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Electric heating

(14 Posts)
phoria Thu 02-Feb-17 14:32:36

Does anyone have any recommendations for electric heaters which are cheap to run? I have storage heaters in my flat now but would like to replace them as they're on their last legs.

So far I have my eye on this:

Any other suggestions?

PigletJohn Thu 02-Feb-17 16:35:40

A panel heater will run on full-price electricity, which costs about twice as much as off-peak on an Economy 7 type of tariff.

Are you at home during the day?

The heater in your link is less than a kW. It may be sufficient for a smallish bedroom, provided the weather is not too cold.

How do you heat your hot water?

I presume your flat has no gas supply.

GRW Thu 02-Feb-17 17:04:03

My neighbours have replaced electric storage heaters with Fischer electric heaters that you can control the room temperature. They seem very efficient but expensive to buy I think. My old storage heaters get hot but don't heat the room very well, the floor especially always feels cold. We have no gas here.

specialsubject Thu 02-Feb-17 17:36:36

a kilowatt is a kilowatt is a kilowatt, however much babble there is in the ad campaign. All electric heaters have the same efficiency.

if you are on an economy 7 tariff, the day rate will be high so running the heaters on that will cost you more. A storage heater is a brick that heats up - what makes you think they are worn out?

phoria Thu 02-Feb-17 18:32:50

not my heater but mine looks like this and in a very similar state:

it's ugly! and also sometimes won't switch on properly.

i'm not in during the day so i feel like i'm not getting the most out of storage heaters.

there's also this one:

i have an immersion tank to heat water. yes no gas annoyingly.

specialsubject Thu 02-Feb-17 19:49:51

no heater is a pretty thing.

if it doesn't switch on properly that needs fixing. Are you on economy 7? Can you get economy 10? Are you heating your water in the cheap rate?

the Argos heater will cost you 2.5 times your unit rate per hour to run.

With no gas you don't have an alternative really.

Villagernumber9 Thu 02-Feb-17 20:21:15

Try Geyser radiators.

PigletJohn Thu 02-Feb-17 23:57:12

As you are not at home during the day, you will not be getting the best use out of storage heaters, though it is rumoured that more modern ones are better insulated and more able to stay hot until evening.

Does your bedroom get too cold overnight?

What are the dimensions and colour of your hot water cylinder? There may be scope for improving economy.

Do you know your meter reading history? (not the bill amount).

It would be useful to know you peak/offpeak usage in winter and in summer.

PigletJohn Fri 03-Feb-17 00:14:40

OK, thanks, I see the photo of the heater. To me it just looks very dirty, and I think there is fluff or thick dust in the slots, which might vacuum out. It is possible to take the covers off, but it would be best to have an electrician do that, safely.

Is the paint actually damaged, for example chipped or scratched by having things dropped on it?

You could buy new heaters, but apart from being clean and unchipped, there might not be any benefit.

It's possible to buy new heaters which incorporate both storage and a convection or fan heater. They cost some hundreds of pounds. It is usual to have them fitted by an electrician, because they are delivered as an electric heater (quite light) and a pallet of thermal bricks which are assembled inside the heater casing once it is installed.

Some examples:

You can hear the noise of a fan, especially as it ages and becomes worn.

phoria Sun 05-Feb-17 12:52:46

Thanks for the links, PigletJohn.

Sorry for the dumb question but does the kW refer to how much it costs to run or the power of the heat?

specialsubject Sun 05-Feb-17 13:07:54

A kW - kilowatt - is a unit of power.

Electricity is sold in kilowatt hours, which is the amount of power needed to run a one kilowatt appliance for one hour. So a 3kw appliance will use three units an hour.

If your unit price is 15p, your 3kw appliance costs 45p an hour to run. You also pay a daily standing charge.

phoria Sun 05-Feb-17 13:12:58

Thanks, specialsubject! So increased kW doesn't mean it's more powerful/gives out more heat?

PigletJohn Sun 05-Feb-17 14:05:12

yes it does.

Twice the kW means twice the heat and twice the cost

PigletJohn Sun 05-Feb-17 14:12:58

but as Special says, cost is power multiplied by time.

For convenience, it is expressed as kWh, meaning the amount that a 1kW appliance would use in one hour.

Appliances are described in the power they use, in kW.

A powerful plug-in heater is 3kW (that's the most you can have, though a domestic UK plug. Other countries may be less). Which is enough for a medium-sized room with reasonable insulation. A larger room will be more evenly heated with a heater at each end.

A 3kW fan heater costs the same to run per hour as a 3kW convector or a 3kW oil-filled radiator, and gives out exactly the same amount of heat. A 3kW storage radiator also gives out the same amount of heat and uses the same amount of electricity in an hour, but it normally uses cheap overnight tariff, at about half price, and the heat leaks out during the day.

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