Electric Radiators vs Underfloor Heating: Making the Right Choice for Your Home

When it comes to heating your home, the choices can seem overwhelming. Among the various options, electric radiators and underfloor heating stand out as efficient and modern solutions. But which one is the best fit for your living space? In this comparison, we’ll delve into the workings, advantages, and considerations of both systems, helping you make an informed decision tailored to your needs.

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Electric Radiators: Modern Comfort and Efficiency

Electric radiators have revolutionised home heating, offering a blend of sophistication and efficiency. These radiators are a contemporary alternative to traditional gas central heating systems, providing the perfect balance of style and practicality.

How they work

Electric radiators function similarly to their central heating counterparts, but without the need for a complex network of pipes or a centralised unit. Instead, they rely on an internal metal heating element to generate warmth. This ingenious design emits heat through both convection and radiation, creating a harmonious mix of gentle, long-lasting, and responsive warmth.

Types of Electric Radiators

  1. Ceramic Radiators: These feature metal wires baked within ceramic blocks, delivering radiant warmth ideal for challenging spaces. Their slightly slower warm-up times are offset by prolonged heat retention.
  2. Oil-Filled Radiators: Equipped with thermal fluid, these radiators offer slower temperature buildup and cooldown, maximizing efficiency.
  3. Dry Thermal Radiators: Using iron heating rods within an aluminum body, these radiators boast quick heat-up and cool-down times, providing rapid responsiveness.

Control and Flexibility

Electric radiators offer advanced programming options for enhanced efficiency:

  • Precision Digital Thermostat: Maintains consistent heat levels, minimising energy waste.
  • Smart Control: Remote programming via WiFi, accessible through apps or voice control.

Underfloor Heating: The Evolution of Comfort

Alternative Underfloor heating

With origins dating back to ancient times, modern underfloor heating has become synonymous with luxurious comfort. Unlike its complex gas counterparts, electric underfloor heating requires no connection to a home’s pipe network, offering a simpler and effective solution.

How It Works

Underfloor heating employs a network of cables connected to a thermostat and the mains electric. Generating heat primarily through radiation, it also utilises convection and conduction due to its position within the floor. This approach provides an evenly distributed and cosy warmth, particularly suited for your feet’s comfort.

Types of Underfloor Electric Heating

  1. Foil Mat: Featuring pre-spaced heating cables in an aluminum mat placed on the original flooring.
  2. Sticky Mat: Heating cables on a sticky mesh set in a thin cement layer, compatible with various floor types.
  3. Loose Wire: Unspaced wire reel tailored to any floor type, suitable for unconventional layouts and corners.
  4. Inscreed Cables: Cables directly fitted into the floor for maximum efficiency, though with a more intricate installation process.

Control and Efficiency

Underfloor heating offers the following control options:

  • Thermostat: Wall-installed thermostat with varying control levels, from manual to advanced programming.
  • Smart Control: Connect smart thermostats to a smartphone app for remote adjustments, scheduling, and heating boosts.

The Verdict: Choosing Your Ideal Heating System

In comparing electric radiators and underfloor heating, a few key factors stand out.


While both systems can be DIY-installed, underfloor heating demands more meticulous planning, including subfloor preparation and sensor installation. Electric radiators are typically easier to install, requiring mounting on the wall and plugging into a 3-pin socket.


Both systems require minimal maintenance. In case of a fault, electric radiators are easier to replace, with quicker substitute part installation.


Both systems can be programmed through app control. Electric radiators offer more responsiveness, while underfloor heating requires longer warm-up times.

Efficiency and Running Costs

Electric radiators offer energy-saving features, suitable for primary heating. Underfloor heating’s efficiency varies based on floor type and insulation levels.

Final Thoughts

While underfloor heating offers luxury and comfort, its cost and slow heat-up times can impact efficiency. Electric radiators provide rapid responsiveness and flexibility, making them ideal for efficient home heating. Ultimately, the choice between these two innovative systems hinges on your lifestyle and preferences.

So, are you ready to embrace the change? Make the switch today and explore our comprehensive range of electric radiators.

Sunflow Team

Founded in 2009, Sunflow is a British manufacturer of 21st century all-electric heating systems.

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