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Portable electric space heaters can be a real blessing when you need some extra warmth in a cold basement, chilly office or drafty room. There are many good options out there priced at $100 or less, and they can make you feel much more comfortable when working, playing or just relaxing.
Space heaters can be a cost-effective solution to chilly spaces because you can turn down the main thermostat if you are warming just the area where you are spending time. There are several types, but the types often overlap so you’ll need to look at listings to see if the unit you’re looking at has the qualities you prefer.
In general, electric heaters may use radiant or convection heating. Convection, a more common type, uses electricity to warm up wires or coils made of conductive material. An internal fan then blows the heat out into the room. Some of these heaters, whether ceramic (containing ceramic plates to hold heat) or forced-air, even have oscillating fans that can make them more efficient.
Radiant heaters produce infrared radiation, warming people and objects close to the heater with a natural feel. These heaters are safe and energy-efficient, but because they warm objects and not air, they can burn you if you get too close. They don’t dry out your rooms since they don’t move air around.
You’ll also find many heaters that use a combination of heating methods. Some are water-filled, some are oil-filled and some have fans. You’ll even find halogen heaters and ones powered by kerosene or propane for additional versatility.
Electric heaters can work well at home, no matter the size of the space you are trying to heat. Most of these heaters are 1500 watts and have different settings that you can adjust to for the ultimate in comfort.
Once you have a space heater, you’ll likely wonder how you ever got along without it.
When shopping for space heaters, look for the right size for the room you need to heat. If you plan to move the appliance from room to room, choose a compact model that has a carrying handle on the top. A remote control is also very helpful when you need to adjust the settings while you are comfortably seated. You should also consider models with automatic shutoff, thermostats and protection against overheating. Safety first!
Our sister site Don’t Waste Your Money has a team of experts that spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing and researching products to help consumers make informed purchasing decisions. Here are their top picks for the Best Electric Heaters.
This inexpensive space heater is versatile because it has two heat levels (750 watts and 1500 watts) and a cool air fan. Because of this, you can use it in the winter and the summer! Measuring just 7.9 by 6.2 by 10.2 inches and weighing less than three pounds, this little powerhouse fits into small spaces and heats up quickly and quietly.
Designed for larger rooms and sporting a unique retro look, this substantial remote-controlled infrared heater is 13 by 12.5 by 17 inches in size. It offers dual heating systems, a super-quiet blower and a filter that will last for the product’s lifetime. Its safety features include overheat and tip-over protection, plus an automatic shutoff timer.
Aikoper’s portable heater with thermostat has three heat settings and a fan-only mode that quickly heats up spaces and distributes the warmth evenly. It is excellent for small rooms and has an ergonomically-designed carrying handle for your convenience.
Designed for warmth and safety, this compact heater has two heat settings and a fan-only setting. It also has an adjustable thermostat plus an automatic overheat function and tip-over prevention. You’ll feel nice and toasty with this warming your space, and you can rest easy knowing it has these extra safety features.
Important Safety Considerations
Before you plug the heater in, think about safety. Keep the appliance on a flat, stable surface at least three feet away from humans, pets, and anything flammable. Remember to shut off the portable heater when you are finished using it.
Keep little ones away from your space heater at all times. In addition, never use extensions cords to power a space heater, and be sure to unplug yours when it is not in use.