Electric heaters and electric radiators are fitted with either digital or mechanical thermostats. Digital thermostats like those in the Ducasa Avant range are accurate to 0.2°C, whereas mechanical thermostats like those in the Sunburst radiant panels are accurate to around 2°C. Electric heating with digital thermostats is without doubt the most economical in terms of running costs, but is more expensive to buy so not always the right choice – it depends what you want to heat and for how long.
The accuracy of the thermostat can result in a room ‘overheating’ by several degrees. For example if you want your room to be 20°C and your thermostat is accurate to 3°C, the temperature will fluctuate between 20°C and 23°C. The additional 3°C is unnecessary and can increase your running costs considerably. If you use a digital thermostat the temperature can be virtually constant and therefore less expensive to run, which is ideal for your living rooms or bedrooms.
If an electric heater is required to warm a small room such as a study for say an hour a day, then a portable heater with a mechanical thermostat may be the right choice. Yes it may be more expensive to run, but for short periods it could be just a few pennies a day. It would take many years of use to re-coup the initial expense of going digital, therefore a product with a mechanical thermostat would be more economical in the long run.
It’s important to remember running costs include the initial purchase cost, the energy costs and the maintenance costs.