If gas grid is out of reach in your case, you will most probably be able to use electricity for heating your house since pretty much every house in the UK has got electricity. However, taking the route of electricity can be costly!
Using night storage heaters
Compared to gas, you can get electricity pretty much anywhere in the UK.
Interestingly, the cheapest way of heating your house using electric central heating system is by using a system that makes use of night storage heaters. Such heaters utilize electricity provided at inexpensive night rate in order to heat certain bricks that can trap heat. The bricks, in return, heat up the house with the help of the heat retained!
Night storage variety of heaters release heat in a slow way, keeping a house warm for the entire day! Using immersion heater, you can make use of cheap electricity for heating water too!
What is Economy 7 or Economy 10 electricity?
In case you go for a night storage heater, you will get electricity at cheaper rate during the night. Such kind of cheap electricity tariff is normally called Economy 7 electricity because you get 7 hours of cheap electricity during the night. There is another tariff known as Economy 10, which provides 3 extra hours of low-cost electricity, mostly during the afternoon.
If you want, you can use electric radiators too, which require normal electricity charges. But since the day cost of electricity is pretty high, you may have to spend a lot running such radiators. You should buy one only if your house has very nice insulation, and there is no need for regular radiator use.
Annual expense on fuel for water heating needs and electric heating needs (installation not included)
- The maximum fuel cost is estimated to be £1,700
- Carbon emitted throughout a year on average
- Yearly emission figure comes around 6 tonnes
The assumption for the above estimation is that a typical house contains 3 bedrooms, is semi-detached, and has very good insulation with loft insulation of 270mm, well-insulated pipe job, and insulated cavity walls. The average efficiency of electric heating systems, and with that, the ongoing electricity cost is taken into account too. Note that the estimations are not based on real fuel bills.
Advantages of using central electric heating
- As electric night storage heaters do not need flue or pipe-work, the cost of installation is normally much lower than that of gas central system.
- Such heating systems, containing almost no major moving parts, do not require much maintenance, and yearly servicing is not essential either
- Almost all households in the UK have electricity, which is not the case with gas
Disadvantages of using central electric heating
The cost of electricity is higher than that of gas per unit. Since both the cost of electricity and gas are going upward, it is unlikely that the trend will change in future. Besides, majority of UK electricity production is done using gas-fired stations of power, so in case gas prices increase, electricity prices will most probably increase too.
With tariffs such as Economy 10 or Economy 7, the day expense of electricity tends to be higher as compared to normal day electricity rate. Therefore, although you will save your money during the night when running your night appliances, you will actually spend more money during the day!
With night storage heaters, you cannot get instant heat! You will surely get heat so long as those bricks are warm, but in case you didn’t use the system for a while, it will take almost a day to heat your house after you turn it on. A few modern models come with instant heating option too though.
Some heaters are equipped with charge control that adjusts heating according to the room temperature automatically. But if you have a model that cannot do so, you will have to make adjustments manually with changing weather.