Do Radiator Shelves Stop Heat? | Checkatrade
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Do radiator shelves stop heat?

No, radiator shelves don’t stop heat, although they will absorb some of the heat that is generated by your radiator.

Rather, your radiator shelf is likely to throw heat forward into the room. This is because a shelf above a radiator will prevent the heat generated from rising immediately, pushing the heat forwards instead.

In reality, this won’t make a huge amount of difference. After all, the heat will be able to rise again as soon as it passes the edge of the shelf. However, it can be worth trying, especially if your radiators are positioned directly below windows.

Of course, radiator shelves also have other benefits, like allowing you to make use of the wasted space above your radiator for storage or aesthetics!

Bathroom radiator covers with shelves

While a radiator shelf is simply placed above a radiator, radiator covers tend to enclose a radiator on several sides. In this way, they can block heat and interrupt the flow of heat around your room.

That said, there are several different kinds of radiator covers, and some will allow you to heat your home more efficiently than others. For instance, if your radiator cover comes with a reflector to help insulate the wall, this can increase its efficiency by bouncing heat back into the room.

The material that your radiator cover is made from can also affect how much heat it blocks. Metal covers block the least amount of heat (just bear in mind that they get hot to the touch so aren’t a good solution if you’re purchasing radiator covers as a safety measure for young children and pets).

Wood or MDF radiator covers will block more heat than metal ones and are also more expensive. But they’re a better solution if you’re using them as a safety measure. Read our guide to how much radiator covers cost for the full lowdown.

Shelves above storage heaters

Like with radiators, fitting shelves above storage heaters could help to push heat forwards into the centre of the room and away from the ceiling. It could also help to stop dust from discolouring the wall above the heater.

However, it’s important that you leave enough room for air to move around freely between the top of the heater and the shelf. It’s also important that you don’t put anything on top of your storage heater, as this could make it overheat and cut out.

If you do plan on fitting shelves above your storage heater, it’s best to invest in ones that are recommended by the manufacturer – such as Dimplex shelves. Alternatively, you can use standard shelves and attach reflective material to the underside. That way, you can make sure your storage heater is still operating efficiently, and avoid adding to your storage heating costs.

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