The Ultimate Guide To Choose The Best Patio Heater For Your Home


Suppose, it’s a delightful summer evening and you are enjoying a gala time in your patio with friends and family relishing the mellow weather and maybe with some good food. But when it’s chilling winter around and the sudden drop of temperature start making you shiver every time you step out, the memory of the cozy warmth of summer surely will make you nostalgic. Suddenly you will start missing the salubrious memories of the summer evenings. If you want to bring the pleasing warmth back in your ambiance even during the windy or cold wintry days, investing in a good patio heater might be a wise choice for you.

With an efficient outdoor heater, you would be able to take advantage of your patio space comfortably at any time of the year without having to worry about the winds or the cold outside.

There are different options available in the market, each of them comes with its own pros and cons. So, it’s obviously confusing for one how to choose a patio heater. But don’t worry, Gharpedia brings a patio heater buying guide. This Outdoor heater buying guide will assess the popular types of outside heaters, and will suggest you the tips concerning the factors you must consider before buying one such gadget for your use. Take a detailed look-

How to Choose A Patio Heater for Your Home

Cozy and Comfy Outdoor Heater for Your Home

In this patio heater buying guide you will get all the information in your basic query form like

01. Why a patio heater is worth buying

02. Different types of patio heater with their pros and cons

03. Design options for outdoor heaters

04. Comparison between gas vs electric patio heaters

05. How well do these outdoor heaters work?

06. Factors to consider to buy the best patio heater for youLet’s get started!

01. Why A Patio HeaterIs Worth Buying?

An outside patio heater is exactly what it sounds like – it’s an equipment that is meant to heat condition the air of your patio with artificial heat generated from the heater. Why do you need it? Well, if you are hoping to keep entertaining your guests in your extended space on a windy or freezing evening, an outside heater would just make the entire ambiance a lot more enjoyable with the heat waves.

02. Types of Patio Heater

Outdoor heaters use four major types of fuels – electric, natural gas, propane, and wood. Each fuel has its own pros and cons, so the same fuel operated heaters. Let’s take a closer look at each kind of fuel to determine which one would be the best choice for you.

01. Natural GasPatio Heater:

Natural Gas Patio Heater

Natural gas driven heaters are eco-friendly and usually require professional installation. This is because it needs to be hooked to the main gas line. The installation cost and the price of the natural gas heater itself can increase the overall cost of using the gadget. The requirement to refill the tank gets eliminated as there is the provision of constant supply of the fuel. Once installed, they are incredibly easy to maintain and have the lowest cost of operation.

Pros of Natural Gas Patio Heater:

i. Easy to maintain

ii. Low operational cost

Cons of Natural Gas Patio Heater:

i. Requires professional installation

ii. Cannot be used in an enclosed space

iii. Mostly difficult to move due to fixed natural gas line connection

02. Propane Patio Heater:

Propane Patio Heater

Propane patio heaters are the easiest to install and use. They usually don’t require any professional installation and all you need to do is assembling them together, attaching it to the tank and turning it on. These are portable gadgets and get fitted quite easily into the enclosed cavity existing at the base. However, they do require frequent refill and the operational cost gets more expensive than natural gas heaters in the long run. It is the ease of the installation that appeals to users. While you need to refill the tank frequently, it is incredibly easy to replace the same with a new one.

Pros of Propane patio heaters:

i. Quick heating

ii. No professional installation required

iii. Portable

iv. East to replace

Cons of Propane patio heaters:

i. Cannot be used in an enclosed area

ii. Propane tanks are expensive as compared to natural gas tank/supply components

iii. In this outdoor propane heaters, tanks have to be replaced periodically

03. Electric Patio Heater:

Electric Patio Heaters

Electric patio heaters are eco-friendly and produce zero emissions while effectively heating an area. With the exception of wall-mounted and hanging models, electric patio heaters don’t need to be installed professionally. All that needs to be done is placing it in a corner close to a power outlet. However, electricity is more expensive than a wood or gas fueled heater and isn’t a cost-efficient option in the long-run in terms of energy bill. Other than that, electric patio heaters are rather easier to use and maintain. Additionally, electric patio heaters are the only outdoor heaters that are safe to use in a covered or enclosed space.

Pros of Electric patio heaters:

i. Easy to use and maintain

ii. Safe to use in an enclosed space

iii. Extremely convenient to use

Cons of Electric patio heaters:

i. Can be expensive in the long run

ii. Can only be used when close to a power outlet

iii. May heat up slowly as compared to other outdoor heating options

04. Wood Patio Heater:

Wood Patio Heater

There might be numerous outdoor heating options available, however nothing beats the authentic and cozy campfire feels of a wood-fueled heater. Depending on the size of the firebox and its capacity to hold firewood, it can generate a lot of heat. Wood-burning heaters work well for an open patio but this could be a problem if you have an enclosed patio counting the amount of smoke and ash it exudes. To reduce the amount of smoke generated, it is recommended to burn only seasoned hardwoods including white ash, birch, and, hickory.

