Choosing a Heating System
An effective and economical heating system is more than just a good heater. It is a 'heating package' which should always include:
An energy-efficiency heating package can use 40% less energy!
- insulation in ceilings, walls and floors where possible;
- sealing off draughts;
- effective window coverings;
- zoning of living and sleeping areas;
- appropriate and efficient heater(s); and
- YOU using your heating package wisely and efficiently.
Types of Heat
Radiant heat is emitted from hot surfaces, e.g. the glowing panel of a gas heater, the surface of a heated concrete slab, a bar radiator or open fire. Radiant heat heats objects in the room directly, but does not directly warm the room air.
Radiant heaters can be appropriate if your rooms have large open spaces or high ceilings, or a particularly draughty.
Convective heat is heat which is transferred from one object to another, using moving air or water. Convection heaters work by filling a room with warm air. Fan heaters and ducted heating are examples of convection heaters.
Convection heaters are most appropriate if your rooms are insulated, well sealed against draughts and have average ceiling heights.
They should be avoided in draughty rooms, rooms with high ceilings or areas with open stairwells.
Some heaters combine the effects of radiant and convection heating, Hydronic radiator panels, wood heaters, storage fan heaters and many gas heaters function in this way.