Outdoor patio heaters are the preferred way to warm up your yard or patio during the fall and winter season. The best patio heaters generate a lot of heat and warmth that spread across a large area. This is why millions of homes and restaurants choose these outdoor heater units to warm up their outdoor space. Not only are they great for warmth but they add a nice glow and ambiance to your space.
You must then be wondering: What is the best outdoor patio heater? Although they are indeed common heating appliances, that does not mean you can just order any electric patio heater online by making a few hurried clicks and waiting for a bulky box to arrive in the mail. A patio heater, if chosen correctly and used and maintained well, will serve you a long time.
At A Glance: Our Top 5 Picks for Patio Heaters
Also, aside from keeping you and your guests toasty as you enjoy some coffee or hot chocolate, the best outdoor patio heater can complement the look and feel of your outdoor living area and do a lot more. The point is that patio heaters are important and you have to take time in inspecting each outdoor heaters model closely before adding it to your cart!
10 Best Patio Heater 2020: (Compare Classic & Latest Model)
Here are the 10+ best patio heater reviews and comparison chart at a glance.
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For a complete patio heater buying guide, simply scroll further down after the reviews section, where we discuss the top 10 best outdoor heaters in detail. However, we understand that not everyone has that much time. If you are in a hurry, take a look at these quick tips instead.
- Choose the right style: Go for a patio heater that matches your available space, home design, preferred heat source, and more. The last thing you want is a tall piece of metal rusting in your basement because it is the wrong kind.
- Prioritize safety: Regardless of their design or style, patio heaters are still inherently hazardous. Choose an outdoor space heater with sufficient safety features especially if you have kids or pets.
- Pay attention to features: Different patio heater models come with neat, innovative features that make operation and maintenance a lot easier and more convenient. Look for product features that will work for you.
- Keep your budget in mind: As we mentioned earlier, a good patio heater does more than just heat your outdoor living space. However, that does not mean you need to shell out. Judge outdoor heaters by their value for money, not by their price tag.
- Listen to your fellow homeowners: The best way to judge a product’s quality is to read online reviews. Find out what other people like and dislike about each patio heater
Fire Sense Hammer Tone Bronze Commercial Patio Heater
The manufacturer markets their hammer tone bronze patio heater as the best there is. It does come with a neat set of features. This outdoor heater has an aluminum reflector hood, wheel assembly, and an ignition mechanism that is easily started. The unit runs on a standard propane gas tank (20 lbs), which is not included in the purchase.
- High BTU rating
- Easy transportation and storage
- Electric ignition system
Many patio heaters nowadays come pre-assembled or need only minor assembly. This model requires assembly, though. However, it does come with a manual that is very easy to understand so you should not have a hard time figuring it out.
Key Features of the Hammer Tone Bronze Patio Heater
The appeal of the Hammer Tone Bronze heater comes from the fact that it is so simple. Despite its simplicity, though, it comes packed with features that make it convenient and effective to use.
Propane Gas Fuel
This heater runs on propane gas, which is safe, effective, and easy to maintain. The output is 46,000 BTUs, which is perfect for large patios and chilly temperatures. A full standard propane tank should last an average of 10 hours on normal setting, but run time will still depend on your preferred setting. On high, it can last four hours, for example.
The Hammer Tone Bronze patio heater comes with a wheel assembly kit, which makes moving the heater effortless and convenient. When it is time to stow it away for storage in summer, simply fix up the wheels and push. Furthermore, you do not have to worry about damaging the wheels in the process as they are designed for rough patio flooring.
Aluminum Reflector Hood
Aluminum is popular in the manufacture of outdoor appliance and equipment because it is very strong despite being remarkably lightweight. In the case of the Hammer Tone Bronze patio heater, the aluminum is right on top of the heat source, reflecting the heat back where it is supposed to be.
Electric Ignition System
Although Hammer Tone Bronze Patio heater runs on gas, this unit has an electric ignition system, which makes ignition very simple and easy. With the push of a button, everything is up and running.
AmazonBasics Havana Bronze Commercial Patio Heater
This sleek-looking patio heater has a sturdy silver body that is built to last and withstand the elements. It runs on gas, which means it produces plenty of heat. This AmazonBasics heater features a one-step Piezo ignition system, a wheel assembly kit, and a long list of other features.
