Myth Buster – Episode 1
Debunking the biggest Far Infrared Myths
The internet is an incredible learning resource. It makes thousands of articles sharing one common topic easily accessible by the click of a button. Information from professionals, scholars, and enthusiasts can all be shared faster and wider than ever before. All information is accessible in seconds because of this. However, this same reason which makes the internet the most superior learning tool of this generation, also makes it the most untrustworthy at the same time. Whilst we would like to think that all information we come across online is backed up by research of its own or screened beforehand, this is not the case at all. Due to this, it is incredibly easy for inaccurate information to be spread across a larger platform than it usually could be.
One of the biggest areas to fall victim to this is that of new technology. Misinformation about new technologies such as Far Infrared (FIR) are spreading despite the many articles out there discussing the real benefits and issues of the product.
Through a series of topical blogs, we will address the largest myths regarding Far Infrared technology and hopefully finally quash these misconceptions for good. By using a question-and-answer method, these blogs will aim to cover the most asked questions created from misinformation and will give evidential or scientific answers to satiate these queries.
Episode 1: “But electric heating is expensive?”
A common misconception of FIR is that it is expensive to run. This may have been truer years ago since electric power was a harder to create commodity than gas or oil. But with more eco-friendly methods of creating electricity being employed such as wind-turbines, hydro power, solar-power etc, electricity is quickly becoming the go-to power source due to its renewability.
It is because of its renewability that the cost for electricity is coming down. Gas and oil are steadily creeping up in price due to the labour it takes to harvest these power-sources. Also, this is due to the fact that they are a finite fuel. With the UK now leaving the EU, gas prices will only rise at a more accelerated pace. Most of the UK’s imported gas comes by pipeline from Norway, the Netherlands and Belgium. In 2019, Norway supplied over 17,400 metric tonnes of the UK’s crude oil. This means that with the UK leaving the EU, importation taxes will rise on both fuels.
Convection heating has higher fuel consumption as it works hard to heat a room. Because running times then become longer, this causes an overall incline in running costs. Since convection heating aims to raise air temperature only, the physics of the situation work against it. Commonly known is the fact that hot air rises; because of this, when radiators heat the air, the warm air rises to the top of the room first. This means that us humans on the ground are the last to feel the benefit of the warmth. Because of this we run our radiators for longer.
If the goal of the heaters is to heat objects rather than air, we are much more likely to feel the benefit first. That is the objective of a Far Infrared heater. Rather than focusing its attention on air temperature, the rays penetrate and bounce back off objects within a room such as; the walls, floor, sofas, people etc. Because of this, we feel an almost instantaneous benefit from the heater once it gets to temperature; (which usually only takes about 5-10 minutes). Once the fabric of the room is warmed, it will begin emitting the heat back into the room. Once the heater has turned off, it will continue to emit. The heaters don’t need to run for long as we benefit first from them. Using a controller also helps to keep running costs to a minimum.
Usually, a typical storage convection heater requires about 2kw of electric to run. Based on a 20msq room, we would usually look to replace this with a 600w Far Infrared heater. This may sound too good to believe, but it is all based on the way in which each heater works. Working harder than Far Infrared, convection heaters require a higher power supply. Far Infrared heaters can afford to be a lower wattage, as a result. This lowers overall running costs again.
Saving a customer anywhere from an estimated 21% – 67%, Far Infrared is a superior system to gas, oil, LPG and storage radiators. In addition to this, due to the UK signing the 2015 Paris Agreement pledging to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, in the next 30 years, fossil fuels will become less desirable, and their prices will rise. Cheaply and easily sourced, electricity is the future. Compared to fossil fuels, the cost of electric power is already in decline. By choosing Far Infrared heating over convection, customers are not only choosing efficiency, but they are also preparing for a brighter, greener future.
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