How to Buy the Perfect Radiator for Your Home

Radiators are one of the most popular ways people choose to heat their homes, but these days there’s a lot to consider when picking the right radiator to suit your home. Rather than the ‘one look suits all’ approach, nowadays you need to think about budget, fuel source, style, size and even colour! Not that this is a bad thing of course: choice is always nice, but to make a good decision you need information and ideas – which you can find in this brief guide to the basics of radiator styles and types there.

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Know Which Type You Are Looking For

Home radiators are powered by central heating, electricity or a combination of both. Always check that the radiators you like are suitable for the system you have in place.

Choose the Best Design

Radiators come in several styles, including:

• Panel radiators – these are either single (the standard image of a radiator), double-sized (two standard radiators joined together with a slight gap between the panels) or convection heaters, which are two panels joined together with a covered mesh on the top. All of these take up a lot of wall space.
• Horizontal or vertical – panel radiators are horizontal, while vertical types are taller and narrow and can make good use of wall space.

Radiator Temperature Thermostat Heating Heat Cold

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Price Tags

• Standard white panel radiators are the cheapest because they are so widely available.
• Radiators made from mild steel are cheaper than average (and they come in other colours too), while stainless steel versions are good quality but they are more expensive.


• Vertical radiators are generally more stylish, and they can be quite individual. Rather than just one style, they come in different shapes, such as column radiators – also known as ‘Victorian/industrial’ – available from specialist such as , and ladder styles.


• In a bathroom a heated towel rail or small ladder radiator is generally enough, but if you have a lot of space to heat a couple of electric radiators may do a better job; they are also useful in additional rooms like conservatories.

Get the BTU Right

BTU refers to the heat level your radiator can give out, so higher numbers mean more heat. You can use the BTU to assess which room each radiator is best suited to.

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