Patio Heaters ~ warm up those cool evenings

Patio heaters came onto the market for residential use a number of years ago and since then people have been enjoying summers long into the cool of the evening, as well as being able to spend time on their patios and decks earlier and later in the year. In some milder regions, patio heaters allow for year-round enjoyment of outdoor living spaces.

Typical patio heaters will heat a 15-20 foot circle and will increase the surrounding outside temperature by 10-25 degrees Fahrenheit. That makes quite a difference in the amount of time you can enjoy your time outdoors.

As with most patio equipment, the choice of the right outdoor heater for your requirements as well as your decor is an important decision. Consider your lifestyle—how often do you eat or entertain outside? What are the weather patterns in your region like? What size outdoor area would you like to heat?

outdoor patio heatersPatio Heaters to Suit Your Budget

Prices for free standing models generally start at around $200-$250 up to $1000. For normal residential use, expect to pay between $350-$400 for a good quality patio heater.

The more expensive models are generally intended for commercial use, but can also be used for larger residential patios or decks. The newer, much-improved patio heaters offer a variety of safety features and temperature controls.

Modern patio heaters are:

  • safer than older models
  • very quiet
  • extend the amount of time you can enjoy your deck or patio

Freestanding patio heaters are usually about seven feet tall and resemble a lamp post with a umbrella type housing on top. This helps radiate heat downwards. Some electric models are available but the majority use propane or natural gas. The gas canisters are contained in the base of the heater. Quality patio heaters will generate around 45-50,000 BTUs—enough to warm a 20-foot diameter.

Most models now come with wheels, which make it easier to move the patio heater from one place to another. Some patio heaters also come with carrying cases. When it's not in use, the patio heater can be stored in its carry case, or under an appropriate cover in a dry secure place.

Tabletop models are also available for smaller outdoor areas as well as footstool versions of the freestanding models of patio heaters.

See online sources for patio heaters.