Infra red panels

I currently have an oil fired combi boiler which works well but I would prefer to reduce my reliance on fossil fuels. I looked into getting a grant for  an air source heat pump but was told that as my house is difficult to insulate they wouldn’t support this as it would cost too much to run. I only run the heating for a couple of hours a day to warm the house through and use a multi fuel stove burning anthracite in the living room which I find also keeps the chill off the rest of the rooms that I tend to use - but again I would prefer to reduce/eliminate the use of fossil fuels. I have tried using logs in the stove which are very effective but get used up quickly and so are an expensive way to heat. So I am considering switching to infra red panels instead of the central heating and only heating rooms as required. For the moment I would continue to use the boiler for hot water until I can find a viable alternative. Does anyone have any experience with infra red panels? Would you recommend them? Thanks 

Comments

  • Reed_Richards
    Reed_Richards Posts: 3,982
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    In England there are two grant schemes available for heat pumps.  You can get the full cost of a heat pump installation if you qualify under the ECO4 scheme or anyone can get a grant of £7,500 towards the cost.  To qualify you may be required to further insulate your house but this requirement should only apply to adding loft or cavity wall insulation and neither of those should be difficult.  Running a heat pump should cost you about a third of the cost of heating the same rooms to the same temperature with infra-red panel heaters so it would be a much better choice for running costs.  But at current fuel prices a heat pump will cost a bit more to run than a newer oil boiler.  If you just want heating that will take the chill off the house, this is much more easily achieved with a heat pump than an oil boiler.   

       
    Reed
  • Netexporter
    Netexporter Posts: 1,032
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    I currently have an oil fired combi boiler which works well but I would prefer to reduce my reliance on fossil fuels. I looked into getting a grant for  an air source heat pump but was told that as my house is difficult to insulate they wouldn’t support this as it would cost too much to run.

    The heat loss is the same whatever fuel you use for heating. A heat pump using R290 refrigerant, that can achieve higher flow temperatures at a given COP, may well be suitable and give a decent level of comfort. If you can fit solar PV and/or a battery, you can greatly reduce your fuel cost for the heat pump.

  • Strummer22
    Strummer22 Posts: 590
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    In what way is your house difficult to insulate? A heat pump would cost less to run than any other form of electric heating!
  • Grum123
    Grum123 Posts: 13
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    I was told that in order to get a heat pump installed under my LA scheme I would need wall insulation to make it cost effective. The house is a mid-terrace old miners cottage and it would need internal wall insulation. The rooms are quite small, so apart from the massive disruption, redecoration, replacement panelling etc the rooms would be even smaller and some of my furniture may not fit anymore so this really doesn’t feel like a viable option.
  • Netexporter
    Netexporter Posts: 1,032
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    I was told that in order to get a heat pump installed under my LA scheme I would need wall insulation to make it cost effective

    I'm getting a heat pump, under ECO4. They are fitting solar panels to compensate for not being able to upgrade the insulation very much.

  • Reed_Richards
    Reed_Richards Posts: 3,982
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    Your L.A. will be acting under the terms of the ECO4 scheme.  The wall insulation would be very disruptive but everything would be free, i.e. paid for by a Government grant via your L.A.  The trouble with the ECO4 scheme is that you pretty much get what you are given without much say.  More insulation would reduce your heating bills but also mean more work, so more revenue, for your installers.  Thus what they advised you may not have been entirely impartial.  I'm sorry, I don't know enough about the ECO4 scheme to know if you can get a "second opinion" from a different installer.

    Most electric heaters work mostly by heating the air in the room which then warms you and the furnishings etc.  Panel heaters mostly warm the objects in the room which then warm the air.  They will be effective at warming you if you are close to the panel heater but not nearly so effective if you are further from the heater, particularly when they are first on and the air in the room has not been warmed.     
    Reed
  • mumf
    mumf Posts: 587
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    We have two infrared panels. 2’x3’ in size. 700w. So they cost about 20p per hour to run. One is next to my favourite armchair,the other by my wife’s craft/sewing table. What can I say? They keep one warm.
  • mexican_dave
    mexican_dave Posts: 247
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    I internally isulated my thick solid stone-walled cottage (no cavity) myself and lost 5" on each external wall with the system I used. I gained points on my EPC by having the design approved by Building Regs before I started. So across 2 external walls I lost 2 x 5" a total of 10", but it was worth it. The cottage stays warm with very little background heat.
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