Storage Heaters vs Oil Filled Radiators

Electric storage heater

The electric storage heater has been a popular way to heat a home since the introduction of the economy 7 electricity tariff in the 1950s. But, has the popularity of these heaters diminished in the last 60 years and are other types of electric heating becoming more popular? One type of radiator that has become increasingly more popular in the 21st century are electric oil filled radiators.

The two products work in very different ways. Storage heaters work off an economy tariff that uses cheap electricity at night to ‘charge up’ warmth, and then emit heat during the day to avoid peak heating costs. Storage heaters use thermally retentive bricks to store heat overnight, and during the day, air passes over these bricks to warm the room. Temperature can be adjusted easily by increasing or decreasing the air flow around these bricks. Once the bricks have cooled they need recharging overnight to be ready to heat your home the next day. Oil filled radiators work in a much different way, they use energy efficient thermal fluid that has been engineered to heat up quickly, retain this heat and then spread it evenly throughout the room.

To see which heater would be better suited for your home, we’re going to look at the impact on your energy bill, prices and the installation of both storage heaters and oil filled radiators.

Savings

The main selling point of a storage heater is that it uses an economy tariff that charges less for electricity at night and more during the day. By charging your heater up at night and releasing heat in the day, users can take advantage of the cheaper night rates without being stung by the higher daytime pricing. However, despite this sound logic, there are a few practical issues with using storage heaters. Storage heaters are often at their warmest in the morning and leak heat throughout the day, so if you have a 9-5 routine then you’ll be out of the house when the heater is working at its best. The ideal lifestyle for a storage heater is if you’re at home all day and don’t use many other appliances.

Oil filled radiators are much more flexible in terms of heating options, because of their ability to maintain the heat of a room easily they can offer savings on normal energy tariffs. The thermal fluid in oil filled radiators can take a little longer to heat up, but then it also takes longer to cool down, providing you with long-term heat. Because they spread heat evenly throughout a room they are ideal in large rooms or rooms that are used frequently. Oil filled radiators can also be programmed to suit your daily routine and have thermostats that are accurate to half a degree, whereas most storage heaters are incredibly basic and only have a couple of dials meaning that the controllability of these heaters is incredibly poor.

PriceHaverland Designer TT

The price of all electric radiators and electric heaters depends on what size room you need to heat. If you need to heat a space of 12m2 the Elnur Ecombi HHR20 fan assisted storage heater will cost £669.99 while the Haverland Designer TT RC8TT electric radiator will only cos £275.94 to heat the same sized room. If you’re not sure about what size radiator you would need to heat a room use our electric radiator calculator to find out.

The cheapest electric storage heaters start at £499.99 and go up to £839.99 so if your main concern is the price of radiators, you might be better off opting for an oil filled radiator. While oil filled radiators are cheaper to buy, if you are on an Economy 7 electricity tariff, it may be worth purchasing one of our electric storage heaters instead.  

Installation

Electric oil filled heaters are incredibly easy to install. All they need is plugging into the wall and they are ready to go, so this product is perfect for DIY installation. The thermal liquid used to heat the radiator is encapsulated inside so there is no risk of any leakage while you are installing your radiator.

Storage heaters need to be installed by a professional to ensure they are hardwired to the mains ‘night time’ circuit of your property, this mean that you will only be charged the night time tariff. Storage heaters are also extremely heavy due to the bricks contained inside them, if you are buying a storage heater then make sure you have another person to help you bring the heater into your home upon delivery.

Electric Oil Filled Radiator or Electric Storage Heater?

Elnur Ecombi HHR20While storage heaters do have some positive aspects, they’re not for everyone, and many will find this type of heating system at odds with their lifestyle: they need charging overnight and are fairly inflexible in terms of how they give off heat during the day. Storage heaters have fallen out of favour in recent years because, in the world we live in today, there are more efficient heating systems, so storage heaters are not always the cheapest choice in the long run.

Despite the initial higher cost, oil filled radiators look like a much smarter choice for most homes. They save money with their excellent heat retention and offer a fantastic alternative to central heating. The flexibility that they offer with the ability to programme heating around your routine means that oil filled radiators are the preferable choice over electric storage heaters for most consumers.

If you would like to more information on our oil filled radiators then have a look on our website or call one of our sales team who will be more than happy to talk through the options for you.

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