Night Storage Heaters

Heat quality and electricity consumption

Storage heaters mainly deliver their heat by convection. Air heated by the unit rises and, as it cools, it falls creating a current of air which flows around the room. Often, night storage heaters are situated opposite a window to improve this convection current.

West Country Heating believe that a heat source that uses radiated and convected heat is more comfortable, as it eliminates cold spots that can be caused by convection heating.

Night storage heaters use electricity through the night at a lower off-peak price. However, most people use the majority of their electricity during on-peak times. Your kettle, TV, iron, all your other appliances, will draw electricity at the higher rate. We suggest you carefully look at how much more this may be costing you.

Also, depending on the electric tariff you’ve chosen, a storage heater uses electricity for 7 or 10 hours a night to store heat. This is not something the owner can control.

Our experience is that our electric radiators draw far less electricity per day to maintain a comfortable warm environment. In addition, our radiators only require a normal, single rate domestic electricity tariff.

Why not see how much you could save by completing a price comparison with UK Power?

Replacing storage heaters

If you already have night storage heaters installed don’t despair. Replacing them with a modern heating system is actually very easy.

The Energy Savings Trust recommends that to save energy consumption (and therefore money) your ideal heating system allow you to:

  • Control the temperature of the room
  • Reduce the temperature at night or when not occupied

This level of control is easy using our German electric radiators and don’t forget that every radiator is fitted with thermostatic controls.

If you are looking for an efficient source of heating, with low installation costs, no ongoing maintenance and a smart design, then please view our range.

Replacing Outdated Night Storage Heaters

First you need to understand your existing economy 7 or 10 tariffs.

A typical example of Economy 7 rates are as follows:

Off Peak 0 to 7am (frequently only storage and hot water): 7p kw
On Peak (or the rest of the house 24 hour):16p kw

It would not be difficult to switch to a tariff of 11p kw all the time for everything so you can see that it doesn’t take rocket science to see which option is more attractive.

Our product is not a night storage heater; it does store heat but it is a far more modern product with full control, high quality of heat and low energy consumption. Switch it on and it will be heating the room within 5 mins.

You could say it has a similar quality of heat to a gas system (wet), similar if not lower running costs to gas and far superior controllability than gas.

Each radiator can be multi timed and multi temperature controlled, so you can have the exact individual temperature for any given room and better still, vary that temperature depending on the time of day.

Our German electric storage radiators require only a normal single rate domestic electric tariff; the most competitive being around 11p per kwh (was 8p per kwh). This means that the running costs could be up to 30% lower and electricity useage could be up to 50% less than night storage heaters. (See calculation below)

To change from your storage heaters is simple, having removed them; our electrician can change the electrical points to a 24 hour supply (storage heaters only get electric for 7 hours) and this should take him about 30 minutes.

What you need to know about your existing storage heaters.

Storage heaters are filled with bricks, they use what you are lead to believe is cheap rate off peak electricity to store up heat over night. Sadly this is a mathematical “sleight of hand”.

What you need to realise is that the on peak tariff is over inflated and designed to steal back those savings so you will always pay on average the same as anyone else.

Economy 7 tariff – what is often overlooked is that you only get a cheap rate for 7 hours in each 24 hour cycle, the rest of the time your electricity use is charged at a much higher rate that effectively means any real savings are significantly reduced or even neutralised.

E.g. economy 7 tariff at 7p off peak and 16p on peak whereas a 24 hour tariff could be only 11p, which is 31% lower than the economy 7 on peak.

The only reason they provide a low off peak rate is that you use huge amounts of electricity during the on peak hours, which ultimately costs you a great deal. Our radiators use 60% less.

You need to predict the weather the day before you need the heat.

Once you have stored the heat unfortunately you cannot stop it coming out, or conversely they do tend to run out of heat in the evening just when you need it most.

The heat given off by a storage heater is a dry heat, the air is actually physically burnt hence the carbon deposits, and this is extremely bad for your health and incredibly hazardous for asthma suffers.

Worse, the distribution of heat tends to be very high towards the ceiling and minimal around your feet were you often need it.

So the steps you need to take

Step 1 – Change with your existing supplier to a 24 hour tariff – this just takes a phone call. It may take 2/3 weeks and sometimes costs £50.

Step 2 – Only when this is done then move to a more competitive supplier:

Step 3 – Our electrician can convert all the storage heater sockets to a 24 hour supply as part of our installation service.

Step 4 – Enjoy “The world of efficient heating” assuming of course that you have made the wise decision to buy our German electric radiators you will now have heat when you want it, how you want it, in the quantities you want, and all at the lowest possible price.


A storage heater must be set for a fixed 7 hours to store heat overnight and you have no choice on that, however when compared with our equivalent German electric radiators in modern well insulated rooms it can drop to as little as 3.5 hours per day, a 50% reduction.

Then we must factor in that a storage heater will require a larger heating element to overcome its inherent inefficiency’s compared to our radiators and that could easily reduce energy consumption by up to a further 25% or more.

Any comparison made is (and must be) on a like for like basis, that is to say an identical quality and quantity of heat but our German electric radiators are capable of significantly higher levels of sustained, thermostatically controlled heat output. Therefore customers will experience dramatically increased comfort levels although sometimes they will accept lower savings in electricity consumption and running costs depending on their requirements.

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