electric infrared panels vs. storage heaters


In 2013, the German “Zeit” magazine reported an estimated 1,5 Mill. electric storage heaters in operation in Germany alone. Old storage heaters are one of the legacy heating technologies easily replaced by electric infrared panels.

However, so far there was no published study that the author is aware of, that compares energy-, CO2- and cost-efficiency of electric storage heaters with surface-mounted electric infrared panels under real-world conditions.

Therefore, this case study’s apartment is a very good subject for such a comparison for several reasons:

First, the occupant of this study’s apartment likes to share the extensive personal experience with long-time use of electric storage heaters in comparison to utilizing electric infrared panels over the last 2 winter seasons.

The occupant is also willing to actively cooperate with the author on this study, and provide the necessary bills for materials and installation, electric power bills, etc. to document the results of this study.

Further, the apartment building itself presents as a rather “interesting” candidate for such a comparison. The building structure consists of hollow concrete wall blocks and concrete ceilings with poor thermal insulation. Also, built in the 1970’s, no consideration was given to the air-tightness of the building-shell. According to popular opinion, these are not suitable prerequisites for electric heating systems with expensive electricity prices. This case study’s results prove those opinions wrong.

Market stakeholders like infrared panel manufacturers and distributors, building designers and engineers as well as government regulators and consumers need to be informed on the applicability of electric infrared panels vs. other heating systems.

Since there is little scientific literature on the subject of electric infrared panels, real-world case studies like this one are of paramount importance.


To download a 30 pages excerpt of the case study click here.



Oswald Oberladstatter, ME
Perl, Germany
July 2016