The reason electric heaters are more efficient than other alternatives is that they convert close to 100% of all the energy they use into heat. The reason they aren’t seen as economical is the simple reason that electricity tends to cost more than gas and other fuels. So is there a way to combat this fact? Well yes, there are in fact several, it is just a case of finding the best option for you.
Because electric heating converts 100% of the energy it uses the best way to measure how warm a heater will be is to look at it kw (kilowatt) output. The larger the kilowatt capacity the warmer the heater will be and the larger the space it will able to heat.
Storage heaters work by heating bricks and other ceramic materials during the night, when electricity is cheaper, allowing that heat to be released slowly during the day by the bricks. The main advantage of storage heaters is that they are far cheaper than leaving the heating on all day and turning it off at night. The downside is that they cannot regulate for you being away during the day; so if you leave the house the heating is “still on” so to speak.
Electric Radiators come in many shapes and sizes but for heating an entire home, and for convenience sake, you will be looking to have one high powered electric radiator in each room. Now, this might sound like a recipe for monumental electricity bills but it needn’t be if you look for the correct features:
Aluminium is a great conductor of heat. Considering the fact that it is also lightweight; it makes for the ideal body for a radiator. Electric radiators which have aluminium bodies will heat rooms faster than those which don’t, meaning the amount of electricity needed to get a room to its optimal temperature is reduced. It is worth noting that aluminium expands and contacts with heat – so make sure the aluminium in your heater is of good quality to avoid cracks.
A good thermostat will optimise the activation of the heating element so it uses the least amount of electricity possible to maintain a constant heat. Poor quality thermostats will leave a room over heated or under-heated using copious amounts of electricity darting between the two.
Electric heating is having a bit of an environmental resurgence. Electric heaters were not considered as any more environmentally friendly than gas until quite recently; this was mainly due to the fact that electricity, in the main, was generated with fossil fuels. However with the expansion of renewables, home solar panels in particular, electricity is fast becoming the perfect way to harness this clean energy.