- Gas fuel source
- High BTU rating
- One-step ignition
The sand used to stabilize the heater’s base is encased in plastic, which can puncture if not handled safely and properly. However, if the product does not fall or get hit, the plastic container should remain intact.
Key Features of the AmazonBasics Havana Bronze Commercial Patio Heater
AmazonBasics’ take on patio heaters is purely designed for function. Surely you will not be disappointed by these features.
The one-step Piezo ignition system installed in the AmazonBasics Slate Grey makes startup very easy and simple. It also comes with a variable heat control knob, which gives you full control over how you are going to take advantage of the 46,000 BTU rating.
Stainless Steel Body
Stainless is popular because it is sturdy and durable, it looks good, and handles heat well. In the case of the AmazonBasics Slate Grey, the stainless body is effective at protecting the inner components of the heater from the harsh elements.
Safety and Tilt Auto Shut-Off
The AmazonBasics Slate Grey has mechanisms in place to prevent fires in case the patio heater gets dangerously hot or gets knocked over. In those two scenarios, the unit will turn off by itself
Belleze Premium Patio Propane Heater
Facts about the Belleze Premium Patio Heater
- Powerful patio heater that can pump out 48,000 BTUs ideal for heating a 15-ft diameter space
- Good Portability: has wheels so you can move it around with ease
- With a safety tilt shut-off valve to prevent accidents
- With low and high heat settings to match daytime or nighttime use
- Made of heavy duty steel with a stylish finish
- Comes with a weight bladder that may be filled with sand or water
- This does not come with a propane tank
- Comes in a variety of colors (Hammer Bronze, Hammer Black, Mocha and Stainless Steel)
- You can move this around your porch or garden easily with its sturdy wheels
- Save on propane with a safety tilt shut-off valve and heat control valve
- No need to take this indoors because of its steel construction that protects it from the harsh sun and salt air
- Fill this with water or sand to stabilize it and place it anywhere outdoors
- Will match your outdoor paint and design because it comes in a number of colors
- Will not stand up to high winds
- Complaints that the igniter controls fail to operate
- Not enough colors to choose from
What users are saying about the Belleze Premium Patio Heater?
Consumers who have purchased and used the Belleze patio heater commend it for working well and for matching their outdoor paint and décor. They also love the way this heater can accommodate a large outdoor area in the most efficient manner. Many also agree that this outdoor heater is a good buy and will provide years upon years of good use.
Key Features of the the Belleze Premium Patio Heater
One-step Piezo ignition system
Easily power on and off the Belleze Premium Patio Heater with a single click. This is designed to work easily so you can warm up fast even when you are outdoors.
Easy temperature setting
Set this heater to low or high by clicking a simple control knob. You can easily regulate patio or outdoor space temperature and even save on propane as soon as the area has become warmer with just one click.
Anti-tilt automatic shut off mechanism
Even if high winds tilt this patio heater, it won’t spill because of its anti-tilt automatic shut off system. No need to worry about taking it indoors when there are high winds because it will keep its stance with its sand or water-filled weight bladder.
No need to crowd next to the heater
No more crowding next to the heater when you want to eat or party outdoors because the Belleze Premium Patio Heater has a heat output of 48,000 which can reach 175- sq./ft. You can place it on your porch, patio or any outdoor space.
Giantex Steel Outdoor Patio Heater
This outdoor patio heater is another proof that sometimes, the simpler the product is, the better it works. This heater is made of high gauge steel and has some convenient features like extra simple startup and variable heat control. The look of the patio heater, which has a slightly vintage feel, is a bonus.
- Propane gas fuel
- Vintage look
- Variable heat control
Unfortunately, this model only holds a 5-lb propane tank, which means you can have it running continuously only for a couple of hours. However, you can always just purchase a large tank and place it a safe distance away from the heater because it will not fit the compartment.
Key Features of the Giantex Steel Outdoor Patio Heater
You can describe the look of the Steel outdoor patio heater as “cute” but its features sure pack a punch. Here, we only go over a couple of them.
Variable Heat Control
If you can, try to look for a patio heater with variable heat control so you can always switch it to your preferred heat level. The variable control switch is located right above the push-button ignition, which we are discussing next.
Startup is easy for this Giantex heater. One red button will take care of both startup and shut down. There is no complicated guesswork involved.
