We're rather excited by the range of radiators we offer at UK Bathrooms. Supplying everything from traditional column radiators to funky, contemporary radiators, you'll be sure to find the perfect addition to your bathroom.
If you only have a small space to keep warm then you might find that a heated towel rail can do the job for you. They can be plumbed into your heating system, or simply electric powered, which can be handy when you're not changing the whole system.
Arranged to give space to air and dry towels, this range of radiators is supplied in an array of innovative contemporary forms, giving a viable option for any designer wishing to incorporate this useful and stylish feature.
By plugging into the mains power source, it is possible to isolate a single radiator unit from the central heating to warm the bathroom or dry towels without having to heat the whole house, leading to a more efficient and cost effective use of energy
Drawing inspiration from the classic designs of vintage interiors, our selection of traditional towel rails are the ideal option for anyone looking for a towel drying option in keeping with their surroundings.
Showcasing the ability of top manufacturers to design and invent radiators in a spectrum of innovative forms, our collection of contemporary radiators features many units that not only warm the surroundings, but are designer features by themselves.
Realised in the classic styles associated with Victorian and Edwardian interiors, the traditional series of radiators is the perfect addition to the interior wishing to authentically recreate sumptuous spaces of yesteryear.
Easily applied to a range of radiators, these dual fuel immersion heaters offer an inexpensive and efficient method of activating a single radiator, bypassing the central heating for a wiser use of energy and lower running costs.
We have a selection of some of the most exciting designs on the market from brands like Bisque and Aestus who for years have been creating radiators that look as much like pieces of art as they do part of the heating system.
Even our more traditional radiators breath new life into the bathroom, with colour, style and function combined in eye catching designs such as the Aestus Versailles. This cast iron beauty comes in a range of sizes from just over a foot long right up to a massive four feet long for a big space. You can paint them yourselves too to match your scheme.
It's not all flash and special in the world of the modern radiator though. If you just want a plain wall panel radiator then we have just the thing for you.
At UK Bathrooms we won't be beaten on price, and we'll get your new radiator to you within a few days of placing your order.
Our radiator buyers guide
The idea of central heating is not new: the Romans developed what was known as a hypocaust system which conducted heat from furnaces through under-floor spaces as well as pipes on the walls. However, it wasn't until about 1857 that a Russian businessman, Franz San Galli, invented what we now know as the radiator.
Radiator: Style, shape and colour
Fortunately, radiator design and manufacture have come a long way since the invention of those huge, cast iron tubular models! Indeed, 21st century radiators come in all sorts of styles, forms and colours. More importantly, there are a variety of different types of radiator according to their design and purpose. What it’s important to remember is, the essential function of a radiator is to heat your home as sustainably, efficiently and economically as possible.
Before anything else can be done, your first priority is to calculate the heat output for each room. In the UK this is measured in British Thermal Units per hour (BTU/h).
Apart from the number and size of the individual radiators required, location will have a considerable influence on your final choice. Radiators should, ideally, be placed in the coldest part of any room, this usually means below or adjacent to windows on an outside wall, because cold air forces heat around the room. In hallways, they are generally near the front door for the same reason.
These days, for the bathroom, having heated towel rails goes without saying, and you need to decide between those that simply warm up your towels, or those that act as room-heating radiators too.
What is a typical radiator size?
Typically, radiators are between 300-700mm in height and from 500 up to 3,000mm in length: the bigger they are, usually, the more heat they can pump out.
What are radiators made from?
The principal materials used today are steel, aluminium and cast iron, but there are options emerging in stone and glass which are both energy efficient and offer potential for innovative, decorative artwork.
Indeed, in terms of material, modern design technology allows for more choice today. Steel remains the most economical choice, with steel panel radiators being the most ubiquitous. With so many shapes, colours and sizes now available, it makes sense to do some research to see what works best for your interior (and needs).
For example, by choosing aluminium, you can have radiators that are moulded into sleek vertical panels (see our Contemporary and Designer Radiators section) or which include sculpted features. Being lightweight and requiring only a low volume of water, these can be mounted on almost any type of wall. However, it is worth noting that while faster to heat up than other materials, aluminium loses heat more rapidly when switched off.
For traditional radiators though, cast iron remains a popular choice, especially for column radiators. As the antithesis of the aluminium radiator, cast iron types take some time to heat up, but will retain their heat long after being turned off. Also, these radiators are the heavyweights of the radiator world, and will require walls and floors to be structurally sound.
Regarding finish, glossy surfaces remain popular and certainly make for a radiant radiator, but it is a fact that they do not emit as much heat as matt finishes.
Contemporary and designer radiators
Radiator design and production has come a very long way from the chunky metal monsters of the past and, today, there is a wide range of options for both "Contemporary" and "Designer" radiators.
Far from the ugly, utilitarian necessary evils of the past, contemporary and designer radiators bring class, colour and culture to any interior. Indeed, as far from the traditional flat panel radiator as you could want to go, contemporary and designer radiators combine function with art. The Zehnder Keel Sym Radiator, for example, could easily be mistaken for an art installation! Alternatively, Bisque Flow Form radiators with their cylindrical look are also great space-savers. Bisque are also very into colour as well as form, and have now introduced an "Iridescent" range, with colours changing depending on your perspective!
The trick with contemporary or designer radiators is in their choice and placement around the house. You would want to think about their aesthetic beauty as well as functionality, limiting their installation to where they would be an exciting, even eye-catching design feature. Though competitively priced, they are still more costly per unit than the more standard panel radiators.
