Best heating options for the coming winter

2015-05-21 06:00
Opt for heaters with an adjustable thermostat or programmable timer as they allow you to save energy costs over time.

Opt for heaters with an adjustable thermostat or programmable timer as they allow you to save energy costs over time.

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WINTER is on our doorstep and many families will be dragging their trusted heaters out of their garages and storerooms to take a central place in their living areas for the next couple of months.

An oil heater is more expensive to run than a gas heater and only heats a small area, but is a safer option to use in the bedroom.

This is according to Francois Labuschagne, product and marketing manager for Junk Mail Classifieds, who says now is a good time to reassess whether your household needs a new heater or a different heating solution to ensure you’re cosy and comfortable during load shedding.

If your heater is in good working condition, but you’re in the market for a new heater, consider browsing an online classifieds site for bargains on second-hand heaters and selling your current heater to earn some cash.

Online classified sites are convenient because you can do your searches from the comfort of your couch, on the device of your choice and at your own leisure. Labuschagne says it’s also quick and easy to place an ad online. With a wide variety­ of heating solutions on the market, it can be difficult to choose one that will suit your family’s needs and budget.

There are various heating options on the market that homeowners should consider. Tips and benefits:

• When choosing between an electric or gas heater, keep in mind that a gas heater is generally pricier than an electric heater, but costs less to operate. Another benefit is that it continues working during load shedding.

• An oil heater is more expensive to run than a gas heater and only heats a small area, but is a safer option.

• If you prefer an electric heater, you have two options - a convection or radiant heater. A convection heater, such as an oil or ceramic heater, is energy efficient if you’re heating a large, closed area for a short period of time.

A radiant heater, such as a bar or flat panel wall-mounted heater, heats the area immediately around it and is therefore efficient enough to keep people in a smaller room warm for a few hours.

A fireplace, whether wood, gas or ethanol­, works even during load shedding.

• An electric fan heater is affordable and portable. It’s best suited for use in conjunction with other heaters.

• Look at the amount of power the heater requires and its capacity to effectively warm up your room. The information will be displayed on the packaging or will be in the manufacturerand#039;s instruction manual.

• Opt for heaters with an adjustable thermostat or programmable timer as they allow you to save energy costs over time.

• Underfloor heating is another heating option. It’s more cost-effective to install underfloor heating when you’re renovating your floors. Choose a programmable option so that it switches on and off at the desired times and heats the room to a specified temperature.

• Electric blankets make your bed cosy, but turn down the heat when you climb in to save energy.

If you’re browsing online classified sites for second-hand heaters, be a savvy online shopper and ensure that the electrical equipment you’re buying is safe and without faults.

Ask the seller if you can view the product and whether you can return it if it isn’t working once you’ve used it at home. When you inspect the heater, check that the cable and plug are in good condition with no protruding or loose wires.

Switch the heater on to confirm that it’s working. If possible buy a product that is still under warranty, has an independent testing company’s stamp of approval, such as the SABS, and comes in the original packaging­ with the instruction manual included.

Great bargains on second-hand items can be found online with thousands of items for sale at any given moment.

“Make sure that you have all the information you need to select the right heating option that will serve your family for many winters to come.” says Labuschagne. – Property24.

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