Everyone tries their best to keep homes warm in the winter when it gets cold out. One of the ways is by the use of infrared heating panels.
Infrared heating panels are an innovation in the world of home heating. Many people have primarily embraced this technology because it offers a variety of benefits that traditional heating sources do not have.
The most notable benefit is that infrared heating panels warm a room very safely and efficiently. However, infrared heating panels have some pretty significant drawbacks. For one, the cost of installation of infrared heating panels is higher than other forms of home heating.
This factor makes it cost-prohibitive for some people to use this new technology. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the benefits that infrared heating panels offer and their drawbacks.
What are Infrared Heating Panels?
Infrared heating panels are a new technology that has started to gain in popularity over the last decade. An infrared heating panel is a type of electric radiant heat that produces warmth by emitting invisible rays from an electrically powered emitter.
These panels are used to warm up the environment and provide comfort at home, in office buildings, or anywhere else.
How Do Infrared Heating Panels Work?
Infrared heating panels work using a process called infrared radiation. The heating panels emit rays that travel through space and into an object or living being in this process. Energy from the sun is also released in infrared light waves, just like those emitted by these electric devices.
Unlike conventional heaters, infrared heating panels do not use flames, hot air, or heated surfaces to produce heat.
Types of Infrared Heating Panels
There are three types of infrared heating panels. They include;
As the name suggests, these types of panels are lightweight. Therefore, they can be mounted on walls or ceilings without requiring much effort to install them there. Some examples are ceiling-mounted radiant panels and standalone tubes.
Ceiling-mounted ones are installed in a room’s ceiling, while tube type is intended to be placed on walls. These devices emit heat directly onto objects directed at using one or more reflectors that produce the heat waves against them.
Standalone tube-type infrared heating panels are more efficient than ceiling ones. The infrared tube emits radiant energy directly where it’s needed rather than use a reflective surface to direct rays into an area as wall-mounted types do.
This infrared heater is designed to be installed close to objects or people who need heating. This device comes with a reflector that sends heat waves directly toward its targets without passing through any insulation materials.
Near-infrared devices are also known as ‘point-source types because they emit radiant energy from one point. This heater is commonly characterized by the orange glow they emit when turned on.
Near-infrared are used in a variety of applications, including home and industrial heating. Commercially, near heaters are used in drying paints.
Far Infrared Heaters
The far infrared heater is the most popular of all three types. They are also known as ‘area’ heaters because they emit radiant energy from a larger area.
This makes the infrared heating panels more efficient than other electric heating devices that produce warmth by producing heated surfaces, hot air, or flames.
Far infrared heaters distribute their generated energy to a larger area. This feature makes them viable options for heating large spaces such as homes, warehouses, and other commercial buildings.
Benefits of Infrared Heating Panels
Saves on Energy Bills
There are many benefits of using infrared heating panels. The first one, these devices do not consume a lot of energy. With the infrared heating panel in use, users will have to pay less for heating bills every month because the infrared panels are efficient at what they do.
Require Little Maintenance
Using infrared heating panels needs little maintenance. These devices do not have any moving parts or components that might need replacing from time to time. Additionally, there are no filters to clean or replace.
Safe for Use in Homes and Offices
Infrared heating panels emit heat waves instead of flames, hot air, or heated surfaces. This makes the devices safe to use indoors without causing any fire accidents since most do not use gas.
Infrared heating panels are known for their efficiency. They produce warmth directly where it is needed without wasting energy in the process. These devices emit heat waves that warm people and objects directly without warming the air. The heat transfer is also made quicker this way.
The benefit of using infrared heating panels is that they do not produce dust particles. This is different from the conventional heaters, which release hot air that stirs up dust particles. This makes infrared heating panels suitable devices for homes with people suffering from respiratory or other health conditions.
Infrared heating panels last longer than other electric devices used for indoor comforts, such as fans. These devices are designed to last for long periods without requiring replacement. This makes them cost-effective options when it comes to heating rooms, offices, and other indoor spaces.
Easy to Install
The radiant floor heating system needs to be installed below the floor. However, infrared heating panels are easy to install. They come with standalone units that can be mounted on walls or ceilings without requiring special skills.
Installation is simple and not necessary to the technical know-how of building materials like radiant piping and concrete foundations.
No Noise Production
More gain from using high-quality infrared heating panels is that it produces little or no noise when turned on indoors. This means that users can use it in their bedrooms or other rooms without worrying about the disturbances caused by noise.
One of the significant advantages of using infrared heating panels is that they produce instant warmth when turned on indoors. Unlike some conventional heaters such as electric and gas fires, these devices do not take time to heat up before creating warmth.
