I've owned and used a portable (not Hydrosil) oil filled heater for 20 years. They are very efficient. Unlike electric heaters that cycle on and blast you with hot air, then cycle off and leave you cold, the oil heats up and cools down gradually and therefore continues to give off heat even when the power cycles off. I use mine in a small bedroom/office and it keeps it quite comfortable.
By Bob from Wareham, MA
We bought two 5ft Hydrosil 220V units almost 3 years ago to replace the 1970s wall units in my home office of about 150 s.f.
This room has 12ft ceilings, R12 insulation, one fairly drafty window and a very drafty old sliding door. I also live in the hills of western, MA at about 1,800ft - the winters are cold and very windy here.
I spend about 10 hours each day in my home office and have been very happy with these Hydrosil units. They heat up the room quickly, even on the coldest days. I usually put plastic over the slider during the winter, but didn't get to it last year - and didn't really notice a difference. It was a more mild winter and the room stayed warm and comfortable.
We did notice the cost went down our first winter with just these two 5 ft units. Our whole house is electric heat and I'm planning to replace the other 6 units (2 ft - 8 ft) with Hydrosil for this coming winter.
We didn't experience any of the shipping, service or installation issues that others have complained about here. Our electrician simply swapped out the old units for the new units and was done with the installation in about 20 minutes. We kept our old thermostats in place. In fact, I'd consider installing the new units myself if I wasn't petrified of electrocuting myself.
As I mentioned, the units we bought arrived in great shape, so we had no reason to contact the company about anything after the fact. In today's world, I always expect a company's customer service to be bad. Try calling your bank or cell phone company and see if you even get someone who lives in the USA and speaks English ;) If you happen to find the rare company that actually cares about customer service, that's definitely a good thing, but I've learned not to expect that.
Actually, there's not much to these Hydrosil units that can go wrong. Just a case, a fluid tube and some heating fins... Some of the complaints were about case damage, dents, etc.., this stuff happens in shipping all the time and is not really the fault of the company really. The units were shipped in very heavy cardboard boxes when we ordered them, so they'd probably really have to be mis-handled and beat-up by the shipper to have dents, but again this happens a lot. And, as far as bad tech-support.., I can't remember the last time I contacted anyone's tech support and not been treated as a simpleton. That's just the nature of most technically minded people.
The point I'm making is.., I'm not trying to defend Hydrosil if they do have bad customer service..., it's just that if this product fits a need you have and will save you money over time, then get it. I don't know of any similar product yet - and have been quite happy with it. I'm willing to bet that in the three years I've had these units, that I've already saved the purchase price. And the best part is that I'm nice and WARM in this typically cold New England hilltop office!
After doing more research I've found that Qmark heaters are identical to the heaters that Hydro-Sil sells. They are available from F.N. Cuthbert Inc. (link at top of page) and other sellers through Amazon.com. If you plan on buying more than one, the savings can be significant.
The PTS-1 thermostat (aka Honeywell/Aube TH106) is also available from Amazon and other sellers for less. (09/28/2007)
By Bob from Wareham, MA
I installed several Hydro-sil units four or five years ago. They replaced standard electric baseboard heaters in part of our old (largely uninsulated, basement-less) farmhouse. Our experience with the product has been outstanding, and I am just about to replace all remaining older electric baseboard heaters with Hydro-sil units. Additionally, I am no handyman, but had no problems connecting the Hydo-sil heaters to the existing wiring. We live in an area that does not have severe winters in terms of prolonged periods of very low temperatures, but we're near the ocean and winter winds are very strong. (11/06/2007)
By Perry Fisher
Thank you Jeff I have never been so satisfied with a company warranty and service as I am with hydro-sill when I bought them I thought it would be like most companies that give lifetime warranty.
If it quit working after a year it was well its not for your life time it's the life time of the product, or or that is a failure not covered, all I can say if you buy from hydro-sil you will get great service.
I called after about 9 years talked to customer service to Mr. Jeff Robins he was very polite and told me to send them back which I did, it took only one week and they sent new ones and they paid to ship them back, I got the three things I all ways look for from a company, they where understanding polite and stood behind there product. 110%, Jeff Robins was very polite, you cannot go wrong with Hydro-sil!
Thanks for your service. Richard cope Central City KY
P.S. The heaters actually cut my heating bill over half I heated with propane gas I had 500 gallon tank and had to fill it twice in the winter, at a cost of 92Cents gal, my electric bill which normally run about 65$ during the winter went up to about $40.00 made us very happy. (11/14/2007)
I am simply amazed as well as very surprised by what HydroSil had to offer. They had given me a average operating cost, and I'll be damned if it wasn't right on the money. They based their operating cost on an average of 12 cent electric rate and on an insulated house and it is very close that it almost scary. Very professional as well as great technical support. And they are American made. They believe in keeping it at home. Good job! (12/01/2007)
I am practically sitting on top of one right now and can barely feel it. My toaster gives off more heat! (12/18/2007)
By MJ in Maine
BEWARE OF HYDROSIL. Their website has "lifetime warranty" in a big banner on the front, but they do not accept returns or issue refunds.
I forked out a couple of hundred dollars for this heater, because the web site claims it basically last forever, unlike cheaper ones, and it is American made. All that money, lost, which as an elderly person I can ill afford.
I was unhappy with their portable heater, because it had a strong burning paint smell even after I let it run overnight (in the garage, I couldn't stand to have it in the house) and because there is no protective guard on the very sharp metal fins, endangering babies or pets.
No refunds after shipment! they told me.
I installed two four foot 220V Hydrosil units in a 20x12 sunporch last spring and have used them this fall and winter. Temperatures have been down as low as 16 degrees. The performance has been excellent. Floors are warm with no drafts. My light bill for December was less than $100. This includes water heating, cooking, washer/dryer and lights. No problems. (01/12/2008)
This company's service/technical dept. is outstanding. I had a problem with one of my Hydrosil units. There were no questions asked, they determined the unit to be defective and all that was asked of me was to send the unit back to them and a few days later I received the new unit. I am once again a happy camper. I can't say enough about this fine company. Thanks again. (01/31/2008)
By Earl E. Babcock
I have had a portable Hydrosil for about 4 years. The thermostat quit working once and I called Hydrosil. They had another thermostat in the mail that day. In Texas it does not stay cold for long periods and we use the heater on the sunporch for the dogs. They love it and I can see a definite dip in my heating bill with it. (03/03/2008)
By Mike Wesley
The heaters are junk. They aren't any more efficient than the 25 year old fin tube heaters I replaced and we have cold winters in the UP of Michigan. Sure am sorry I spent the 2500 dollars to replace the ones I had. (03/05/2008)
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