February 2014


Many central heating systems are not well designed for people with sight loss, according to research from Thomas Pocklington Trust and consumer research charity Rica. The 2014 study tested seven central heating products among users with various sight impairments, giving each a score out of five for accessibility. The results form a definitive guide to selecting the right central heating controls, and potential problems that might arise.

Key Facts:

  • Many of the products tested were not very useful for people with sight loss, even though some were designed with vision impairments in mind.
  • The main problems found among the central heating systems tested were hard-to-read text, oddly placed markings, and buttons and switches that were difficult to use.
  • Most of the products tested came with instructions featuring small text and diagrams, though some manufacturers will supply an accessible version upon request.


Choosing Central Heating Controls and Saving Energy – PDF version and Word version