Are Ceramic space heaters better?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by JEDI, Dec 14, 2008.

  1. JEDI

    JEDI Lifer

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  2. episodic

    episodic Lifer

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    hey, i have that little ceramic one and it heats a 200 square foot room in less than half an hour. . . works well. . .
     
  3. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    1500 watts is 5121 btu/hr no matter how you look at it. Ceramic heaters are popular because they can be made very small and still have relatively low watt densities so their active heating areas do not become incandescent like their nichrome based counterparts. In order to function, however they do require a fan to run which can be noisy. They are not true radiant heaters in a sense but the warm blast of air can be felt immediately to provide relief from a chill.

    If true convection heat is acceptable, the oil filled "radiator style" heaters will heat the same amount of square footage but takes a lot of time to feel the heat.

    The power limit of 1500W is restricted by the socket in the U.S. so all heaters produce the same amount of heat but the style (radiant vs. convection) makes them feel considerably different. A quartz heater is pure radiant and will provide the fastest relief and is relatively quiet (may buzz when cold and the coils inside the tubes rattle if the floor is unstable under heavy footsteps, etc.)
     
  4. Yzzim

    Yzzim Lifer

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    So how about a heater like this: EdenPure Quartz Infrared Heater

    It claims to save 35% on energy costs compared to other heaters. Where would that energy savings come into play?

    These heaters have been advertised a lot recently. I just don't get how they're "better" than an oil-filled radiant heater.
     
  5. Gothgar

    Gothgar Lifer

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    I was gunna post something, but I knew you'd come in here and blow it out of the water with this super detailed explanation....



    I was right
     
  6. DayLaPaul

    DayLaPaul Platinum Member

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    Yeah, what she said.

    /thread
     
  7. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Quartz saves energy because it heats bodies really fast so you feel it instantly instead of shivering while waiting for the room to heat up meanwhile the little disc in the kilowatthour meter spins faster all that time. That would be my guess on where the savings comes from.
     
  8. episodic

    episodic Lifer

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    This heater costs 21$ and 15c an hour to operate based on average energy costs. . .


    The one you linked to is around 400$

    You'd have to run it for 2500 hours to see any savings. . . based on 4 hours usage a day . . . You'd have to run it for 625 days. . . .


    Also, the average winter season is 100 days . . ..

    So it would take over 6 years to see any savings. . .


    So if it saves 35% of the energy . . . that is .35 x .15 that means it costs around 9.5 cents per hour instead of 15 cents. .

    so the 2500 hours. . . would be multiplied by .35 gives us an additional 875 hours. . before we get to a cost savings. . . so that'd be an additional 2 winters. . . So 8 years from now you may break even . . . .maybe. . . Now how much longer will either heater run? Which would cost less to replace?


    Shrug. . .
     
  9. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Funny you mention this!

    People spend $25,000 on a windmill (I think they are neat though!) to supplement their electrical needs at home and it may take decades to recover the costs if even breaking even after the maintenance for batteries, inverters, etc.


     
  10. rezinn

    rezinn Platinum Member

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    I bought a $30 holmes ceramic heater from home depot 11 years ago and it was used every night during the winter for a few years. I put it away for about five years and I've used it just about every day for the past three winters and it still works just as well as ever. So that says something for their longevity.
     
  11. JEDI

    JEDI Lifer

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    wait.. you just listed why ceramic is better than convection.

    how about ceramic vs the $15 cheapo heater i listed, which also uses a fan?
    http://www.walmart.com/catalog....do?product_id=7768667
     
  12. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Oh one other thing to mention about ceramic heaters. They have very tiny passages in the active heating element that air must be channeled through. If you have a lot of dust in your living space make sure to maintain the unit (it should have a washable polycell filter) because if the dust accumulates in the element the airflow slows down and the active surface temperature increases substantially - enough to fracture the element or cause the thermal fuse (microtemp) to open effectively rendering the appliance useless. Microtemps can be changed (or jumped out - NOT recommended btw!) by a handy user and the elements cleaned with dry compressed air restoring like new operation.

    So if you have lots of dust you may want to consider a more traditional resistance wire type heater. :)

    Ceramic technically is forced air convection. It does not produce radiant heat from a glowing element. ;)
     
  13. herm0016

    herm0016 Diamond Member

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    they are a rip off. get a cheaper one.

    i have one of these and was able to heat about 300 sq. feet very easy. it saved quite a bit over the elec. baseboard. in a very cold place, temps requllary below zero, i spent less than 100 bucks a month for elec.

    these heat the objects via radiation and not just heating the air.

    http://www.walmart.com/catalog....do?product_id=1943146

    these are great. just point it at the place you want heated. they work much better then the nicrome or ceramic heaters that just heat the air.
     
  14. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

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    It's still rated 1500W.

    I wonder if their "35% energy savings" are because of the Auto mode?
    That's only 950W, versus the typical 1500W setting of most other heaters.

    (1500 - 950)/1500 = 36.67%.
    Curious.
    $400 is a major rip-off.

