Frequently Asked Questions
For more information:
Please also check our About Infrared pages
or Contact Us if you have any other questions.
Heaters must satisfy 3 criteria:
Electrical and mechanical safety
Our panels are tested and verified by the German research establishment TÜV and certified “GS” (Geprufte Sicherheit – or “Proven Safety and Health”) which gives then certification to Australia / New Zealand Standards AS/NZS 60335.2.30: 2015 & AS/NZS 60335.1: 2011 Inc A1-2.
They are further verified by the Standards Association of Australia (SAA).
EMC (Electromagnetic emissions)
Appliances comprising “Resistive Elements” fall into the lowest EMC emissions category. In Europe our panels are CE- certified (Corformité Européenne) and in Australia / New Zealand carry the RCM mark.
Safe materials used in construction
Our panels are RoHS and REACH Compliant.
We could get really geeky on this but will try to keep it simple…
Herschel Select and Select XL Panels contain the Herschel COSIX element, which is carbon-based. When a current is applied to it, the whole surface heats up uniformly, making a higher average surface temperature for a given wattage than wire-based elements (which have an insulation space between the wires that does not heat: requiring a higher wire temperature and therefore more watts to achieve the same average surface temperature).
The heat emitted is radiant, averaging between 85 – 95°C or 5-12 microns of “far infrared” energy, which is the range at which our skin and many normal household furnishings including fabrics and wood most effectively absorb heat and is indeed called the “vital range”. (Both higher and lower wavelengths are not as effectively absorbed – implying wastage of energy).
This depends on the ambient temperature and the levels of insulation of your building. Herschel Far Infrared heaters work by warming up the thermal mass of the room and on initial start up, this may take several hours and in some cases days, depending on the area to be heated (a damp basement room for example). It is very important to go through this phase to warm the thermal mass of the room for the heaters to work efficiently – cold walls and floors will not give occupants a feeling of warmth and wellbeing. For the system to work effectively all surfaces in the room should be at the same comfortable temperature and will start radiating back.
We recommend leaving the heaters on constantly until the room reaches the desired temperature. They then work most effectively by “topping up” the temperature using a thermostat control, being operated on a timer or a combination of both.
Don’t worry, Herschel far infrared heaters are completely safe.
Herschel far infrared heating is 100% natural for our bodies and our well-being. The human body is designed to accept and emit infrared waves.
Far Infrared heating works on the basis of gentle, long-wave Infrared which penetrates the air and heats solids. If you like the warmth of the sun then you will love the feeling you get from your new infrared heating system. However, unlike the sun our heaters only emit safe infrared heat, not the harmful UV. So, you get the feeling of the sun without the damaging rays (and minus the suntan unfortunately!).
Please also see the FAQ on Are your panels safe to touch?
Panels are very easy to install.
All you need to consider when installing infrared is:
- Provision of an electrical source;
- Ensuring enough strength exists in the wall / ceiling where you are going to hang it.
This makes Infrared significantly easier to install than oil or gas boilers, heat pumps, underfloor heating etc and minor disruption.
As they are electric we do recommend they are fitted by an Accredited Herschel Installer or a suitably qualified electrician.
It depends on the product. Many of our products come with a plug and can simply be plugged in. However, we recommend that they are properly installed and hardwired to the mains in which case installation should be carried out by a competent person or a qualified electrician according to national regulations.
Herschel accredited installers are fully trained and experienced in installing our heaters and can provide advice on the correct sizing and locating of the panels.
Panels should be sited to maximise the throw and spread of the far infrared heat without obstruction. The panels radiate heat in all directions and any obstructions will interfere with the performance of the panels. Furniture should not be placed directly in the path of the panel. For example, if the panel was sited on a wall ABOVE a sofa this would warm the room and the sofa and would be working effectively, However, if the panel was located low down behind the sofa, the panel would heat the back of the sofa and not the room and would NOT work effectively. This is very different to conventional “radiators” which heat the air and are often sited behind furniture.
Herschel panels radiate far infrared heat through the air which is then absorbed by objects and surfaces of the room. The most effective place for you to mount your panels is usually higher up on the walls or on the ceiling.
The heaters will be less effective if they are mounted directly opposite a window or door as there will be no thermal mass to absorb the energy.
You will feel heat from the panels to a distance of around 2.5-3m, so if you want to have the feeling of the warmth from the panels try to mount them within 3m of where you are normally located within the room.
We recommend you contacting us or one of our authorised distributors, installers or re-sellers for more advice.
Electrical Safety in bathrooms divides into four zones.
In zone ‘0’ which defines being within in the sink bowl, bath tub or shower cubicle any electrical appliance must be direct current and low voltage.
Zone 1 is any zone above a bath or sink or around an unenclosed shower that is prone to splashing. Any electric appliance operated in this zone must have a protection rating of IP44 or higher.
Zone 2 is a 60cm safe zone outside zone 1 to which the same IP44 minimum rule also applies.
“No Zone” is any other area in which theoretically no ingress protection need be applied.
All electrical appliances in a bathroom should be protected with a 30 ma RCD (Residual Circuit Device).
This means that any Herschel panel heater may be installed within zones 1 or 2 (or “no zone”). If you are seeking to install an Advantage or Aspect space heater, please seek the advice of your Herschel Installer, since IP ratings vary.
