How do heated towel rails work?
A heated towel rail is a bathroom upgrade that’s more than a one-trick pony. As well as keeping your towels toasty before use, a heated towel rail can also help them dry between uses, which is especially helpful during the cooler winter months.
Depending on the style of rack, Head of RACV Trades Kieran Davies, says heated towel rails generally warm up to about 50C and run on the lowest wattage possible, making them a relatively cost-effective appliance to run.
How long do heated towel rails take to warm up?
Most electric towel rails heat up and cool down quickly. Some towel rails can heat up in as little as a few minutes and reach maximum temperatures within about half an hour. If you hang a wet towel straight out of the washing machine, it can dry within a few hours on a heated towel rack, negating the need to switch on a clothes dryer.
How hot to heated towel rails get?
This varies by type and brand but, on average, most heated towel rails are designed to reach temperatures of between 40 and 60 degrees Celsius. They can, however, get even hotter than this is if there is a towel draped over them. Depending on the maximum temperature of your unit, heated towel rails may be hot to touch so it is important to exercise caution, especially if you have young children in the house.
Do heated towel rails use a lot of energy?
The amount of energy heated towel rails use differs from brand to brand. Most heated towel rails consume 100 to 200 watts of electricity per hour. Some use as little as 60 watts. How much energy it uses will depend on the size and style of the towel rail.
“If you have a large 200-watt heated towel rail running all day, at 35 cents per kilowatt-hour, the total running cost would be around $1.68,” Davies says. “This is comparable to having a few old-style incandescent light bulbs switched on or a couple of modern LED TVs.”
If you only run a heated towel rail for a few hours per day (say four, which is about how long it takes to dry a sopping wet towel straight out of the washing machine), that cost goes down to around $0.40 cents per day.
“That’s a lot less than the cost of using a clothes dryer to dry and warm your towels,” Davies says.