Radiator Buying Guide

Electric or Central Heating Radiators?

Electric radiators or a plumbed hot water central heating system are the two heating options you can choose from. It is best to use the system you already have if you are replacing or adding more radiators - although in some cases, you might have to switch systems. Electric radiators, for example, can be installed in places where your central heating is not currently available, which makes them ideal for loft conversions, conservatories and extensions.

Plumbed Radiators

Central heating radiators are the most common choice. Hot water is heated in a boiler and circulated throughout your home using pipes.

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Electric Radiators

Electric radiators aren't controlled centrally, but are controlled by each individual room. Modern styles are slim, easy to install, and only require mains electricity.

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Will I Need Radiator Valves?

A pair of valves are needed for every plumbed radiator in your home, as these are used to control the heat output. These need to be purchased separately.

Make sure you know what size pipe you have so you can choose the right valve. Also, keep in mind what type of pipe you have will determine what size valve you need. Usually you'll need a 15mm or 22mm valve as these are the most common.

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What are Dual Fuel Radiators?

By adding a thermostatic heating element, you can convert your radiator into a dual fuel system. Using this device, you can heat up your plumbed radiator using electricity. By doing so, you can independently heat one area, such as your bathroom towel rail, without having to heat up the whole house. As dual fuel radiators can be used when your main central heating system is off, they offer a great deal more flexibility and control than standard radiators.

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Consider Your Existing Pipework

Is your pipework running along the wall or up from the floor?

You'll find plenty of choices to choose from if you choose to change the size or style of the radiator if it runs along the wall. If the new radiator is wider or the same width as the existing one, the excess pipework can easily be removed. You may need to extend the pipework if you choose a narrower model - if you're not sure, ask a qualified plumber for advice.

There are a few challenges involved if it runs up from the floor. You won't have a problem if you choose a similar size replacement, but if you'd like to change the size or style, you may have to lift the floorboards to move pipes.

Make sure you measure the area where you want the radiator to go, as well as the distance between the pipes (in and out) and the studs if the wall is constructed from studs.

What size and how many radiators do I need?

Before you begin, you must know about BTUs, irrespective of whether you want a plumbed or electric radiator. We have created an easy-to-use BTU calculator to help you figure out roughly how many and what heat output you'll need for your new radiators.

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What is a BTU?

British Thermal Units represent how much energy it takes to heat 1 pound of water by 1 degree Fahrenheit. The BTU rating of radiators tells you how many BTU they produce. This is a quick and easy way to find out how much heat a radiator will generate. When matching the BTU rating of a radiator with your needs, choose one with a slightly higher output to ensure your room is warm enough.

BTU Calculator

What is the best location for my radiator?

Take some time to think about where you want to hang your radiator. What type of wall you have in your room will influence the size and style of radiator you need. You have the greatest choice of radiators if the wall is composed of solid masonry, brick, or blockwork. With the right fixings, larger radiators can be hung from strong solid walls. If the wall is made from plasterboard with hollow space behind, i.e a drywall or studwork wall, you'll need to find where the studs run. Using a stud finder tool will help you with this. Studs are the strongest part of your wall and it is essential that you hang radiators from them.

Installing radiators behind big pieces of furniture will stop the heat from travelling around the room efficiently, so it is best to avoid doing this. If you are hanging it on an external wall it is important to make sure it is insulated, this can be achieved using a heat reflector.

Choose Your Style

Central Heating Radiators

In addition to having the highest heat output and greatest heat efficiency of all plumbed radiator styles, these radiators also use corrugated panels (convectors) to radiate heat into the room.

A single panel style is suitable for smaller rooms, while double panels produce more heat, and stick out farther from the wall. For the maximum heat output you may want to consider a triple panel style, which uses three panels and three convectors.

Central Heating Radiators

Column Radiators

Column radiators are a great way to give your home a traditional feel if you're looking to add or retain period charm.

While these modern radiators have a similar look to cast-iron radiators that originated in the Victorian era, they provide more heat efficiency than their predecessors did.

Column Radiators

Designer Radiators

Designer radiators offer a range of benefits - from space-saving technologies to products that can double as mirrors and memo boards. With them, you can easily give a room a modern, contemporary feel, and create stylish, attractive features you won't want to hide, unlike other radiator types on the market.

Designer Radiators

Vertical Radiators

In a smaller room, vertical radiators save on space by fitting into thin wall spaces, and they offer an alternative to more traditional ones. They are available in a variety of colours and styles, making them an affordable alternative to traditional ones. If you choose a bold design to break up the texture of the wall, vertical radiators can be a piece of d├ęcor in themselves.

Vertical Radiators

Towel Radiators / Warmers

With our towel radiators, drying your towels and adding warmth to your bathroom can be easy and stylish. We have a range of heights and widths to suit all layouts.

Towel Radiators / Warmers