Why it’s important to keep your electric radiators clean

Author: Rointe


In addition to looking much better, keeping your electric radiators clean and free from dust and dirt is important to help reduce your heating costs.


When dust and dirt accumulate between the radiator fins and blades, they hinder natural convection. This means your product must work harder to heat the room, increasing the amount of energy consumed.

So it’s important to take appropriate measures and thoroughly clean your electric radiators at least once or twice a year. We recommend doing so before the winter season starts, in September for example, and during the traditional “spring-clean”.

Don’t mistake us, cleaning your radiators won’t make you rich overnight, but spending a few minutes ensuring your radiators are in tip-top condition can extend and produce savings over their lifetime.

Why does my electric radiator attract dust?

There is dust in the air all the time. It’s everywhere and it’s probably not all dust either.

There may be pet hair, nicotine residue (if you are a smoker) and all sorts of other mixed particles.

The reason they trapped in and around the radiator is natural air convection, which helps circulate heat throughout the room.

Hot air rises and cold air falls. So as the air cools, it takes the dust down with it. It’s then sucked into the electric radiator, dust will begin to accumulate on its inner fins.

You may never have noticed before because let’s face it, who checks the inner depths of their radiator on a regular basis? If this is the case, you may find a large amount of dust and dirt inside. Don’t worry, we’re here to explain how you can clean your electric radiator with minimal fuss.

What equipment do I need to clean my electric radiator?

  • Vacuum cleaner
  • Warm soapy water / pH neutral cleaner
  • Non abrasive sponges and rags
  • Towel or a dust sheet
  • A long or telescopic pole to reach the inside of the radiator

How to clean you radiator

With just a few simple steps, your electric radiator will once again have a clean and shiny appearance, ensuring correct operation and possibly saving you extra money.

Step 1: Turn off your radiator

Before you start cleaning your electric radiators, it’s important to make sure they are turned off. Safety is essential while cleaning, as we all know that water and electricity don’t mix well together!

Step 2: Vacuum your radiator

To start, try to suck up as much dust as possible from the inside, around and under the radiator.

Test all your vacuum cleaner accessories to see which one works best. It might even be capable of vacuuming between the fins. But don’t worry if it doesn’t, there are simple ways to fix this problem.

A) The stick or ruler method

Take a long, thin piece of wood – something like a measuring stick or a one-meter ruler – wrap a cloth around the end and secure it with some tape. Be careful not to cover the fabric with too much tape or put too much fabric around the stick, as this can make it too thick to get into the smaller recesses of the radiator.

Place a towel or cloth under the electric radiator (to collect dust or dirt that falls and keep the floor clean) and start gently pushing the stick inside the radiator, from top to bottom, pushing dust and dirt out until everything is very clean.

Repeat this action on each element of your radiator, until you have removed most (if not all) of the dust and dirt.

B) The hairdryer method

Believe it or not, a simple and efficient way to get the dust off the inside and back of the radiator is to use a hairdryer.

Just point the nozzle of the dryer towards the slots on the top of the radiator and turn it on at full power.

This will help you to extract a lot of dust and dirt from the inside and the back of the product. Be sure to put a suitable cloth or towel on the floor before you start. you can then use your vacuum to suck up the dust and debris that comes out of your electric radiator.

Step 3: Cleaning with soap and water

Pour a little liquid dishwasher or your favourite cleaning product (pH neutral) into a bucket of water.

Remember to check first of all that your radiator is off. Dip a sponge or cloth in the water and wring it out to make it slightly damp. Clean the exterior, being careful not to splash drops on the floor and wipe it clean with a dry cloth.

Make sure you use a non-abrasive sponge, cloth and soap. For example, an acidic cleaner might damage the aluminium of your electric radiator and so will a brillo pad.

Additional tips

  • Vacuum your electric radiator regularly. This will not only help protect you against allergies, but will also help ensure that your heater works perfectly at all times.
  • If you want to give your radiator a thorough cleaning, you can take it off the wall completely, so you can clean the back and the wall behind or even paint behind it.

Things to consider when cleaning your electric radiator

Cleaning your electric radiators is fairly easy to do once you’ve got the hang of it, but there are a few things to keep in mind when doing this job.

  • It is important to be careful with the type of materials we use. Avoid the use of abrasive materials, such as metal scouring pads, as they can scratch and damage the surface. Acidic cleaners (maybe lemon-scented) could wear away the aluminium.
  • If there are difficult stains, spray active oxygen, let it act for a few minutes, wipe it vigorously with a cloth or sponge.
  • Never try to open your electric radiator to clean it, as you could damage some of its parts.
Learn more about our range of electric heating systems including: radiators, towel rails, domestic hot water heaters, underfloor heating and smart heating controls. Or shop now to find the right electric heating option for you.
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