Thoroughly modern heating - radiator choice is better than it's ever been

Thoroughly modern heating - radiator choice is better than it's ever been



With a huge amount of choice available, choosing the best radiator needs care, but getting it right yields some excellent benefits.

Radiators now come in a huge range of formats, wide, low, tall, narrow, stylish and functional. Choosing the right one for each application needs care but willcontribute significantly to creating a highly practical energy efficient heating system.

Stylish practicality - panel radiators

In many applications a panel radiator will still be a desirable solution, as it has been proved through research to be perfect for use with all types of heat source from renewables to conventional central heating boilers.

The advent of the decorative panel radiator means that as well as energy efficiency, you can now achieve different looks. Panel radiators can be grooved or plain flat panel models, or increasingly, shaped designer panels with rounder or squared edges to suit the style of the property. This has allowed the homeowner the chance to match heat emitter with décor and has put radiators more firmly on the consumer's mind. No longer is the installer the only specifier, many homeowners want a say too, even in the selection of the panel radiator, though they will always look to the installer for advice.

Reshaping design - vertical radiators

The merits of vertical radiators have also earned it some well-deserved kudos in the heating market, and with this we are seeing a growth in the numbers of vertical models being specified. The places in which you might wish to use a vertical radiator are becoming more obvious, and are being appreciated more and more by architects, interior designers and homeowners alike.

Naturally, the most popular reason for selecting a tall, narrow heat emitter is where you have a tall narrow wall space. The ability to provide a perfectly adequate heat output from a tall, slender model is equally useful in the home or in the commercial setting.

Even period properties can embrace this option as there are now modern versions of the column radiator which can fit the bill. Manufactured in steel to make them far more lightweight than their cast iron forerunners, column models can now be made up to three metres in height. These look equally attractive in modern or traditional settings.

In domestic settings, living space is key, and most homeowners like to place furniture around the outside of rooms in order to gain the sense of a spacious living area. A conventional horizontal radiator, especially during winter, rules out placing sofas and bookcases against an entire wall, especially in rooms with large windows, so consumers have looked for alternatives.

The space around a taller window can be utilised in two ways.

Homeowners can choose to add long, low panel radiators in the space under the window as there are now specially designed low profile radiators to make the rnost of this Iocation. Floor standing models can also be used in front of fixed panel glazing, especially in modern apartments in which the entire exterior wall of the room is glazed.

The other option is to place vertical radiators either side of a large window using the narrow wall space beyond the curtain of window shutter, feeling that a tall slender appliance is far more appealing.

Function prompting choice - kitchen radiators

The function of the radiator within each room should be the real prompt for the choice of radiator.

In most habitable rooms, the main purpose of the radiator is to warm the air for the room's occupants, but in bathrooms and kitchens, we want it to dry and warm towels too. Traditionally, we have used open ladder designs in bathrooms and kitchens because of their dual function of warmth and towel drying and storage.

However, even in these rooms, the latest designs of vertical panel radiators allow you to add a towel rail to flat fronted designs, so that you can incorporate the towel drying function into a much more minimalist looking product.

In the kitchen, using tall narrow spaces for radiators is important, because homeowners wish to install the maximum storage space in the form of base units. A narrow strip of wall unsuitable for a storage unit becomes the perfect site for a radiator.

There are two vertical options which suit kitchens perfectly, the vertical panel radiator with added towel rail, or the designer towel warmer. Either is a good choice, so personal preference can be the deciding factor.

This greater choice in design was given a boost with the discovery that radiators are ideal heat emitters to use with lower temperature renewable heat sources as well as high efficiency modern condensing boilers.

A 21st Century product - the modern radiator

Scientific evidence which proves that radiators are definitely a 21st century product has given manufacturers the confidence to invest in developing new, highly efficient and practical designs.

When specifying these it is important to ensure that you source them from a manufacturer with a long track record in heating, such as us here at Trade Radiators. With models of up to three metres in height, you need to be sure that they will work efficiently and that the water, which should be operating at a lower temperature than in the systems of previous decades, will circulate efficiently, emitting heat into the living space.

A good vertical model is one that has been designed as such from the outset, and which performs well once installed. In our excitement for new designs it is essential not to abandon quality and manufacturing excellence. Importantly, you should take care to specify a model which carries a CE mark and a ten-year guarantee and which complies with all relevant manufacturing standards.

Many homeowners now view radiators not only as a functional item, but also as an architectural feature, which is why manufacturers have invested in giving them as much choice as possible. with a knowledgeable installer to guide them, there's no reason why they shouldn't give full reign to their creativity.


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