What is causing my storage heater to smell?

There are many factors that could cause your storage heater to smell. None of these factors are in result of a manufacturing issue and are all in relation to external factors or installation errors.

New insulation smell.

New insulation smell.

Cause :

Heater not Commissioned 


Heater must be set to Home all Day or User Timer, 26C for two nights to burn off any newness smells.

 Paraffin / diesel or oily smells

Paraffin / diesel or oily smells will be caused by a petrochemical substance in the environment which has gone through the heater. Those petrochemical chains break down due to the hot core of the heater to form a Paraffin like oily smell.

Common causes can be:

• Using air fresheners, joss sticks, incense and burning candles - most are oil based!

• Furniture polish / sprays / floor waxes

• Recently redecorated room - paint has oils in it.

• New carpets or underlay - they contain rubber that has a smell that then goes through the heater

• Cooking fats nearby. Is the heater close to a kitchen?

None of these are faults with the heater.  It is an external influence. All the heater is doing is taking in air from the room, passing it through a very hot core (650C+) then expelling the heated air. There is nothing inside the heater that will make this smell. The customer should avoid all of the above possible influences and ventilate the room where possible.

Uncommon but possible:

• Contaminated bricks - if a new install and the bricks were contaminated / dirty then this needs to be raised with the installer, as only clean dry bricks must be installed!

Fishy electrical smells


 Fishy electrical smells are usually due to an overheating electrical connection causing the surrounding plastic insulation to melt. The cause is a loose connection, not a fault with the appliance 99% of the time.

The customer may be able to identify where the loose connection is by following their nose. Is the smell more intense by the switches on the wall, or inside the heater?

In any case, the customer should switch off the heater at the wall (both supplies) and call out their installer or their local electrician in the first instance to trace the loose connection.

Note, we do not supply the switches on the wall or the cable going to the heater. These are sourced & fitted by the installer. If they fail to tighten the screw terminals correctly onto the cable and the connection eventually overheats, this is an installation fault!

If an electrician finds no fault but there is still a fishy smell, then a job can be raised providing the customer agrees to the terms & conditions. We WILL charge for the visit if no manufacturing fault is found & if if it is a wiring issue, we will not rectify it.

Burning dust smells

Burning dust smells are normal, especially when the heater is first switched on after remaining off all summer. It will soon pass as the heater gets up to full heat. It will help to open a window briefly if the smell is bothersome.

It may help to vacuum the outlet grill of the heater whilst the heater is cold, prior to switching on the heater for the first time in Autumn. This reduces the amount of dust that can burn off by the outlet grill.

Applicable models; 

XLE050 XLE070 XLE100 XLE125 XLE150 

TSRE050 TSRE070 TSRE100 TSRE125 TSRE150 

NLSH050 NLSH070 NLSH100 NLSH100 NLSH125 NLSH150 

DESE050 DESE070 DESE100 DESE125 DESE150 


SSHE050 SSHE070 SSHE100 SSHE125 SSHE150 

VASH050E VASH070E VASH100E VASH125E VASH150E AC6550 AC6554 

 QM050RF QM070RF QM100RF QM125RF QM150RF 

QM050 QM070 QM100 QM125 QM150 

CQH070 CQH100 CQH125 CQH150

Legacy XL CXL Storage heater range 

Was this article helpful?

That’s Great!

Thank you for your feedback

Sorry! We couldn't be helpful

Thank you for your feedback

Let us know how can we improve this article!

Select atleast one of the reasons
CAPTCHA verification is required.

Feedback sent

We appreciate your effort and will try to fix the article