Panel Heaters Buying Guide

Posted by Alex Wells on

When the cold creeps in, it’s important to keep your home warm – especially if you find yourself putting on extra layers or shivering in bed. It’s recommended to keep your home between 18 and 22°C depending on preference, but this can impact your monthly bills. Panel heaters are a cost-effective solution to heat your home without hitting your wallet.

A woman sat curled up on her sofa cuddling a cushion in a hat, scarf, coat, gloves, and wooly socks.

Why choose a panel heater?

If you’re looking for quick heat without the hassle, panel heaters are perfect. You can easily heat a room without cranking up the central heating or lighting a fire. It is important to keep your home warm as cold homes have been linked to increased blood pressure, asthma symptoms and poor mental health. Cold temperatures within the home can also create damp which, if left for a long time, can lead to toxic mould.

Panel heaters can either be portable or wall mounted to fit your needs. Their streamlined design means they take up very little space, and some models come with smart functions like open window detection, 24 hour timer, double overheat protection, and more.

A wall mounted panel heater on a greay wall with yellow curtains

How does a panel heater work?

Panel heaters work using convection. This means that they pull cold air into the panel, running it over the heating coil. This hot air is then pumped out of the heater towards to ceiling. This process then causes a circulation of air in the room, encouraging the cold air into the heater to be heated and so on.

Diagram showing how covection heating works.

Pros and cons of a Panel Heater

Pros:

  • Quiet to operate
  • Cost and energy efficient
  • Various size and shape options to suit your needs
  • Portable or wall mounted
  • Streamlined design
  • Smart options
  • Carbon neutral when used with green electricity

Cons:

  • Heat 1 room at a time
  • Convection heaters can be less efficient than radiation heaters
  • Panel heaters are less efficient than electric radiators as they use convection as opposed to radiation
  • They are not suitable for constant use as dust particles on the hot elements can cause sooty deposits on the wall

Which panel heater is best for my room size?

 0.5 kW 

12m2 bedroom with single bed, desk, chair, and drawers

0.5kW panel heaters can heat rooms up to 12m2. Their compact size makes them the ideal choice for smaller rooms.

1kW

Yellow bathroom with a panel heater being used as a towel rack

1kW panel heaters can heat rooms up to 12m2. Models with an IP24 rating are splash proof from any direction making them the perfect choice for bathrooms.

2kW

Large living room with a sofa across from a wall mounted TV

2kW panel heaters can heat rooms up to 22m2. Their increased power provides more heat circulation for big rooms.   

2.4kW

Very large living room with kitchenette

2.4kW panel heaters can heat rooms up to 25m2. This is the most powerful panel heater we stock, great for larger spaces!

Features and Benefits of Panel Heaters

Power output (W) - This is how much power the unit uses. This can help you to work out the running costs.

Open Window Detection – This feature automatically shuts off your unit when you have a window open so that you aren’t heating outside.

24 Hour Timer – Set how long the heater will run for in increments of 1 hour up to 24 hours of run time.

Double overheat protection – This is a feature that automatically shuts the unit off if it overheats. There are 2 layers of protection.

Anti-Frost – during the colder months your appliances are liable to frost. This anti frost protection means that your unit won’t be damaged by sub-zero temperatures.

Portability – Panel heaters can be wall mounted or free standing with castor wheels depending on your requirements.

Wi-Fi Compatible and Smart Features – Panel heaters with smart features can be controlled using a dedicated app, making them easy to programme. Many can also be used with smart devices like Alexa and Google Home Hub.

FAQs

What size do I need?

The wattage (W) is the maximum power output of your heater. If you want to use the heater as the primary source of heat in a room, you need to choose the right wattage. The bigger the room, the more power you’ll need to keep it warm.

Will my heater switch off on its own?

If you have set a timer on your heater it will switch off when the time has elapsed. The heater will also stop heating once the target has been reached.

Should I wall mount my heater or leave it free standing?

This depends on how you want to use your heater. If you plan to move it from room to room, you should leave it free standing. However, if you have chosen which room it will be in all the time, it can be mounted to the wall to save floor space.

How are panel heaters installed?

If you plan to keep your heater free standing, it is as simple as plugging in the cord. If you wish to wall mount your heater, it will be a quick and easy job with none of the mess and expense of installing central heating. Simply screw them to the wall and plug them in to the nearest socket.

However, if your heater does not come with a plug you should not try to wire this in yourself. Call a qualified electrician. Hardwiring your heater can provide a tidier fitting with no visible wires.