What is the Cheapest Electric Heater to Run?
As Britons, we know that colder weather is inevitable. Thus, maintaining a comfortable and cost-effective home heating system is crucial.
Whether you’ve recently moved into a new home or are dealing with an ineffective heating setup, an efficient and affordable solution can be a lifesaver.
Central Heating Systems: Gas Vs Electric
In the UK, gas central heating systems are a common feature in many homes, often providing a reliable and flexible way to manage the home’s temperature. These systems offer the advantage of adjusting heat settings and scheduling heating cycles.
However, for individuals residing in newer properties, a more eco-friendly central heating system like a thermal store might be installed.
This type of central heating operates differently, typically lacking a timer facility and necessitating extended periods of power use to generate heat. In comparison to gas central heating, this approach might lead to higher running costs, particularly given the relative expense of electricity. In this scenario, the quest for the cheapest electric heater to run gains importance.
Draft Excluders: Enhancing Efficiency
Although not categorised as an electric heater, draft excluders play an integral role in maintaining a warm home. They form a physical barrier, minimising the influx of cold air and preventing the hot air from escaping. When coupled with an energy-efficient electric heater, draft excluders can contribute significantly to minimising your heating costs.
Convector Heaters: A Quiet, Affordable Solution
Convector heaters provide an effective solution for heating smaller rooms in well-insulated properties. These heaters function by drawing air over a heating element and then circulating the warmed air throughout the room. Operating without a fan, they keep noise to a minimum, and their portability allows them to be used wherever needed.
However, in older, less insulated homes, the efficiency of these electric heaters may be compromised. These homes may require heaters that can deliver more concentrated heat output, making convector heaters not the cheapest electric heaters to run in such scenarios.
Flame Effect and LED Electric Fires: Adding a Touch of Elegance
For larger living spaces, flame effect electric fires offer both warmth and aesthetic appeal. These heaters act as a heat source, whilst providing a focal point for the room, emitting a warm, comforting light.
They typically come with multiple settings, allowing for customisation of the heat output. However, once switched off, the heat dissipates quickly, indicating that they may not be the most energy-efficient heaters.
Electric Oil-filled Radiators: Retaining Heat Long-term
Oil-filled radiators are a type of electric heater that uses oil as a heat reservoir. They offer a highly energy-efficient electric heater option, especially in well-insulated properties. Once heated, the oil retains its temperature for a long time, continuing to emit warmth even after the heater is switched off.
One of the unique features of oil-filled radiators is the range of heat settings they offer, along with an automatic cut-off when the desired temperature is reached. This avoids unnecessary energy consumption, making it a contender for the cheapest electric heater to run. These heaters are typically on wheels, enabling easy movement across different rooms.
Halogen Heaters: Safety and Efficiency Combined
Halogen heaters are a fantastic heating solution, especially for draftier or less insulated properties. Unlike convector heaters that heat the air, halogen heaters emit infrared rays to heat objects and people directly. They offer a safe heating option, as their surfaces don’t heat up as much as other types of heaters. Besides, the warm orange glow from halogen heaters also serves as a source of light, contributing to a cosy atmosphere.
Electric Hot Warm Heater: Instant Heat Provider
If quick, instant heat is a priority, electric hot warm heaters might be an optimal choice. These space heaters are capable of providing quick heat due to their high power output. They come with temperature control settings for comfort level customisation and are portable, making them ideal for heating small spaces like home offices.
However, for larger rooms or longer periods, these might not be the cheapest electric heaters to run due to their high energy consumption.
Infrared Electric Heater: Heating Objects, Not Air
Infrared heaters function differently from most electric heaters; they emit infrared light that people and objects absorb, creating warmth. Despite a higher up-front cost, these heaters can be the cheapest electric heater to run over time, particularly in less well-insulated homes, due to their energy efficiency.
These heaters can be either free-standing or wall-mounted, offering flexibility in positioning for optimum heat distribution.
Conclusion: Finding the Cheapest Electric Heater to Run
To conclude, navigating the world of electric heaters to find the cheapest electric heater to run can be a daunting task. The decision largely depends on the size of the area to be heated, the insulation of the property, the upfront cost of the heater, and the running costs.
By considering all these factors, it is possible to find a balance between upfront costs, running costs, and energy efficiency. This balance can ensure a warm, comfortable home without causing a significant increase in your energy bills.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here we answer your questions on electric heaters and more.
What is the cheapest electric heater to run?
The cost-efficiency of an electric heater largely depends on the property’s insulation and the size of the room to be heated. While oil-filled radiators are known for their long-lasting heat and energy efficiency, infrared heaters can be more cost-effective in less insulated spaces.
Are halogen heaters expensive to run?
Halogen heaters are efficient and cost-effective for heating smaller or less insulated spaces, as they directly heat objects and people, rather than the air. However, for larger rooms or prolonged use, other options might be more cost-effective.
How do oil-filled radiators work?
Oil-filled radiators work by heating the oil inside, which then circulates through the radiator’s columns or fins, releasing heat. The heated oil retains its temperature for a considerable time, continuing to emit warmth even after the heater is switched off.
Are infrared heaters energy efficient?
Yes, infrared heaters are energy efficient. They emit infrared light that is absorbed by objects and people, creating warmth without heating the air, which can lead to energy savings especially in less well-insulated spaces.
How do convector heaters work?
Convector heaters operate by drawing in air over a heating element. The heated air then rises and circulates throughout the room, creating a warm environment.
Can draft excluders help reduce heating costs?
Yes, draft excluders can help reduce heating costs by preventing cold air from entering and warm air from leaving the room. They can enhance the efficiency of your heating system, making them a cost-effective addition to your home.
What is a flame effect electric fire?
A flame effect electric fire is a type of heater that not only warms the room but also adds aesthetic value. It mimics the visual effect of a real fire, emitting a warm, comforting light while providing a heat source.
Is an electric hot warm heater a good choice for instant heat?
Yes, electric hot warm heaters are excellent for providing instant heat. They have a high power output, making them ideal for quickly heating smaller spaces like a home office.