Aluminium radiators are becoming increasingly popular due to their energy saving possibilities. Simply, aluminium is more efficient at conducting heat. Scientifically, the thermal conductivity of aluminium is 4-5 times greater than that of mild steel. An aluminium radiator is quicker at transferring the heat from the water into the air than a steel radiator is. This helps reduce energy because the radiator will need less heated water from the boiler and will be faster to respond to changes in the room heat requirements. It is thought that this kind of radiator could potentially save 5-10% off your heating bill every year.
Did you know that we even have a National Radiator Day on November 1st to celebrate the overlooked work of the radiator? There are over 190 million radiators fitted in our homes across the UK and the aim of the campaign is to respect and love our radiators and the tireless, warming work that they do. Started by the Manufacturers’ Association of Radiators and Convectors, I think they may need a bit more press attention as I’d never heard of it!
Aluminium is the most abundant metal in the world, but steel is much more common for use in radiators. Steel has always been slightly easier to extract and cheaper to use. Aluminium radiators are more common in Europe because of their heat efficiency qualities, even though they are more costly than their steel counterparts. Aluminium is also much more environmentally friendly due to its ability to be recycled, reshaped, and reused. The metal has a low melting point so it can be processed efficiently, and it doesn’t rust so can be salvaged from scrap metals.
Aluminium radiators will heat up your home in super-fast time, have a low water content and thermostats that are highly responsive. They are very light and easy to install, and the metal is non-corrosive so no problems with age related staining. The other great thing about these radiators is that they come in a huge variety of styles, colours and finishes and so can blend in with just about any surroundings and décor. They really do offer it all, function, versatility, efficiency, and style. They look great with all types of flooring from Marble to Laminate wood flooring.
The other options are cast iron, mild steel, or stainless steel. Cast iron was one of the first materials used in Victorian times and is popular for a period style home. They take a long time to heat up but also stay warm for a long time afterwards. Mild steel is most used in conventional panel radiators and is often used in designer styles due to its low cost and efficiency when offered in a painted finish. Stainless steel is high quality and doesn’t rust but as there are so many different grades of stainless steel, not all of them are suitable for use in a radiator. They look great, are easy to clean and retain heat superbly but they are rather costly. For the perfect all-rounder, Aluminium fits the bill.