With fall quickly approaching, now is the time to start thinking about purchasing a high-quality patio heater to combat the chilly weather. At this time of year, patio heaters are extremely popular because of the impending cold weather. These come in a wide range of sizes, but they all serve the same purpose: keeping you toasty on your patio. Gas, electricity, propane, and infrared are just few of the possible choices. Their designs also diverge greatly; some are made to look nice, while others are made to serve a certain purpose.
But what characteristics do patio heaters need to have? The first and foremost requirement is that it adequately heats you and your patio. However, it must accomplish this while consuming a negligible amount of energy and being silent. If possible, you should choose for a design that can be folded up and taken with you in a pinch. While this may sound pricey, be assured that a high-quality patio heater is available for less than you may think. We’ve scoured the web for the finest patio heaters available to help you out. There’s one here that’ll work in any backyard, whether you’re looking for a tabletop model or one that’s efficient with energy use.
Top 10 Patio Heaters Consumer Reports: Editor Recommended
The 10 Best Patio Heaters Consumer Reports Review:
1. Amazon Basics 46,000 BTU Outdoor Propane Patio Heater with Wheels
- Powerful 46,000 BTU outdoor gas heater provides heat up to a 9 foot radius;...
- Constructed with aluminum, plastic, and steel with a durable powder-coated...
- One-touch ignition button for easy start up; requires 20lb liquid propane gas...
- Features adjustable temperature knob, tilt safety auto-shut off valve, water box...
- Secure the patio heater when not in use to avoid any potential damage to unit
We advise the Frontgate Commercial Patio Heater if you’re looking for a powerful and easily transportable outdoor heating solution. It is the most effective patio heater, with a heat output of 46,000 BTU and a range of 9 feet, for transforming a vast outside area into a warm and inviting retreat.
Not included with the heater is a 20-pound propane tank, but these are readily available at any hardware store. It can be started with minimal effort and features a safety shut-off valve that closes automatically. The sturdy, wheeled base can be moved anywhere you need it to go because to its expansive footprint.
The Frontgate heater, in contrast to some of the other options we considered, is meant to be used in the great outdoors. It’s a tad costly, but the sleek, lightweight, and robust construction more than makes up for it.
- Large heat capacity
- Wheels on base
- Outdoor only
2. Dr Infrared Heater DR-238 Carbon Infrared Outdoor Heater for Restaurant
- INDOOR and OUTDOOR HEATER - Heater is IP55 approved for both indoor and outdoor...
- CLEAN and INSTANT HEAT - Clean, instant and odorless Infrared heat with 3 power...
- PLUG and GO - uses standard 120V, remote controlled
- WALL and CEILING MOUNTED - Included wall and Ceiling mounting bracket
- EFFICIENT - High level Mirror aluminum reflector with 90% reflectivity, and...
This space-saving patio warmer from Dr. Infrared can be installed on the wall or ceiling. This infrared plug-and-play heater provided quick (and odorless) warmth, and its temperature could be readily adjusted with the accompanying remote control. It’s perfect for both indoor and outdoor use because to its gas-free operation.
The Dr. Infrared Electric Carbon Infrared Space Heater has three power levels (900W, 1200W, and 1500W) to accommodate a wide range of settings and preferences. You won’t have to worry about disturbing your get-together because to its solid aluminum construction and silent functioning. Keep in mind, though, that it’s most effective in quite tight quarters.
- Plug-and-go operation
- Indoor/outdoor use
- Works best for small spaces
3. Hampton Bay 48000 Btu Stainless Steel Patio Heater
The Hampton Bay 48,000 BTU patio heater is an excellent compromise between cost, performance, and aesthetics. The stainless steel exterior conceals a regular propane tank, making it as simple to use as a gas grill. It can warm an area up to 200 square feet, making it suitable for most backyards.
This unit is a little over 7 feet in height, which makes it more vulnerable to the effects of wind. There isn’t much to keep the heater elements from being damaged in case of an accidental overturn. In windy weather, this issue can be mitigated by placing a couple of small sandbags at the base.
- Highly effective
- Uses propane tank
- Blows over easily in wind
4. Mr. Heater MH450T Tank Top Heater, One Size
- Multi-directional radiant propane heater mounts directly to a 20 lb tank for...
- High-medium-low regulator: 45,000-36,000-30,000 BTUs
- Tip-over safety shut-off switch
- Approximate 9.5 hour run time on high with a 20 lb tank
- Mounts on 20 - 100 lb propane cylinder
The Mr. Heater portable heater is an inexpensive choice that may give heat for up to 9.5 hours without the inconvenience or permanent installation of a larger patio heater unit. It is designed to fit on top of a regular propane tank and emit heat in all directions, with a range of 360 degrees and the ability to rotate 180 degrees. We recommend it as the best value option because it costs less than half as much as many other comparable-sized heaters.
