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Providing efficient heating for pennies per hour in a small package

There are times when some heating is required in certain areas of the home but not necessarily from expensive to run central heating. Smaller, compact electric tubular heaters offer a very cost and energy efficient way to provide background heat for mere pennies per hour.

The need for background heating

There are various situations where background heating is required as opposed to ‘full bore’ central heating – or in areas where the central heating doesn’t reach including, say, certain conservatories or maybe a loft conversion.

It’s important to ward off frost and condensation and this is where tube heaters can be very effective. Due to their economical running costs (as low as half a pence per hour) they can be left on for prolonged periods – perhaps in conjunction with timer and thermostatic controls – to keep frost at bay and prevent condensation forming.

For example, a small bedroom in a loft conversion where a central heating radiator hasn’t been installed or a conservatory could both benefit from tubular heating.

Various options

Tube heaters are available in various power outputs and guises to suit different requirements:

  • Various sizes from one to six feet
  • Different sizes provide various power outputs – 60w per one foot, so 60 to 360w outputs
  • Usually available in pure white or parchment finishes
  • Available either with three pin plugs or hard wired into the mains electricity

Accessories and add ons

Various accessories can be specified to make the heaters more suitable for the use they’re put to:

  • Brackets and linking kits – available if more than one heater is to be installed
  • Timers – to control when heat is provided
  • Thermostats – to control heat based on temperature – for example, switching on just before frost would occur
  • Weatherproof thermostats – built to IP56 standards, these offer extra durability in more extreme weather conditions such as outdoors in greenhouses or maybe outer storage cupboards
  • Combined units – both timer and thermostatic control
  • Guards – to prevent children and pets touching hot heater surface
  • RCD safety adaptor – designed to cut power instantly so useful in areas where moisture is present

Simple and economical heat option

The tube heaters’ straightforward and simple aluminium design means they don’t require maintenance and are guaranteed for two years. They start at just below £20 and even the most powerful variants are under £50 each.

They’re available in 240 and 110 volt versions; the smaller voltage units are intended for non-domestic environments such as construction site offices or boats. Otherwise, the 240 volt versions can be used anywhere background heat is required including:

  • Kennels
  • Walk in cupboards
  • Individual rooms
  • Home offices
  • Outdoor storage areas
  • Conservatories
  • Garage conversions

Certified and safe

Along with using accessories such as the RCD safety adaptor, the heaters meet an IP54 rating. This means the units possess a high level of protection against particles and water ingress.

The first number, five, refers to resistance to solids ingress such as dust and particles, and the heaters achieve level five of six levels.

The second number, four, covers liquids ingress and the four rating means the heater can resist even splashing water from any direction.

Tubular heaters area certainly an economical, flexible and safe method of background heating.

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