services.

Pros and Cons of Infrared Heaters

If you’re considering looking to supplement the heating in your home then there are several electric heating options available to you. These include electric radiators, fan heaters and infrared heaters. In this article, we’ll look at the pros and cons of infrared heaters. How they can be useful, and why they’re not always the best option.

What is infrared heat?

But first, what exactly is infrared heat? Well, imagine the heat you feel when you step out into the sun. That’s a combination of infrared and ultraviolet rays. The infrared warms us, while the UV is more damaging to health. We can feel it, but we can’t actually see infrared light. This is because it’s beyond the spectrum of what we can see, sitting at a wavelength of between 0.78 and 2.5 micrometres (or microns). Infrared heaters work by converting energy into radiant heat. Infrared radiation travels in a straight direction and isn’t absorbed by the air. This means it heats objects it meets, and infrared heaters are therefore excellent for providing direct heat.

The pros of infrared heaters

Instant heat

Infrared heaters warm the area in front of them practically instantly, with heat being delivered within as little as 30 seconds. The air in front is warmed rapidly, as the energy is immediately converted to heat particles. In contrast, convection heaters will take a short while longer to warm a room. This is because they use the cooler surrounding air, heating it over coils as it rises, and releasing it back into the room.

Quiet and efficient

Just like electric radiators, infrared heaters are silent and provide excellent energy efficiency. This makes them ideal, in particular, for bedrooms. Traditional gas-fired radiators can be particularly noisy, with the movement of water, clicking of the pipes and the sounds of the radiator itself heating up. Likewise, fan heaters can be noisy, so they’re also not ideal for bedrooms or areas where you need peace and quiet.

Health benefits

This is a contentious point because as you’ll see, there are safety issues with infrared heaters. However, because there’s no movement of air, infrared heaters can be beneficial to your health. There’s no change to humidity levels, compared with forced air systems and fan heaters. So no need to add humidifiers, to rebalance moisture in the air.

Good for zonal heating

If you’re looking to boost your heating in specific areas of your home, then both infrared heaters and electric radiators are excellent options. However, you need to bear in mind the safety issues with infrared heaters, and ensure the area to be heated is clear of obstacles in front of the infrared panels.

No pollutants

As there’s no combustion required, infrared and electric heaters and electric radiators are extremely environmentally friendly. Indeed, given the drive toward renewable energy, we predict that the use of all types of electric heating solutions will increase exponentially over the coming years.

The cons of infrared heaters

Safety

As we’ve already mentioned, infrared heat travels in straight directions. It’s excellent for providing direct, targeted heat. However, the heating elements can get extremely hot and the heat produced is very intensely. So it’s important to keep the area around an infrared heater free from objects. Also, this makes them a potential hazard if you have young children and pets. So while you might like the idea of infrared heaters, think about where you need to use them, and whether they’re the safest solution for your home and family.

Potential health issues

While it’s true that UV rays are the most damaging to your health, long-term exposure to infrared radiation can also be damaging to your eyes and skin. Although this is typically seen with high levels of exposure not associated with home heating, it’s still something to consider. Indeed, if you sit too close to an infrared heater, you can experience blotchy skin, so there is damage occurring at a cellular level. Also, if you overheat, you sweat. While this isn’t an issue with convector heaters that gently heat and circulate the air, it is a problem with infrared heat. If you overheat and sweat, this can lead to water loss and dehydration.

Isolated heating

Yes, infrared heaters are excellent for providing zonal heat. However, this is also one of the cons of using infrared heaters. They’re not good for heating large spaces. They provide direct heat, heating surrounding objects rather than the air in-between, and you need to be close by to feel the benefits. In contrast, convection heaters such as electric radiators actually heat and circulate the air. This warms living spaces and makes it easier to maintain desired ambient temperatures.

No thermostat control

Even the best-infrared heaters lack the functionality of other electric heating options. They can’t be controlled by a thermostat or smart controls, as these work by monitoring air temperature. So it’s impossible to programme them into a central heating system and control your home heating. They’re very much a ‘switch on when you need them’ option.

Instant loss of heat

Once an infrared heater is switched off, it will stop radiating heat. As the air around the unit won’t have been heated up, you’ll lose heat practically instantly. In contrast, convection heaters and oil-filled heaters will continue to radiate heat even after they’re switched off.

