Installing a Heated Towel Rail
Heated towel radiator guide
Everyone loves having a warm towel, especially on colder days. With warm towels, you stay warm for longer after a hot bath or shower, but to keep your towels warm you need a heated towel rail. A heated towel rail is a popular bathroom accessory in which the rails heat up to keep your towels warm. These heated rails can use either hot water from your central heating system or electricity to stay warm.
They are available in a wide variety of styles and the electrical type can be hardwired or simply use a power cord which needs to be plugged down to an electrical outlet. To fit an electrically heated towel rail in a bathroom you will need a qualified electrician. To fit a towel rail which is connected to your central heating system you should really use a qualified plumber. To find a suitable tradesman quickly and safely, please use the free service on this website to both find tradesmen and to read reviews from other previous customers.
Average costs for having a heated radiator supplied and fitted
|Job Description||Duration||Material Cost||Labour Cost|
|Electric towel rail installation||1 day||£220||£200|
|Plumbed in towel rail install||1 day||£250||£200|
All of the above costs and durations are averages only and will vary depending upon location, complexity of job, etc.
Things to consider with heated towel rail installations
Hardwired electrical towel rails can easily be hung on all any wall but on a stud wall should try and locate it so that at least two of the supports can be fixed into the wall studs. Of course, this is not a problem if you have concrete balls. Although you can buy electrically heated towel rails with a power cord which can be simply plugged into a standard electrical socket this is not possible in a bathroom where standard three-pin sockets cannot be fitted. in any case, the heated towel rail should have its own dedicated circuit so a qualified electrician would be required in any case so you may as well have the towel rail safely hardwired into the mains electricity supply.
Hardwired towel rails look neater as the wires are hidden but they are more expensive to install. Most electrically heated towel rails are made of stainless steel so rust is not a concern even when hanging damp towels over them. The only disadvantage of hardwired towel rails is the cost of hiring an electrician.
Doing it Yourself
Most bathrooms in the UK already have a radiator connected to the central heating system. Therefore, if you choose a towel rail with the same width as the existing radiator in the bathroom, replacing that radiator with that heated towel rail is quite an easy job. Just remember to turn off the heating system and to isolate the radiator using isolation valves before you disconnect any pipework. Once a pipework is disconnected simply remove the radiator from the wall and connect the new radiator.
There is no need to drain the central heating system or to remove the floorboards with this method. However, if you are not comfortable with plumbing work then you should hire a local plumber to do this job for you. If you are fitting an electrically heated towel rail, you need to remember that these will come under electrical wiring regulations as bathrooms are designated as special locations under Part P regulations. So for electric towel rails in the bathroom, you will always need to hire an electrician and this type of job cannot be taken on as a DIY project.
Towel Rail Benefits
- Heated towel rails are an affordable luxury!
- Electrically heated towel rails are easier to install
- Plumbed in "wet" towel rails are cheaper to run
- Dual fuel towel rails offer the best of both worlds but are more expensive to buy
Hiring a Tradesman Checklist
- Always get at least 2 quotes before hiring.
- Never pay the full amount upfront.
- Get the quote in writing.
- For any payment you make, always get a receipt.
- On more expensive jobs, ask for references.
- Check if the tradesman is a member of any trades associations.
- Make sure the tradesman has public liability insurance.