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Squash Courts

Heating Squash Courts

Probably the most important consideration when selecting a heating system for a squash court is not to interfere with the game itself.  This consideration obviously precludes low level heating and means that heaters suspended from the roof are preferred. 

A mounting height of around 6m effectively precludes the use of fan heaters.  Even it were possible to project warm air this kind of distance, the fan noise would be very significant and the running costs would be prohibitive because of a phenomena known as temperature gradient.   It is estimated that in a squash court heated by fan heaters, the air temperature will increase by around 2.5°C for every metre above floor level.  Therefore, to maintain an air temperature of 20°C at floor level, in a 6m high squash court, the air temperature at ceiling level would be around 35°C.  The net result is a large body of over-heated air that is expensive to generate and serves no useful purpose.

The solution to the problem lies in radiant heaters which will heat a squash court from high level without any noise and without creating a significant temperature gradient.  Having decided on high level radiant heaters, we must know select between shortwave and long-wave heaters both of which have their advantages.


2 x 3.6kW radiant cassettes providing comfort heat to a squash court in Wandsworth, London 


Radiant cassettes omit no light, draught or noise output – ideal for squash courts 

Long-wave Radiant Cassettes

When squash courts are used on a more regular basis, long-wave radiant cassettes tend to be preferred.  This system is designed to raise the air temperature within the squash court and will also warm the floor and walls more effectively than halogen heaters.  Radiant cassettes do not produce any light output whatsoever.

A typical squash court would require two 3.6kW cassettes suspended at high level.  Control would be by means of thermostat and programmable timer.  Radiant cassettes are not instantly effective meaning some pre-heating will be required.

>> More info on BN Thermic Radiant Cassettes

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A typical design using radiant cassettes 


4.5kW magic lamp quartz halogen heaters providing comfort heat to players at Brooklands Squash Club in Sale, South Manchester

Shortwave Quartz Halogen Heaters

Halogen heaters emit shortwave energy which is absorbed directly by people (in this case squash players) and experienced as heat.  The impact of halogen heaters on the surrounding air temperature will be minimal.  Traditionally there has been a reluctance to use halogen heaters in sports facilities because of the light output associated with the technology.  However, with the introduction of the BN Thermic’s Magic Lamp which produces a barely discernible glow, the benefits of halogen heaters are being reassessed.

A typical squash court could be heated using two 4.5kW halogen heaters suspended at around 6m above floor level.  As the heaters are 100% effective the instant they are turned on, there is no need for preheating.  Control by a time delay switch, will ensure that the heaters are not left on when the court is unoccupied.

Halogen heating, using heaters with BN Thermic’s new Magic Lamp, is recommended for courts with sporadic and irregular use.

Click here for more info on quartz halogen heaters

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A typical design using quartz halogen heaters

Please note that the above recommendations apply to a typical squash court.  We are aware that the buildings housing squash courts vary considerably and that a selection that is ideal for any given court may not be effective in different court.  Please take into account the characteristics of a specific building before selecting a heating system.  The engineers at BN Thermic are very experienced and are always on hand to assist. 

Case Studies

Here’s a recent video case study from a project we designed and supplied at Spencer Squash Club in Wandsworth, London. We specified long wave radiant cassettes in two courts.


  • BN Thermic recommends two types of radiant heaters for heating squash.  Longwave radiant cassettes (sometimes called far-infrared heaters) are generally preferred for regularly used squash courts whereas shortwave quartz halogen heaters are sometimes preferred when a facility is used intermittently. 

    Because quartz halogen heaters are instantly effective it is easy to calculate running costs.  For a standard squash court, BN Thermic suggests installing two 4.5kW quartz halogen heater.  Assuming an electric tariff of 15p per kW/h, this system will cost £1.35 per hour to run (2 heaters x 4.5 kW per heater x £0.15 tariff = £1.35).  This figure is, of course, a maximum running cost as the players may decide to switch off the heaters at any point during a session.

    It is not possible to provide the same simple calculation for a squash court heating system using longwave radiant cassettes.   This is because some preheating will be required and once up to temperature, thermostatic control will bring the heating in and out at a frequency which depends on the thermostat set-point and the prevailing ambient temperature.  What is safe to say is that if BN Thermic’s recommendation of two 3.6kW radiant cassettes is followed and assuming a tariff of 15p per kW/h, the running cost per hour cannot exceed £1.08 (2 heaters x 3.6kW per heater x £0.15 tariff = £1.08).  On a cold day, you could expect this level of cost for the first hour but the running cost per hour will reduce thereafter as thermostat control takes over.

    So to sum up, longwave radiant heaters tend to be cheaper to run for continuously used squash courts whereas quartz halogen heaters tend to be cheaper to run in intermittently used squash courts.