Electric and hydronic towel warmers are relatively energy-efficient bathroom luxuries, allowing homeowners to wake up to freshly warmed, fluffy towels each morning while saving on utility bills.
Towel warmers are bathroom fixtures that gently warm bath linens. They come in designs ranging from simple, plug-and-use metal towel bars to ornate, even custom-built-ins that can coordinate with just about any bathroom design, from Victorian to Art Deco.
Also called "drying rails," towel warmers have the added benefit of keeping damp towels from becoming mildewed, and they can be used to warm up baby blankets or quilts on chilly nights. They also offer a great place to safely dry delicates like lingerie. Towel warmers generate radiating, gentle warmth that can even serve double-duty as a primary or secondary source of heat in the bathroom.
There are two main types of towel warmers: electric and hydronic. Electric towel warmers heat up using an internal electric heating element, much like a curling iron, while hydronic units connect directly to a home's hot-water heater.
Electric warmers can be freestanding units plugged into a standard wall outlet, or they can be integrated into a home's wiring like any other built-in home appliance. In some high-end bathrooms, towels, robes and slippers are warmed in specially heated pullout drawers hardwired into the bathroom vanity. Both freestanding and drawer electric warmers heat up in about 15 to 20 minutes.
Plug-in floor units are the most affordable way to bring warm towels into a bathroom. Models start at around $100 and come in a variety of styles, colors and finishes. One advantage is that they can be moved into other rooms as needed, but they can take up valuable floor space in smaller bathrooms.
Wall-mounted electric units come in both plug-in and hardwired versions, and each is available in a variety of styles and finishes. They range in price from $200 to $800. One popular option is the swiveling, wall-mounted towel warmer, like those offered by WarmaTowel, which allow you to pull the rails out when you want to use them and also swivel them flat against the wall to conserve bathroom space.
Both electric and hydronic towel warmers are relatively energy-efficient bathroom luxuries, costing between 25 and 60 cents per day if left on continually. But many models come with a programmable timer, allowing homeowners to wake up to freshly warmed, fluffy towels each morning while saving on utility bills.
Resource: Myson, www.mysoninc.com
Courtesy Katie Allison Granju on hgtv.com.