I guess by now most people know that infrared heat is radiated heat via an invisible light spectrum, it heats very directly and so on. It is the same as the heat we get from the sun without the UVA (aging) and UVB (burning)!
We all know how essential heating is when you live in a climate with cold winters. You may be able to live without your TV, you may be able to do without your fridge, but living without your heating could be life threatening. I don’t think anyone has ever died because they didn’t have a television!
Infrared heating does not heat the air and make it stuffy, so what are the different types of fuel in use?
If you have a cold spot in your property then propane fueled infrared heat may be the answer because
- They are extremely cost effective
- A propane heater can be adjusted without affecting the whole property
- It will give instant warmth, no waiting to warm up
- Protective metal covering for safety
- Even fabrics are safe
- No dry heat
- Keep out of reach of children and pets
Are being used more and more in place of traditional heating and are ideal for use in commercial and industrial buildings.
They are popular due to;
- Needing no electricity
- Having an adjustable thermostat
- Extremely cost effective
- Using gas to its fullest level
- No high maintenance
- It is easy to install
- Eco friendliness
- No smoke emission
- No carbon monoxide, making them safe
- Even more ecofriendly by use of natural gas
- Extreme safety compared with other heating methods
N.B There is two types of gas infrared heaters; luminous high intensity and radiant tube heaters.
Electric or IR radiant heaters
Electric infrared heaters come in all shapes and sizes and can be used anywhere where there is a plug socket.
They are really useful for;
- Heating the home
- As they make no noise
They can also be adapted to
- Any size
- Many different design styles
Classifications of infrared heaters
IR heaters are usually classified by the wavelength they emit.
What is NIR infrared?
NIR is short wave radiation
What is Far Infrared?
Far infrared has a wave frequency measuring between 5.5 – 15 microns, considered to be most harmonious with the human body and the most productive heat for therapeutic purposes. Far infrared has less energy than NIR shortwave infrared.
There are some differences in the scientific answers to what the wave frequencies are for near, mid and far infrared frequencies, but as research progresses better more precise information is forthcoming.
Ceramic and Quartz
Quartz technology has been around for 20 years now and becoming more attractive as a supplement to heating the home in cold winter months. Most of us have heard of the use of this glossy mineral in the manufacture of watches and other electronic devices. The quartz infared heating capabilities far out perform others in the same price class, which is great!
- Inside incorporates a quartz bulb made up of tungsten wires allowing the electric current to flow.
- The quartz bulbs use a small amount of halogen gas and they do emit radiations of around 5 microns.
- Quartz infrared heaters are easy to install and very safe.
- Quartz helps increase negative ions and reduce positive ions
- They are excellent for rapid heat response.
N.B. Negative ions are the ones you get from nature, the open space of parks and woods and coastlines, positive ions are the ones you get from built up areas, from electro-magnetic energy. Hence why they are feel good ions and why you feel better after having spent time in natural surroundings.
- Ceramic infrared heating is used in industry where long wave infrared radiation is required. Ceramic plates can emit near and far radiation and are more likely to be used in situations where infrared radiation is needed but not too much heat.
- They are more expensive and most likely to be used in saunas, rather than heating, although they are also used for outdoor heating
- They can be very hot to touch so do need to be treated with caution, and still are very popular as a source of instant heat
Infra-red may become the most cost effective method of heating homes in the future.
The ultimate system is probably infra-red heating panels, so have a look at the article dedicated to this type of heating to get an idea if it is for you.