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Expert Review - Heater Heaters Heating Range
 
Heaters are an essential in every home, helping to keep the cold at bay during the winter months. Portable heaters come in really handy especially if your home or office tends to be cold even with the central heating on, or in areas where heating cannot be installed, for example, a conservatory.
Our range of heaters have been carefully selected to ensure that you not only get that all important warmth during those cold winter days but you also get the added benefits that come with them.

Allergy Allergies  >  Shop by Product Category ...  >  Allergy Product Reviews  >  Expert Review - Heater Heaters Heating Range

A heater is an object that emits heat and causes the temperature to rise. In a house hold and domestic setting heaters are used to generate heat and keep the room warm.
Electric heaters :

They work because electric current is forced through wires that have a good deal of electrical resistance. Heat is generated when electric current flows through any resistance. They have no insulation on the heater wires because the insulation would catch fire; so, the wire is bare and you can see it glow.

Central Gas Furnace Heaters:

They are really simple to run. They have a controllable furnace, fuelled by gas and uses water that can be moved with a pump to carry heat into radiators in all the rooms. After passing through all the radiators, the water cools down and returns to the boiler where it is heated up again and re-circulated once more. A thermostat in one of the rooms switches the boiler on and off to keep the room temperature comfortable. The hot waste gases flow out side.

• Instead of turning up the heat in the entire house, you can use portable heaters to warm up the living area.

• When you don’t want to use central heating and just need your own heater to keep you warm.

• To keep the electricity bills low.

• During cold spells for targeted heat to avoid chills and to keep the rooms warm and cozy.

• For remote rooms with inadequate heat.

• Rooms which have poor insulation that would have draft or three-season porches.

• Accommodate individual warmth preference for everyone in your home.

The electrical heaters are the best in heating as they are 100% efficient in converting electrical energy into heat energy. Coal and oil generated heaters convert only 30% of the electrical energy into heat energy. Apart from energy conversions, electrical heaters do not cause any health hazard and there is less chance of the heater exploding or causing fire. There are two types of electrical heaters.

1. Convection heaters: For heating the entire room, a convection room heater would be the best choice. It not only heats but also circulates warm air throughout the room with use of natural ventilation current in the room. Because of this reason, it is quieter than fan heaters. The heating element in the convector heater is either a hot water coil or steam coil. These heaters can be further classified into two.

i. Natural convection heaters: Theses heaters are oil filled heaters and uses air currents to circulate the air, so it is the quitest heater.

ii. Forced convection heaters: Forced convection heaters work on the same principles as the natural convection heaters but the difference is that they use a fan to circulate the warm air. These heaters use less time to heat up an entire room but have higher noise levels.

2. Radiant heaters: These types of heaters are used to heat smaller areas as the heating elements (quartz tubes, carbon tubes, metal coils, halogen tubes) heat up the object at which they are pointing, instead warming the entire space. It is best for those people who don’t plan to stay in a room for a long period of time. These heaters are more energy efficient as they tend to heat up the object instantly. Radiant heaters perform efficiently and effectively in warehouse, garages, storerooms etc. Radiant heaters are also called infrared, parabolic, quartz, ceramic, halogen or reflective heaters.

3. Oil filled radiant heaters: Oil filled radiant heaters are reliable, stable and consume less electricity. When the room is extremely cold it sends full voltage to the rheostat but as the room gets heated the output of electricity is reduced. A fan is used to draw air through the ceramic element and is distributed in the room.

4. Fan heaters: These heaters are not as effective as a convector heater but for heaters but are the best for heating small areas. They pass air from their heating elements and instantly warm the room.

Non electrical heaters are best for the outdoors and they also save on the electrical bills. They come in different types depending on source:

1. Inverter heaters: These heaters run mainly on paraffin or odourless Tozane and are mainly used for supplemental heat. They don’t require electricity so are beneficial in saving electricity. They are portable, vented and have double heating capacity. They are most ideal for heating large areas. With the advance in technology these heaters are 99% combustible and have sensors that can detect carbon monoxide/ carbon dioxide in the air and switch off in case the level reaches a certain critical level. Paraffin remains an economical fuel and is typically far cheaper than LPG bottle gas. The electronic thermostat enables you to maintain your chosen room temperature. Once the required temperature has been reached it will either reduce to its lowest setting or turn off according to your setting. Use your Inverter Tozane gas heater instead of turning on your central heating and you can save pounds. Because you "pay as you go" there are no scary quarterly heating bills; they are ideal for households on a fixed budget.