Also, it’s important to note here that wood-burning heaters require a lot more maintenance as the wood needs to be continually refilled and the ash cleaned out after every use. The ambience that it creates surely makes the purchase worth investment.

Pros of Wood Patio Heater:

i. Creates an unbeatable campfire-like ambience

ii. Quite affordable if wood supply is affordable

Cons of Wood Patio Heater:

i. Requires more maintenance as compared to other outdoor heating options

ii. Can be tricky to ignite and maintain the desired level of heating

03. Design Options for Outdoor Heaters

Design does matters for an outside patio heater because placement and design compatibility vary from one place to another. Some of the most common variants that have attracted consumers’ applause globally, are explained here with outline details.

01. Standing Patio Heater:

Standing Patio Heater

Standing outdoor heaters are full-sized and one of the most popular variants you may opt in outdoor gas heater category. They are mostly portable and have a compartment reserved for the fuel tank. Such outside heaters are usually sleek, tall and can be spotted commonly at coffee shops or restaurants. The price of the standing heaters is based on the power, size and the kind of fuel they use. These are ideal for an extended patio and some can provide warmth even when placed 20 feet away.

02. Tabletop Patio Heater:

Tabletop Patio Heater

If you have limited space in your patio, tabletop heaters would be the ideal choice. However, it is important to note that being small, these heater models are capable of providing warmth only to a very small space. But they are an affordable option if you only need a small space heated. Electric models are quite common but you may find a few gas models too in tabletop category. Most tabletop heaters look like tiny versions of the standing heater. If you plan on spending your time relaxing and sitting around the table, tabletop heaters would be the most practical option to complement your need.

03. Wall Mounted Patio Heater:

Wall Mounted Patio Heater

Wall mounted Heaters are ideal for areas where there’s not enough room to accommodate a freestanding or a tabletop heater. Wall mounted heaters are mostly electric fueled and generate enough heat to keep you comfortable. They are considerably easy to install but will require some installation arrangement from your end.

04. Hanging Patio Heater:

Hanging Patio Heater

Hung from the ceiling of a deck, patio or a sunroom, the hanging heaters are a popular and ergonomic choice for small spaces. They are relatively small in size and don’t occupy room’s space on the floor, walls or tables. Installing hanging heaters is pretty simple and most people find it easy and a DIY(do it yourself) installation task.

05. Fire Pits and Chimneys:

Fire Pits and Chimneys

If you have the space for fire pits and chimneys and you are happy to put in a little more effort toward the periodic maintenance of your patio heater, nothing beats the charm of fire pits. The classic wood-burning ambience is unbeatable. Fire pits are also perfect for those who enjoy bonfire nights when everybody gathers around and melt marshmallows for delectable’ mores. While affordable options are available, fire pits can be expensive if you want a fancier or larger model.

04. Comparison Between Gas Vs Electric Patio Heaters

If you are perplexed about choosing between a gas or an electric heater, then here is the comparison between gas vs electric patio heaters. It is important to understand the pros and cons offered by both the heater variants to choose the right one. Gas heaters are fueled up by natural gas or propane. Electric heaters, on the other hand, simply need to be plugged into an electrical outlet. Unless you have a model that needs higher voltage, the standard outlet should work just fine.

Comparison Between Gas VS Electric Patio Heaters

05. How Well Do These Outdoor Heaters Work?

This depends on the total area that you are planning to heat condition with your heater. The maximum extent a patio heater can efficiently heat depends on a number of factors. Several large heaters emit radiant heat wave which means that instead of disseminating heat through a fan, it reflects heat waves making it more effective. It happens because it is capable to warm up the objects placed in front of the heater rather than just making the air inside the room warm. On a gusty day, a fan-based heater wouldn’t really be efficient as the wind would blow away the heater air.

06. Factors to Consider to Buy the Best Patio Heater for You

Outdoor Heaters

Of course, several models are available in the market and it’s actually quite usual that customers get carried away by something that doesn’t really matter. To determine which patio heater would work the best, it’s important to appraise all the available options and ascertain the priority factors that hold the most value to you.

Listed below are some of the vital factors that you need to keep in mind while you will be shortlisting for an efficient patio heater.

01. Cost of Patio Heater:

Each kind of patio heater mentioned above comes in numerous varieties and the cost depends on the size or style ultimately chosen. It is best to set a budget or consider any special requirements and then start looking for the products. Expensive models do last long if you are planning to splurge but there’s no reason you should be paying more than what you hoped for if your needs are simple.

