While a patio, deck or garden is nice during warm weather, if you are like most people, you probably don’t spend much time on them when the weather turns cooler. However, with an outdoor heater, you can still enjoy your outdoor space during the fall and winter months. If you are looking for a way to heat your outdoor space, there are several options to choose from.
Types of Outdoor Heaters
Outdoor heaters come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and they use different energy sources. While they may have once been a novelty reserved for restaurants and pubs with outdoor seating, they are now available for residential use. If you enjoy outdoor entertaining, an outdoor heater will allow you to keep doing so even when there is a chill in the air.
When you are searching for an outdoor heater for your outdoor space, there are several decisions you will need to make. One of the most important decisions will be the energy source that it uses. Heaters can be powered by:
- Natural Gas
Natural Gas Heaters
With a natural gas heater, you and your family or guests can keep warm on your patio or in the garden. Some gas heaters also provide some light, so even if it is dark outside, you can stay out and relax. If you choose a natural gas heater, you will need to have a gas line installed in the area where you will have your heater. This heater will need to stay in a fixed position, so you will need to carefully consider where you wish to place a natural gas heater.
Once it is installed, using a natural gas heater is one of the more economical ways to heat your patio, deck or garden area. Gas heaters come in a variety of styles. They are available in standing heaters with options for a glass hood and a visible flame within the hood. You don’t have to worry about the rain dousing the flame as patio heaters are waterproof.
As long as you have an outdoor electric outlet, you will have more options for where to put an electric outdoor heater. There are freestanding heaters that you can place on your patio, or they also come in styles that you can hang on the edge of your patio or gazebo. They are efficient to run, but depending on the size of the area you need to warm, you may need to buy more than one heater.
Most electric heaters are smaller than most gas heaters. They have a heating element that radiates heat to warm the space and keep you comfortable when you out in the cold.
LPG or Propane Heaters
Instead of connecting a heater to a gas line or an electric outlet, you can purchase an LPG or propane heater and move it wherever you want it as they use tanks of gas like a barbeque grill. When you use this type of heater, you will want to make sure it is well vented as they do release carbon monoxide, which can be dangerous if it builds up in an enclosed or semi-enclosed area.
This type of outdoor heater provides heat quickly, so you don’t have to wait long to be cosy on your patio or in your garden. They are also cost efficient to run for long periods of time, allowing you to use your outdoor space more often in the fall and winter months when entertaining friends or just hanging out with your family.
Styles of Outdoor Heaters
If you are in the market for a heater to warm your patio or garden, you have several style options from which to choose. You can choose between patio heaters that are:
- Table top
It depends on the size of your outdoor space and how often you use it when the weather turns cool. A standing or upright outdoor heater will heat a large space, and they are available in natural gas, propane, LPG or electric types. If your patio space is partially enclosed, you will not want to use a gas heater as the carbon monoxide they produce may not be able to escape, and it can build up to dangerous levels.
Table Top Heaters
If you just want to heat a small area, you can place a small heater on the table on your patio or in your garden. The table top heaters use small propane tanks to produce the heat to keep you and your family warm while enjoying being outside. They are also good to use if you just want to heat a small space next to you when you go outside onto the patio to have a cup of coffee or to smoke in the morning to start off your day.
If you want to be able to move your patio heater where it is needed, a portable heater is your best option. They will use LPG or propane gas as an energy source, so the heater doesn’t have to be fixed to the same spot on your patio because of a gas line or an electrical outlet. They come in a variety of sizes from larger upright heaters to table top varieties.
Hanging heaters are a great option for any size patio or gazebo space. Since they can be hung around the perimeter of the space, you can place one or more to help heat the area when it is cold outside and still stay comfortable. There are hanging heaters that can be hung like a light from the centre of the space, or there are some that you can hang on a patio umbrella to help you stay warm. They use electricity, so you will need to have an outlet that is close by or use a longer power cord.
When considering an outdoor heater you need to think about the size of the space, the availability of an energy source and how often you will use it before choosing the type and style.