Early in the 19th Century public interest grew in matters of hygiene and personal comfort and as a result there was a sharp decline in disease. This interest was met with the development of many domestic household luxuries like central heating, fresh water, piped gas and a network of underground cast iron sewers. Demand for these new found luxuries increased and with the coming of the industrial revolution the standard of living throughout the UK improved greatly. Mass production made many of these luxuries more affordable and simple cast iron radiators made central heating available to many households.
Wealthy people with large country houses started having elaborate and specially designed radiators to match their elegant interiors. Some of these radiators were extremely decorative and included special warming chambers for plates and linen, and some had boxes build around them with ornamental grills providing a decorative radiator cover. These were the earliest examples of the modern day radiator covers and radiator cabinets which are now manufactured by specialist companies and are seen in households the world over.
A good radiator cabinet company will provide a “made to measure” service” – they will visit your home, measure up the radiators you wish to have covered, then make the cabinet just for you, in the style and colour of your choice. Alternatively, radiator covers can now be supplied in fixed sizes as flat packs or ready assembled. Some manufactures supply adjustable radiator covers that can be resized to fit your radiators. Most radiator covers are painted in a choice of colours which can be specified when you place your order – or you can have them supplied unpainted, than paint them yourself with colours that you know will match the decor of your room. It is also possible to have radiator cabinets finished with real wood veneer and some are now supplied with a frosted glass front panel.
The grills at the front and sides can be decorated in a variety of patterns, making the radiator cabinet an attractive feature on any room, whilst providing a valuable protective function – particularly if small children or elderly adults are around! The front pannel can normally be removed so that access is gained to the thermostat controls.
In addition to providing decorative and protective features, radiator cabinets also draw in cool air at the bottom then direct the heat flow into the room, rather than allowing the heat to disappear up the wall or behind curtains.