“ Brand: Tesco / Type: Radiator „
Autumn is here with a vengeance and as such I have turned my attention to heating the house again. I have a gas central heating system in my home but both the kitchen and one bedroom don't have radiators. Furthermore, I have recently been informed that my gas charges will be increasing by 18% and as I live in a rental property and don't plan on staying long term, I can't even just switch to a cheaper provider - assuming there is one of course.
I have two oil filled radiators which run off the electricity and these really come into their own on cooler days when I only need to heat a small area as opposed to switching on the central heating. I have already reviewed my Delonghi Dragon oil filled radiator so this review is for my Tesco OFR1K10 heater.
This is a cheap and cheerful heater and it is fairly small, measuring just 14 cm wide x 66 cm high x 27 cm in depth. The heater is white and sits on 4 castors. It has five fins, one of which is thicker and houses the controls.
The heater has a carrying handle and a storage area for the cable, which measures 160 cm. The heater itself weighs just 6.4 kilos making it easy to carry up and down stairs.
Despite the heater not being particularly expensive, it is actually a very well made consumer item. The whole heater is made from metal which is painted white with only the control section and handle being made of plastic. The handle remains cool at all times.
When you first open the heater up it does require a small amount of assembly to locate the main part of the heater on to the castors. This is very straightforward and takes no more than ten minutes. It should be noted that the heater will not work until attached to the castors due to a tilt system which automatically switches the heater off if it's not positioned properly on a flat surface.
Using the heater is very simple because this isn't a particularly fancy item. It has no timer which simplifies things enormously but also limits use to times when you know you will be in the same room.
To switch on you should turn the temperature knob to "Max" and then decide how much heat you want. There are two press down power switches and if you press the first one you will get heat coming out at 300 watts. If you opt for the button marked "II" you get an output of 600 watts. Alternatively you can depress both at the same time for maximum output of 1000 watts. There are lights on both switches which will illuminate while the radiator is heating up.
Once the heater has reached the maximum temperature the lights will go out and it's desirable to then turn the temperature knob down to a lower level which the heater will then use as its required temperature for the thermostat to ensure the radiator doesn't over heat. The total output of the heater is 1kw.
I really do love my Delonghi Dragon heater which is an incredibly powerful oil radiator but my Tesco heater is a fraction of the weight and as such much easier to move about. It's also smaller, making it easier to store. So in spite of this heater lacking the bells and whistles of the Delonghi, it's an incredibly useful spare heater to have in the home.
The heater itself doesn't take long to warm up at all - certainly within 10 minutes you can feel the heat emitting from the radiator and the thermostat tends to switch off within 20 minutes once the desired temperature has been reached. After that the thermostat ensures an even temperature according to the settings you have chosen.
I have found that some oil filled radiators can be quite noisy - certainly my Delonghi Dragon can be noisy as the heat can cause the metal to contract but this one from Tesco is incredibly quiet, with only the occasional click when the thermostat switches off. The noisiest this heater gets is when it's cooling down once you switch it off.
I also love how easy it is to move this heater around. The castors are excellent, allowing for smooth movement along the floor and the handle at the top of the heater enables you to easily carry it up and down stairs. Futhermore, the power cable can be safely stored by winding over a cord storage area and then you can insert the plug into a storage socket to ensure no-one can trip over the plug or the cable.
The heater isn't particularly expensive to buy either. I paid £29.99 for mine instore at Tesco last year and it's currently on offer on the Tesco website, costing just £19.97 which is a bargain.
I really don't have any real complaints about this heater even though it falls into the "cheap and cheerful" category. Yes, it would be nice if it were to have a timer control but experience has taught me that this feature alone can increase the price of these heaters by a staggering amount of money and as such is only worth paying for if you know you are going to use it.
As I only use this heater when I am sitting almost right beside it, I am happy for the thermostat to control the temperature and energy use and find it works perfectly well on the low power setting at taking the nip out of the air. Because of the thermostat I find it fairly economical to run but of course the main downside about not having a timer is ensuring you remember to switch this off when you no longer need to have it on.
Because the fins are located quite far apart on this radiator it is simplicity itself to clean. I just use a microfibre duster which lifts the dirt off in no time.
I have already briefly mentioned the tilt control in this heater and I have to say it's a great idea. If the heater isn't sitting on a flat surface or if it is knocked over, the tilt control will automatically switch it off.
You need to use the heater in an area which allows 20 cm of space around the sides of it and a minimum of one metre above it to allow proper ventilation.
The heater cannot be used in a bathroom or close to any water source. This includes an open window to avoid rainwater creating an electrical hazard. As with all oil filled radiators you cannot hang anything on them so unfortunately this cannot be used to speed up the drying of clothes.
The heater should never be left switched on in a room and left unattended.
When you have finished using the heater the plug should always be removed from the mains for safety reasons and you should wait until the heater has cooled before storing the power cable on the cord reel.
This is a cheap and fairly cost effective little heater which is capable of slowly heating a room on a low temperature or offering a quick burst of heat to take the chill off the air on colder days and keeping the room warm.
Because of its size it's probably best suited to smaller rooms and as such this works very well in my spare bedroom but I have used it downstairs in my quite large living room where it keeps me warm so long as I position it close to where I am sitting. Because it is easy to move about I can move the heater close to where I am sitting in my living room, whether that be close to my desk or on the sofa.
The lack of a timer does mean you have to be sure to remember to switch the heater off when you are finished with it but I have never forgotten it's been on in all the time I have owned it although I do concede the fact it is so quiet might make it easier to forget than if it were as noisy as my Delonghi.
Overall though this is an effective and easy to use oil filled radiator from Tesco and definitely worth considering at it's current offer price of £19.97.