Panel or Storage Heating – Which is which?
Storage heating comes in the form of bricks or ceramics. They store heat at night when electricity is less expensive.
Panel heating contains oil but relies on electricity to create heat quickly and, because they’re oil-filled, they retain heat even when not being used.
Storage heaters work best with Economy 7 heating. They generate electricity for 7 hours over the course of the night when costs are lower. They use this time to recharge, then store heat which is then slowly and gradually distributed throughout the day.
It’s an efficient way to heat the house if you’re there during the day but a bit of a waste of time and energy if you aren’t.
Storage Heating Advantages:
• Heat is lost slowly
Storage Heater Negatives:
• They take time to heat
• Heat control is more difficult.
• They’re generally more expensive
• They tend to be heavier and take more effort to install
There are storage heaters which include internal fans, giving you better heat control and increasing your savings.
Examples of Storage Heaters:
8 Brick Fixed Heaters
12 Brick static storage heating systems
This is timed to use electricity when the night tariff kicks in and turns off when it finishes, giving you 24 hour comfort.
The true benefit of a panel heater is that the heat is there as and when you want it and they retain their heat even when they are not being used. Compared to storage heaters their ability to keep heat doesn’t match but they are more effective than the average electric heater. Basically, you’ll pay more while it’s turned on but the cost is just for the period that it is in use.
Panel Heating Positives:
• They heat up faster
• Electricity is only generated when the heater is being used
• You have better control over levels of heat
• They’re light and easy to install
Downsides For Panel Heating:
• Loss of heat is faster
• More expensive
1.5Kw panel heat
One of the economical features of the 1.5kW Panel Heater is its heat selection switch, letting you choose between complete or half-load heating.
0.75Kw panel heating
The advantage of this heater is that it gives your room extra warmth during the colder months
Combi Storage & Convection Heaters
Storage heaters with an integrated convector give you the best of both worlds. They store heat during the night at cheaper rates, then boost the heat during the day as and when you want it.
Combination Heating Advantages:
• Heat loss is slower
• It’s generally more affordable
• Extra temperature control
Combi Heating systems downsides:
• The convection boost is less effective than panel heating
• They tend to be heavy and require a bit of extra effort to install
16 brick convection
This heats a ceramic block, made of high density magnetite bricks. They’re chosen for their capacity to absorb and store heat
12 brick convection
Used to supplement the heat from storage heaters, or when storage heaters are turned off.
The advantages of Electric Home heating in a nutshell:
All of these heaters have certain advantages over gas and oil boilers:
• Carbon monoxide poisoning will never be a worry.
• You’ll never have to deal with the issue of oil or gas running out.
So, which one will work best for you?!
Essentially, your lifestyle will be the determining factor.
If you spend most of your day in the house and are using the home heating a lot, storage heating might be the better option.
If you’re not at home for much of the day but need heat fast (or have a limited budget) then panel heaters are very likely the best choice.
For more information go to Electrical World.