Why am I seeing LOT20 everywhere?
If you have been browsing the BestHeating store for an electric radiator, heating element or heated towel rail, you’ve probably come across the term LOT20 and you might have asked yourself what LOT20 actually is.
So to help you make the right heating choices, in this quick guide, we’ll explain exactly what LOT20 is and how it affects you and the purchases you make.
What is LOT20?
If you’re into your electrical heating, then LOT20 is great news for you.
In short, LOT20 is recent EU legislation (yes BEFORE Brexit) that is designed to help remove inefficient tech from the market and help to reduce the energy required by products that heat our homes.
It should help to achieve the UK’s carbon reduction targets and make for much cleaner and efficient home heating – as well as meaning that you should save a little money on the cost of heating your home.
What does LOT20 mean?
Without getting bogged down in loads of jargon, LOT20 is basically a way to ensure that smarter and more intelligent heating systems are the future.
It states a new ‘minimum efficiency rating’ for all local space heaters – though that does vary depending on the kind of system they use to work.
Efficiency is calculated based on how energy efficient the product is or isn’t – you know the drill and you’ve probably seen labels like this before, so it won’t be too unfamiliar.
It’s simple, really.
An old-school style storage heater with standard on/off dials and an inaccurate thermostat is likely to score low on the efficiency scale, whereas newer, more accurate smart technology is going to score highly.
What LOT20 is trying to achieve is the removal of manually and poorly controlled temperature regulators and have them all replaced with smarter heating systems.
This is good news for everyone and the planet too.
How does LOT20 work?
LOT20 works like this –
Most electric heaters sold into the UK will be given a baseline efficiency rating of 30%, although ‘fixed electric’ appliances – like the electric radiators in our store – will be set at 38%.
Portable heaters (like the one your grandma has) will be rated a little differently and anything below the 250W threshold will have different specifications altogether.
These are the minimum standards and requirements of any future electric heating item that is to be sold across Europe.
Although products that fall below these standards can still be sold, they should no longer be manufactured – this will ensure that consumers can no longer buy the poorly performing electric heaters and instead start to invest in smart thermostats and other technologies that use less energy and perform more efficiently.
How does LOT20 affect me?
Well, in all honesty, it shouldn’t – at least not in a way that will be noticeable to you.
Like I said (typed) above – the idea is pretty simple.
Stopping inefficient items from being manufactured should slowly remove them from the market – once they become old and worn out, they will only be able to be replaced by better, more efficient items.
“But won’t that be more expensive for us?” comes the cry – well, apparently, no.
Though you could reasonably expect the price of smart tech to rise, the Ecodesign Directive addresses this directly, by stating: “ecodesign requirements should not affect the functionality or affordability of local space heaters”, so the chances are things shouldn’t get any more expensive to buy.
In fact, you are likely to be able to pick up a bit of a heating bargain as shops begin to slash the price of the stuff that doesn’t meet the requirements – but keep in mind, there’s a reason they’re getting rid of them – they’re inefficient!
So it’s probably best to invest in smart heating tech instead.
What products does LOT20 affect?
You may be surprised by the number of items LOT20 applies to, so here’s a list of some of the things it does and doesn’t affect.
Things it WILL affect –
- Storage Heaters
- Direct Acting Heaters
- Portable Heaters
- Radiant Heaters
- Electric Fires
- Gas Fires
- Underfloor Heating
- Electric Radiators
Things LOT20 WON’T affect –
- Sauna Stove
- Slave Heaters
- Tubular Heaters
- Towel Rails
- Frost Protection Heaters
- Air Curtains
- Outdoor Local Space Heaters
There will be other products that are affected by this change, so be sure to check when making a purchase that you are getting the latest design of a product and not an end of line piece that isn’t compliant.
Can I find out more about LOT20?
Sure, you can.
If you’d like to find out more info about LOT20 compliance and which products it may affect, just visit the LOT 20 website.
There is also a lot more info online and it’s important to note that although this is a European directive, we still must comply with LOT20 here in the UK (Brexit or no Brexit) and all relevant products in our store are fully compliant.
John trained in journalism before finding his way to the BestHeating Advice Centre team. He uses his journalism skills to meticulously research heating topics and bring you the latest news and views on all things home heating related. He’ll also beat you at any sport that involves a cue!