Garden Radiance GRP4000BK Dancing Flames Pyramid Outdoor Patio Heater
The GRP4000BK from Garden Radiance is a good mid-range outdoor heater investment. It produces 34,000 BTUs worth of heat using propane gas and can heat a radius of about 15 feet. The ignition system comprises an electronic striker mechanism. Lastly, this unit has a durable ceramic glass flame tube, which looks as good as it is durable.
- CSA certification
- Ceramic flame tube
- Stainless steel body
In comparison with other patio heaters in its price range, the GRP4000BK’s BTU rating of 34,000 is considered moderate. However, it compensates for that with its ability to heat a decent radius of 15 ft.
Key Features of the Garden Radiance GRP4000BK Patio Heater
If you are looking for a good patio heater in the middle price range, the GRP4000BK may be the unit for you. It looks good and does what it is supposed to do without breaking the bank.
As a safety measure, the GRP4000BK is programmed to shut its heating element off and extinguish the flames if its sensors detect that the heater is tilted at an unsafe angle.
Stainless Steel Construction
Heavy grade stainless steel never fails the outdoor appliances it is used for and the GRP4000BK is no exception. Its stainless steel body improves heating, durability, and stability.
AZ Patio Heaters HLDS01-GTSS Quartz Glass Tube Patio Heater
The HLDS01-GTSS runs on propane and boasts a 40,000 BTU rating. Like some of the best propane patio heaters today, it has an auto shut-off mechanism, a wheel kit, and similar features.
- Sturdy stainless steel body
- High BTU rating
- Tilt shut-off feature
This pyramid outdoor heater is not too difficult to assemble especially if you are used to putting appliances like this together. However, if you are new to patio heaters, you may have a hard time understanding the assembly instructions, which are not written too well. You will still figure it out, though. It will just take a little time.
Key Features of the HLDS01-GTSS Patio Heater
The intimidating look of the HLDS01-GTSS is there for a reason. It is designed to work very well with proper care and maintenance and has the right safety measures in place.
Auto Tilt Shut-Off
The HLDS01-GTSS is engineered for maximum safety. The patio heater will automatically shut down in case it gets moved at an unsafe angle. This feature helps prevent fires effectively.
Propane Gas Fuel
The fact that it runs on a standard propane gas tank means that this is convenient to operate but produces sufficient heat for a large patio. Propane is also relatively clean and safe compared with other fuel sources.
Durable Stainless Steel Construction
Stainless steel holds up well against the weather. The body of the HLDS01-GTSS is great at keeping contaminants out of its interior parts and manages to remain in mint condition even after a long time of usage.
XtremepowerUS 48,000 BTU Premium Floor Standing Propane Outdoor Patio Heater
This patio heater is another propane fueled unit. It has an impressive BTU rating range of 47,000 to 48,000. The ignition system comprises the popular one-step Piezo ignition. There are also features for ease of use, convenience, and safety.
- Very high BTU rating
- One-step ignition
- Propane fuel source
This patio heater from XtremepowerUS requires assembly. The adjustments needed are very minor, though, and you should be able to put the unit together even if you are new to patio heaters.
Key Features of the XtremepowerUS 48,000 BTU Floor Standing Patio Heater
For a mid-range priced patio heater, the Premium floor standin heater delivers a lot. It has all you can possibly ask for in a standing outdoor heater.
Wheel Assembly Kit
This model is sold with its own wheels. Whenever you have to store it or move it elsewhere outdoors, simply put the wheels to work. Moreover, they are designed to handle rough surfaces well so you do not need to worry about pushing the patio heater along on hard and uneven patio flooring.
Piezo Ignition System
The Piezo ignition mechanism is popular among outdoor equipment manufacturers because of its simplicity. All you have to do it push a button and the patio heater will ignite and start to heat up.
Auto Tilt Shut-Off
Like the other models in this list, the Premium floor standingheater is designed to automatically turn its heating element off if it happens to get knocked over. This is an important safety feature that you should not do without.
Garden Sun GS4400BK Floor Standing 41,000 BTU Propane Powered Patio Heater
You will like how the GS4400BK combines a high BTU rating of 41,000 and a good heating radius of 15 feet. In addition, it has effective safety mechanisms in place to guard against potential fire hazards. It runs on the same standard propane tanks used for barbecues.
