Your patio, in all likelihood, is your favourite part of your home. After all, there’s no better place within your property to entertain guests or unwind by yourself while enjoying the fresh air and the relaxing view that it typically offers.
Without a doubt, you and your family have been camping out on the patio all summer long. And now, with the colder months approaching, why not keep your love affair with the outdoors alive by installing patio heaters?
If you have a patio and don’t have outdoor heating just yet, it’s time to start shopping for patio heaters. Should you choose an electric outdoor heater or one powered by gas? Let’s take a look at the available patio heating options to help you decide.
Gas patio heaters
Patio heaters that run on liquid propane or natural gas are quite popular mainly because of the clean flames they produce. They are also easy to install and use.
If you want portability, choose propane patio heaters, since each one has its own tank. You can place these heaters just about anywhere on your patio.
The cost of operating propane patio heaters can be higher, though. A typical propane gas-powered heater comes with a 20-pound propane tank, which can last up to 10 hours. Constant replacement is necessary.
Natural gas patio heaters, on the other hand, need no replacing, since they are connected to your natural gas line, which provides an uninterrupted stream of fuel.
However, being connected to the natural gas line means your natural gas patio heater needs to stay in one spot. It must be installed professionally as well to ensure that there are no leaks.
One upside of natural gas outdoor heaters is the fact that they are quite environment-friendly. Natural gas burns the cleanest of all fossil fuels, as it emits 50 to 60 percent less carbon dioxide.
If you have a sizable outdoor area, gas patio heaters would be perfect for you. With easy-to-control flames, gas patio heaters provide safe outdoor heating as well.
Electric outdoor heaters
If you’re not comfortable using actual flames for heating, you might want to consider electric patio heaters instead.
Electric patio heaters warm you up using infrared heat, which it produces by energizing an emitter. The heat from electric outdoor heaters doesn’t just heat people. It also heats objects and spaces directly around it and within range, from the furniture to the walls, which will then produce ambient heat and contribute to warming up the area.
Aside from being an efficient and effective method of heating outdoor areas, electric patio heaters are also available in a variety of designs that provide you flexibility when it comes to placement.
Some designs ensure that you’ll save some space, like electric patio heaters you can hang from the walls or ceilings. There are also tabletop models, as well as free-standing ones that you can place just about anywhere you want.
If you want to go old-school with your outdoor heating, you might want to give a fire pit a try. Compared to gas and electric outdoor heaters, keeping a fire pit going is incredibly cheap. After all, it runs on wood and coal.
You can have a fire pit dug into the ground, or you can go for an above-ground one contained in a structure made of stone, brick, or metal. Once you get the flames going, everyone gathered around it is going to feel warm and cozy quickly.
The downside of fire pits and similar heating options has something to do with safety. While the flames are generally contained, they still present a risk as the firewood could crackle and send sparks flying out of the pit and ignite something or burn someone.
You will also need to check with local rules and regulations to find out whether fire pits are allowed or banned during certain days of the year.
The only way to enjoy your outdoor spaces all-year-round is to shore up your outdoor heating. Consider the size of your space and your installation and maintenance budget, and you’ll be able to choose the patio heater that is best suited for you.