Electric heating is making something of a comeback. With natural gas prices soaring and uncertainty in its future availability, electric heating systems are the preferred choice of those who wish for an efficient heating system and peace of mind with a more environmentally friendly alternative to gas central heating. So what are the benefits of an electric heating system?
What is Electric Heating?
Essentially, an electric heating system converts electricity into heat. Like an electric kettle, the electric boiler heats water via an element then pumps the water throughout the building’s radiator network. Domestic systems do require a boiler but, because of their smaller size compared to gas boilers, they can be situated more discreetly and in smaller spaces.
Efficiency of Electric Heating
Compared to gas central heating, electrical is far more efficient and reliable:
- Easy to install as there is no flue required.
- Electric boilers can run at 100% efficiency.
- Quick response times – hot water from taps within 5-10 seconds, radiators heat to maximum temperature within 3 minutes.
- Simple, user friendly controls enable quick and easy temperature control, room by room.
- Few moving parts means no annual service, quick and easy repair and maintenance.
- Longer life span than a gas boiler – 10 years for gas, 15 years for electricity.
- Durable components.
- Good safety record – no need for a flue or ventilation.
- Quieter operation than gas.
- Mains pressure hot water – power showers don’t require a booster pump.
- No storage or header tanks required.
- Provides constant room temperatures.
Helping Your Pocket
Because of the simplicity of electric boilers, electric heating users rest safe in the knowledge that there is little or no energy waste. In addition, electricity usage for heating can be monitored accurately, which helps future domestic budgets.
Users of electric central heating systems can have lower running costs than gas users as they have the option of peak avoidance tariffs to help keep running costs down, something gas users cannot use for their central heating. In the UK, two popular tariffs are Economy 7 and Economy 10. Economy 7 splits electricity use for heating into day and night (7 hours on an off-peak rate during the night). Economy 10 offers 10 hours of off-peak electricity. The beauty of these tariffs means that you have the choice of running heating and other appliances during off-peak times.
Helping the Environment
Both gas and electricity prices have suffered in recent years. Most electricity is created from gas-fired power stations, so if gas prices rise so do electricity prices. However, the move towards sustainable electricity generation is well underway. Wind farms account for increasing amounts of generated electricity year on year, and governments around the world continue to collaborate to make electricity more abundant and affordable. This type of electricity generation is not only good for the environment; it is good for end users reliant on electricity for heating. Another environmental benefit of electric heating is that there are no emissions. This not only has a positive effect on the wider environment, but also within buildings as it maintains cleaner, healthier living and working spaces.