Radiator Reflectors

About this product

Product footprint: []g CO₂e

Carbon savings rating: 3/5 🟡🟢🟢


Product carbon footprint calculation

CategoryCO₂e in gSource / Assumptions
Development Process4646 (Average COe in g for a book with a volume between 1M-2.5M) [1]
Materials794930 (Average COe in g for a book with conventionally produced wood and bleached with chlorine) – 136 g for recycling paper mix [2]
Transport & Disposal1241/4* 316g CO2e (For 1kg Book, this example weights ~400g) [3]

The calculation of the carbon footprint is as follows:Starting from the average value for paperbacks, which is 1.1kg CO2e for a 300-page book, some adjustments can be made for “The Carbon Footprint of Everything”. These reductions result from the use of FSC certified paper (FSC Mix). This certification attests to sustainable forestry and the use of at least some recycled paper. The publisher “greystone books” claims to use 100% recycled paper on their website, but has not yet provided a statement. However, the book itself is exclusively certified with the “FSC MIX” certificate, so we can only assume a mix of recycled and virgin materials.

Further reductions are achieved by avoiding chlorine bleaching and using environmentally friendly, mercury-free inks.

Carbon savings rating details

This rating is supposed to give you an indication of how much positive impact purchasing and adding radiator reflectors to your heatings footprint. Of course the exact numbers depend on the current level of insulation, your type of heating and your habits.

There are many angles of looking at this. The way that the book is set up there are helpful tips for just about every life situation and Mike Berners-Lee is very aware that everyone is going to pick their battles in accordance with what feels okay for them.

Let’s pick some examples though to give you an idea.

Scenario 1 (our living room / home office test):

  • Our apartment was built in the 60s and is not very well insulated
  • Heating source is fossil gas (problematic, especially since Ukraine war started)
  • The radiator is below a large window on the outside wall

It’s hard to say if all of the savings compared to the prior year come from the reflectors or if doing this project has also made us more conscious with our habits or if the weather was just a bit better overall but we’ll take the 25% any day! The cool thing is that our landlord communicates the consumption monthly, so we will see a great picture after a full year. That is also financially quite a reasonable investment.

Scenario 2:

  • You read and like the chapters about food (i.e. meat vs. substitutes)
  • You decide to swap out beef for chicken once = the books carbon footprint is paid for
  • Or you decide to go one week without meat = the books footrpint is paid for multiple times

Scenario 3 (New apartment project):

  • To be honest, if you live in a house/apartment that’s rather new and built to comply with modern (European) standards, it is very likely that such a foil would do very little for you.

Conclusion: Radiator reflector foil is very likely to have a positive impact, how high depends a bit on your specifics.

Alternatives to buying new:

  • Some people have seen positive effects even with regular aluminium foil, which you might have lying around anyways

Why did we choose this product? What about XYZ?

Heating is one of the main sources of our domestic carbon footprint and this is a home improvement project that almost anyone can pursue with positive effects very short term.

Of course there are bigger projects like insulating the entire outside wall which can have even greater effects but that are out the reach of a majority of people. Also we just love that this reflector foil pays for itself financially rather quickly, especially with the current energy prices.