Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Aluminium Radiators - What's so special about them?



Aluminium radiators are quite a strange phenomenon on these shores. They're been around in Europe for decades, but they haven't been seen by us Brits, unless on our hols in the Costa Del Sunny. Recently, they've started becoming more widespread in the UK. So what's making people switch from our ingrained ideal of the pressed steel panel radiator to something that looks so different?

As you probably know, aluminium as a material is incredibly lightweight, but many don't realise that its heat transference properties are tremendous. This makes aluminium a great choice to make radiators with.

Another benefit of aluminium radiators is  due to the great heat transfer, they don't need to hold a lot of water. This means you have less water in your heating system, which in turn means less water for your boiler to heat, which in turn means lower heating bills.

On the subject of heating bills, many people are looking into alternative and renewable energy. Aluminium radiators lend themselves to solar, ground source and air source heating due to the low water and heat transfer properties they possess and the fact that an aluminium radiator will transfer heat at lower temperatures than a pressed steel panel radiator.

From a production perspective, many aluminium radiators are modular in their design, consisting of die cast or extruded sections bolted together. This means you can buy sufficient sections for the space you want to heat and divide them according to the number of radiators you need without being stuck with the particular sizes offered by pressed steel panel radiators. You can also add to or remove individual sections as required so you have a far more flexible method of radiator layout.

Throw in the huge range of heights from 300mm to 2000mm and most in between and you have an amazing array of size options to provide heat to almost any space.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Radiators - Particularly of The Designer Kind.

Hello Everyone and thank you for taking the time to read my blog. I've been advised by the clever people who help me with optimising our website that we need to start blogging about the things we specialise in. Simply put, we have a showroom in Portsmouth filled with designer radiators and they're telling me to talk about them. Seeing as I know a fair bit about this game, I reckon I'll be able to quickly make this a bit of an authority site, but in the meantime, I thought I'd just post up something practical for people to think on.

The thing that differentiates what we sell with the more conventional type of radiator is to do with one simple aspect. They're 'designer'. Now what exactly does this mean? Well, designer in this context refers to it's form, whether cast iron and traditional or modern vertical, the shape and ascetic is a priority. In some cases the ascetic may even supersede the product's functionality, but that's something I'll come to shortly.

Designer radiators, whilst not always or necessarily possessing the most efficient way of providing heat in their basic function can actually be the most logical solution and offer the most heat in certain situations.

Hmm... That sounds like a total contradiction in the same sentence, doesn't it? Let me explain.

Radiators are often only as good as where they're put. Back in the day, if you had heating put in, the plumber would simply ask which wall you wanted the rad on and then he'd bugger off down the plumbers merchant and buy the cheapest model available for your output requirements. Positioning usually meant under the bay window. We've all got rads there, even I have.

Fast forward 25 years. The three seat sofa and two armchairs has been replaced by two three seaters (or four seaters if you're really lucky), and the 21" telly is now at minimum a 40" flat screen. Suddenly you're in the realm of bad radiator positioning. That bay window rad is now heating the back of a sofa because you've run out of room and anyone who sits on it in the winter falls into an immediate heat induced coma.

The answer is a vertical radiator. Or vertical radiators. Plural. Take a couple of thin tall radiators and put them up either side of the bay window, or either side of the fire place. In most houses (unless you're married to a photographer, like I am) anything above dado height is dead space and this will put it to good use.

So you've killed two birds with one stone. You're not putting guests to sleep and you've putting the radiators in the room allowing them to heat the room properly.

Thanks for reading. I'll post something else up soon.