April 4, 2018 by
Since 1st January 2018, the electric heating industry has been operating under new rules. These new rules aren’t as glamorous as that Dua Lipa song makes out, and you probably weren’t aware of them unless you’re a big fan of electric panel heaters, but they almost certainly will affect you. New ErP (Energy-related Products) legislation known as Lot 20, passed down from the EU, is changing the electric heating industry for good. It all sounds a bit confusing, but it is very important, so read our guide below to find out what this all means for you.
Simply put, the EU has decided that we need to reduce our energy consumption by 20% before 2020. As part of the measures taken to achieve this, fixed electric heaters will have to comply with these new efficiency standards. The legislation includes panel heaters, electric radiators, underfloor heating, electric fires and heated towel rails. For a full list of what is and isn’t affected, click HERE. In the long run, it should mean your heaters use less energy and are cheaper to run.
It’s from the EU? Brexit will change all this, right?
We can’t go much further without mentioning the B-word, so please be nice!
In short, no, Brexit won’t change this. Britain has already signed up to this change. That means even if the heater is manufactured in Britain (or anywhere outside the EU) after 2018, it still needs to meet EU energy efficiency standards to legally be sold here. Going forward, trading with the EU will mean we need to meet Lot 20 standards anyway, so manufacturers will want to meet those standards regardless of what happens with Brexit.
How will I know my heater is Lot 20 compliant?
If your heater was manufactured this year, it will have to be Lot 20 compliant by law. Many older heaters are Lot 20 compliant anyway – such as this Levante panel heater – so pick up the phone or use our live chat function on HSDonline.co.uk to get our expert advice if you’re not sure.
One thing that makes this easier is all new heaters will have a percentage score based on how efficient it is. This means if you’re shopping around you’ll be able to compare each heater and see which one will cost you less to run! The higher the percentage score the more efficient your heater will be.
How high does my heater have to score?
Your heaters will need to have a score of at least 38% to meet the new standard.
How will these new heaters actually work?
All new heaters will have a range of smart controls to help them meet Lot 20’s targets. The more of these controls and features it has, the higher its percentage score will be. Crucially, old-fashioned temperature controls, like rocker switches and temperature dials, score no points! New heaters will have to make use of digital or mechanical thermostats and programmable timers to give you full control over the temperature to meet these efficiency targets.
They may also include systems that detect when you’ve left a door or window open, or systems that let you control the heater with an app via WiFi.
Sounds a bit complicated…
Really all it boils down to is this:
If your heater has a thermostat and one other energy saving feature (such as an open-door sensor) it is energy efficient. If it has more than one of these features – like the excellent Mylek Lumi – you’re quids in!
If your heater only has one heat setting, or if it has several numbered pre-set temperatures you flip through with a dial, it’s not energy efficient enough. This means it’s been phased out as of the beginning of 2018 and looking at a newer model is a good idea. It’s not as bad as it sounds – in the long run it’ll save you a lot of money!
If you’re still a bit lost, use this handy calculator on the Lot 20 website to work out what your heater does and if you can improve on it.
What does it mean for me?
Well, it probably means now is as good a time as any to start looking for a new heater. You don’t need to know every little detail (though we would advise checking through the Lot 20 website to find out more), but this new legislation should save you a fair bit on your electricity bill in addition to helping the environment. You’ll also have much more control over your heater – no more flipping between too cold setting 4 and too hot setting 5 – so you can get your room temperature just the way you like it down to the degree.
It isn’t the most exciting topic, nor is it the easiest thing to get your head around (it’s not easy being green!), so if you have any questions, just give us a call on 0800 091 3171 or use our live chat function on HSDonline.co.uk and we can put your mind at ease.
Click HERE to browse our full range of new, energy-efficient heaters and get the best prices you’ll find anywhere online.
HSD Recommends: Mylek Lumi Aluminium Panel Heater
Boasting every feature you could ever want in a heater, including an easy-to-use LCD display, thermostat, 7-day timer, open door/window detection system and remote control, the Mylek Lumi offers unbelievable value for money. It’s got a pretty face to go with all those brains, too; it’s a sleek design that can be left free-standing or mounted on a wall. And most importantly of all, yes, it will keep you toasty warm with its unique aluminium front that kicks out heat into the room faster and cheaper!