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Are you unsure of whether or not you should put designer radiators in your family home?

Perhaps you’ve had a bit of conflicting advice on the subject. Unfortunately these days, everyone and their dog seems to think they’re Laurence Lllewelyn-Bowen. Even worse, they think this gives them the right to dictate what you can or can’t fit in your home.

Or, what will or won’t match for the era your house was built! Strangely, people take advice from those who have no knowledge or experience, when really it should be down to your own personal taste.

Designer radiators may not be the best choice for your family home – or they could be a wonderful investment! As an experienced heating engineer, let me explain more, below.

Why might designer radiators not work in a family home?

Firstly, designer radiators are expensive. If you only plan to live there a few years, you may not recoup the initial outlay. Secondly, if you have an average family home with a young growing family, like us all you may use the radiators to dry clothes on. This is a bit of a waste for designer radiators.

Thirdly, my house has cleared a bit as the children have grown up. There was a time when there were bicycles in the hall, leaning on the radiator. Toy boxes and school bags rammed on top of the bedroom radiators. Again, what a waste of a designer radiator.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t fit them in a family home. I’m saying think about your family and lifestyle. Previously, I fitted them in the lounge and dining room as these were the two areas with least amount of traffic and clutter. This is when we had a young, boisterous family.

The bottom line is, it really comes down to personal choice and your own habits and lifestyle.

What are some more family-friendly alternatives?

There can be alternatives, if you think about it. Say you have a lounge/dining room with the TV, computer games and toy box – not to mention one radiator taking up space and getting abused on a daily basis. 

You may consider taking it out and instead fitting two narrow vertical radiators on small corners of the room. This can look great, and they’re not on the main thoroughfare or play zone.

TIP: I’ve put together a good guide on vertical radiators *INSERT LINK* to give you a better idea of some of the things to be aware of. Just bear in mind, if one standard steel radiator is currently in that room, chances are you’ll need two vertical radiators of the same size.

Advice from an experienced engineer

If you love the idea of designer radiators, but not the cost, you don’t have to fit them all at once. When I moved into my own house with children, I replaced two radiators with chrome towel rails. Since then, I’ve fitted underfloor heating, and designer radiators in other rooms.

I’m now redecorating the kitchen/dining room and lounge with a plan to fit graphite grey column radiators and a 4-column radiator with a wooden seat on top for the kitchen. This will be fun at the back door to sit on and take your boots on and off – also to warm the cold drafts.

There’s no reason why you can’t mix and match your radiators *INSERT LINK*. There’s no reason why you need to have a uniform colour or style of radiators in your home.

Remember, designer radiators are more about making a statement, and there’s nothing stopping you from having designer radiators in your en-suite as a bit of a sanctuary, but have standard white pressed steel radiators elsewhere in the house.


I hope you’ve enjoyed reading. Hopefully I’ve managed to help give you a better idea of whether or not you should put designer radiators in your family home. Remember, they don’t all need to be the same – nor do you have to fork out for them all at once. However, it’s safe to say they’re not for everybody.

Do you have any questions about designer radiators? Let me know in the comments. I’ll be happy to help!

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