Portable Heating FAQs

Listed below are some of the more frequently asked questions we receive about our portable heaters. If you can not find an answer to your query, please call our helpful Customer Services team on NZ Freephone 0800 161 161 or email us for assistance.

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Kent Portable Heating FAQs

  • What is the difference between a convection heater and a radiant heater?

    Generally speaking, a convector heater generates and circulates warm air currents without any obvious sign of heat glowing red from the heater. They are ideal for heating “air spaces” and the things in the room.

    A radiant heater generates heat-waves from a heated surface (often glowing red) and this heat-wave heats objects in its path. Waves can be short, medium or long. Short are more intense but lose their strength over shorter distances, long are less intense (gentler) and maintain their strength over longer distances. They are ideal for heating “objects” within the heat wave.

    In a convection heater, heated air convects around a room and provides warm air currents. The colder air near the floor is drawn through the heater. This heated air will circulate up and then down and around a room. Walls, carpets and furniture, as well as humans, will eventually feel warm due the convected warm air current transferring its heat. This is determined by the size, shape and insulation qualities of a room, the number of air changes taking place, the size/setting of the heater, and location of the heater.

    In a radiant heater, heat-waves are emitted directly from the heater and these waves heat all objects in their path. This is similar to light waves, think of a torch light and anything inside the light waves receives light, anything outside remains dark. Radiant heaters can be ‘aimed’ directly at the object to be heated. This is a more efficient way of heating people directly in large open spaces with lots of air changes.

  • How do I work out the right size heater for my rooms?

    The size of your heater is determined by the amount of heat lost in the room and the temperature you want in the room. A well insulated room, that also has excessive air gaps sealed, helps reduce your heat loss (check your floor, ceiling, door frames and windows). The amount of free heat from the sun also comes into play, but generally speaking we need heating at night and all the sun’s heat has been and gone.

    A typical NZ home has a wooden frame, a tin roof, a raised floor, wooden windows and modest insulation. This home will likely lose 80 Watts of heat per sqm in order to keep the room warm at 21 degrees Celsius. So a room that is 18sqm in size will need a heater that can provide at least 1440 Watts of heat (18x80W)... so you would choose a 1.5kW heater.

    In a better insulated house, the heat loss can be down to just 50 Watts per sqm, and in this case a 18 sqm room size will only need 900 Watts of heat.

    If you want to be warmer than 21 degrees Celsius then the heater needs to be larger, typically an extra 10% of heat output is needed for every extra degree of warmth needed. So setting your thermostat too high means more heat is needed and your costs will be higher. So wearing extra clothing is not a bad idea!

    Heater sizing chart

  • What is the best position for a heater in a room?

    A radiant heater should be positioned so that it can safely and efficiently heat the people in its heat wave, so any objects that do not need heating (or are flammable) should be moved away.

    A convection heater will work better if the warm air currents it produces and circulates are assisted. Convection heaters should be placed near a wall that is closer to a doorway. The doorway draws the ground-level colder air towards it and it is this colder air that the convector wants to heat - rather than let it stay cool in your room. Avoid placing a convection heater opposite your windows, especially if you have no pelmet above curtains or blinds, as the warm air current will head straight for the windows and outside (glass transmits heat much quicker than walls and curtains).

  • What are the warranties for Kent portable heating products?

    Please refer to our warranty policy for both gas and electric heaters.

    For complete details please refer to the product manual.