What is infrared heating and how does it work?

Posted on 2nd Apr 2016 by Ged Ennis

Looking for a way to increase your energy efficiency and bring down the cost of your bills? Infrared heating is yet another one of our low carbon, cost-friendly solutions – helping you to keep warm for less. With infrared heating, you can reduce the cost of your heating bill, reap the benefits of a more efficient and better performing solution, while knowing you’re doing your bit for the environment.

What is it?

Infrared heating is perhaps the most basic form of heating – overlooked because of our dependence on, and habit of, using fossil fuels to power central heating. You can compare infrared heating to the feeling of warmth on your face from the sun. In this scenario, heat transfers directly onto an object – you – and warms it up. This also explains why you feel warm when standing under the sun on a cold and wintery day. The infrared waves from the sun release heat energy on to your body and as a result, make you feel warm.

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How does it work?

Unlike central heating, infrared heating heats objects. It does this through electromagnetic waves, which cause molecules to oscillate and release energy to heat up an environment. The heat then travels through and penetrates the air before radiating back on to an object, releasing heat energy.

Water, in particular, absorbs infrared heat well. As our skin is 80% water, infrared is the ideal solution for keeping our bodies snuggly and warm when it’s cold outside. Our infrared solutions also use far infrared heat – a type of heat that is optimally absorbed by the skins’ surface.

It’s not just human bodies that can absorb and lock in infrared heat though – all other objects can too. What’s more, when an object in your environment is warmed up by infrared heat, you’ll feel the benefits too – as you will warm up from them.

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How does this differ from traditional central heating?

As infrared heaters don’t heat the air – like central heating does – heat is held in an environment for longer. The heat doesn’t escape with the moving air, and as an object you retain heat better than air, meaning a more efficient solution for you at home or in your commercial premises. In fact, with more traditional heating solutions, 54% of electrical energy is lost before it even reaches end users!

With traditional central heating, you’ll often be warmer than another object in a room and radiate out to that object. As a result, you’ll begin to feel cold. For example, if you’re sitting next to an outside wall, which is colder than you, you’ll radiate heat out to that outside wall to warm it up.

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Find out more

Keep your eye out for more information on infrared heating in our upcoming blog posts. We’ll be telling you all about Herschel, our infrared supplier, and sharing lots more of the benefits. If you can’t wait until then, give us a call on to 08456 808 963 to find out more about the technology.

Do you use infrared heating in your home or commercial premises? If so, what are your thoughts on the technology? Tell us in the comments below, or tweet us @LowCarbonEnCo

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