It lacks the aesthetic appeal of some alternatives and is instead designed for practical purposes. It’s the perfect appliance if transportable and easy-to-use heat is your top goal. Not the best option if you’re hoping to design a cozy outdoor retreat.
- Easily portable
- Small footprint
- Not very stylish
5. Fire Sense Telescoping Offset Pole Mounted Infrared Patio Heater
- FIRE SENSE ELECTRIC PATIO HEATER: The patented heavy duty Black Powder Coated...
- Operating at 90% heating efficiency, this infrared patio heater runs on regular...
- This adaptable unit can be used indoors and outdoors and has wheels for easy...
- 1500 watts | Protective aluminum heat shield | On/off toggle switch | 90% energy...
- 9-foot blanket of heat not affected by wind | 6-foot non-retractable electrical...
Fire Sense’s electric option stands out from the crowd thanks to a few standout characteristics. Telescoping from under 6 feet to well over 7 feet, it’s a versatile choice for a wide range of settings. The 4-foot chord allows for usage from any normal electrical outlet, making it suitable for use even on a covered porch.
When compared to patio heaters fueled by propane, this one doesn’t put out nearly as much heat. For effective heating, you’ll need to either sit in close proximity to the device itself or buy additional units. The price tag is a bit high, especially when you consider that multiple units are required to get the same warmth output as a more reasonably priced gas patio heater.
- Uses standard outlet
- Safe for enclosed spaces
- Lower heat output and range
6. Bromic Heating Tungsten 500 Smart-Heat Gas 5 Burner Radiant Infrared Patio Heater
- Sleek contemporary styling with black high temperature ceramic coating over...
- Radiant infrared burner heats up fast and provides direct heat to warm people
- Wind resistance up to 8 miles per hour for uninterrupted heating
- Wall bracket houses control system away from heat and pivots heater head...
- Perfect for residential and commercial installations
This is one of the most dependable options for natural gas installation, but it is a pricey patio heater that requires a connection to an existing natural gas line. It can be hung from the ceiling or mounted on a wall.
Users can adjust the temperature and other settings from a remote control panel, keeping their hands safely away from the unit’s coils. To heat a larger area, hook up additional patio heaters to a central control panel, each of which can heat up to 200 square feet.
- High heat output
- Separate control panel
- Can connect multiple units
- Complex installation
7. Outdoor Heater -1500W Electric Heater with Remote
- ADD A WARM ATMOSPHERE TO YOUR HOME: Outdoor heater is exquisitely crafted and...
- WHISPERING AND QUIET COMPANION: When electric heater uses fiber infrared heat...
- SAFE PROTECTIVE BARRIER: Patio heater has the functions of overheating...
- SIMPLE TO USE AND OPERATE:Hanging patio heater working voltage is 110-120V~...
- ENERGY SAVING AND HIGH EFFICIENCY: ZIPEAK heater especially suitable for...
The AllModern Romano electric hanging patio heater is an attractive option for a patio warmer because it hangs from the ceiling like a light yet provides substantial warmth to anyone sitting below it. Since the chain’s length is modifiable up to 19.7 inches, you can illuminate your room in a cozy manner that’s just right. Powered by electricity, it operates in the same way as a pendant lamp.
This heater isn’t very powerful, yet it serves numerous purposes. Warming up a compact outdoor dining space or patio is the greatest option. However, for its size, its ability to heat an area up to 12 feet is extremely remarkable.
- Large heat diameter
- Uses standard electric plug
- Small heat capacity
8. Mirage 38,200 BTU Bronze Heat-Focusing Propane Gas Patio Heater
- 38,200 BTU's heats up to 120 sq. ft. Propane-fueled (propane tank not included)
- Highly durable oven baked, hammered powder coating finish. Heat-focusing...
- Large cone-shaped burners provide effective heating. Anti-tilt design and...
- Fitted with wheels for portability. Weighted base offers stability
- Hinged-cylinder chamber door provides easy access. Patio heater cover included
The Mirage 38,200 BTU propane patio heater has an impressively high heating capacity and convenient additional features that make it an excellent choice for heating a specific area. The propane tank’s base has wheels for portability and a weighted design to ensure it remains steady in windy conditions.
A cover is included, but it won’t keep the heater’s base from getting scratched. However, you can extend the life of your patio heater by purchasing one that is compatible with it. This is a costly heater at almost $700.00, so it is important to invest a little extra money at the outset to ensure that it serves you well for as many years as possible.
