What are Infrared Heaters, and How Do They Work?
Some things to know before making a purchase...
Even in places where warm weather takes precedence, there’s nothing more jarring than the extremely cold seasons. When it’s too harsh for even the warmest blanket to handle, desperate times call for desperate measures.
Infrared heaters are one of those great innovations. Instantaneous and environmentally friendly, they’re great alternatives to your conventional heating systems. But what are they, and how do they work? We’ll give you the lowdown on what to know about these wonderful inventions – and hopefully help you choose the best infrared heater for you:
1. They work like the sun
Allergy and Air gives an apt enough anecdote for this. Much like how you instantly feel warmer when you step into the sunlight, infrared heaters also warm you instantly under the same principles. As both make use of infrared rays, they are able to release heat regardless of air temperature, unlike other heating alternatives which heat the air.
2. There are different kinds
Not all infrared heaters work the same way. HowStuffWorks.com notes that some mainly direct the infrared light straight into a room, while others create heat in three parts: infrared light bulbs, a heat exchanger, and a fan that blows the heat from the bulbs into the exchanger. However, according to Herschel-Infrared, there’s actually 3 kinds of infrared heaters: near, medium, and far.
a) Near infrared uses a reflector to concentrate heat in a particular direction. Because of this, heat does not reach too far. Out of the three, they work at the highest temperatures (1300°C), so they are the best infrared heaters for high-intensity activities, like cooking.
b) Medium infrared uses a heated wire coiled in a glass tube, which is then supported by a metallic body. At 500°-800°C, they are the best infrared heaters for drying processes, and in some cases, comfortable heating.
c) Far infrared is the most commonly used (and suggested) when it comes to heating for comfort. Emitting the farthest wavelength (and the least temperature), they are the best infrared heatersfor human heat absorption.
3. They help reflect heat back into the room
By nature, infrared heaters heat up objects directly since they are radiant sources of energy. But because they are light-based, the heat generated by them also bounces back, thus spreading the warmth more evenly around the area. This nature helps them heat up spaces more efficiently; so knowing how large of a space you need heated up can help you choose the best infrared heater for you.