- Good heating power
- High BTU rating
Although the item is relatively cheap, you may have to spend extra on assembly if you are not familiar with how it is done. However, you can give it a try as assembly is very easy and does not even require a manual anymore.
Key Features of the Garden Sun GS4400BK Floor Standing Patio
Propane Gas Fuel
The propane fuel source for this patio heater burns cleanly, is easy to use, and highly accessible. The standard 20-lb tank this unit uses should last around 10 hours under moderate heat settings.
Auto Tilt Shut-Off
The manufacturer made sure that the proper safety precautions are taken by installing an auto tilt shut-off mechanism. As mentioned, this feature turns the patio heater off if it runs the risk of causing a fire hazard by getting tilted or knocked over.
Lava Heat Italia – AMAZON-128 – Hammered Black Finish
Let us warn you this early that this hammered black heater from Lava Heat Italia is utterly expensive. The other expensive items we listed here pale in comparison with this. However, that price tag is explained by a 66,000 BTU rating, which should work well for the largest patio, the largest crowd, and the lowest temperatures.
- Very high BTU rating
- Versatile fuel options
- Elegant look
The one downside we are seeing about this Lava Heat Italia patio heater is the price. But then again, as we always say, in the long run it is about the value for money. We think you will find the utility, look, and durability of this patio heater worth it.
Key Features of the Lava Heat Italia – AMAZON-128 Patio Heater
It is not hard to see why this certain model from Lava Heat Italia is expensive. It does come with impressive features and we will only be covering a couple of them.
Versatile Fuel Options
This model is available in propane and natural gas variants. If you love the look of this patio heater and have access to either fuel, you are good to go. With a standard propane tank, you should be able to get 14 hours of generous heating.
This patio heater has a super sophisticated ignition system that is easy for owners to operate. The complicated part is done by theheater while the pushing of the button is the only thing that is left for you.
AZ Patio HLDS01-GTPC Tall Glass Tube Heater – Matte Black
This HLDSO1 heater from AZ Patio Heaters looks stylish and should complement any patio design. The structure has an 87-inch quartz glass tube. You can get a variant that runs on propane gas or the one that runs on butane. If you are using propane, you might as well buy a standard tank weighing 20 pounds to get this heater up and running.
- CSA certification
- High BTU rating
- Stylish look
Like the first item on our list, this patio heater also requires assembly. You can have it preassembled, but for an added charge. The heater itself is already a little more expensive than average, but if you are willing to spend just a bit more for expert assembly, then by all means go for it.
Key Features of the AZ Patio HLDS01-GTPC Tall Glass Tube Heater
The HLDSO1-WGTHG is more than just good looks. There is a nice set of features that justify its popularity and relatively high price.
Propane and Butane Gas Fuel
Because it runs on gas, you can be sure that this heater will effortlessly keep you and your friends feeling toasty even at formidably chilly temperatures. The heat output is 40,000 BTUs, which should work fine even in big patios.
Wheel Assembly Kit
Moving the patio heater will not take up too much effort and time, provided you have mastered how to install the wheels that come with it. The wheels are of a heavy duty design, making them work just fine on rough patio surfaces.
The HLDSO1-WGTHG has a CSA certification, meaning its safety features comply with international standards.
True Commercial Hammered Mocha 3 Sided Pyramid Style Quartz Tube Patio Heater
The True Commercial heater belongs to the upper price tier. When you take a closer look at its appearance and features, it becomes obvious why it is expensive. It is elegant, sturdy, and definitely built to last.
- Quick ignition
- One-piece quartz tube
- Rust-proof aluminum frame
As we mentioned, this product is expensive. However, its features, its look, and the good reviews it is getting so far all justify the hefty price tag.
Key Features of the Golden Flame True Commercial Patio Heater
The more expensive a patio heater is, the more you should dig deeper and evaluate its features. It is a good thing that the True Commercial patio heater passes that test.
One-Piece Quartz Glass
Most quartz tube patio heaters have two thin quartz panels stuck together. Their thin surface means they can easily break. The fact that there are two of them means that there is more likelihood of breakage. The True Commercial heater resolves both of those issues by having a single sheet of quartz glass all around.
Rust-Proof Aluminum Frame
Here we go again with aluminum. Golden Flame surrounds its main body with rust-proof aluminum to ensure that your patio heater retains its impressive looks even when left outside for weeks on end and while enduring weather-related effects.
