What are peoples' opinions on flat panel heaters? I saw a largish one
in Wickes but it was only 900W and didn't say how it worked (oil, wire
element, etc). I also saw a smaller DeLonghi one in Homebase that was
oil-based but that was just 600W.
Surely these can't heat a room as well as a conventional oil or
convector heater (which can be 2-3 times more powerful), so is it worth
I'm happy to settle for a free-standing 7 or 9 fin oil heater (1.5KW)
but the flat panel heaters seemed more discreet.
900w or 600w is 900w or 600w no matter what type of heater. They all
put the same amount of heat into a a room, which is entirely dependent
on the wattage.
The only variation is the type of heat they produce. Fan heaters start
to warm up fairly quickly and distribute their heat around the room
well. Radiant type heaters are good for localised heating (warming your
knees). Oil heaters are slower to warm up and much more gentle.
Oil heaters also retain their heat after turning off rather like a normal
radiator, so you can get a more constant heat rather than non-oil based
where when the thermostat turns it off it stops putting any heat out into
the room (as the element is no longer heated) and (depending on the room)
the temp can drop quite quickly again before the thermostat kicks back in
You can calculate the heat loss for the room using one of the programs
on the central heating radiator manufacturer's web sites - e.g. Barlo
You basically measure the walls, floor and windows and plug in the
numbers and pick the type of construction. Generally you work on -3
degrees outside for central heating and 21 degrees inside for a living
room. You also plug in a number for air changes, which in a living
room is conventionally done at 1.5 per hour.
This will give you a heat loss in watts and you can work from there.
For electric heating, you can take the view that you would like a
discrete panel heater for most of the time, when it is warmer and you
don't need the heat output, but be prepared to supplement it with
something else when it's really cold.
As far as choice between these flat panel and oil heaters are
concerned, the rating is what determines the heat output into the
room. You might notice a different subjective effect if one type is
more radiant in nature and you sit near it, but I believe that the
flat panel types are predominantly convecting in nature.
Fan heaters are another option if you want to warm a room quickly.
To email, substitute .nospam with .gl
Can't speak for their room heating qualities 'cos the one I've got
warming my legs up right now isn't big enough to heat the size of the
room it's in, but for keeping the locality round me warm it's fine -
it's only 386W.
I have a 72 sq meter flat panel radiator that heats most of my ground
floor. Probably about 5Kw. It's called a 'floor' :-)
Its all a matter of space. Double skinned things will kick out more per
unit area. So if space is limited....
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