Do Not Dry the Air
Infrared heating panels are known for their ability to produce warmth without drying the indoor air. Other machines release hot or warm dry air, which can cause respiratory problems in people with breathing difficulties. However, infrared heating panels do not.
Disadvantages of Infrared Heating Panels
Infrared heating panels have some disadvantages that prospective users need to be wary about before making the purchase decision. The disadvantages include;
High Initial Cost
Infrared heating panels are relatively expensive compared to other types of heaters. This means that users will have to pay more for purchasing the devices. Additionally, this gadget might require special wiring not needed by some other appliances.
High Electricity Bills
The next disadvantage of using infrared heating panels is that they use a lot of electricity when turned on. This means that users have to pay more in their monthly bills to consume more significant energy from the grid. The bills will also spike during cold seasons when these devices are used regularly.
No Heat Distribution Control
Infrared heating panels do not come with controls for adjusting or regulating the heat distribution in the room. This means that users have to change their bodies or move from one place to another to get warm when these devices are turned on indoors.
Poor Heat Distribution
Infrared heating panels do not produce good warmth for a room because they lack hot spots and localized warming capabilities. Such are standard features in some other types of machines, such as electric fires. In such cases, users cannot direct the heat produced towards specific areas of a room they want to be heated.
Not Ideal for Cold Areas
Among the disadvantages of using infrared heating panels is that they are not ideal for icy areas. The infrared heaters are inconvenient in areas where temperatures can drop below zero degrees Celsius during the winter months. These devices only produce warmth up to a specific temperature which might not be enough for users in cold areas.
Inefficient when Obstructions by Objects
Infrared heating panels become inefficient when there are obstructions by objects in the room. When the rays are blocked, users have to keep moving around the machines not to experience reduced warmth.
Gas-fired Infrared are Unsafe
When using a gas-fired infrared heating panel, users have to be wary that the devices are unsafe. The panels produce flammable gases when turned on, which can cause fires if leakage occurs in homes or buildings. However, these leakages are unlikely to happen when the infrared panels are kept under good maintenance.
Instantly Lose of Heat When Turned Off
Infrared heating panels instantly lose the warmth they produce when turned off. Infrared heating panels do not store heat like some other devices that keep the warmth before it dissipates.
Not Safe for Children and Pets
Another con of using infrared heating panels is that children and pets can easily bump into them or come in contact with their hot surfaces. This poses a significant risk since children and pets do not notice the heat produced by these devices.
Probability of Skin Problems May Arise
When used repeatedly for longer hours, Infrared heating panels can produce heat that is not very deep into the skin. With this, users can develop skin problems such as rashes and burns because of the heat produced.
Additionally, the infrared lights open up skin pores, and the heat produced by the devices penetrates skin tissues. One may require to hydrate more to protect their skin.
Are Infrared Heaters Safe?
Yes! Despite the disadvantages of using infrared heating panels, users need not worry about them being unsafe. They have been designed to meet international standards and can be used safely, provided that they are handled with care indoors. Their safety features include;
- They have special shatterproof exterior glass, which keeps temperatures from getting too hot on surface areas.
- Their surfaces are made of heat-resistant material.
- Their interiors contain unique materials which do not emit toxic fumes when heated.
Safety Measures to Take When Using Infrared Heater Panel
When using an infrared heating panel, users need to take safety measures such as;
- Keeping children and pets away from these machines when they are switched on or hot for security reasons.
- Protect the power cord; ensure that the cable is entirely out of reach and foot traffic.
- Ensure it is Certified for safety; ensure that the device is certified by checking its quality features.
- Ensure it has not been tampered with in any way when switching on or when using indoors to avoid injuries.
- Avoid tampering, modifying, and installing the machine onto other surfaces such as ceilings which manufacturers of these devices do not recommend. Injuries and accidents may also arise, causing harm.
- Use the product correctly by following what is recommended in the manual on using them safely indoors.
Do Infrared Heaters Cause Cancer?
No! A common myth is that infrared heating panels cause cancer. However, this has been debunked by experts. Studies show there’s no evidence that the infrared heaters emit harmful ultraviolet rays emitted by the sun.
Infrared heating panels have several disadvantages that prospective users need to consider before making the purchase decision. Some of these include the high initial cost in terms of purchasing and installation costs, higher electricity bills when used indoors regularly.
However, these points do not suggest that these heating panels are not suitable to be used indoors. By using infrared heaters, people can warm up their homes and rooms during the winter months effectively. Nevertheless, before going for a purchase, one should carefully go through each of the advantages and disadvantages discussed.
One should also consider discussing their purchase with an expert. The professional will advise on how to buy or use these heating panels. The advice will curb experiences of any problems when using them inside homes. Additionally, one needs to understand which type would suit their style best fully.