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Electric heating(21 Posts)
We've just bought a small house with no gas. There's a log burner in the lounge and underfloor heating (a bit rubbish tbh) in kitchen and bathroom.
We need to find something for everywhere else before another winter. Any cost efficient electric suggestions warmly (😉) received.
How old is the house, and how well-insulated?
Energy from electricity currently costs around four times as much as gas. All electric heaters, whatever you pay for them, turn 1kWh of electricity into 1kWh of heat, although snake-oil merchants will try to trick you into believing otherwise.
Hi. 1960s and very well insulated ( the loft is a sight to behold).
1960's and no gas? is it rural? Has it previously had an economy-7 type of electricity tariff? (photos of the meter and consumer unit(s) and surroundings will give clues).
Are the cavity walls insulated?
for inexpensive solutions to next winter, I warm;y recomend oil-filled electric radiators. They are cheap to buy, especially in summer when (if you can find them) retailers are clearing their stock at giveaway prices.
They only get as hot as a teapot, so AFAIK it is impossible for them to start a fire (a fan heater or convection heater can do this if it is close to furniture, or a curtain blows against it, or clothing is deliberately or accidentally dropped on it) and the heating is more even. A large room will need one at each end for even heat.
The cost of electrical heating is shocking, and I suspect you will never use the UFH again once you see your first bill. Unless you already have solar panels.
What colour is the hot-water cylinder?
Yes, pretty rural. It's actually a bungalow and tiny, so once it's warm it does stay warm. The previous owners insulated the loft so much it's unreal.
There are 2 storage heaters (ancient) in bedrooms which are fairly good heat wise but cost a small fortune last winter, and yes economy 7 but without the storage heaters we will get rid
The boiler is a new pressurised thing that seems pretty good.
Thank you so much for your replies
If you must heat electrically, the E7 tariff will cost you less. you can heat the hot-water cylinder at half-price. If your UFH is on concrete floors, you can heat them in the early hours of the morning because there is a big time lag. You can run an oil-filled radiator in your bedroom at half-price during the night.
E7 is quite popular with retired people, or those with small children, who get up early and are at home during the day.
It is no good for people who are out at work, and arrive home in time for the storage heaters to go cold.
Modern storage heaters are smaller and might be a bit better for heat control, but seldom worth the expense of buying if you already have old ones.
personally I wouldn't put storage heaters in bedrooms because they give out most of the heat during the day, when you aren't in bed.
Thank you so much for your advice. The boiler doesn't have a timer on it but we can certainly look at getting one.
We really need to look for some additional heaters before winter and will look at oil filled. There's some nice looking wall heaters around but expensive and difficult to know how costly they would be to run.
Thank you again.
We only have electricity in our small flat and use 3 Rointe heaters all year round (not been on since early May this year) plus 2 additional oil filled heaters in winter. We have a hot water tank too. We spend around £54-£72 a month on electricity with Bulb.
Hi Goldenshoe. Have had a look on amazon at those heaters, which look ideal, if expensive. Your electric bills are impressive though, very much lower than ours were last year.
Another vote for oil filled heaters here
Rointe are an example of an electric heater which, like all electric heaters, are 100% efficient and turn 1kWh of electrical energy into 1kWh of heat energy.
They cost about ten times as much as a cheap electric heater which produces the same amount of heat at the same running cost.
It's possible that they are sufficiently stylish to justify the additional cost.
Or not, depending on your opinion.
I expect you have a white HW cylinder. It may have an upper and a lower immersion element. Here are some examples of timers. I think the Horstmann are particularly good, and IMO the non-electronic one is more intuitive in use.
Preferably fitted by a heating engineer or electrician.
I have a well insulated bungalow with a multifuel burner in the kitchen/dining room which I light and sit in most evenings.
In the front living room when not log burning I can shut the door and get the room cosy within 20 minutes and keep it warm in there using an oil-free radiator [looks the same as oil filled but has gel inside instead].
I use a similar radiator in the bedroom but only turn it on when it's very cold for 30 minutes to warm the room up.
I threw out some storage heaters and it's tariff as I am home most of the day. My electricity bills are low, very reasonable [using the radiators about 10-12 hour a week]. But then I only heat the room I'm in at the time and I use a fair bit of kiln dried wood through the winter.
I find it's heating water that uses up a lot of electricity so keep to showers. I don't want gas and fixed radiators and water coursing through the house [personal reasons] so am very happy with the heating I have.
I agree the expensive radiators are the price they are because they are stylish, but the heat given out is the same heat for the same cost as cheaper but just as efficient other [latest technology] radiators on the market.
I must admit, we bought them because they look good and are happy to pay for something stylish, but the heating bills have gone down so
My parents have infra red ceiling heater things that seem to work pretty well too, no idea of costs though.
I have been looking at dimplex q rad to replace my storage heaters with. I am at work till. 6pm so the storage heaters don't suit me.
You may well be eligible for the government grant in September and be able to think about an air source heat pump. Not super cheap, but much more affordable with the £5k contribution and then you get the RHI payments each quarter for each kw/hr of energy you generate (as I understand it).
I put in Herschel infrared heaters. They look like mirrors or you can even have a custom picture panel. Controlled with a central digital thermostat.
@Pipandmum how have you found those heaters?
I am in an electric only small flat. Power from Southern Electric, now SSE. Storage heaters but on a tariff called Flexi heat, which I think is obsolete and now called Economy 10 rather than Economy 7. Geared to working people so 5hrs at night and a 2hr boost to storage heaters in afternoon for when returning from school or work. There are 3 rates so a different meter is required. Best bit is cheaper rate 1930-0730 and all over weekend so Fri 1930-0730 Mon, this is when washing goes on.