Product Type: Challenge heaters
Newest Review: ... or only buy recommendations like in this case. First thing you notice is that it is very light, and the hard resin plastic case feels al... more
Challenge 1.6kW Halogen Heater
Member Name: SJ2011
Challenge 1.6kW Halogen Heater
Advantages: Good for small rooms or as a secondary heat source
Disadvantages: Wobbly base connection causes problems with safety cut out switch
We don't have any central heating in our house only a gas fire and a couple of heaters in case it
gets really cold. Unfortunately when they built our house in 1890 and gave it lovely high ceilings
they never thought how hard it would be to heat the place (or what a pain it is to change a light bulb) Fast forward 122 years and add a few more drafts from wonky walls and doors and it's a cold place
to live I'm sure I've just seen a brass monkey cuddling a polar bear to keep warm on the stairway.
In the last few years halogen heaters have become pretty popular and readily available with every
shop from Poundstretcher to the supermarkets and electrical stores seem to be piled high with
different versions costing anything from £10 upwards We've had and destroyed a few of the cheaper halogen heaters but none of them have really lasted so this time I decided to pay a bit more and
bought this one from Argos to see if it would be any better and if it would last any longer. As with everything these days there is some self assembly required but at least it only involves threading the cable through the hole in the base,putting the base onto the heater and tightening up the wing nuts.
If you're looking for a stylish heater you're probably better looking elsewhere even the more
expensive ones like this somehow manage to look a bit on the cheap side.The heater is made
of a white plastic material with a reflective metal behind the 4 halogen elements which are covered
with a metal grill. The heater is attached by only one pivotal joint to the oval base so it can oscillate
( posh term for turns from side to side! )and supposedly spread the heat around rather than aiming
it in one direction.
There are four buttons on the top which allow you to choose the heat setting by how many bars you
want lit and one button to switch on or off. The plastic casing on the heater never gets more than
slightly warm so there's no chance of it burning you if you accidentally knock into it or any need for it
to be switched off for a while before you move it. The dimensions of the heater are H64cm x W41cm
x D30.5cm. it's also really light at around 3.5kg and has a recess at the back to use as a handle so
it's easy to move around doesn't take up too much space.
One of the good features of this heater (and most of the halogen heaters) is the safety cut out switch
which means the heater will cut out instantly if someone accidentally bumps it or if it's picked up or
tipped. While I do think this is really handy for added safety in a house where there are often kids
and pets running riot it does have a downside especially if the base is as wobbly as ours is.
The heater has to be sitting on a flat surface to work or it thinks it's being tipped over and won't
switch on due to the safety switch. On this heater and a couple of the other ones we've owned the connection between the base and the heater has been too wobbly which means it's hard to get it
sitting perfectly flat. Being an old house our floorboards aren't perfectly flat and resemble the rejects from a first years woodwork class this means every time we move the heater we have to mess about
to get it sitting straight usually with a bit of help from a beer mat or two.
At 1600 watts this heater is slightly more powerful than our previous halogen heaters but I don't
find much difference in the heat it provides and definitely not enough of a difference to warrant buying this over the cheaper models. The halogen heaters don't really heat a room so they are really only
useful as a secondary heat source unless it's a really small room. In our house if you are sitting on the couch your legs will be warm while your upper body is still cold as the heater really only provides a decent heat if you are right in front of it.
One of the nice things about the halogen heaters is they give of a nice warm glowing bright orange
light when they are on. This means the room looks lovely and warm so hopefully your brain will be
tricked into thinking your body's warm while in reality in our house at the moment you're probably somewhere near to hypothermia.
The halogen heaters are marketed as being more energy efficient than many of the portable heating solutions that are available such as fan or electric coil heaters. I haven't noticed much difference in
my electric usage between the various halogen heaters despite them varying from 1000 on our
original one to 1600 watts on this one. The halogen heaters do definitely beat most other types of
plug in heaters I've used previously on electric consumption but sadly they don't beat them on heat.
While this doesn't provide enough heat for a large room it does work well as an additional heat
source or to heat a small room which also would make it perfect for caravans or conservatories etc.
We've had this one for around 4 months and so far it still works but the base seems to be getting
looser and wobblier as time goes on. The halogen bulbs do eventually give up on these heaters
some quicker than others but they are replaceable although I would advise checking the cost and
availability of spare bulbs before buying the heater as we've seen them priced anywhere from £2
on Ebay to £40 online which would obviously make replacing the bulbs pointless.
We paid £39.99 for this at Argos and it's currently available for £42.99 but although it is slightly
warmer than our other current heater which cost £22 to be honest I can't find enough difference
in the performance of this one over a £20 one to warrant paying the extra cash.
Summary: Great for small rooms or as a secondary heat source