In this blog post we explore the ins and outs of electric heating, why you may opt to choose an electric heating system, what to look out for, what you can do to be more energy efficiency and how you could save money on your bills.
What is Electric Heating?
Most homes in the UK are powered by gas central heating using a boiler with either a cylinder or a modern version tucked away in a cupboard. The radiators used will be white and of metal construction which may have been in situ for many years deteriorating in heating performance with passing time.
This deterioration in performance is so gradual that you may not have noticed, but this would cause an increase in cost to heat your home year on year.
Whilst this type of fuel is popular and traditional, it is possible to install a modern alternative.
Electric heating systems remove the need to provide fuel to your boiler. They also deliver 100% efficiency as opposed to 80% to 90% that a gas boiler will achieve. We also know that the impact of burning gas on the environment is of growing concern.
An electric heating system doesn’t release any pollutants into the atmosphere – by opting for an electric heating system you are helping to reduce the carbon footprint of your home.
The Main Benefits of Electric Heating Systems
1 – Produces Zero Emissions (when used with a renewable source of electricity)
2 – Cleaner, no risk of a carbon monoxide leak
3 – It provides effective heating if you are not linked to the main gas supply
4 – Quick response to the heating being turned on
5 – 100% efficient versus gas systems which are 80% to 90% efficient
6 – Minimal servicing and maintenance required
How Does Electric Central Heating Work?
As the UK pushes towards being carbon neutral, fossil fuels are being phased out in favour of more sustainable energy sources, such as electricity. As a homeowner, now is an opportune time to start thinking about more environmentally friendly ways to heat your home.
You could replace your old gas powered boiler with an electric boiler. Electric boilers simply use electricity instead of gas to heat your hot water. They come in a variety of shapes, each one with water running through a system to be heated by a heating element, similar to a kettle.
They do not need to be placed on an external wall because there is no flue or gas pipe pumping out emissions. They are usually small, compact units that can run almost silently. Despite this, they were never designed to run central heating systems heating multiple radiators. Therefore, whilst there is a place for them in small apartments, they generally are not suitable for the average home.
Electric Radiators & Panel Heaters
Electric radiators & panel heaters conduct the heat through electricity as opposed to hot water running through internal pipes. Because of the way electric radiators & panel heaters work, they use every single watt of electricity and convert it into heat. Thus, there is no wastage and no waiting around to warm up.
It is important to choose a high quality electric radiator or panel heater. A low quality heater will not accurately measure the temperature of the room and may over or under heat the room using either more energy than is needed or leaving your home colder than it should be.
A high quality electric radiator or panel heater, such as HMPH47ERP, paired with a high quality control system, such as HM68OLED, positioned away from the radiator or heater, will measure the room temperature at a more optimal location and adjust the heat more precisely ensuring the efficiency and effectiveness of the electric heating system is at its best. This ensures no excess energy is wasted and the room is always at a comfortable temperature whilst retaining full control of the system for the end user.
Additionally, this means you have control of each electric radiator or panel heater independently and can heat your home on a room by room basis, further saving energy and money. Typically, a high quality system such as our combination suggested above will have scheduling and programming functionality, so once that is setup the first time you never have to lift a finger again!
Finally, the cherry on the top is that electric heating systems are incredibly easy to install, requiring no water connection and plumbing, and much cheaper to install than a traditional wet system.
There is no hiding the fact that gas is cheaper than electricity per unit of energy. However, this does not always translate into a direct correlation when looking at running costs. For example, as mentioned, the efficiency of electric heating is 100%, so all the energy used is converted into heat meaning that you are not paying for energy which is not being used to heat your home. Furthermore, Smart Controls allow you to schedule or switch off the electric heating when you don’t need it, control the heating on a room by room basis, ensuring that you do not overpay for any heating which is not used.
Ultimately, the switch to alternative methods of heating the home are inevitable, this will no doubt reduce the cost per unit of energy in the long term. Investing in an electric heating system now may well pay off over the next few decades and should therefore be a serious consideration for any homeowner.
Why Now Is The Time To Switch To An Electric Heating System
If you’re still not sure that an electric heating system is for you, there are some good reasons to choose an electric heating system now.
Cost is not the only factor think about. There’s also the environmental impact of your heating. Burning fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Hence heating your home is one of the biggest sources of CO2. In fact, home heating is responsible for around 15% of the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The UK government has therefore said that from 2025 now properties won’t be allowed to have gas boilers. They have set a goal for the UK to reach Net Zero carbon emissions by 2050 and this means that homeowners with older properties will need to start thinking about alternative ways of heating too.
It is also worth noting that electricity also contributes to CO2 emissions. This is because we still use gas to generate electricity. However, renewables like solar and wind power generated almost as much electricity as gas last year. If you combine an electric heating system with a 100% renewable electricity source you know that the carbon footprint of your home heating system will be carbon free!