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Infrared vs. Convection


gently warms everyone in the room, as well as the walls and objects around you – without drying out the air.

Heating with infrared (IR).

Heating with infrared is based on the principle of radiant heat. As opposed to conventional heating systems (convection), which only warm the room itself, a SALT VITALHEATER uses infrared radiant heat to warm objects and surfaces in the room, along with those occupying it. The air in the room remains pleasantly cool and doesn't become dry. There is no unnecessary circulation of air (warm air rising, cooler air sinking and having to be heated again), which is the case for convection heating.

Due to the temperature difference, (warm walls, pleasantly cool air in the room), damp air is prevented from condensing on the walls, and therefore mold is actively prevented from forming. Due to reduced air circulation and the associated lower burden of dust and pollen, heating the room with IR is generally highly suitable for those who suffer from respiratory problems, allergies and asthma.

Thermal comfort and energy efficiency.

Energy-efficient heating with infrared

Heating with infrared offers an additional advantage. It is especially energy efficient. The thermal comfort of the SALT VITALHEATER comes about through the interplay of air and wall surface temperatures in the room. The most comfortable temperature is approximately halfway between these two different temperatures. Convection or warm air heaters are only perceived as comfortable when the walls of the room reach a certain basic temperature.  If, for example, the air temperature is 20°C, the temperature of the walls must be at least 16°C. In the case of radiant heaters (IR heaters), the situation is precisely the opposite. The walls of the room are warmed and a significantly lower air temperature is necessary in order to feel comfortably warm. If the temperature of the walls is 22°C, then the air in the room only needs to be 15°C in order to feel the same level of comfort. In terms of energy, this highly beneficial constellation of warm surfaces and comfortably cool air in the room can only be achieved by radiant heaters, not by convention heaters or warm air heaters.  This is depicted clearly in the diagram from Bedfort and Liese (image on right). Another advantage arising out of the principle of radiant heating is the reduced rate of air exchange. Undisturbed air in the room means less disturbance of dust. And that also means you no longer need to ventilate the room as often as before, resulting in further energy savings. Using convection heating, an increase in room temperature of 1°C requires a 6% increase in energy (per 1°C). 

Bedfort and Liese_Diagram_EN.jpg

Diagram: Bedfort und Liese

"Heating like the sun" with IR

Image by Mick Haupt

Very many of us have experienced this. It is winter, and the snow is glistening white all around us. We're sitting comfortably together with friends outside the ski hut in the afternoon and we're enjoying the last, warming rays of the sun. In fact, it's quite cold, but the sun makes it feel more than tolerable, perhaps even in just a t-shirt. We find it surprisingly pleasant, despite the winter temperature. What's making us feel so warm is the principle of radiant heating in physics.


We bring this thermal comfort into your home.

Infrared (IR) heating functions precisely according to this principle. The feeling of warmth, like rays of sunlight on your body.

The disadvantages of conventional heating systems

Conventional heating systems are subject to the laws of thermodynamics. Their use brings many disadvantages, such as:

  • High energy consumption

  • Immediate cooling of air in the room when ventilating and lengthy, energy-intensive re-heating of air in the room, etc.

  • Higher emission of CO2 and fine particles through the burning of fossil fuels

  • Drying out of air we breathe

  • Stress on the respiratory tract due to pollen and dust disturbance (asthma and allergies)

Infrared heating – also described by experts as "the future of heating" – operates according to the laws of quantum mechanics and, because of this, it is based on a completely different principle: the principle we already know from the warming rays of the sun ("heating like the sun"*).


*Prof. Dr. Claus Meier (Berlin Technical University)

Image by Anton Maksimov

Topic links: IR heating

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