    Like Rubycon said, 1500W gives you 5121 BTU/hr. You could buy a 1500W hair dryer or heat gun and get the same effect.
    1500W is 1500W. Want to really save energy on heating bills? Stop using electricity.

    Heating by electricity:
    1) Fuel is burned at a remote location. Some heat is lost out the exhaust towers.
    2) Fuel heats water in a boiler. Some heat is lost to the boiler's surroundings.
    3) Water turns to steam and turns a generator. Some energy is lost as waste heat, and as a result of mechanical friction. Some also gets blown out into the atmosphere in cooling towers.
    4) The electricity is sent over power lines. At least 10% is lost as heat due to resistance in the wires.
    5) You finally convert the energy of that remote combustion into heat.
    Net result: Around 30% of the energy of combustion makes it to your house.

    Versus heating by burning something in your own home:
    1) Gas furnaces are now around 90% efficient. The combustion heats air that is vented directly to your living space.
    2) A wood or coal stove heats the living space air directly, and are anywhere from 65%-85% efficient.


     
  15. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    That is a dangerous if not life threatening proposition for ATOT! They say when there is no heat that sex can prevent you from freezing to death! :laugh:

    Well if the electric is still on I suppose they can fold with those quadcore furnaces. :p
     
  16. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

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    Calculating possibility of the average ATOT member getting some, even to save himself from death by freezing..........and by the time it's calculated, I'll have frozen to death. Damn.


    Back in the dorms on campus during September, I had to turn off my PC most of the time (twas but a single-core then), and use my laptop, otherwise I could have baked bread by letting it set on my desk. Goddamn it got hot in there.



     
  17. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Use silicone on the slide rule (ok perhaps I should be realistic here!) - lithium cells in that TI-89. :laugh:

    What was generating so much heat? Insolation? Paint the roof white! :p

     
  18. Old Hippie

    Old Hippie Diamond Member

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    3X :laugh:
     
  19. NoShangriLa

    NoShangriLa Golden Member

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    Any thing would be better than none.

    Radiant heaters are the best for quick directional heat because you only heat the object that the heater pointed at intead of the large volume of space. Radiant heater will heat up the space volume just a quick as any other method of electric heater, because plugin space heater are design to plug into a 110V/15A circuit. Cheap/pooly built heater may not last as long as well built heater, but with care it should last you more than a few seasons.

    Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Radiant Heater

    Optimus H-4110 9-Inch Dish Heater

     
  20. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

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    Hells yeah, TI-89!
    (With Eneloop AAAs in it, aw yeah!)


    Ahhh, the good old days.
    My dad actually had a slide-rule. I'd seen it many years ago, but never had a clue what it was for until I stared at this university.
    I think I like my TI-89 better.


    Generating heat in the building? Sunlight, combined with the humidity of a large lake not too awfully far away, and hot air. Google's satellite images show that the roof is kind of tan. Very old building, too - it was one of the first on-campus dorm buildings; it's got to be well over 50 years old.
    That, and idiots attempting to smoke in the rooms without setting off the alarms.

    The campus has an absolute love of energy efficiency. The new engineering building was obviously designed entirely by an architect, with no engineers around versed in heat transfer. A large portion of the building's exterior consists of glass with aluminum framing. The structure is a giant heat sink. Sit near a window in the winter, and you can feel the convection currents of the cooled indoor air as it falls from the glass.
    But yay, it looks pretty! Which I believe was the primary design goal.


     
  21. ManyBeers

    ManyBeers Platinum Member

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    I have an older model similar to this one and it doesn't have a fan either. They oscillate

     
  22. Rubycon

    Rubycon Madame President

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    Blasphemy!

    You have not used a real calculator until you've used a Curta! :p

    That's a neat feeling isn't it?

    Yes that's a radiant design. Notice how elongated the active area is. The original Pelonis Disc Furnace from the 1980's required forced air to work.

     
  23. NoShangriLa

    NoShangriLa Golden Member

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    It is somewhat fault advertising for the heater that you are looking at. The "energy saving mode" (dual mode) suggests that the heater energized only 2 elements thus lowered the power consumption to 950W instead of the 1500W (all 3 elements). There are 2 to 3 modes (500-1000-1500W) heaters that are much cheaper alternative out in the market than the one in the link.

    But, IMHO the best heater is one that have little or no moving parts and single mode switch (on/off), because they tend to be much more reliable. Single mode elements tend to last longer because it isn't subject to human playing with the switch when compare to multi mode heaters. (On/off or hot/cold kills the element)

    PS. Cost heater is associated with the attractive heater envelope, and catchy naming scheme.
     
  24. NoShangriLa

    NoShangriLa Golden Member

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    <--- trained to use an abacus literally, and that was a real calculator. Funny thing was, I prefered to use the the abacus over an expensive digital calculator untill I high school.
     
  25. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

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    What. The. Hell?
    Good god that's crazy.
    But impressive.


    Except when your hands go numb while you're trying to do homework. :Q