The wires can be chased into the wall and completely hidden or else discretely fitted within cable trunking, in much the same way as you would do when installing any electrical device (i.e. a wall mounted flatscreen TV). Please consult your electrician or a Herschel Accredited installer for more advice.
At Herschel we have the most extensive experience of the application of Far Infrared globally and have developed our heaters to provide the best combination of quality, performance and price available. We have the largest range of heaters for the widest range of applications. All of our heaters have been extensively tested to International standards and carry best in class warranties. We are the only Far Infrared specialist in New Zealand to provide and insist upon full training and accreditation for our installers, distributors and re-sellers.
Integrity is one of our core values and we will never allow our heaters to be mis-specified or mis-sold. You can be sure that when you purchase a Herschel heater you will be purchasing the right heater for the right application and will have many happy years of use.
The best way to heat your water is to have an immersion heater or use a thermodynamic system.
If you have solar PV you can use modern microgen power diverters which will use the electricity generated from the solar panels to heat your hot water and also some of your infrared panels.
The Total Cost of owning a Herschel Infrared panel is cheaper over its lifetime than owning a heat pump over its lifetime. Please see our article on this topic.
There is a risk of injury from touching any form of heater and Herschel panels are no different. However, a key benefit of Herschel panels, unlike conventional heaters, is that they can be mounted higher up on walls or ceilings – reducing the likelihood of accidentally touching them or falling against them. We always advise this, especially in areas where young children or the elderly are present.
Our Herschel Inspire and Select panel heaters (excluding our Herschel IR space heating range) have surface temperatures of around 85-95°C. If you do touch one of these panels you will perceive this as hot on initial contact but, provided you do not continue to touch the panel, you are unlikely to scald or burn.
The reason that you can touch Herschel panels without immediately injuring yourself is because a Herschel infrared panel typically has a heat energy or “watt density” of 0.09 watts per cm² – an energy level that the skin can absorb and conduct away from the area of contact at least in the short term. This is different from, say, touching a metal kettle at the same temperature, because the kettle has a watt density of between 30 – 70 watts per cm². It is the heat energy in the object and its transfer rate into your skin that does the damage.
Warning: Please note that prolonged contact with any heater, Herschel included, will result in injury. Please also note that the Herschel IR space heating range all utilise Ceramic elements which run at far higher temperatures and would cause immediate injury if touched. These heaters must always be mounted in accordance with our instructions & never be touched when switched on or for 30 minutes after use.
Please also see the FAQ on Are your heaters safe?
Our heaters all come with a 5 year guarantee and are expected to last decades because of the advanced heating elements that are used. Herschel Far Infrared heaters require no maintenance or servicing. Our heaters use solid state elements unlike water-based heating or fan-assisted systems, which often require servicing, inspection and repair costs. And unlike split heat pumps you won’t have to contemplate performing an entire re-installation every 10 years.
Herschel Infrared heaters and control products are certified to national safety standards.
We do not build thermostats into our heaters because far infrared works by heating the fabric of the building which then radiates heat back. Therefore it is the temperature of the room which is important, not the temperature of the panel. Built in thermostats are not as effective because the close proximity of the thermostat to the heater means that it is impossible to correctly measure the room temperature.
In order to emit far infrared at the right waveband, our heaters are either “on” or “off” (it is not possible to vary the temperature of the heater itself). Our heaters can simply be switched on or off at the plug/power source. However, to control the panel and the required heat within the room we recommend the use of a Thermostat. For whole building control and for maximum flexibility we strongly recommend using a building management system.
For more information see Zoning and Control.
Herschel Far Infrared emits the biologically most significant Comfort Heating wavelengths because skin content is 80% water which absorbs heat most efficiently from wavelengths of 3 microns and lower (Far Infrared). Far Infrared is better absorbed by the skin, is less transmissive (passes through) and is less reflected.
Infrared wavelengths themselves are divided into 3 distinct categories, due to the different physical characteristics of each wavelength.
“Near Infrared”, “IRA”, “Short wave” or “Bright” Infrared heaters and “Heat Lamps” operate between 0.78 microns to 1.4 microns and emit temperatures of 1300°C and more plus a certain amount of “deep red” visible light. Applications of this technology include heat lamps for food preparation; large volume “Space” heating requirements and certain carefully controlled medical applications.
“Medium Infrared”, “IRB” or “Medium Wave “ infrared heaters operate between 1.4 microns and 3.0 microns and emit temperatures around 1000°C. Applications of this technology include autoclaves and plastic welding. This is the wavelength sought by heat-seeking missiles.
“Far infrared”, “IRC”, “Long wave” or “Dark Radiators” operate in the wavelengths above 3 microns. Far Infrared elements emit much lower temperatures, typically around the 85-95°C mark and no visible light. This is the wavelength used in domestic “comfort” heating and Infrared Sauna applications.
“Far Infrared” is consequently the only applicable technology for a “comfort” heating application.
Please find these on our Datasheets page.
Panels are to be signed for ONLY if there is NO damage to the packaging on delivery. If there is any damage to the packaging please do not sign for the goods. Contact Customer Services at Herschel, +64 21 334499, within 24 hours of receipt to notify us of the problem. Please quote your order number in all correspondence.