Space Heaters Sense and Sensibilities
When Space Heaters are the Perfect Choice for Your Home
If you want to save money on heating this year consider use one or space heaters. While most households use central heating systems to heat an entire home, the trend towards using space heaters to heat single rooms is growing. This is a perfect solution for small living areas, bedrooms, offices and dining rooms.
Space heaters are not designed to replace central heating systems nor are they more energy efficient when heating an entire home. They favor heating smaller areas for short periods of time, because they heat rooms fast. When used along side central heating they will save you a lot of money. Used incorrectly to heat a large home and your energy bills will skyrocket.
Here is a list of reasons why a space heater could be the perfect choice for your home.
1. Low Purchase Price
There are many common space heater types, and most work in any style home. Compared to central heating, they are inexpensive to purchase and install.
Their simple design means they are easy to maintain, and with less moving parts, making them durable and cheap to repair.
2. Consume Less Electricity
Heating any small contained space will consume less energy. This is where space heaters work the best. Good space heaters use fast-heating tungsten filaments that stop heating when your ideal temperature has been met. They continue heating only when, or if, the room temperature drops. That's fast controlled heating in a small space.
Unlike standard heaters that keep drawing power, space heaters save money because you don't overheat rooms to the point of dehydration. However, most space heaters don't come with energy efficiency ratings, meaning it is difficult to compare them. Here are some things you can do to make your space heater work more efficiently and consume less energy.
- Use heaters in small spaces keeping windows and doors closed to avoid warm air escaping and cold air entering.
- Keep heater vents clear and clean of dust. Avoid covering them with clothing or other items.
- Reduce temperature settings as soon as your room is warm enough.
3. Get Warmer Faster
Regular heaters work by heating the air in your home. Its a process, turning cold air into warm air, and it takes time. Instead of warming the entire room, space heaters radiate heat out quickly heating your skin and clothes, so you get warmer, faster.
There are three main types of space heater and they work differently. These are convection space heaters, radiant and micathermic space heaters.
Convection space heaters are the most common. Air that passes over the heating element is warmed and circulated into the room using a fan to distribute the warm air out into the room. This means you can heat rooms quickly and evenly. Rooms remain warm even when the heater is switched off. Fan noise can be a problem in some models.
Radiant space heaters heat an area or person directly. Some radiant heaters heat up quartz, then use infrared heat to warm the area directly in front of it. Others use oil filled pipes which radiate heat once the oil is heated. These heaters are not designed to heat entire rooms or large spaces but they are safe enough to be used outdoors on balconies and patios, as they can work with open doors or drafts. The disadvantages are that this heater only heats a specific area or subject and heat dissipates as soon as it is switched off.
Micathermic heating is a hybrid of convection and radiant heaters. Thin layers of mica stone heat until they radiate heat. Air passes over the mica layers, into the room. These are very thin heaters, so if you want something discreet, this is it. They also heat up quickly, are energy efficient and silent. These heaters are suitable for small areas, and even though there is a limited choice of models currently available, this should change in the future.
Options such as remote controls, portable or fixed heaters, natural or propane gas or electricity, ceramic, oil filled, baseboard or fireplace style all come with different price tags.
4. No Installation
Many central heating units need installing, by professionals. Cha ching! This can be messy as well as expensive and maintenance is a must. Adding a space heater can reduce the stress on your central heating.
By comparison a space heater needs little to no wiring and only needs plugging in, unless you get a fancy electric fireplace that will be built in to a wall space.
5. Ideal for Small Places
If you live in an apartment with no central heating, the cost and ease of installation makes choosing a space heater very easy. These units are compact, but have enough power to heat up the whole apartment and not just a room. If you live in an average to large home and only need heating at night, using a space heater in the areas you use the most makes a lot of sense and will reduce your heating. You will get warm rooms faster, and for less.
Space heaters can be the perfect choice, they are economical to run, convenient to store and give you warm rooms faster. Use them cleverly with your central heating, or alone, and save on your energy bills this winter.