A Complete Patio Heater Buying Guide
A patio heater is one of the most important outdoor appliances you can ever have. Although it sits silently in one corner, it offers a lot of comfort for you, your family, and your guests. Despite this, heaters are generally inexpensive. All you have to do is order one that meets your needs, wait for it to arrive at your doorstep, and enjoy warm evenings in the company of your folks.
Benefits of having the best Patio Heaters
You will not appreciate a good patio heater until you have spent a couple of nights in an especially chilly region. Just because the weather is intolerable does not mean you have to lock yourself indoors and forget about enjoying the outside air and having a couple of drinks with your buddies by that patio bar you built.
With a good outdoor heater, your patio becomes an extension of your living room. You will be able to cook, relax, and hang out with family and friends while staying perfectly toasty no matter how cold the surroundings get.
When shopping for patio heaters, there are so many options to choose from that it becomes virtually impossible for you not to find the right unit or model for your home. The BTU rating is one of the most important factors to consider when looking for patio heaters but that does not mean that looks should take the back seat.
Patio heaters come in various styles, colors, shapes, and sizes. You can easily select a model that will complement your patio design and work well with your space’s requirements and limitations. For example, if you do not have much space, wall-mounted or hanging heaters may work for you. If you are heating a relatively small area, a powerful floor patio may be overkill. You can instead go for a tabletop heater that will look good with your patio furniture.
Although freestanding patio heaters are still inherently dangerous (They produce heat, after all.), they have certainly come a long way from the time our grandparents had to create a huge open flame in the backyard to keep warm. Modern patio heaters are safe to operate and maintain.
Despite producing a lot of heat, most of the parts of heaters, especially those that can possibly come in contact with people (base, pole, etc.), remain cool to the touch. This means you are free to place even a tall patio heater with a heavy base anywhere in your patio without fearing that it may burn people. The only parts that heat up are the parts that come in direct contact with the heat source, which are the reflector and the areas near the heat source itself (In some cases, a dome-shaped case).
Which Patio Heater Types is Best For You?
Standing Patio Heater
Also known as floor or free-standing heaters, standing patio heaters are popular because of their sleek look. This is why they are the type you often see in restaurants, coffee shops, and similar places. Also, although you have to find room for them in your outdoor space, most designs and styles do not take up much space. You can put them anywhere provided you have sufficient fuel access. Many outdoor heaters run on propane gas while some are powered by electricity, natural gas, and other sources. Most models in this category have more or less 40,000 BTUs, which is the best BTU rating range you can hope for in a patio heater.
A standing heater has four main parts. From bottom to top, you have the base, the pole, the heat source, and the reflector. The main function of the base is to provide stability. A standing patio heater’s tall and thin structure is very prone to tipping over so a heavy base is a must. Often, the fuel tank, if any, is placed in the base as well.
The purpose of the pole is to extend the heat upwards to maximize heating and heat distribution. The heat source is the part that directly concerns the patio heater’s BTU rating, which is a measurement of the amount of heat an appliance can produce. Finally, you have the reflector on top. Its job is to reflect heat from the heat source downward so that it is pushed back toward the living area.
Not all floor heaters have reflectors, though. However, they make up for the absence of a reflector by having a movable or adjustable heat source, which can be focused on the specific areas that need heating. That way, you do not have to worry about having any of the heat get wasted because all of it goes to just one area.
Tabletop Patio Heater
Also known as portable patio heaters, tabletop models are compact and highly portable. They look great and are often used as centerpieces for patio tables. Many of them are designed to look like mini versions of standing floor heaters while many look like normal table lamps you would find in your living room.
The parts of a tabletop patio heater are generally the same as those of a floor heater. The body of a tabletop heater has a fuel tank compartment that is located in the base but they generally do not produce more heat than 30,000 BTUs. This is why they are ideal for relatively smaller spaces like breakfast or coffee nooks. They commonly run on electricity while a few run on propane gas.
Hanging Patio Heater
Because these are installed to hang from the ceiling, hanging patio heaters are ideal for use in small outdoor living areas like enclosed porches or gazebos. They are the most convenient heater design because they do all the work required of them without getting in your way.
