Storage Heaters

12 Oct 2011
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United Kingdom
hey guys, any help much appreciated.

Me and my better half have just moved into our first flat together and in the front room and hallway we've got these storage heaters. Neither of us have ever used these before and the managing agents are quite crap when it comes to helping us.

So basically I have a few questions but one main one really; how the hell does it work!?! lol.

It recommends having the input set to '4' on a 1-6 twist knob then to adjust accordingly, then the output on a second 1-6 scale knob (1- no boost 3- evening boost 6- afternoon boost). So as i get the feeling they haven't been used in quite some time;

what setting should we have it on to get it going?
how long will it take to actually warm up?
do i change the settings for during the day so it doesnt use electricity and become expensive?

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ok cool, thanks very much. After reading that link i'm guessing that in theory what would be best for now is, tonight have input set for 6 and output on 1, then in the morning change it to input 1 and either a low output or nothing at all and adjust the output accordingly so it lets out more heat in the evening, and keep repeating this.
I found the best way with storage heaters, was never have them on full, UNLESS you are certain we are in for cold weather.
Its shameful to have to open windows & waste heat. Do you have additional heating you can put on if required? an electric convector or electric oil filled rad would be my choice. I have assumed you do not have gas.
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never have the input or output on full?

no other additional heating, and no don't have gas.
I'll try to help by explaining how storage heaters work...

Basically the heater is a box full of bricks, and there's a heating element around the bricks (a bit like a bog-standard electric cooker ring). The element heats the bricks up at night on cheap electricity and, because bricks stay hot for ages, it's the hot bricks which give off the heat throughout the day.

The higher you set the input...the hotter the bricks get at night, and therefore the more heat they can give off during the day. However once they've spent all day giving off their heat, there's hardly any left for the evenings.

The output is basically a vent, so it lets the heat out quicker when open.

What you'll find in normal use is that your house is stewing overnight and in the morning, and cool/cold by night time. Having lived in various houses with storage heaters over the years I found the best way to operate them is to set the input low to mid level (which takes the cold air off the room), but to also have an additional heat source on in the evenings. Oil filled radiators are one of the cheapest electric ones to run.

All the electricity on your flat should be on a cheap rate overnight, like maybe 11pm to 7am or something. There'll be a time clock around the electricity meter somewhere, and you should be able to hear when it clicks on/off if you listen for it.

If you've bought the flat consider changing the radiators to something else, like wall mounted oil filled rads with thermostats and timers or something.

Edit...the input knob only does something when the heater is heating up, ie overnight. Changing it's setting makes no difference until the following night.

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