Not cost effective

There are two issues to look at here: cost price and running costs. While infrared heaters can be picked up for a decent price, if you’re looking to heat a larger space then you’ll need a number of heaters. This means a higher cost of purchasing. Also, in terms of running costs, infrared heaters do run on low wattage. But given the lack of functionality and the possibility that multiple units will be required, any savings on electricity are negligible compared with other electric heating solutions.

Limited warranty

If you’re lucky, you could find a model with a 5-year warranty. However, the typical warranty for infrared heaters is 1-2 years. So while the price might look great, you’ve got to consider the fact that you may need to regularly replace an infrared heater. In comparison, high-quality electric radiators such as the Economiser come with warranties of up to 30 years, giving you greater peace of mind.

We hope these points have helped you consider whether infrared heaters are the best option for your home or office. We think you’ll agree that while they can provide a great solution if you need short-term targeted heat in an uncluttered area, there are disadvantages to this type of heating. Think carefully about where and how you need the additional heat, and whether convection heaters would actually be a better option for you.

If you’re looking to switch to electric heating, then here at Electric Heating Expert we have some excellent options for you, including German-built premium electric radiators, electric panel heaters and electric towel rails. Our electric heating solutions can be used to supplement the heating within your home or as your primary heating system. Future proof your home heating today by calling us on 01252 560770, or email us at enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk.

Easy Ways to Make a House Feel More Homely

You’re finally in your new place! The moving van has left and the boxes have been unpacked. Everything is in its place. But it doesn’t feel quite like home yet, and you’re wondering ‘why?’ Well, it can take a while to feel ‘at home’ in a new space. However, there are several easy steps you can take to make your house feel like a home. Here are our top ten:

Check your heating

Nothing makes a house feel more homely than being warm and cosy. So as soon as you move in, it’s time to organise your home heating. Get your boiler serviced (if necessary) and start looking at potential problem areas. Improve insulation, and think about investing in electric radiators or heaters if you need to boost the heating in cooler zones. This might sound costly, but it’s really not. Given that all you’ll need is a power socket and the ability to wall mount a unit, it’s actually an inexpensive way to ensure you’ll have the heat you need over the winter months. Ultimately, you might choose to upgrade to an all-electric heating system. But if you’re looking for an easy way to make your house feel like a home, then this is it.

Use soft furnishings

Soft furnishings bring a wonderful sense of warmth and security to a space. If you have wood floors, choose a sumptuous area rug. Think of throws on sofas and beds, as well as layering textures with cushions. Soften hard window dressings such as blinds or shutters with a curtain, to dress the space and bring your look together. Choose from neutral palettes and think Scandinavian ‘hygge’ to ensure your house feels safe and ‘homely’.

Add natural finishes

Carpets and painted walls are rapidly being replaced with more natural finishes, such as wood floors with jute, sisal or seagrass rugs. Panelled walls are also incredibly popular, as well as exposed brickwork. Think ‘organic’ and more natural, for a sense of calm in the space.

Fill your home with foliage

Indoor plants bring soothing elements of nature into your home. Plants and fresh flowers really brighten up a home, making it immediately feel more homely. However, plants are more than just decorative features. They’ll also improve the air quality and help to absorb unwanted sounds and echoes in a large space. It’s hardly surprising therefore that indoor plants have been proven to lower stress levels. After the big move, restoring a sense of calm will be just what you need. So make a trip to the garden centre as soon as you can! For inspiration, here are some of the most popular indoor plants:

• Peace Lily
• Weeping Fig
• Money Tree
• Ferns
• Tall cactus
• Rubber Plant
• Fiddle Leaf Fig

You can even enhance your windows with carefully placed window boxes, brightening up your view. Also, think about growing herbs either in an indoor herb garden or in your window boxes. This way you’ll always have a supply of fresh, organically-grown herbs.

Think books

Books in a beautiful bookcase or even just coffee table editions bring an element of sophistication to a home. It’s also an excellent opportunity to tell your guests something about yourself. The literature you like to read, the places you like to travel and your interests and pastimes.

Let there be light

There’s nothing worse than a dark, dingy space. Start by cleaning the windows and giving the walls a fresh coat of paint. This could be all the home needs. If you really want to brighten it up, go for white walls. For tight spaces, if you want to add colour there are also specialist paints that reflect light, making the room instantly feel brighter and more spacious. There are also design tricks, such as light wood flooring, gloss on ceilings and placing large mirrors near light sources. Fairy lights and LED strips will also cheer up a dark space, creating a lovely atmosphere.