The phrase "traditional radiators" brings to mind the chunkier column radiators of yore. Far from ugly eyesores, though, today's technology and manufacturing processes mean that, depending on the style and nature of the property you are seeking to heat, installing these traditional radiators will greatly enhance the look and feel of the rooms they are in. Again, Bisqueoffer wall-hung or free-standing versions, which look striking yet classic in any room. Zendher also propose a range of vertical and horizontal radiators in the traditional column style; some with a twist.
However many rooms you need, or choose to heat, everyone wants a warm, cosy bathroom. There is nothing better, either, than a soft, pre-warmed towel to wrap around yourself upon exiting the bath or shower. To that end, there are a number of options available depending upon whether you need to combine towel warming and drying with room heating, or are in a position to separate the functions.
Towel rails and towel radiators
As with all the permutations of radiator/towel rail combos, the range is considerable: from the simple and economical to the iconic and beautiful, combining form and function artfully. Again, size and price may influence your choice.
Coming in a variety of styles, towel radiators offer the dual function of heating your towels and bathroom from the same unit. Once again, options will be determined by the size of the bathroom, as well as your budget. From traditional floor-standing radiator/towel rail combinations to artistic wall-mounted radiator/rails, there is plenty to ponder. Whichever option you go for, you might consider a dual fuel heating system which will allow you to combine towel warming and room heating during the cold months and only towel warming for the summer.
If you already have satisfactory and attractive radiators, you might consider a separate electrical towel drying radiator or you might install an electrical heating element - such as those from Bauhaus - to existing rails. Alternatively, you might consider installing Thermostatic Radiator Valves to individual radiators (TRVs)
Radiator energy efficiency explained
Not only do TRVs enable you to set the temperature of individual radiators manually, but they also individually regulate the output of heat. This automatically reduces flow to a particular radiator when the ambient air temperature rises too high.
According to the Energy Saving Trust, fitting TRVs, along with a central timer and thermostatic control, in a four bedroom detached house with oil central heating, for example, could trim up to £300 off your annual bill and reduce your annual CO2 output by 1,717kg (See energysavingtrust.org.uk). This is the equivalent of £150 and 987kg respectively for electric central heating systems. Furthermore, having TRVs will also improve your home’s rating on your Energy Performance Certificate.
To get optimum performance from TRVs, you should neither use them with covered radiator nor on radiators that are likely to have long curtains draped in front, nor have lamps to near to them. TRVs cost around £10 each and the cost of their installation needs to be factored in.
One excellent and independent way of having heat and towel warming in the bathroom is through the installation of an electric radiator with immersion heater such as the elegant Zender Klaro Electric Radiator with Immersion Heater. This would be an ideal compromise if the bathroom is the only room requiring some new form of heating and drying facility. In terms of economy, this may be practical for those who only need heat in a bathroom on demand (such as in an ensuite guest bedroom, for example).
Different mounting and installation options
There is no doubt that installing new radiators will improve the efficiency of your home's heating system as well as upgrade the look of any room. There are no limits, today, to size or style, as noted above, as modern radiators can make more efficient use of space, and be a design feature in their own right while also generating exactly the right amount of heat for the room.
Easy to install and maintain, and with so many styles, colours and finishes to choose from, modern radiators make aesthetic, environmental and economic sense. Indeed, some radiators can appear as other decorative features such as mirrors, like the Zehnder - Roda Mirror Vertical Radiator, or even magnetic memo boards!
Do I need a plumbed or electric radiator?
There are two types of system: plumbed radiators and electric radiators. Plumbed hot water systems run from a boiler which heats water that is then circulated around your home through a system of pipes. At strategic points, radiators are used as an efficient way for the warmth to be radiated into your rooms.
Electric radiators, on the other hand, are not controlled centrally but rather they are controlled in each individual room. Modern electric radiators are slimline, easy to install and run simply off a mains electricity supply in your home. While there are models described as ‘plug and go’ that can be plugged into a conventional electrical socket, there are others that will need to be installed by a qualified electrician.
If you are only replacing or adding a number of radiators, you will probably be connecting them to an existing plumbed-in heating system. However, if you have added a room such as a conservatory, or by converting a garage, for example, then you might prefer to install a stand-alone electric radiator.
It is worth taking some time considering exactly where you would like to hang wall-mounted radiators. Indeed, the wall will provide some clues as to the size and style of radiator that best suits the chosen room
What kind of wall can I mount a radiator on?
The good news here is that if the wall is made of solid masonry, brickwork or blockwork the widest choice of radiators is yours. If the walls are strong and solid, then using the appropriate fixings, you can hang larger radiators on anywhere.
On the other hand, if the wall is constructed from plasterboard so that there is a hollow space behind, you’ll need to find out where the studs are situated. Studs are the vertical and horizontal lengths of timber that the plasterboard is attached to inside your walls. These studs are the strongest part of this kind of wall, and it is where your radiator will need to be hung. Depending on where they are, you may be limited for choice in the shape and size of radiator you can hang there.
You do need to take into consideration the existing plumbing in your home. If the piping runs along the wall there will be plenty of options should you wish to change the size or style of the radiator. With no change in width - or if you want wider - a new radiator can easily be fitted and excess pipes removed. However, a narrower radiator might mean the pipework has to be extended.
Alternatively, pipework that comes up through the floor can pose a few problems, but if what you are replacing it with is similar in size, it shouldn’t be an issue. However, if you are going for a new size or style, the floorboards may have to be lifted so that the pipes can be moved.
Finally, before you even start installing new radiators, check the condition of your walls. Cracked or crumbling plaster will need repairing before anyone attempts to hang a new radiator. Similarly, should you be redecorating the room, painting or papering the wall behind where the radiator is going to hang beforehand will avoid complications later.