Oil Filled Electric Radiators
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Oil filled radiators are a popular heating choice as they encompass a wide range of styles: portable, electric, wall mounted etc. They are an efficient and valuable way of heating any space and are generally considered safe as they usually have a lower surface temperature.
Although filled with oil or thermal fluid, these types of radiators are electrically heated and do not involve burning of any oil. Instead, it is used as a heat reservoir, rather than a fuel.
How do oil filled radiators work?
The body of an oil filled radiator is made up of a series of metal fins or columns, although occasionally you will find it has a flat panel surface. As the oil is heated by the enclosed electric element, it circulates through channels built into the fins and panels, heating the metal as it moves. The warm metal surface (aluminium tends to be the best) then heats the room by:
Warmth emitted by a heated surface that travels directly (in a straight line) to a point of absorption. For example, if you were to stand directly in front of the radiator, the heat you would feel is radiated.
Cold air is introduced at the bottom of the radiator and is heated as it moves across the warm fins. The heated air then rises, allowing more cool air to flow in its place, thus creating a convection cycle.
The surface area only affects how quickly heat can be transferred to the room. The amount of electricity consumed, or larger wattage units do not necessarily affect how quickly the room warms up.
In fact, if you don’t size your oil filled radiator correctly, you are likely to increase energy consumption leading to higher heating bills. It’s important to size your radiator correctly.
- Too small a product and it will need to work harder to reach the desired temperature leading to increased energy consumption. The product will struggle to provide adequate heat in a room that’s too big for it.
- Too large a product will also lead to increased energy consumption, simply because larger heaters have more wattage. Larger products will also take up much more space in a smaller room, important for specifiers to consider when designing built environments.
You can use our radiator size calculator here to help you determine which Rointe radiator size is best for your room.
What are the advantages of oil filled radiators?
Oil filled radiators are excellent at retaining heat, so less energy is needed to top up the temperature in a room. Even after they’ve stopped drawing power, these types of radiators will continue to gently radiate heat for long-lasting warmth because the fluid inside is designed to cool slowly.
The oil has a high specific heat capacity (the amount of heat a material can hold before its temperature rises) and a high boiling point. Together, this combination means the oil inside your radiator can store a lot of heat without getting hot enough to boil making them very effective and helping to save money on energy costs.
Lower running costs
Oil filled radiators are 100% efficient at the point of use as they use electricity to heat the fluid. This means all the energy used is converted directly to heat making them very effective.
The improved thermal retention means that your radiator will be more energy-efficient, ultimately costing less to run. If you opt for WiFi radiators, smart heating controls or models with advanced programming, you can decrease your bills further by creating heating schedules for each room in your home, individually. As the controls are built into each unit, you have the option to create bespoke routines for each room, matching how it’s used on a daily basis.
When the set temperature is reached, your radiator will automatically cycle on and off or cut its energy consumption to maintain that temperature, rather than running continuously. This saves you money by preventing overheated rooms.
Oil filled radiators also come with high precision thermostats, many of which are accurate to within +/- 0.25ºC to prevent overheating and wasted consumption.
Lower surface temperatures
The way oil filled radiators work by convection allows a more even heat across the radiator surface. You won’t get “hot spots”, nor will the surface be hot enough to burn skin. This makes these types of radiator more suitable for installation in places with vulnerable people like the elderly or children.
Many oil filled radiators also include extra safety features like overheat protection and safety thermostats. And because there is a lack of burnable fluid or gas, there’s no need to worry about explosions or dangerous gases.
Low maintenance & silent
One of the best things about oil filled radiators is they operate silently as physics takes care of circulating warmth, rather than noisy components like fans. Sometimes you might find a clicking sound as the thermostat adjusts, but if this becomes a nuisance you should contact your manufacturer for help.
The oil isn’t used as fuel, so you won’t need to replace it, therefore it’s sealed inside the radiator unit. In fact, most manufacturers recommend you don’t tamper with your unit by opening it up as you’ll end up with foreign materials inside and could also invalidate your guarantee. If you need to get inside the unit or have a problem with leaking fluid, for example, you should contact your manufacturer.
As these are not gas heaters, there are no flues, pipes or chimneys and therefore do not need complicated maintenance. All that”s required is a simple clean of the radiator (including in between, behind and underneath the fins) using a slightly damp cloth and pH-neutral soap. Find out how to clean your radiator here.
Rointe oil filled radiators are an extremely efficient electric heating option. They are perfect for heating all types of properties, including continuous use between 5 – 8 hours a day. Choose from a variety of Rointe oil filled radiators.