Do Radiator Covers Block Heat?

Radiator covers can help improve the look and feel of your home without sacrificing heat efficiency, depending on how well they’re designed. 

Sometimes, adding a simple decoration to a room can make all of the difference. Radiator Cabinets are a brilliant touch to any room, offering bespoke covers that give you a lovely display shelf, saving you time and money on expensive plumbing work to replace the radiator itself. 

But do they block heat? A question that’s now essential due to the increase in energy prices!

Poorly designed radiator covers can interrupt air flow and block the convection of the radiator. Warm air rises up through the radiator cover, so it’s essential there are air vents or air gaps at the top of the unit. Some covers simply don’t have these vents, therefore the heat is trapped and unable to travel through the rest of your home.  

A typical example of a poorly designed radiator cover, with no vent or air gap.

How do your radiators generate heat? 

Radiators generate heat through radiation, convection and conduction.

Radiation turns into heat when it comes into contact with surfaces, causing convection to occur where the air is heated which in turn expands and rises.

Conduction then occurs, where the heat travels to your radiator, warming fins and the metal surface. The more surface area your radiator has, the more warmth will be spread around the room. Then through the convection process, the air around the radiator is heated. Cold air is drawn in at the base of the radiator and warm air expels to the front and top of the radiator. 

Therefore, it’s important there is a reasonable air-gap between the radiator and the inside of the cabinet. Its critical cold air can be drawn in at the base and the warm air can rise up and out.

If there are any factors which block or interfere with this process, it will significantly impact the energy efficiency of your radiator. 

Our Mirrored Cabinets have vents at the top and sides, as well as large air-gaps to the front for heat to escape easily.

Metal Grilles for Energy Efficiency 

Wood based materials are the most common material used in radiator covers, even though it isn’t the best conductor of heat. It is, however, the best material to protect all family members from injuries from hot surfaces. 

Unlike materials such as sheet metal, wood won’t get hot. The added benefit of vents and air gaps in your radiator cover helps to improve the heat output, making our bespoke radiator cabinets the perfect idea to keep your rooms not only stylish but warm too.

Our Regency grilles are absolutely stunning and instantly become a feature piece in any room. Although they are a significant investment, they guarantee almost zero heat-loss. This is due to material used, as the perforated metal grilles and mesh are fantastic materials for heat conduction. 

No noticeable loss of heat or your money back*

Here at Radiator Cabinets, we’re not only passionate about making your radiators compliment your home decor, but we truly believe in keeping your home warm and energy efficient. We’re so confident in what we do, that we offer an energy efficiency promise! 

* Offer is based on room temperature after 45 minutes of heating being switched on. Radiator  must be the correct size for the room in the first instance. The tolerance is 5%. We reserve the right to offer replacement parts with additional ventilation/ air-gaps.

About The Author

“I’m John Molloy, founder and head tea boy at Radiator Cabinets UK. Having studied furniture design and craftsmanship at college and University, I then went on to work in the industry before establishing Radiator Cabinets UK. My mission is to provide a quality, commissioned piece of furniture to every customer. I have found a solution for most scenarios over the years, but feel free to test me! My wife and I run RCUK together whist raising two very busy boys, always something happening, and wouldn’t have it any other way!”