Some people love hanging patio heaters because of their even heat distribution. Since they are installed overhead, more areas are warmed. However, it still ultimately depends on how you adjust it. You can always choose to have the heater focus in one specific area. Most hanging heaters have heating power ranging from 10,000 BTUs to 30,000 BTUs. Most heater models in this category are powered by electricity or batteries.
Wall-Mounted Patio Heater
Wall-mounted patio heaters are highly convenient, practical, and space-saving because they are placed on walls and posts, where they are far from getting in anyone’s way. They are ideal for use in small spaces or areas cramped with furniture.
Understandably, wall-mounted heaters run on electricity. In addition, a lot of them use infrared heat technology for heating and can be moved up and down so that the heat is focused in one area. They are not too fussy to work with because many of them are already sold with their own brackets.
Patio Heater Fuel Types
Most patio heaters run on propane gas. The great thing about propane is that it comes in lightweight and portable tanks. This means you can place the heater just about anywhere without much fuss. Many propane heaters are also sold with wheel kits or similar add-ons that make transportation easier. Patio heaters that run on propane gas are usually designed with a cabinet or a compartment for storing the propane tank out of sight.
The standard propane tank weighs about 20 pounds and that is the size required by many propane heaters. Smaller heaters like tabletop ones require much smaller tanks. It is best to have a spare propane tank around just in case your current one runs out. As you really have no way to tell how much gas is left in your tank, you can really only estimate how long your tank will last. You do not want your patio heater to suddenly conk out in the middle of relaxing with a cup of coffee outside. However, if you have a spare, switching tanks is easy.
You can buy propane tanks in groceries. You can also opt to have your empty tank refilled or replaced with a full one for a special discount.
Most propane patio heaters are easily started up using a Piezo or a multi-spark ignition system. To ignite the heater, simply turn on press the ignition switch and the heater will do the rest. Also, since they do not require a power outlet, you can place them just about anywhere.
Among the various propane heater fuels, it is propane gas that produces the most heat. You should consider going for a propane heater if you have a particularly spacious patio.
If you do not like the sound of having to buy, refill, and replace gas tanks, you may be happy to know that many patio heaters today are powered by electricity. If there is an outlet close to where you plan to place your heater, you should have no problem at all.
Just like your other appliances, electric patio heaters simply have to be plugged in and turned on. One issue you should keep in mind when buying this kind of heater, though, is fire hazard. To avoid accidents, many heaters that use electricity are built with weather-resistant exteriors. However, it is still best if you put such a heater in a protected location.
There are electric versions of all kinds of patio heaters: hanging, wall-mounted, tabletop, and standing, so you should not have a hard time choosing one that is convenient enough for you to operate. Generally, though, electric patio heaters do not produce as much heat as propane heaters. If you have a small or a moderately sized patio that does not need that much heating power, you should be fine with an electric heater.
As people become more environmentally conscious, appliances that run on natural gas become increasingly popular. Patio heaters are no exception. If you have an outdoor outlet for natural gas, then by all means have yourself a natural gas patio heater. Like propane, natural gas offers a lot of heat and are ideal for use in spacious areas and the chilliest temperatures.
The best thing about a heater running on natural gas is that you do not have to worry about suddenly running out of gas, having to get a refill, or suddenly experiencing a power outage. You can keep your patio warm and cozy whenever you need to. The only thing you have to do is connect the heater to the outlet, which should not be a problem if your outlet is accessible enough.
What is the Top Patio Heater Brands
When shopping for the best outdoor heaters, you are likely going to come across these names. Get to know some of the top patio heater manufacturers today.
Fire Sense was founded in 1998 as part of the Well Traveled Living product group. They make electric fireplaces and a host of outdoor heating appliances. All of their products come with a one year warranty and are supported by their customer service team headquartered in Amelia Island, FL.
Patio heaters and replacement parts are the specialty of AZ Patio Heaters. Established in 2002, the company is relatively new. However, they have already made a name for themselves, as indicated by the many positive reviews they have garnered online.
Another name you will definitely encounter is Thermo Tiki. This company has also been getting good reviews from happy customers who bought their outdoor heaters online.
Belleze is known more for their furniture and home decor than their outdoor heaters. However, that does not mean they do not deliver. Their heaters are quite popular among online buyers because of their quality and style.
