What type of outdoor heater is right for you?
Before you rush out and purchase an outdoor heater, you need to consider what kind of area you are aiming to heat. Ask yourself what is the space used for, is it an outdoor kitchen that will be a hub for entertaining year-round, or is it a small balcony?
Whether you're trying to heat a patio, deck, balcony or open space, there's a right heater for each.
How to heat a small outdoor area
If you want to heat a relatively small area, the most suitable heater would be either an outdoor gas heater or heat strips.
Outdoor gas heaters range from those suited to tabletops to freestanding column and area heaters and are easy to move around. Alternatively, you may wish to invest in electric heat strips which are affordable and discrete.
You may also wish to consider clear bistro blinds to seal in the heat, which still allows you to view your garden.
How to heat a large outdoor area
Nothing says ‘cosy’ more than a fireplace. When it comes to open areas, you have two great options to choose between; Chimeneas and fire pits. Both provide a focal point for your guests and will keep you toasty throughout the cooler months.
Wood heaters can be a great option too, being both efficient and environmentally friendly. These heaters look great and provide good radiant heat with low emissions.
5 ways to heat your outdoor area
1. Heat your pergola
Turn your pergola into a gorgeous entertaining space this winter and use these electric strip heaters to keep the space warm and cosy. The slim and stylish bars are fixed to the underside of the roof and provide gentle warmth at the flick of a switch. The heaters are also surprisingly efficient, costing less than a dollar an hour to run. Adding clear bistro blinds around the outside of your pergola will enclose the space, keeping in the warmth and the winter chill at bay.
2. Patio heaters
Portable patio heaters are a good option to heat any area and can be moved to where they’re required giving you more flexibility. The tall heaters with large mushroom heads radiate heat down and out so can cover a wide area compared to their size. They run on either bottled gas or electricity. Small tabletop models are also available to heat an intimate gathering on a balcony or in a small courtyard.
You just can’t beat the atmosphere and romance of an open fire and with a firepit, it becomes a feature of your garden too. A built in firepit made out of bricks or stone is a great DIY project for your garden while a fire bowl or braziers are more portable and great for paved areas or courtyards. They also come in a huge range of shapes and sizes, adding a sculptural element to the fire.
The pot-bellied chimenea gives you the charm of an open fire and the warmth of a radiant heater in one unit. They work by creating an intense flame fuelled by the natural draught caused by air exiting the chimney. As the fire burns, it heats the whole chimenea itself, which radiates heat to the surrounding area. They’re available in either clay or cast iron.
5. Heat strips
Mounted on the ceiling, these discrete strips provide targeted warmth. The number of heat strips you need will depend upon the size of the area you are heating. Running costs are low, particularly if you install timer controllers.
How to stay safe using outdoor heaters
As with any type of heater, safety to both property and people is of prime concern. Keep firepits and patio heaters away from anything flammable and make sure they are on stable ground. If using gas heaters in an enclosed space, there must be some source of ventilation to prevent the build-up of carbon monoxide.
4 outdoor heating products
Give your place a café feel with an outdoor patio heater. This matte black gas heater is portable and easy to operate, making it a handy addition to your outdoor space.
Perfect for an overhead structure like a pergola or balcony, these sleek and stylish heaters add a sophisticated touch to your outdoor areas without dominating a space like other heating options.
For a larger outdoor space, these tall electric patio heaters are the way to go. With three heat settings and a tip-over safety feature, they're as easy to use as they are to set up.
Take the classic campfire and bring it home to your place with this sturdy cast iron fire pit. Rather than just a sideshow, you can make a fire pit a feature of your outdoor area.