The benefits of natural convector radiators in care & nursing homes

Regardless of ownership and management when considering hAutron in living room LReating in care homes, all service providers must take into consideration the extra duty of care owed to often vulnerable elderly, frail or infirm people. In addition, increasing numbers of care home residents suffer mental impairments including dementia, which can seriously affect their judgement and personal safety when exposed to hot surfaces.

Choosing Autron LST radiators for installation in care and nursing homes offers residents and service providers distinct benefits. Here are five…

1. Safety

Section 10.11 of the HSE Health and Safety in Care Homes guide, states that where vulnerable residents may come into contact with radiators and associated pipework, these should be designed or covered so that the maximum accessible surface temperature does not exceed 43°C. It has been recognised for many years that skin exposed to temperatures above 43°C can suffer serious scalding and burns, within seconds. It is not unusual for skin to thin as one ages and with slower reaction times the elderly can be particularly at risk from scalding and burns.

All service providers, consultants and contractors can specify Autron, safe in the knowledge that all Autron natural convector LST radiators equipped with the emitter prefix “S” are fully compliant with the HSE guidelines.Autron Emmiter Close Up

Autron radiators with “S” rated heat emitters have been tested at BSRIA to be compliant when used with water flow temperatures up to 82°C and a 71°C return temperature, effectively keeping all surfaces including the outlet grille, to a maximum temperature of 43°C.


2. Heating effectiveness and efficiency

Both the long term environmental and current austerity agenda mean that public sector and commercial care home service providers are looking to make energy efficiency savings wherever possible.

As an Autron natural convector radiator contains far less water than a traditional steel panel radiator of the same Wattage output, it takes less boiler energy to heat it up which can result in lower care home fuel bills.

In addition as the greatly reduced volume of water inside an Autron copper and aluminium emitter heats up faster and conversly cools down more quickly than a traditional steel panel radiator LST, heating in a care home’s corridors, bedrooms, bathrooms and communal rooms only needs to come on as and when required. The speed of response of a natural convector radiator system means that any heat buffering effect is also considerably reduced.

Installing Autron natural convector LSTs in a care home environment really does provide a a win:win for residents and service providers. Residents experience effective heat quickly as and when required, while home operators benefit from reduced heating costs through improved energy usage.

3. Space saving

Space is at a premium in the majority of UK residential care homes, particularly non-purpose built buildings such as redeveloped residential properties. The Doc.M part of the current UK Building Regulations advises that corridors and passage ways in healthcare facilities including care and nursing homes, should be sufficiently wide to allow wheelchair access.

Even if capable of walking, elderly, frail, infirm or disabled people may well require additional space around them to allow for physical ambulation aids such as frames. In addition Doc. M notes that consideration should be given to the likely obstruction caused by fixtures, including radiators.

Fortunately Autron can provide an LST solution that is the perfect installation solution where space is a major issue.

The Autron Slenderline is the slimmest natural convector LST radiator on the UK market. With a wall to front face depth of only 75mm, the Slendeline is ideal for installation where space is at a premium such as in Autron Slenderline in carehome1corridors and passageways, but the availability of a safe surface temperature heating source is a must.

The Slenderline’s profile is so narrow that it can sit comfortably below handrails without protruding into the walk ways. The range is available in heights from 290mm to 1030mm and in lengths from 661mm to 2911mm, with heat outputs up to 2570W@ Δt 50°C.

The Elmhurst Care Home case study provides further information on a recent Slenderline installation.

4. Good looking and practical

The Autron Sovereign and Slenderline ranges of LST radiator are designed to be smart both on the inside and outside.Sovereign C in corridor

The front and sides of all Autron radiator cases are manufactured from durable 1.2mm zinc coated steel and finished in a tough white powder coated finish. The front panel is made up of a number of individual panels which are welded together on their return edges. This creates a single very robust panel. This means Autron radiators continue to look good for longer. The attractive grilles are manufactured from anodised aluminium and compliment the overall appearance.

The Sovereign range is Autron’s premier range and is available in large number of case styles including floor standing and wall mounted models. Each style is available in a choice of 3 case heights across 12 case lengths.

All Sovereign LST radiator cases feature rounded, bullnose corners to minimise injuries in case of falls against the units.

The C & D models and larger output CC & DD Sovereign models feature a solid top case surface with front facing outlet grilles. This makes these models ideal for installation in bedrooms where residents can place  personal objects ornaments on the radiator tops, without fear of objects obstructing air flow or falling into the radiator casings.

5. Ease of cleaning and maintenance of hygiene

The tough polyester powder coating on all Autron radiator cases not only provides an easy clean surface, but is impregnated with BioCote® – a world class anti-microbial protection.BioCote logo

BioCote is proven to reduce the risk of healthcare associated infections including E.Coli and MRSA, by reducing live germ and microbe colonies on treated surfaces, by up to 99.96% in less than 2 hours.

The grilles on all radiator cases are easily removed for cleaning and maintenance.

In addition by simply removing a small number of screws, Autron outer casings can be easily removed to allow regular cleaning of the internal aluminium and copper heat emitters. These can be gently vacuumed to remove any accumulated dust.

Read our installation case studies to discover more about how Autron can help provide a better environment for care home residents and better operating efficiencies for service providers.

See the Autron radiator product range.