2. Natural Gas heater: This type of heater is also known as LPG (liquid paraffin gas) heaters. These heaters can be connected to a pipe that can provide continuous gas. They are ideal for heating large areas, are very efficient and also available as a patio heaters.

3. Wood burning space heaters: This type of heating system is popular as it helps save on electricity bills. The only thing you require to install the wood stove is a chimney system. It is best used for the patios and is more efficient than the fireplace.

Using heaters involves a number of hazards such as explosion, fire, burns, air pollution etc; the following are the safety tips that should be kept in mind while using any type of heaters:

1. Always make sure that the heater has a guard or grill around the heating substance and don’t let newspapers, drapes, clothes or flammable material near the heater.

2. Avoid using extension cords, as they are not able to carry the electricity capacity of heaters. It is also advisable not to put the cords of the heater under the carpet as it may overheat the wire.

3. Do not use heaters in bathrooms or wet areas.

4. Make sure that the plug of the electrical heater is properly fitted into the switch board as loose connection might catch cause a fire due to overheating.

5. Always keep heaters on the floor as they have less chance of falling down.

6. When using gas heaters, make sure there is proper ventilation in the room. This prevents pollution and also makes fuel burn more effectively and efficiently.

7. Always make sure the heaters are turned off before you go to bed.

8. If you are using a kerosene heater, do not use gasoline as it can cause fire. It is essential to have your heater checked by a professional every year as a rusted heater can emit carbon dioxide. Use Tozane instead of Paraffin as it is more efficient and odourless.

9. In case there is a leak in the heating system, do not try to fix the problem yourself; instead call a professional technician to fix it.

10. Installing a detector is useful as it will alarm people in case of fire and smoke, as well as the level of air pollution and carbon dioxide.

Once you have selected the type of heater you want, you have to determine the right size for your requirements as selecting the right size will help you save on electricity bills. While calculating the size of a heater, there are certain things bear in mind such as the room size, amount of insulation and the number of windows etc. A rough estimate shows that each square of your room requires 10 watts to be heated.

1. The exact size of a heater is determined by calculating first the size of the room by measuring the length, width and height of the room. Multiply all three to know the cubic feet of the area. Do the same calculation for all rooms and add them together to find out the total area that requires heating.

2. Estimate your desired temperature increase. Measure the lowest area temperature and subtract this from the temperature you want to maintain in order to calculate the desired temperature increase. For example, if area lows average 38 degrees, and you want to maintain a temperature of 68 degrees, you will need a temperature increase of 30 degrees.

3. Select the insulation level. Older homes are often poorly insulated and they require about 12.5 watt per square foot. On an average insulated home, 10 watt per square foot is sufficient. And for fully insulated home 7.5watt per square foot is sufficient.

4. The BTU (British thermal unit) is calculated by multiplying the total cubic feet area required to heat with 0.133. Then multiply it with the temperature you want to increase. The result will be the BTU required to heat the entire area.

Poorly Insulated Room measuring 10 feet by 12 feet area with a ceiling of 8 feet

10 x 12 = 120 sq. ft. Now multiply the area with 12.5 watt per square foot i.e 120 x 12.5 = 1500 Watt.

Average Insulated Room measuring 10 feet by 12 feet area with a ceiling of 8 feet

10 x 12 = 120 sq. ft. now multiply the area with 10 watt per square foot i.e

120 x 10= 1200 watt

Fully Insulated Room measuring 10 feet by 12 feet area with a ceiling of 8 feet

10 x 12 = 120 sq. ft. now multiply the area with 7.5 watt per square foot i.e

120 x 7.5 = 900 watt

However, you need to make adjustments depending on the height of the ceilings. Above the height of 8 feet, add 25% of wattage to every additional 2 feet increase in the height.

Once you have selected what you want to buy, go through the check lists that you need to consider at this point.

1. Choose the type of heater depending on the area whether you want it for your lobby, bedroom, living room, garage, kitchen or nursery.

