Why are radiators placed under windows?

One question that is often asked when it comes to radiator placement is why radiators are placed under windows and whether it is possible to locate radiators in other areas of a room.

In the past, radiators have often been located under the window in a room because this is the coldest area in the room. Historically, older windows would be single glazed, and this type of window used to let a lot of cold air into the room. This is one of the reasons the radiator was placed in this location as it would then help counteract the cold air and draft.

White Column Radiator

In a room with single glazing, the reason it is more efficient to place the radiator under the window is due to conduction. On a traditional radiator most of the heat that comes from the radiator is emitted as hot air through the top of the radiator. This interacts with the cold air from the window, and this cold air then helps push the hot air from the radiator into the room. This in turn keeps the room warmer than it would be if the radiator was in a different location. In a house with single glazed windows installed, this is still the best place to locate a radiator since single glazing isn’t very efficient.

Today, many homes, especially new builds will have double glazed or even tripled glazed windows which makes these windows exceptionally efficient. Since these windows tend not to leak as much heat and introduce less cold air into the home then there is more flexibility in the placement of the radiator in the room.

However, even though with modern glazing helping the placement of a radiator become more flexible, many people still opt to put a radiator under the window simply because it is a space within the house where furniture is not often placed, so it makes a great spot for the radiator. One of the reasons for this is that the efficiency of the radiator is greatly reduced if it is blocked by furniture. That is why it is never recommended to place sofas and large objects directly in front of the radiator. In these situations where furniture is blocking a radiator then the object will benefit from the heat mostly, and not the room itself.

For those who want more control over their interior design then there are a lot of flexible options available here at Mr Central Heating available for those homes fitted with modern windows. In addition to placement, radiators today come in a wide range of sizes and shapes and these styles of radiator can be used more creatively in the home. Try our range of compact radiators for example.

Traditionally a horizontal radiator was the predominate radiator found in the home, simply because this shape and design fitted neatly underneath a window. Now there are many vertical and alternatively shaped radiators available which can be placed in a multitude of locations. In addition to this, modern radiators do not necessarily have to be drab, functional apparatus that stands out for all the wrong reasons. Today, radiators come in a wide range of designs and colours and some of which can even be used as a focal point in the room, as opposed to something to be ignored.

View our full range of Radiators here

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