I invited one of my Christchurch Creative clients, the director of designer radiators and towel rails specialist DQ Heating, Stewart Double for his professional opinion on key heating trends this season. Stewart discusses some of the latest styles and designs I think you’ll love and which heating trends are proving popular. You can also discover some of his favourite designer radiators and towel rails and why colour is becoming such a popular feature. Stewart offers expert advice for those who want to update their radiators or towel rails and he reveals why being a member of MARC (Manufacturers’ Association of Radiators & Convectors) is so important for the industry and the consumer.
Why are interior designers drawn to designer radiators for heating the home?
Radiators in modern terms are now being viewed as part of the overall design of a room. These can instantly improve the aesthetics and they are not just a functioning necessity. The model and colour variations available today make designer radiators more of a centrepiece. So, you no longer have to hide them behind the curtains.
Describe some of the latest designs/styles we should look out for?
Multi-functioning and space-saving heated towel rails for the bathroom have hit the ground running. These not only fill the need for warming your towels, but they can work as storage, too….or just as a unique way to display things in your bathroom. Our Fender and Oakham models fit the bill for all functions, with the ability to fit shelves to any of the horizontal bars.
How do you work with interior designers/decorators/retailers on projects?
We can facilitate our customers’ needs with our in-house powder coating plant. This way, we can them the freedom to choose from a massive colour range, including our DQ special finishes. We can help achieve the right design aspect with our colour matching service; this allows designers the choice to either blend their radiators or towel rails, or to have a contrasting colour.
Are modern or classic designer radiators most popular?
I would say that traditional radiators are still the most popular, but with a modern twist. The traditional designer radiators have been reinvented by the finishing options that are now on the market; to take a classic and give it a modern look is very ‘now’.
Which style of designer towel rails are in demand right now and why?
In an ever-changing industry, styles come and go. However, the trend that seems to have staying power is the lacquered finish. The ability for your heated towel rail to suit your bathroom furniture is a major plus for the consumer, and one that’s not going to go away soon.
Which trends have you noticed in designer radiators this year?
The environmental issue seems to be something that our customers are concerned with more and more. This, in particular, tends to relate to where we source our products, and the materials that they’re manufactured from. And the importance of how well radiators function in the home is fast becoming a hot topic.
We give the correct information regarding outputs for all our products; if you do not achieve the right outputs, this can have a massive impact on the environment. If you are under-heating your home, this will dilute your comfort. However, if you are over-heating it, it will cost more and have a negative effect on your carbon footprint.
What are your favourite designer radiator and towel rails?
My favourite radiator style is still the multi-column. I feel they suit any type of décor, modern or classic. Our Modus range can be ordered ‘made-to-measure’ with a massive amount of colour options to choose from. You could fit out an entire house, with radiators in the exact size you need, in the exact finish you love, all from the Modus range!
For the bathroom it would be the Rosa in the copper lacquer finish. This is a classic tube-on-tube design, which is manufactured in stainless steel. This model comes with a 25-year guarantee, but the copper lacquer finish gives it a modern feel. My wife, however, loves the Austen in brushed brass.
Are colourful designer radiators and towel rails proving popular?
The uptake in colour has been dramatic in recent years, not only the popularity but also the variation of colours that our customers have requested. That is why we have driven our business to facilitate this; we offer a wide range of designer radiators and heated towel rails that can be finished in any RAL colour or a DQ special finish. We believe in taking a beautiful product and personalising it to suit the consumer’s needs.
Which is your bestselling designer radiator and why?
Our bestselling designer radiators are still the Modus multi-columns, which is why, this year, we have added to the Modus collection. We have included a new ‘Modus Stocked’ and ‘Modus Lacquered Stocked’ range, giving customers the same quality product, available on a next day delivery service! And to add the cherry on top, we also have a ‘Modus Electric’ collection (see image higher up) that is Wi-Fi compatible and can be controlled from your hand-held device, through an app.
What’s your newest collection and where did you get your inspiration?
For me, the ‘Modus Lacquered’ is our most new and exciting range. This design will suit any décor; although these designer radiators have an industrial feel, they will still benefit the design aspect of any space. We offer this range in stocked sizes and a made-to-measure service. This lacquered range, which includes copper, black nickel & brass, simply complements our Modus collection.
The inspiration part of this question is harder for me to answer. In all honesty, if my team and I see a style, which we like and believe will be popular, then we go for it!
What’s your best advice for those who may want to update their radiators or towel rails?
Choosing the correct heating solution can be daunting, but there is help at hand! We have designed our website with this in mind; you can choose from our range of designer radiators or towel rails then use our BTU calculator to help choose the correct size for each room. To help with a smooth installation we also have technical details and fitting instructions on each product page on our website.
Probably the most important aspect is to always buy from a reputable company. They will not only understand the products but will assist you, not only in the purchase, but with after-sales care, if needed.
What’s your connection with MARC and why is it so important to be a member?
We are very proud members of MARC and the voice that it gives our industry. Basically, the main goal for all MARC members is that we follow the rules within BS EN 442 and that all involved in the industry, including the end user, are aware of the obligations.
This will ensure that the consumer fully understands what they are purchasing, including the outputs they need, and they can trust the way they are displayed or portrayed.
To be a MARC member, all our products on the market must be tested and have DoPs (Declaration of Performance) submitted; because of this, our customers can be confident that all our outputs are correct.
From a consumer point of view, the MARC stamp of assurance is something to look for to give them confidence that their purchase is, firstly legal, and secondly, the output displayed has been achieved through a rigorous testing process.
Looking for ideas on how to update your bathroom this year? Why not read my exclusive interview on bathroom trends with Sofia Charalambous, the co-founder of Bathroom Origins? You can read all about it here.