Autumn has well and truly arrived here in the UK. I’ve laid to rest my hopes of an Indian summer – the downpours have really helped with that.
It seems fair to say, most of us are feeling a little..nervous about the colder months this year, not only because we have to endure Christmas jumpers and Michael Bublé on repeat, but because of the cost of heating our homes.
I’m a freelancer, so I spend most of my time working from home. Correction: I spend most of my time working from one room at home, so it seems silly to waste money heating the two-up-two-down when I’m not using it.
Which is why I’ve been looking for a great portable heater.
There are a lot of things to consider when investing in a portable heater (price, safety, cost to run), and I know looks aren’t everything, but if I’m going to be getting my credit card out then it’s got to look good.
Most portable heaters are – I’m sorry to say – eye-wateringly ugly.
At best, they resemble a small aircraft engine. At worst, a cage of lava so bright, one look will have you seeing stars for weeks.
As a child of the 90s, it’s hard to forget the grey, oil-filled radiators on black wheels that found themselves into most homes. I don’t think I’ll ever un-hear the clicking sound of its thermostat and the gurgling noise of the oil as it warmed up.
But don’t fret too much. All is not lost, as some brands have finally done us a favour by offering prettier versions.
I’m not averse to the fireplace-like heaters and I quite like the slim glass panels you can mount on the wall; even oil radiators now come in an array of colours.
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Which are the cheapest heaters to run?
Halogen heaters are known to be the cheapest heaters to run; as long as you’re in close proximity, they provide lots of warmth, but they shouldn’t be left on for a long amount of time or unmanned.
Which are the most energy efficient heaters?
Electric heaters are the most energy efficient – all the energy they use gets converted directly into heat.
Having said that though, different electric heaters will provide more heat per unit than others.
Oil-filled portable heaters have the longest lasting heat and are cheaper to run per hour than fan heaters, but they take some time to warm up unlike infrared heaters (also efficient) that heat up a room almost instantly.
Which are the safest portable heaters?
Infrared heaters are considered the most safe heaters because they heat the air and not the object in front of them.
You can leave these unattended and switched on overnight too as well as oil-filled heaters which are also considered very low risk.