Electric heating used to be an expensive, not very eco-friendly option – but specialised electric heating devices can be the best solution for a range of applications.
If a fireplace is not safe enough, gas heating is not available or central heating is not an option,such as in small houses or flats
or in commercial environments that require flexibility, you should consider electric heating. There are abroad range of different electric heating devices to choose from, ranging from small bathroom heaters or underfloor heating to large sophisticated heaters distributing hot air exactly where it’s needed.
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Types of electric heating
The most common types of electric heating are radiant heating and convection heating.
- With radiant or conduction electric heating (radiators), you will have a device that heats up surfaces within a small area, such as parts of the bathroom, or the area in front of your desk. Radiators provide direct heat and are the most common form of heating in the home.
- Convection heating makes use of hot air to heat the room. While some people don’t like the idea of hot air circulating in the room, convenience is mostly a question of professional installation and well-planned heat distribution. Using air circulation, convection electric heating can heat your home faster and more efficiently. Also there’s natural convection that happens in a regular central heating radiator: cold air is being heated up, rising through the radiator and then streaming out on top.
Advantages of electric heating
First of all, electric heaters have an efficiency of 100%, that is, 100% of the energy that goes into the electric heating device will be turned into heat. Electric heating devices do not emit fumes or vapors and they require almost no maintenance compared to combustion heating. While some claim that their energy consumption may be too high with rising energy prices, new models using high-tech thermostats will only use the energy needed to get the room to the temperature you desire. Also, electric heating is as eco-friendly as the electricity that is used to power it: if you choose an eco-friendly electricity supplier, electric heating will also be eco-friendly.
Costs for electric heating – Devices & electricity
There are two types of costs you will need to calculate for electric heating: the costs of the devices you will need, as well as the expenses for electricity when using the heating. For areas where no permanent heating is necessary, such as in bathrooms, conduction electric heating will be the reasonable choice. These devices come from around £20 for basic models, while more sophisticated conduction heaters will most likely cost around £100-£120.
Convection electric heating devices will cost a little bit more, from around £60. More expensive models may save you money in the long term as they have a long lifespan with low maintenance requirements, and are equipped with high-tech automatic controls they will keep energy consumption as low as possible. For the right solution for your home it’s advisable to have a heating contractor or an energy advisor calculate your heating requirements and plan the most efficient electric heating setup.