Infrared Heaters: The Oldest 21st Century Heating System

Infrared Heaters: The Oldest 21st Century Heating System

Infrared heaters are relative newcomers to the heating industry, an industry dominated by firmly established heating methods. For some time now, the UK has been preoccupied with traditional plumbed heating systems. Since the 19th century, cast iron central heating radiators, and their subsequent derivatives, have ruled over our households. Because of this, infrared heating, and electric heating in general, has become synonymous with the modern world. But infrared isn’t a new phenomenon. In fact, it’s been with us for far longer than you might think…

Ancient Infrared

Ancient humans and infrared heat

To a certain extent infrared heaters have been around since the very beginning. The earth, back when it was a primordial breeding ground, was heated by infrared. Our earliest ancestors, when they discovered fire, were heated by infrared. In fact, all life on Earth was, and is, heated by infrared – generated by the oldest infrared heater in the solar system, the sun.

Infrared is a form of energy that travels in waves. Emitted and absorbed by everything, this energy radiates outwards, interacting with anything in its path. When infrared energy comes into contact with our skin, it vibrates our molecules and causes us to feel warm. Everything emits infrared energy. A mug of hot tea, our own bodies, and even objects we’d consider to be cold – like stones, ice cubes, and inanimate objects – emit infrared heat. It’s a harmless, natural, and universal phenomenon. You’re being exposed to it right now in fact, just as you have been since birth, in exactly the same way as our ancient ancestors were millions of years ago.

In this sense, infrared is the oldest 21st century heating system in existence: simultaneously primeval and cutting edge. The only difference between modern infrared heaters and pre-civilised bonfires are the finer details…

Electric Patio Heaters

For outdoor heating, if you don’t fancy waiting for the sun or starting a fire, a patio heater is your first port of call. In essence, infrared patio heaters are the modern equivalent of prehistoric bonfires. Using the same infrared heat, a patio heater provides soothing warmth with the push of a button. Unlike bonfires however, patio heaters for the modern age come with a whole host of features that make them controllable, economical, and energy-efficient.

The Ecostrad Thermaglo

Ecostrad Thermaglo Infrared Patio Heater - Black 2kW with Remote

The Ecostrad Thermaglo is one of our most sophisticated patio heaters. Versatile, stylish, and quick to heat up, this outdoor electric heater combines smooth aesthetics with comfortable heating. Housed in a sleek black casing, with teardrop panes at either end, the Thermaglo is definitely one of the best-looking infrared heaters on the market.

The Thermaglo uses one of the latest infrared heating innovations to keep you warm and comfortable. Whereas traditional patio heaters use tungsten filaments, which glow an intense red when in use, the Thermaglo uses an ultra-low glare carbon filament. Producing a much softer light, this durable carbon filament provides around 10,000 hours worth of use – plenty more than our ancestors got from their wood fires.

Complete with an integrated timer function, four heater settings, and an included remote control, the Ecostrad Thermaglo combines the comfort of open-flame heating with the convenience and controllability of 21st century design.

View our range of infrared patio heaters

Infrared Heating Panels

Infrared panels are the pinnacle of infrared technology, providing subtle and efficient heat that can be used throughout the home. For energy-efficient heating that can replace traditional systems, heating panels are ideal.

The Herschel Select Infrared Heating Panel

Herschel Select Infrared Heating Panel - White 540w (900 x 600mm)

The Herschel Select range sets an exceptionally high standard for indoor infrared heating. Subtle, stylish, and energy-efficient, the Select heating panel is leagues away from the primitive heating methods used by our ancient ancestors, despite using the same infrared energy.

Infrared panels are no thicker than a picture frame, can be DIY installed in minutes, and provide comfortable infrared heat that’s perfect for the use in every room of the home. Using longwave radiation, the gentlest kind of infrared, heating panels create a soothing, natural sensation of warmth – rather than the dry stuffiness that can occur from conventional heating systems, or the intense heat from outdoor infrared heaters.

Suitable for wall or ceiling installation, the Select is a versatile appliance – blending into the background of any design scheme. Infrared panels don’t create any visible light or emissions either, making them a completely covert heating system.

Controllable through receivers, thermostats, and controllers, Herschel Select Infrared Heating Panels can be zoned together, for compartmentalised heating, or used independently. Whichever you prefer, we’d always recommend pairing your heating panels with a thermostatic controller. This provides greater control over your heating and ultimately saves you money on your heating bills.

View our range of infrared heating panels

Whether you’re using an outdoor patio heater, a slimline heating panel, or an open flame, you’re being exposed to infrared heat. While there’s nothing specifically “new” about this phenomenon, heating manufacturers will always find inventive ways of utilising infrared. Whichever infrared product you prefer, you can find comfort in the knowledge that you’re using an age-old heat source that’s been around for millions of years…