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When I first converted from Gas to an all Electric house I saw these heaters in Argos, I was impressed with the removable "Pod" that you put on the table beside you and set the desired room temperature. As the thermostat was in the "Pod" it measured the air temperature where you were sat instead of inside the heater. I also liked the idea of having a boost fan that blew warm air into the room, therefore warming the room faster. The design was pretty modern too.
i went down to Argos and picked one up, assembled it and plugged it in. The Pod was pretty intuitive, Either constant low, hight or thermostat, I set the temperature on the Pod to 20 degrees and the heater kicked into life and gave out a lot of heat. The room was warm in no time at all. The Pod also displays the current temperature as well as the desired temperate and communicates with the heater though a wireless radio link. As it was a digital thermometer it apparently is accurate to within .5 of a degree. I watched the pod like a hawk, as soon as the temp fell beyond the set point, on clicked the heater - Big smile factor ;)
The fan wasn't as bad as I thought - about the same noise level of a microwave oven but there was a bit of vibration from the fan, very noticeable when the heater was mounted on a stud wall. I kept going with it for a week with no problems so when passing Argos picked up another one. Don't make the mistake I did and overload your ring main! Rather an expensive mistake - it blew the fuse box into bits but It forced me to progress my electric conversion project.
A sparky friend installed a new circuit breaker panel and amongst other worked installed proper electrical points and wall mounted the Bionaire heaters. - Oddly enough unlike other heaters that are "locked" to the wall these heaters just sit on 2 hooks on the top of the back and a spacer to keep the bottom of the heater away from the wall, not good for curious kids!
I don't know if i was using them incorrectly but when I went to bed I put them into standby. Coming down in the morning I pressed the button on the pod and nothing! I looked at the heater to see if the fuse had blown, there was the red light on the heater so I guessed there was electricity getting to it. I switched the heater off at the wall, left it for 5 minutes and switched it on. The red light came back on, the heater wasn't listening to the Pod and the buttons on the front panel weren't working.
I phoned up Bionaire who advised my to do a reset on the heater by pressing a combination of buttons when switching on the power. This didn't work.
The sparky was coming round to install the electric point for the hot water heater and cooker so I asked him if he could unwire the heater so I could take it back to Argos who offered me a refund or replacement. I went for a replacement which lasted about a week before the same thing happened.
I assume it was a design fault as i worked though about 4 heaters which had the same fault or the Pod needed to be re-pared with the heater. I started to lose faith in these heaters and returned the 4th one this time for a refund - Argos don't seemed to sell this model anymore!
Excellent concept of having removable Pod with digital wireless thermostat - I really loved that idea and was very accurate,
The design was also very modern in Grey steel.
Very affective turbo fan warming the room very quickly.
A couple of things I wasn't keen on was the insecure way it was wall mounted, i would have preferred for the heater to be "locked" to the wall rather than it affectively hanging from 2 hooks, I'd have thought that would have been a bit dangerous with the young on infirm.
They would have been worth the £70 if the technology was reliable.
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