Raw Metal Radiators : How To Know Guide!
With the ability to make a stylish statement while providing efficient and customized heating, raw metal radiators are a popular choice to warm up homes and businesses. This detailed guide will explore the advantages of raw metal radiators along with the various types and things to consider when choosing the ideal model to meet your needs.
The Benefits of Raw Metal Radiators
Raw metal radiators are prized for their many benefits:
- Excellent heat conductivity – Metals like aluminium and steel heat up rapidly and distribute warmth evenly across the surface. This allows a metal radiator to warm a room quickly once the heating system is activated.
- Retains heat well – The raw metal material retains the heat it generates, radiating it steadily into the room over an extended time. This helps maintain a comfortable temperature.
- Rapid warm up time – A metal radiator can heat up in as little as 10-15 minutes after the heating system turns on. This provides heat when you need it.
- Compact sizes available – Models like vertical or slimline radiators have narrow profiles that don’t consume much floor space. Great for apartments or small rooms.
- Wall-mounted options – Installing a radiator on the wall clears up floor area in a room. Models as tall as 79 inches can be wall mounted.
- Hydronic and electric choices – Raw metal radiators can run on hydronic systems using hot water or be fitted with electrical heating elements. This versatility suits many homes’ existing setups.
- Highly customizable – With extensive choices of sizes, heat outputs, configurations, and finishes, metal radiators can be tailored to match any space and heating needs.
- Luxurious designs – Raw metal radiators come in attractive modern designs as well as classic decorative styles. Brushed nickel, blackened steel, polished chrome and other finishes look upscale.
- Long lifespan – Durable raw metals like steel, aluminum, and iron can last for decades with proper maintenance. This makes your investment pay off over many years of use.
“We installed several sleek vertical steel radiators for zone heating in our open concept home. They warm each area quickly while complementing the modern decors.” – James and Melanie P.
Types of Raw Metal Radiators
Raw metal radiators come in different styles to match your room’s look and functionality. The most common types include:
Vertical raw metal radiators are tall and slim, providing an inconspicuous heating solution.
- Slimline – Very narrow 3.5 inch depth models are great for tight spaces. Available in heights up to 79 inches.
- Single or double panel – Choose single or double panel models depending on heat output needs. Double panel radiators provide greater warming capacity.
- Electric or hydronic – Vertical raw metal radiators can run on either heating system. Electric models use long lasting oil filled heating elements.
- Modern appeal – The streamlined silhouette and minimalist look of vertical radiators suits contemporary decors. Stainless steel and matte metals create an urban chic aesthetic.
- Effective for zone heating – Their concentrated heat output makes vertical radiators ideal for heating a single zone or area without overheating other spaces.
Column style raw metal radiators have a classic decorative look.
- 2 to 5 columns – Column radiators contain multiple vertical columns linked horizontally by tubing. Models with more columns provide increased heat output.
- Traditional aesthetic – Resembling old-fashioned heating units, column radiators work well in vintage and period style homes. Their embellished details create ornamental appeal.
- Freestanding or wall mounted – Most column radiators come as freestanding units but wall mounts are also available to conserve floor space.
- Hydronic heating – Column models require a hydronic heating system. Their larger heating core optimizes hot water output.
- Range of heights – Column radiators come in standard heights around 24-32 inches but taller “highline” models reach up to 50 inches for greater heat radiation.
For a bold decorative statement, designer raw metal radiators offer unique modern shapes.
- Sculptural shapes – These radiators ditch the typical boxy look for curvy, artistic forms like waves, arcs, coils, and angled bends. Their fluid shapes become focal points.
- Varied materials – In addition to metals like steel and aluminium, some designer radiators utilize materials like glass, stone, and wood paired with raw metal accents. This adds visual interest.
- Custom configurations – Bespoke designer radiators can be fully customized from dimensions to patterns to finishes. This allows for one-of-a-kind pieces.
- Electric or hydronic – Heating can be integrated into the raw metal body itself for electric models. Or the radiator can connect to hot water tubes for hydronic systems.
- Luxury status symbols – Avant garde designer radiators often come with premium price tags, serving as symbols of wealth and high-end taste for some buyers. Their artistry provides an extravagant heating solution.
As the name suggests, towel radiators allow you to both heat and dry towels.
- Integrated rails – Horizontal rails are built into the design to hold towels for warming and drying after bathing. This helps keep bathrooms cosy.
- Moisture resistant – Towel radiators are made from moisture resistant raw metals like aluminium or stainless steel to withstand high humidity.
- Electric or hydronic – Both electric and hydronic heating choices are available to align with your existing system.
- Wall mounted – Towel radiators mount to the wall at around 48-60 inches high to be accessible. This position above the floor facilitates drying.
