Electricity is the most expensive and carbon-intensive heating fuel available in the UK. The preferred option for anyone with storage heaters is to replace them with a boiler or heat pump, with radiators or underfloor heating. This can cost a considerable amount to install but can save money in the long term.
You could switch to a conventional fuel like gas. A new gas boiler will typically cost around £2,300 plus the cost of the radiators, but you could cut the cost of your heating bill by nearly half and save about £340 a year.
If you don’t have a gas supply to your house but it is available nearby, you may be eligible for a grant towards the cost of having a connection put in. Otherwise you could install an oil boiler and fuel tank.
You can also switch to a renewable heating system like a heat pump or wood boiler. This will cost more than a conventional system but you can get payments from the government over the lifetime of the system.
If you decide to keep your electric heating then it could be beneficial for you to upgrade your heaters.
How can I upgrade my electric storage heaters?
If you cannot install a whole new central heating system, then you could install new heaters with better heat retention and improved controls. New storage heaters can be quite pricey, but can be cheaper to install than central heating, and you don’t have to replace them all at once.
Fan-assisted storage heaters
Modern slim line fan-assisted storage heaters are better insulated, so are more able to store heat – that can be used when you need it, rather than leaking heat constantly throughout the day. Their heat output is more controllable, so you can heat a room up faster or keep it cool if you’re not using it. They vary considerably in price, but expect to pay around £700 each.
Automatic charge controls
Modern controls on storage heaters allow you to set a thermostat so that the heater switches off when it has reached a certain temperature. A heater with automatic charge controls will automatically control how much heat it stores overnight, depending on the heater’s internal thermostat as well as changes in daily weather patterns.
A system with Celect-type controller will monitor heaters in all rooms and automatically control how much heat is stored or released in different rooms.
High heat rentention storage heaters
These are storage heaters that are able to retain more heat than other models. This means that less heat is wasted throughout the day and more heat should be available when it is needed, for example in the evening.
These storage heaters will come with Celect-type controls.
Is replacing storage heaters a DIY job?
Replacing storage heaters is never a DIY activity as the heaters need to be wired into their own electricity circuit in your home.