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Heating that orangery: independent electric or extend the central heating?

Orangeries are all the rage, and it is not hard to see why. Big glass windows and natural light create a sense of luxury and grandeur, but will your orangery be wasted in the cold winter months? Heating your orangery will ensure you can relax in comfort, no matter what the time of year.

Heating that orangery

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There are several methods of heating an orangery, from extending the central heating to fitting electric under-floor heating. This information will help you to work out which type of heating will work best for you.

Radiators and central heating

You probably already use radiators as part of a central heating system to heat your home, with the fact that you can simply extend your central heating to your orangery meaning that this method is cheaper than other techniques. Radiators are easily installed and are available in a range of sizes. An additional advantage is that you can independently control the temperature of each room.

The downside of radiators is that pipes may need to run through other rooms, requiring further work. This could be a problem if you have a listed property, where any damage caused during installation will legally have to be repaired.

Having a more energy-efficient boiler installed at the same time could help to drive down long-term costs. Modern boilers can cut up to 30% per year from your heating bill and installation does not have to be prohibitively expensive; for example, companies such as www.1stadvanced.co.uk offer consumers around Surrey and Haslemere boilers and installation in one package.

Electric under-floor heating

Electric under-floor heating is more expensive to install than radiators, but cheaper to use. This method works by running either a cable through the concrete ‘screed’ foundations or by placing a heat mat under the tiling. Cable under-floor heating heats the foundations, providing a massive thermal store in the concrete that keeps your orangery cosy for longer.

A heat mat is the most responsive method; however, it lacks the thermal store provided by the foundations and drives up running costs. While the floor will be warm, a heat mat may struggle to heat the whole orangery on particularly cold days.

One advantage of under-floor systems is that they are hidden, with no valuable wall space lost to bulky radiators.

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