Types of Space Heaters

Posted: 12/09/2014

Convection Heater
Did you ever have that spot in your house that just seems colder than anywhere else during the winter months? Sure, it’s all cozy just like the rest of the house most days, but as soon as it hits below freezing, that room suddenly requires layers… gloves, a jacket, a blanket. And I would guess that it either happens to be where you sleep or where you spend most of your time during the day (because that’s just how it works out, isn’t it).

Rather than crank up the HVAC to take the chill out of your home when temperatures fall below freezing this winter, space heaters provide a more energy efficient alternative. Because they allow you to focus the heat on certain areas of the home, rather than have the heating unit try and get all of the house to a consistent temperature. That means keeping your energy bill a bit lower during the winter, and we all know that any little bit helps, especially the way Missouri winters have been going.

Thing is, there are a variety of space hearers out there, and a variety of concerns for using them. Namely, the biggest concern most people have is risk of fire, so that will be the number one thing we address as we examine the different types of space heaters available.

Propane/Kerosene Space Heaters
We’re only mentioning this type of space heater in an effort to prevent its use – at least indoors. These space heaters have an open flame and require fuel, and that means major risk factors for fire and for carbon monoxide poisoning. These are great, however, for unheated covered patios and the like, with a lot of air flow. And only used under supervision (and away from children or pets).

Convection Space Heaters
 Designed to warm the air in a room, rather than the people, if you’re looking for an instant warm up, these aren’t for you. It’s like using an oven to heat food over a microwave – it takes longer, but the results are better. Baseboard convection heaters are common, but the most effective are the water or oil filled heater options, which start at about $50 but last a very long time.

Find one with a built in timer and you’re all set – you can set it come on an hour before you typically use the room so that it’s ready when you are. This is also your most energy efficient option, because, once the oil or water is heated, it doesn’t require as much power to keep it hot.

Radiant Space Heaters
Radiant heaters are typically the kind you see under each desk at work during the winter months. They are designed to heat a person rather than the room itself. There is increased risk of burn with this method, as well as fire if a radiant heater is placed too close to something flammable. So, be careful. This option isn’t as energy efficient because it has to continually “kick on” to maintain the temperature you’ve set it at, using wattage each time.


Of course, if you feel that more needs to be done than simply adding a space heater (such as heated floors in the bathroom), give Andy and his HA Construction team a call to get an estimate for the job!