2. The safety measures that have to be considered while purchasing heaters, especially having heaters have a proper enclosure to keep you safe.

3. Size of the heater depending on the size of the room that it has to heat.

4. Always buy new heaters and check the noise level.

5. Also know the type of heater you are buying whether it is vented or non- vented. Check if the heater is has a solid and with a well insulated base so that it doesn’t overturn easily.

6. Heaters that have a thermostat should always be considered even though they would cost slightly more but are more efficient and will save money in the long run.

Both the appliances are heated by electricity. Electrical heaters operate at 100% efficiency. You put 1 kW of energy in and you get 1kW of energy out in the form of heat.

An oil filled radiator takes longer to cool down when turned off, but takes longer to heat up when turned on whereas an electric fire has a more immediate response, so again no difference in energy use there. An oil filled radiator however has two main advantages over an electric heater. It is safer to use in an attic for example as there is no exposed hot element to cause a fire if positioned near combustible materials and most come with a built in thermostat to allow control of the heat output to be controlled.

The following is the average cost of running different heating units. The day time costs differ from night time off peak costs and also depend on which gas or electric company you are registered with. Electricity costs are worked out using a rate of 11p per kWh. This is an average of the prices of the three main Suppliers in September 2006 and includes VAT

Normal gas central heating, with radiators, (including water heating)
In very cold weather
In cold weather
In mild weather

 

44p
23p
17p

Electric- Bar fire
3 bars
2 bars
1 bar
Electric – oil filled radiator (1kW)
Electric-fan heater (2kW)
Electric-convector heater


33p
22p
11p
11p
22p
33p

An Electric heater has low capital and installation costs.

• They do not incur the costs of an annual safety check.

• They are virtually maintenance free.

• They are 100% efficient at point of use.

• They have a life expectancy of 15 years, unlike gas boilers which are estimated to have a 10 year life span.

• There is no risk of leaking or burst pipes damaging your property.

• They are clean and safe, with no harmful fumes or gases to worry about.

Rheumatoid Arthritis/ Reynaud’s Phenomenon: The cold weather poses problems for joint pain sufferers especially people suffering for rheumatoid arthritis and Reynaud’s Phenomenon. The cold winter months signals a time for more pain and stiffness. Joint pain occurs throughout the year but the cold, damp weather somehow seems to make things worse. According to the National Institute of Health weather changes on the joints cause stiffness and joint pain. The cause is related to the spasm of the muscles due to contraction and relaxation. The National Institute of Health recommends that arthritis patients should keep their body warm in order to reduce stiffness.

Asthma: Asthma is exacerbated with cold weather and people have to use bronchodilators more often than people who are in warm environments. Heaters can provide that suitable temperature that would help to reduce exacerbations and attacks.

Psoriasis: People who suffer from psoriasis know that their psoriasis flares up during the winter season, so winter tends to be the most challenging season for people living with psoriasis. Heaters can provide the warmth needed to maintain adequate body temperature and the application of moisturisers will prevent the skin getting dry.

Mould Allergy: The winter season does not only bring cold temperatures but also dampness. The damp can cause mould on walls and furniture as well as making timber window frames rot. Moisture and dampness encourage the growth of mould and mites and increase the risk of developing respiratory diseases. To prevent mould growing in your home, keep a low background heater on all day.

Common cold and flu: As the winter season sets in, more and more people suffer from common cold and flu symptoms. Coldness is one of the precipitating factors that cause common cold and the best thing to do is to keep warm. Heaters with thermostats allow uniform temperature and help in preventing those flu symptoms.

1. http://www.eastlothian.gov.uk/downloads/Heating_Comparison-20377_1_.pdf

Visited on 20-09-2010

2. http://www.buildingtalk.com/news/sot/sot116.html

Visited on 23-09-2010

3. http://www.alertelectrical.com/upload/dimplex%20resource.pdf

Visited on 23-09-2010

4. http://www.answerbag.com/q_view/1809215

Visited on 23-09-2010

5. Coming out of the cold.

http://www.arthritiscare.org.uk/PublicationsandResources/Listedbytype/Magazines/NoLimits/Previousissues/main_content/NL18p01.pdf

Read more: http://www.buildingtalk.com/news/sot/sot116.html#ixzz10oXGRZUh

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