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The Most Common Questions About Outdoor Patio Heaters

The Most Common Questions About Outdoor Patio Heaters

Outdoor patio heaters have many applications, whether it’s for outdoor seating for a business, a company event, or a family get-together in the backyard. Heaters ensure that individuals can comfortably sit, walk, and mingle outside without having to worry about cold weather.

But before purchasing a heater, individuals need to know the most common questions about outdoor patio heaters to make a well-informed purchase. Knowing these questions and having the answers can determine what style of heater you invest in and any complications or advantages that can make installation and use simple. Make sure everyone has a comfortable experience and that you can control the outside temperature.

What Are Patio Heaters?

First and foremost, potential buyers need to understand the very basics of patio heaters. They are small devices that draw from a power source, which we will discuss in the next point, and produce an aura of heat in their general vicinity.

They allow for climate control in outdoor environments, creating comfortable spaces for individuals in otherwise chilly weather conditions. Patio heaters can come in two general shapes; one is a large, standing tower, usually around six-feet tall. Another is a smaller, more compact size that you can hang up on the ceiling. Other designs can include wall-mounted heaters and much smaller tabletop heaters.

What Are the Different Power Sources for Patio Heaters?


Patio heaters have several different power sources to generate heat, each one having its own advantages and challenges to consider before purchase. The first and arguably most common variant is heaters that utilize natural gas.

Owners use already-existing gas lines to fuel the heater, allowing for seamless integration onto their property. Gas-powered space heaters also produce generally cleaner heat than most other fuel sources. Their reliance on an attachment to an existing gas line provides some challenges that the owner needs to deal with, one of those disadvantages being mobility.

Mobility suffers due to the need for a direct connection, which ties the heater down to a specific location. This gas connection also poses a slight safety risk if anyone disturbs the gas connection and accidentally damages the valve.


Propane-powered patio heaters provide many of the same benefits as gas-powered ones but bring their own considerations. With a propane tank, owners can move around their heaters as they see fit, not limited by a natural gas line. However, this increased mobility comes at the cost of needing to periodically replace the propane tank, increasing maintenance costs.


Electric heaters are an easy and common solution for consumers, as they do not have to deal with potentially dangerous gases to install their heater. Electric heaters do need to plug into power outlets, which can limit their range, but are significantly more mobile and convenient than gas-powered heaters.

Due to the lower power output from outlets, it can take longer for electric heaters to warm up a space, but once they do, they provide the same warmth as any other method. Lastly, owners need to be aware of the increased long-term costs of electric heaters. It does put a strain on the electrical system, and constant use will result in higher electrical bills over time.

Can You Use Patio Heaters Indoors?

Larger installations, such as the standing six-foot models, are not safe to be indoors. To allow for proper heat dispersal, you need to place large heaters outside to prevent any situations where a space becomes too hot. In some scenarios, having a large heater in an enclosed space can create a physical obstacle that patrons may bump into and burn themselves, or it can pose a fire safety risk.

There are some Bromic heaters for sale that utilize a smaller design that can make them suitable for indoor use, but you should also be aware of their limitations and safety considerations. Owners can safely install these onto ceilings to direct the flow of heat, and due to their smaller size, they pose a significantly lower risk to patrons.

How Long Do Heaters Generally Last?

This does not apply to natural gas or electric heaters, as they can last as long as you maintain a continuous flow of energy. If there is a power outage, an electric heater will shut off, and if there’s some sort of blockage along the gas line, your gas-powered heater will also stop functioning.

With propane heaters, there is a concern that they will run out of fuel during the day. Generally speaking, a 20-pound propane tank will last about 10 hours before it requires replacement, providing heat until it runs out of fuel.

What Is the Coverage Area of a Patio Heater?

This detail is important to know, as it allows you to purchase enough to cover the maximum area necessary, although there are many different variations depending on the model. Typically, standup heaters will cover about 300 square feet of space around them, washing the area in warmth.

There are smaller wall-mounted heaters that can cover roughly 200 square feet. Some factors to consider include the number of objects in the way, such as walls or large furniture.

These can slow down or completely prevent the heat from reaching certain areas, keeping it in a more localized area. You also need to consider ventilation, as a powerful ventilation system can serve to spread the heat faster and farther, increasing overall effectiveness.

Know the Best Use for Your Heater

There are many different styles of patio heaters that exist, and you need to be particular about which ones you purchase. Be aware of your needs and how you can warm up your area in the most efficient and safest way possible. Always consider the most common questions when selecting a patio heater; these can inform what you get and provide better, safer, and more reliable heat coverage based on your needs.

All too commonly, individuals make the mistake of investing in a heater that doesn’t suit their needs. This can be because of an inability to reach the intended gathering area due to a lack of power source or the size being too small to adequately heat an area. Always be aware of the limitations of your space and your heater’s limitations.

The Most Common Questions About Outdoor Patio Heaters
Jasmine Walker
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