Install artwork and photographs

‘Every picture tells a story or so the saying goes. Well, you can tell your story by displaying the beautiful artwork you’ve collected over the years. Seeing a familiar painting or print can really help you feel relaxed in your new surroundings. There’s something about that familiarity that can really help you settle in. Also, make sure you’ve got plenty of family pictures on display. Picture walls are particularly striking, and a great design feature. You can make one quite cheaply by collecting frames of the same colour – black or white work best. Choose them from different shops, so they’re not all identical, this adds to the charm. Then it’s off to get the photos developed and you’re ready to get designing. In fact, this is such a simple idea that the longest part of the process is usually which photos to choose from in the first place!

Buy some candles

When we think of the five senses, we often underestimate the power of our sense of smell. Well, it can transport us back through time better than just about any of the other senses. So make the most of this by buying some exquisite candles in your favourite room fragrances. From tropical scents to a sense of being by the sea (think driftwood and sea salt) there really is a scent for everyone, and for every room.
Floral and fruity candles are probably best reserved for the bathroom. For living areas, select scents such as sandalwood, patchouli, white tea or vanilla. Candles not only smell divine, but they also look so atmospheric. There are even aromatherapy candles. Choose lemon candles to energise, lavender to relax and eucalyptus to focus your mind. Make your house a home by selecting the loveliest candles to warm and nourish your living space.

Invest in smart storage

Because no one likes clutter. Organise your space and declutter using clever storage systems. There really is something for every sized room. You can use storage systems to organise every type of item, from children’s toys to living room knick-knacks and from kitchen spices to bathroom towels. Storage systems can even be used to divide up rooms, offering a cheap means to create separate living areas. Check out Ikea for some of the best storage systems available.

Get a pet

OK, so some might not think that this is an easy option. But it’s an excellent way to make a house feel like home. A dog or a cat is definitely part of the family, and once they’re settled, you’re settled. Stroking a cat or a dog has been proven to reduce stress levels (there’s a reason ‘therapy dogs’ are used to diffuse stressful situations). They’re also great social support, and there’s nothing nicer than coming home and being greeted like a long lost friend (even if you’ve only been out of the house for 10 minutes!)

So there you have it, our top ten tips for making a house feel more homely. We hope this article helps you to settle into your new house. If you need any design ideas, it’s probably best to contact a local interior designer. For help with electric heating, we’re the company to get in touch with. Here at Electric Heating Expert, we have some excellent choices of electric radiators and electric heaters. Get in touch on 01252 560770 or by emailing enquiries@electricheatingexpert.co.uk. Alternatively, you can access a free, no-obligation expert quote by filling in our simple 2-minute self-survey form.

Rob Corey

I bought 4 heater for my daughters Scandinavian Pine lodge and found them to be very efficient and effective in the recent 2 month cooler weather. So much so that we turned them right down to 11 or 12 degrees, and in the last week have left only one on. Super easy to control and very good quality. Easy to fit and fine finish.

14 May 2021

What’s the most energy-efficient electric radiator?

When it comes to choosing the right electric radiator for your home, there’s no one size fits all. The radiator you choose will depend on a number of factors – including the size and layout of the room, and your budget. However, the most important attribute to consider is how energy efficient the radiator is. After all, selecting a low-cost radiator won’t convey long-term savings if it has high running costs. In this article, we’ll guide you to the key features you need to look for when selecting the most energy-efficient electric radiator.


What wattage do you need?
OK, so first of all, you’ll need to consider the wattage of the radiator you need to buy. Whether this is a 600W, 1200W or 2000W unit will be governed by a number of factors. These include:

• The size of the room
• The number and type of windows
• The number of doors
• The type of flooring
• Whether there’s a heated room above or below
• The number of outside walls

Using a BTU (British Thermal Unit) calculator, you can ensure you have the right amount of wattage you’ll need, in order to heat your room. It’s important to note that if you fall between two wattages, you should always go for the higher wattage. A good energy efficient radiator will have a built-in sensor, ensuring only the right amount of heat is generated in order to maintain ambient room temperature. So even if the wattage is higher than necessary, you won’t be wasting energy.

