Heated towel rails are one of the most sought-after fixtures for a bathroom these days. With many options to consider we compare three types, Dry Electric, Liquid-Filled and Hydronic.
Electric Dry Element Heated Towel Rails
Electric dry element heated towel rails are manufactured with a resistive heating cable running through the bars. The heating cable heats the air in the bars and when you put a towel over the rail it insulates it and the rail heats your towel. Electric heated towel rails are low wattage and the most affordable. There is many different styles (ladder rails, individual vertical or horizontal, swivel and free standing). Electric heated towel rails are the easiest to install and can be controlled by either a timer or switch and have running costs are similar to a 60 watt light bulb. With rapid heat up times, the rail will warm your towel in no time to give a warm luxury feel after a shower. A dry element towel rail is not designed to warm your room and the warmth is concentrated under your towels.
Liquid-Filled Heated Towel Rails
Liquid-filled heated towel rails are filled with a heating fluid and an immersion element that heats the water in the bars, and this then circulates through the towel rail. Although a more expensive option to purchase and run, a liquid-filled rail stays at a constant temperature and can serve as a radiator in the room as well as a towel warmer.
Hydronic Heated towel rails are connected to a central heating system and the water flows from the boiler through the radiators and/or floor heating and the towel rails thus heating the rail and room. The installation process is more complex as it needs to be plumbed in as part of your hydronic system. One disadvantage is that if the boiler is switched off for summer you cannot use your towel rail to dry your towel unless you opt for a dual fuel system and install an extra electric element in the rail.