What are oil filled radiator heaters?
Oil filled radiators are a specific kind of electrical space heater. They are used in much the same way that other heating appliances are used. That is, to provide warmth to keep the chills away when we are feeling cold. As with all other electrical heating units they must be connected to a power socket in the wall. Simply by taking the power cord that is on the oil filled radiator heater and connecting it to the power outlet allows the unit to get the electrical current required for its operation.
How do oil filled radiator heaters work?
They are actually very interesting appliances once we start to look into their operational capabilities and how they work. Firstly, oil filled heaters are not oil powered heaters. Of course, oil is an integral part of their operation however the oil is not used as a fuel. This is one of the confusing aspects about oil filled radiator heaters. Perhaps they should really be given the full name of electrical oil filled radiator heaters instead. Once the device has been connected to a supply of electricity the next thing to do is to turn the radiator on. A feature of these household heaters is that they take a little while before they start warming the area in which they are to be used. This means that for them to be used most effectively it is worth considering using the timer capabilities that most of these oil filled radiator heaters now come with. This means that warming a space or heating a room so that it is at a reasonable temperature for when it is needed becomes possible. This is surely much better than having to wait, even though the newer machines are warming up more and more quickly these days.
Once an oil filled heater begins to draw power from the electricity outlet this is converted into thermal energy and the heating coils contained within the radiator begin to heat up. Surrounding these metal heating coils is a special kind of oil that is sealed within the appliance. As the temperature of the heating coils increases, the surrounding oil’s temperature also begins to rise. So as mentioned above, the oil is not used as a source of fuel or power for the heater. Instead it is used as the blood of the radiator which transfers heat from the metal heating elements on the inside to the outer parts of the radiator which in turn raises the temperature of the surrounding air. This makes oil filled radiator heaters very efficient as the internal oil is able to transfer a high percentage of its energy to the outer parts of the heater. The type of oil that is used retains heat well and releases it over time so even after the unit is switched off it will continue to supply a warming effect to the surrounding area. While it is true that it takes these machines a bit of time to warm up, about ten minutes in some cases but can also be quicker with newer models or when used on full power setting, we get the benefit at the other end. In that even after turning the heater off we will be kept warm. This is great when we go to bed for example. Rather than risking leaving the appliance on unattended, even though they have a good safety track record, we can turn it off as we go to bed and it will continue to distribute heat as we begin to fall asleep.
Oil filled radiator heater alternatives
There are many other types of space heaters that can be considered to help you stay warm over the winter period. Oil filled radiator heaters are simply one of the many options. Other electrical space heaters include convection heaters which blow warm air around the room; halogen style heaters have exposed heating elements that provide almost instantaneous heat when required. On top of these options are things like central heating and gas powered heaters although these are out with the scope of this article. The thing about portable space heaters like oil filled radiators is that they can be used in conjunction with central heating to help lower central heating costs or simply to provide additional spot heating.