If you specifically search for propane or natural gas heaters, Lava Heat Italia will definitely come up because those are what they specialize in. Most of their patio heaters come in propane gas and natural gas configurations.
What to Look for in a Patio Heater
Generally, there are only five things to look for when shopping for the best patio heater. In this section, we discuss these five things in detail to make sure you make the right purchase decision.
Start by deciding which style serves you best. To review, the four types of patio heaters are- standing, wall-mounted, hanging, and tabletop. A standing heater is ideal for moderately sized to large patios that can accommodate such a structure. It is also good for homes with no pets, kids, or anything else that can cause the heater to tip over.
Wall-mounted heaters are a nice option if you want to make sure the heater stays out of your way or if you have small children and pets and you need a heater out of their reach.
Hanging ones are the best in terms of space optimization but require the most installation work. Finally, you have tabletop heaters, which look good and are ideal for small spaces.
Look for special safety features in patio heaters for sale. Common safety mechanisms include safety shut-off systems, tip-over switches, and cool-touch glass. Many heaters also come with various safety certifications from different regulatory bodies.
A safety or automatic shut-off mechanism immediately turns off the patio heater if it heats up too much and becomes a fire hazard. Some models have manual valves that disconnect the fuel and extinguishes flames, if any.
A tilt switch automatically turns the patio heater off if it gets tilted or moved past a set threshold angle. In case your heater gets knocked over, you do not have to worry about possibly starting a fire.
As we have discussed earlier, most patio heater exteriors remain cool to the touch even when the heating element is running. This feature prevents kids or pets from accidentally burning themselves on the heater.
Check each unit for any safety certification. One of the biggest organizations issuing such marks is the Canadian Standards Association (CSA). This group has stringent requirements and high safety standards so any patio heater with their mark is guaranteed to be safe by international standards.
The best way to find out if you are really getting value for your money is to go over the list of a patio heater’s features. The most important ones would be the fuel type, the BTU rating, safety mechanisms that we discussed previously, and add-ons.
Obviously, even the best-looking, most expensive patio heater is useless if it happens to use the wrong fuel type or power source. Heaters commonly run on electricity, propane, and natural gas while a few run on batteries.
Just to give you a quick rundown of each power source, electric patio heaters are the most convenient because they work just like ordinary home appliances. There is no gas tank to replace. However, they are useless during a power outage and do not produce as much heat as gas-fueled heaters.
Propane gas produces intense heat but require gas tank replacements and refills. The other good thing about them is that they can be placed in any corner where their base (which contains the propane tank) fits instead of having to be kept close to a power outlet, as is the case with electric patio heaters.
Natural gas can also get very hot and do not require tank replacements and refills. Your relaxation is never interrupted. The downside is that not everyone has a natural gas outlet by their patio.
Second, you have the BTU rating. BTU stands for British Thermal Unit, which is a traditional unit of measurement for heat. We can give a detailed explanation about how it all works, but we will skip that and go straight to the point. How much BTUs does your patio need?
Your required BTU rating mainly depends on the size of your patio. To give you an idea, a patio measuring anywhere between 100 to 150 square feet requires at least 5,000 BTUs. A bigger patio measuring 300 to 350 square feet needs at least 8,000 BTUs.
However, the BTU requirement is also influenced by other factors such as temperature. For example, a big patio and a small patio may have the same BTU requirement if the smaller patio is a lot colder than the big patio. You get the idea.
Finally, you have to look at add-ons like remote controls, electronic settings, adjustable flames, warranty, eco-friendly features, etc.
Patio heaters are sold at a wide range of prices. If you do not do enough research before shopping, you may end up either settling for a cheap patio model, because it is the most affordable one you can find or you may buy the most expensive one available thinking it has the best patio features.
At the end of the day, it is always more than just the price tag. Instead of comparing prices, compare features first, and then choose the one that gives more value for money. Sometimes, a cheap patio heater is a good idea only at the time of purchase and a relatively pricey one becomes cheap in the long run.
Customer reviews are the best determinants of product quality. Always scour online stores and review sites to see what your fellow buyers have to say about the heater you are looking to purchase. There is a reason the best rated patio heaters end up being so popular among a large group of customers.
We hope we were able to significantly help you in shopping for your patio heater. Now that you know what to look for in the best patio heater, we do hope you buy one of the units we listed and get to experience the reason why they made it into our list!