Energy-efficient features to look out for

Construction

The best electric radiators will be of all-metal body construction, and the most popular metal to look out for is aluminium. This is because aluminium is lightweight, strong and is a superconductor, so it will heat up quickly. Alternatively, a steel body that’s galvanised and powder coated will also perform well. Even if a unit is advertised as all-metal, always check that the end panels and fascia aren’t made of plastic. Manufacturers use plastic parts to lower manufacturing costs, but these models won’t be durable and the plastic parts can discolour over time. Once you’ve determined that the construction is all metal, check whether there’s a scratch-resistant coating. This will ensure the radiator looks pristine throughout its lifetime. Another feature to look out for is interchangeable electronics. This means that control panels can easily be replaced, without having to buy a whole new radiator, even when the unit is out of warranty. Also, as pleasing as a smooth surface can look, there’s a reason traditional boiler-fed radiators have a ridged design. This increases surface area for heat exchange. So select an electric radiator with a ridged surface, for optimal efficiency.

Heat output

The best electric radiators combine radiant and convected heat. Ideally, select a unit that utilises multiple ceramic plates and has a sealed thermodynamic core. This will generate heat at a more constant, uniform level, for supreme comfort. This may sound technical, but a good retailer will be able to guide you to the right model.

Programmability

The most efficient electric radiators will offer full 24/7 digital programming. Using this feature, you can set a precise heating schedule to meet your needs, ensuring you have heat exactly when and where you’ll need it. This energy-saving feature allows you to control your heating like never before and ensures no money is wasted heating unoccupied rooms, or when you’re not at home.

Adaptive Start

This is another important feature to look out for. It’s an intelligent pre-heating system that actually anticipates the heat-up time of your room, based on the ambient temperature. Heat output commences in advance of the start time, to ensure the room is up to temperature precisely when you need it to be. After all, in the winter months, it will take slightly longer for the room to reach temperature than in the spring or autumn. Ideally, if you’re up at 7 am for work and you want the room to be at 21 degrees, you don’t want that to be the time the radiator starts producing heat, you want that to be the time the room is the correct temperature. Likewise, if you’ve set the programmer for when you come home from work, you want it to have already reached that temperature when you walk in the door. Well, with this feature you can achieve just that. The radiator will apply the precise energy needed, giving you unparalleled heating control and ensuring maximum comfort.

Energy Monitor

Smart controls, or smart meters, are an excellent way to track your energy usage and control your monthly bills. However, before you invest in a smart meter, maybe look for a radiator that has this inbuilt feature. With this feature, energy usage is tracked and you can see how much energy your radiator is using day by day, week by week and annually. You can use this function to address any areas of your home that are performing poorly in terms of heat retention and address any concerns, such as poor insulation, draughty windows, etc.

Open Window Sensor

An ‘open window sensor’ is a fantastic feature to have on your radiator. This energy-saving technology senses sudden drops in ambient temperature (for example, when a window or door is opened) and reactively pauses heat output until the room temperature stabilises.

Other important features to consider

OK, so you’ve determined the required wattage, identified the energy-efficiency functions you need and down-selected some radiators. What else can set them apart? Here are some other issues to consider:


WiFi Enabled

We’ve already mentioned the importance of smart controls in monitoring and controlling your energy usage. However, to integrate with smart controls, your radiator will need to be WiFi-enabled. Look for this feature to ensure you can control your environment in real-time, from wherever you are, at the swipe of an App.

Surface Temperature Control

Electric radiators are created to produce heat, but in doing so some models can become extremely hot. This presents a health and safety risk, especially around young children and the elderly. So make sure your electric radiator comes with surface temperature control. This will limit the surface temperature of the unit, keeping it at a level that’s safe to the touch.

Warranty

When it comes to the warranty, always check the fine print. Just because the sales description states a certain warranty, it doesn’t mean that all elements of the radiator are covered for the same time period. Don’t just look at the length of the warranty, also make sure there’s comprehensive cover for all the working parts, for a decent time period.

We hope this article has helped you understand the criteria to consider when selecting an energy-efficient radiator for your home. Here at Electric Heating Expert, we have a fantastic range of electric radiators available that more than meet the above efficiency criteria. With a range of products to suit every budget and warranty periods of up to 30 years, you can be sure you’re buying the best electric radiators on the market today. Check out our Economiser and Vantage electric radiators, as well as our Ecopanel XT electric panel heaters, and find your electric heating solution today!