- Cover included
- Weighted base
- Wheeled base
- Included cover only works on top
9. Hampton Bay 42,000 BTU Pyramid Patio Heater
- Electronic ignition system
- Automatic shutoff device included
- 42000 BTU golden hammered rust-resistant patio heater
- Wheel kit included
The Hampton Pyramid Patio Propane Heater is one of the best patio heaters you can buy if you want a pyramid-style heat source that will get some attention (in a good way). This heater is pretty neat because it generates 42,000 BTUs and has a beautiful flame to look at (err, hot).
The sturdy base is secured in place by a 20-pound propane tank (which can be easily accessed through a door located beneath the table). With its 85-inch height and attached wheels, this isn’t the best patio heater for tight quarters. However, if you have the space for it, you will love the rustic yet stylish look it provides.
Attractive hammered bronze design
- Heavy, tall
10. Hiland FS-1212-T-10 Aluminum Scroll Propane Pit
- 42,000 BTU's
- It is 23.4" tall
- Includes lid for burner area
- Fireglass included
- Easy access propane tank door
Among the best patio heaters, the furniture-style models are a good bet if you’re going to splurge. Although the Hiland Fire Pit is considerably more costly than other patio heaters, its bronze construction and sophisticated design are undeniable selling points. (And not the type that requires constant tending.)
When it comes to outdoor entertaining and leisure, nothing beats the Hiland FS-1212-T-10 Aluminum Scroll Propane Pit. The hammered bronze will complement any outdoor space and can be used throughout the year. (The propane tank is concealed underneath.) It costs more than your standard floor heater, but it serves twice as many purposes. It’s easier than ever to spend the night toasty warm under the stars. Don’t get your feet too hot!
Doubles as a table
Distinguished bronze design
Hidden propane compartment
Buying Guide: What to Consider When Select Patio Heater
a) Power source
Patio heaters are available in three different fuel types: electricity, propane gas, and natural gas. Patio heaters that use electricity are typically the simplest to set up, but they may not be as effective at warming a space as those that use propane or natural gas. Unlike propane, which can be easily connected to a 20-pound tank, natural gas almost always necessitates the installation of a line.
Most patio heaters have a heating radius of about 9 feet. As might be guessed, smaller devices have a shorter range than their larger counterparts. Think about how big and how open the room is that you want to heat. A wall-mounted or directional unit could be ideal if the object in question is situated near a wall. A ceiling fan or light fixture placed above a dining table can be a great addition to the space.
The patio heater’s output of heat is expressed in British Thermal Units (BTUs). For the same duration of use, a higher number indicates greater heat output. Although propane and natural gas heaters produce more heat than their electric counterparts, they may not be as efficient or reliable.
i) How do I choose the right fuel source?
Liquid propane, natural gas, and electricity are the three most common types of fuel for patio heaters. To choose the best option, consider how accessible, convenient, and inexpensive each is.
Since liquid propane is cheap, many heaters run off of 20-pound tanks; however, when the tank runs low, you’ll need to visit a hardware store, gas station, or convenience store to have it refilled. If that sounds like too much of a bother, consider getting an electric one that can be plugged into any regular household outlet. However, you should be aware that using an electric patio heater constantly can significantly raise your monthly electricity costs. Another choice is natural gas, which can be used in homes that already have a natural gas line installed.
ii) What are BTUs?
Patio heaters’ BTU output is typically listed, where 1 BTU is the amount of heat needed to increase the temperature of 1 lb of water by 1 °F. The higher the BTU output of a patio heater, the more quickly it can warm a large space. Typical BTU outputs range from 30,000 to 50,000 per hour.
iii) How do I clean a patio heater?
To keep your patio heater looking its best, you should clean its exterior with soapy water a few times each season. Covering it when it’s not in use and giving it a good cleaning at the end of the season will help you maintain a clean patio heater for the next season.
The fuel regulator and fuel line should be inspected for kinks, breaks, and leaks on a regular basis, as should the pilot tube and thermocouple. If any of these components are broken, you should look in the manual for replacement instructions.
iv) Where should I place my patio heater?
Put your patio heater on a level, stable surface to avoid any accidents. In general, place the heater fairly close to your outdoor seating or dining area; this will allow you to get the most heat from it, and if it’s too warm, you can simply turn it down, which will help you save fuel. Keep it at least three feet away from combustible items like plants, fabrics, and propane tanks.
v) Are patio heaters safe on decks?
As long as you keep an eye on it, a freestanding patio heater can be used on a wooden deck without damaging the surface. It is, however, prudent to check the manual once more just to be sure.
The Frontgate Commercial Patio Heater is the best patio heater you can buy. The Frontgate commercial patio heater is powerful for its size, emitting 46,000 BTU over a 9-foot radius. Choose the Dr. Infrared Heater 1500W Carbon Infrared Heater if you need a smaller, wall-mountable option.