- Compact functionality – Even narrow models provide sufficient towel drying capacity while not consuming much space in smaller bathrooms.
How to Choose the Right Raw Metal Radiator
With many types and customization options for raw metal radiators, it’s important to consider a few factors to determine the best model for your needs:
- Consider the room size – Larger rooms need more heating capacity. Measure square footage and ceiling height to determine the required BTU output.
- Account for windows and exposures – Rooms with more windows, higher ceilings, and cool exposures like north facing require greater heat output radiators to warm effectively.
- Plan for heating zones – In open concept spaces, strategically place radiators for zone heating only where needed instead of overheating the whole area.
- Select electric or hydronic – Choose electric or hot water radiators to match your existing or planned heating system. Retrofitting to a different system costs more.
- Calculate heat loss – To size your radiator, factor in heat loss from the room based on building insulation, air leaks, and other waste. A heat loss calculator can help estimate.
- Read reviews – Check reviews and radiator brand ratings to gauge real-world quality, output, and longevity of the models you’re considering.
- Choose durable materials – Opting for commercial grade raw metals like steel or aluminium rather than lower grade thin sheets prone to defects.
- Consider custom options – If a standard size doesn’t fit your space or design vision, explore fully bespoke custom radiators tailored to your needs.
- Compare warranties – Better radiator brands offer warranties of 10 years or longer that protect you from defects or premature element failures.
Pros and Cons of Raw Metal Radiators
Raw metal radiators provide attractive and highly functional heating, but also come with a few drawbacks:
- Excellent heat distribution across surfaces
- Rapid warm up time
- Custom sizes and finishes available
- Sleek modern or classic traditional styles
- Durable and long lasting
- Efficient conductive heating
- Higher upfront cost than some other types
- Lose heat quickly once turned off
- Noticeable dust and marks on finishes
- Can be cool to the touch
- Hydronic models need annual servicing
“I love the modern linear look of the matte steel vertical radiators in my apartment. They heat the rooms evenly and quickly.”- Emma R., New York
“The antique cast iron radiators in our Victorian home look gorgeous but don’t retain heat well once the boiler shuts down.” – Thomas and Susan P.
Costs of Raw Metal Radiators
Raw metal radiator prices vary based on:
- Dimensions and heat output
- Materials and build quality
- Design style
- Brand reputation
- Electric vs hydronic
- New custom work vs stock models
Here are typical price ranges:
- Basic electric stock models: £100 – £250
- Mid-range electric radiators: £250 – £600
- High-end electric with designer styles: £600 – £1,500
- Basic hydronic radiators: £250 – £500
- High-end hydronic with ornate details: £500 – £2,500+
- Fully custom radiators: £500 – £3,000+
Professional installation costs approximately:
- Electric radiator install: £150 – £300
- Hydronic radiator install: £200 – £500
Total costs for a high quality electric vertical radiator with install could be £700 – £1,000. A premium cast iron column hydronic radiator could total £1,200 – £2,500 installed.
What maintenance do raw metal radiators need?
- Wipe down with a soft dry cloth to remove dust regularly.
- Use touch up paint as needed for chips and scratches.
- Flush hydronic radiators and have a plumber service them annually.
How long should a good quality raw metal radiator last?
- With proper care, steel and iron models can potentially last 30+ years.
- Electric heating elements may need replacement every 10-15 years.
- Well maintained antique cast iron radiators can last a lifetime.
Can you paint or change the colour of a raw metal radiator?
Yes, any raw unfinished surface can be painted. Use a high heat resistant spray paint made specifically for radiators and appliances.
Are raw metal radiators energy efficient?
- Their rapid warm up and excellent heat conductivity makes them very efficient.
- Look for high BTU output models suited for your space for the best energy efficiency.
Can raw metal radiators be cleaned inside?
- Vacuum or use compressed air on inside of hydronic radiators to clear dust.
- Wipe electric radiator insides with a microfiber cloth and mild cleaner.
- Avoid abrasive brushes or materials that can damage interiors.
With smart planning taking into account room size, exposures, heating needs, and aesthetics, raw metal radiators are sure to be long-lasting, high performing, and stylish upgrades to your home heating. Their customization potential, quality materials, and versatility for either electric or hydronic systems make investing in a raw metal radiator worthwhile. Add ambiance and comfort to your rooms with a raw metal radiator tailored to your lifestyle and decors.
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It is crucial to seek guidance from the manufacturer and a certified professional for the installation process to ensure safety and compliance with all technical specifications and requirements. Proper installation is key to the optimal performance and longevity of the product.
Therefore, it is highly recommended to consult with experts and not attempt to install the product yourself unless you are qualified to do so.