02. How Often You’ll Use It:

Another important consideration is how often the patio heater will be used. Consider the shape and size of your patio, and calculate the number of people would typically be using it and the probable situations that it will be used in. For instance, if you have a small patio and you hope to use only one particular area when outside, a tabletop heater should suffice your needs. With a very small, enclosed space, an outdoor electric heater should serve the purpose flawlessly.

03. Safety:

Like all electrical equipment, outdoor heaters too come with its share of risks. If you choose a floor-standing heater, it would have to be properly weighted so it can endure the topsyturvy momentum of the windy days. In case it falls over while it is on, you would be risking a serious fire accident. If you live in an area where strong winds are a quotidian affair, it would be ideal to choose a model that comes with an auto shutoff feature.

Furthermore, wood and gas heaters should always be positioned in open spaces. By keeping it in an enclosed space, you run the risk of a fire hazard and carbon monoxide build-up. Electric heaters surely are the safest of all the market-available options but they too shouldn’t be kept close to anything that is highly flammable.

The safety of your patio heater truly relies on the user. If you read the manual carefully and practice caution, you’ll abate the chances of risks substantially.

04. Power:

Your heater’s power will determine how much space it can efficiently cover to heat. You might come across models where the manufacturer mentions how much space it can impact, however, how far the heat actually reaches depends on numerous factors including how cold the weather is.

Measures like Wattage can be considered to compare all the different models but it can at times be misleading. It’s important to look at the reviews online before you actually make the purchase after checking the posted reviews from the customers already using the product. The reviews usually mention how powerful the equipment is or how much space it can actually heat so you can form an unambiguous decision.

05. Aesthetics and Atmosphere:

While some heater users may feel contented with the functionality of the heater, others may desire more than that. If you are someone for whom aesthetics matters as much as all the other factors, you might want to look for models that can add a nice tasteful touch to your patio. Some people like outdoor heaters with open flame for the ambience it offers. You may want to take a little time to research and look for the options that really serve you as one of the most terrific fits for your outdoor area within your budget.

06. Typical Weather:

It’s important to consider what the weather is usually like through most parts of the year. Choosing a model that’s viable for your area’s typical climate will ensure that it not just works efficiently but will also last for a really long time. For instance, if you usually experience strong winds in your area, a floor-standing patio heater could be extremely difficult to manage as you would hardly be able to keep it upright. If you are in an area that receives consistent drizzling through of the months, a fire pit wouldn’t really be a practical choice.

07. Ease of Use:

Let’s say, you got a model that requires a little extra effort to get it working. Will you be willing to do that? Or, are you looking for a model which simply requires flipping a switch? While some patio heaters are extremely straightforward to use, others may need you to strain a little or take out time every once in a while, for minimal maintenance.

Most gas and electrical models are usually rather undemanding whereas chimneys and fire pits may demand comparatively more attention and periodic maintenance.

Additionally, you need to consider if it would take some elbow grease to put together the heater. Electric heaters simply require to be plugged in and the natural gas heaters have to be hooked up just once. However, other models entail that the fuel source be changed at regular intervals.

You might buy a model due to its aesthetic qualities and its functionality, but don’t really like putting in the effort it takes to get it working. In such a scenario, you would hardly ever use the model. Hence, consider if you would be willing to exert yourself a little to actually get the heater working when you need it.

Summing Up

So, when you ever think about how to choose a patio heater then go through the above text, whether you are looking for a centerpiece that would steal your friends’ breath or want something with excellent functionality, you can easily find a patio heater that matches your needs. Of course, you cannot control the weather but what you can control the comfort level of your patio by installing an outdoor patio heater there, and it will keep your place all cozy and warm.

Whichever outdoor heater you choose, it will give you comfort& coziness.  Nevertheless along with the coziness, if you really need an eye-catching look for your patio, go through our most-read blog 10 Tips To Design Outdoor Patio For Your Home, and start designing your own cozy, happy place…

And other than these 10 tips, we have more about patio decoration and design which will definitely help you design your patio creatively. Click on the below links:

How your Outdoor Patio can Change into your Private Retreat?
Create Stunning Entryways – A Transition to Outdoor Patios & Living Spaces!

Image Courtesy: Image 2Image 3Image 4Image 5Image 6Image 7Image 8Image 9Image 10, Image 11, Image 13

Author Bio

Rashmi Shaw – Rashmi Shaw has been writing content since she was in her first year of college in 2014 and since then, there has been no looking back. Recently, she completed her Master’s in English Literature. She has an earnest passion for writing and has written numerous articles, blogs and PR’s for diverse niches. She attempted working as a full-time writer for a year and a half but is back to freelancing as it gives her the creative liberty that she desires. She loves gardening, reading books and travelling.

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