Summary: advantages of electric storage heaters and disadvantages of electric storage heaters.
Electric storage heaters
Storage heaters are electric heating systems that use power supplied at night to heat up clay bricks, which in turn release heat throughout the following day. The benefits of using heat retaining bricks are that the night time use of electricity, when on the Economy 7 tariff, saves money for the user as it is cheaper than the daytime alternative.
The bricks are made of high density clay (or alternative ceramic material), which is very good for retaining heat. The storage heater can be set up so it automatically releases heat when temperatures drop. You can also manually control the amount of heat put into the bricks and the amount released by the bricks on a day to day basis.
- The cost saving aspect of using a storage heater is a positive for homeowners looking to spend less. It is particularly cheaper than the usual gas alternatives, when used on the cheap-rate Economy 7 tariff. Other types of electrical heating may not be so financially beneficial, however.
- Heat is being emitted both day and night, which means you will not wake up to a cold house early in the morning and you won’t have to think much about saving money by switching off the heating.
- The electrical aspect of the heater means that gas is not required. This could be important for areas that are not distributed with gas.
- The installation is quicker and cheaper than gas or other systems. No pipes or flues are needed.
- There is very little, if any maintenance required for a storage heater.
- If heat is no longer required in your house, the storage heater emits it anyway due to the fact that it needs to lose the heat that has been stored in the clay bricks. Conversely, if not enough heat has been stored in the bricks and the weather suddenly turns cold, electricity on the full price tariff will have to be used.
- The controls of the heater can be misused easily. If the output control is left on overnight, heat will not be stored in the bricks as required; the heat will be spent into the rooms instead of being stored.
- The large size and weight of the storage heater due to the bricks used can make them an unwanted central heating option.
- Ground source heat pumps
- Air source heat pumps
- Gas central heating systems
- Electric central heating systems
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