Is your towel rail leaving you out in the cold?

Towel rails were once considered a luxury item but in recent years have become a standard bathroom feature in many homes.  In some homes you may even find them in the kitchen or utility room. 

What many people do not consider when specifying or purchasing a heated towel rail is what type of rail they need, what size they require, and the different finishes available.  There is a mind-boggling amount of choice on the market today, what once was probably a quick trip to the local DIY superstore has become a much more considered purchase and investment.

1.)   What size do I need?

We’ve all been there, stood in the DIY superstore looking at the unlimited amount of choice and prices thinking ‘I only need it to warm the towels’, the reality is that a heated towel rail can do so much more.  If you take the time to work out the area of the bathroom you could purchase a towel rail that is sufficient enough in size to warm the bathroom on its own. 

All towel rails will have a BTU (British Thermal Unit) rating and this is an essential element to consider when purchasing a heated towel rail.  The BTU is measured hourly, the higher the output is means that your chosen rail is more powerful and effective, thus warming your bathroom quicker and saving you money on your energy bills.

We recommend you select a product that exceeds the required output as you can enjoy some extra heat in cold weather while turning it down at other times of the year.  To find out what size will give you enough heat output to warm the bathroom, not just your towels is to use our handy online tool.

Hugo2 Heated Towel Rail in Lusson Grey

2.)   What type of towel rail should I get?

Central Heating

Most homes in the UK already have central heating.  If such a system is in place, you can simply plumb your new towel rail into your existing central heating system. Tissino Hugo2 towel rails produce enough BTU to warm your towels and heat the bathroom the same way as a traditional radiator.

Electric only

For homes without central heating or for those looking to quickly add a heated towel rail to the room without the upheaval or cost or re-routing pipes, an electric towel rail can offer the perfect solution.  They are very easy and quick to install by a qualified electrician and offer a cost-effective way of keeping towels and robes etc. warm and dry. Tissino towel rails can be converted into electric towel rails, we will fill the rail with a suitable heating fluid, install the appropriate heating element, seal and water test.

Dual fuel

A dual fuel towel rail is plumbed into your central heating system and features an electric heating element.

A dual fuel towel rail can be heated by the main heating system in the house, or when the heating system is not in operation it can be isolated and heated by the element.  This gives you the luxury of heated towels all year round without having to use the heating system in summer periods. Tissino make this easy by supplying a set of dual fuel valves specifically designed for this installation scenario with wall or floor connection options.  

3.)   What finish/colour should I consider?

When specifying a towel rail for their bathroom most people will think of cost and functionality over style, yet there is now so much more choice in terms of styling and colour, a towel rail can really become a focal point of any bathroom.

It is worth noting that the BTU of a chrome towel rail is normally a lot lower than a towel rail with a textured or gloss finish, for example the BTU for a Chrome towel rail measuring 812 x 600mm is 1522 whilst a textured or gloss [CL4] finished option in the same size has a BTU of 2320.

Consider the accessories available when choosing your towel rail to, after all you don’t want to fit a beautiful new coloured towel rail only to have to fit chrome brackets, valves and pipe surrounds.

Another important accessory which is often overlooked is a towel hanger, the advantage of which is that the towel still gets warm with the heat of the towel rail but it doesn’t stifle the heat, thus the room gets heated more effectively as well as the towel.


Chrome towel rails were the first type of mass-produced towel rails in the UK and first made an appearance over thirty years ago.  They remain one of the most popular towel rail options today due to their long-standing presence in the market and the fact that they match most other fittings in a bathroom. 


White towel rails have fast become as popular as a chrome finish due to white matching the vast majority of bathroom suites.  White is also a popular choice for those seeking a minimalist or crisp look for their bathroom.  Most white towels have a bright white gloww finish, for a modern alternative have a look at our Mont Blanc towel rail, crisp white with a textured finish.


Grey and Anthracite have grown in popularity over recent years due to their contemporary look and designer appearance.  Even the simplest of towel rails can look like a designer option when finished in grey or anthracite.


One of the latest trends for bathroom accessories has been the rich and luxurious tones of deep bronze tones.  Accessorising your bathroom with notes of Arabica tones adds a hint of decadence and luxury.

Hugo2 Towel Rail in Anthracite

Image: Hugo2 Heated Towel Rail in Anthracite

4.)   Where should I place my towel rail?

One of the most common misconceptions when placing a towel rail is that it shouldn’t be placed near a window or on an outside wall as the heat will just evaporate.

You might think we are crazy but the best place to hang your heated towel rail is on the coldest wall in the room which is often the wall with a window or any other external wall.  By doing this you are ensuring that the heat is distributed throughout the room evenly and efficiently.

In addition to this you also need to consider where the towel rail will be in relation to the bath or shower, after all no one wants to trek across the room in order to wrap up in a cosy warm towel.

**Be sure to check the specifications of the appliance before purchasing as there on many different ratings which determine how closely you can install electrical items to a water source.

Hugo2 Towel Rail