After testing 15 of the best heaters on the market today, we chose the Mr. Heater MH9BX portable buddy heater as our top pick. This space heater is powerful and perfect for outdoor applications or in garages. It’s also incredibly portable and safe for use.
To help you find the best heaters for heating your living spaces, we spent over 20 hours testing 15 different options. During our testing, we looked specifically for heating efficiency, safety features and user friendly designs. We included heaters of varying sizes to help you find the right heater for your specific living space. Keep reading below to learn more about the Mr. Heater MH9BX and the other best heaters on our list so you can get warmer in a faster way than before.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: This portable heater is the best space heater for garage and other outdoor applications with powerful heating capabilities. It also features a rugged design that can take a bump or two without problem.
If you’re looking for an outdoor heater to use in your garage or on camping and hunting trips, look no further than the Mr. Heater MH9BX portable buddy heater. This is a propane heater that can produce anywhere from 4,000 to 9,000 BTUs of heat, making it perfect for warming up large spaces up to 225 square feet. We were pleased overall with how much heat the Mr. Heater could produce, even in frigid temperatures and it’s Hi-Low heat settings. We do wish it included a blower to more evenly spread the heat, but this was easy to overlook after a few minutes when the heat had a chance to radiate out further away from the unit.
The MH9BX is also incredibly safe to use. Our favorite safety feature here is the comprehensive automatic shut-off functionality. The Mr. Heater will shut off automatically if the heater tips over, the pilot light is extinguished or low oxygen levels are detected. We were pleased with the overall design of the heater, as well. It’s built from durable steel, plastic and nickel, with a rugged design that won’t get ruined out in the wilderness. You even get a fold-down handle for better portability and a swivel-out regulator for easier fuel replacement. However, if you want to use something bigger than the small propane tanks, you’ll need to purchase an additional hose and fuel filter. To make sure that your cooling needs are met too, you might want to take a look at the best misting fan too.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This heater is super efficient and heats your living spaces in a flash, making it an excellent option for naturally colder areas in your home. It’s also easy to use and doesn’t get too noisy.
The Dr. Infrared Heater DR-968 is fast, quiet and safe to use. The DR-968’s most impressive feature was the speed in which it could power on and start heating up your room. The infrared heating systems can warm you up in a matter of mere minutes. Plus, it’s incredibly energy efficient, so you won’t have to worry about paying way too much for such fast heating. The unit also includes a handy blower fan that can distribute the heat evenly. And with 1500 watts of power, the Dr. Infrared Heater can heat up spaces up to 200 square feet. All of these features and functionality make it one of the best space heaters for basement rooms.
When it comes to usability, the DR-968 has plenty of features that make your life easier. You’ve got controls on both the unit and the included remote. Unfortunately, the remote can only control the adjustable thermostat, and doesn’t feature an on/off button, but this is easily overlooked. During our testing, we found the thermostat to be mostly accurate, but there were definitely moments when it wasn’t reading the right temperature, especially farther away from the unit. We were also impressed with how quietly the DR-968 operated, especially when compared to how much square footage it can heat. If you’re also looking to cool a larger amount of square footage, take a look at the best WIFI smart air conditioner too.
Award: BEST ON A BUDGET
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Trustech ceramic heater gives you powerful and fast heating capabilities, all at an extra-affordable price point. It also features 3 adjustable heating levels and built-in safety features.
The Trustech PTC-903 is an affordable ceramic space heater that offers up to 1500 watts of heating power. This makes it an excellent option for both large and small rooms, especially when you consider the powerful, built-in blower fan. The fan does well to distribute the heat, but it can be noisy at the highest level. The Trustech heats well, but it also keeps you safe in the process. It features a built-in automatic shut-off functionality in case the heater is tipped over or placed on an unstable surface.
The PTC-903 is also user friendly. It’s got a simple control panel with dials instead of buttons. The first dial is the on/off control and the second switch allows you to switch between the different heating modes. While the three different modes don’t equate to an true adjustable thermostat, it still allows you some freedom over how much heat you want the unit to produce. You can adjust the heater between Natural Wind, Low and High modes. Unfortunately, the Trustech doesn’t feature a remote control, which is essentially the only user function we would have preferred to see. But with affordability come some sacrifices, so this exclusion is easy to overlook. For your cooling needs within your home, take a look at the best drying fan as well.
Award: FASTEST HEAT UP TOWER
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Pelonis indoor ceramic tower heater is sleek and stylish, with durable materials and built-in safety features. The heater also features a programmable thermostat for greater customizability.
If you’re looking for a customizable and efficient heating solution for your home, look no further than the Pelonis PHTPU1501 indoor tower heater. The first thing that stands out about the Pelonis is its sleek and stylish design. Tower heaters are taller than other options, but they’re also easier to fit into corners and tight spaces. The Pelonis also includes a built-in handle for greater portability. Controls are found on top of the unit, as well as on the included remote, and are easy to learn. One of the best features of the tower design is the 70-degree oscillation, which allows for greater flexibility and versatility in heating your spaces.
The Pelonis’s heating performance is also impressive. The ceramic heating unit can heat up your living room to 70 degrees Fahrenheit in as little as 3 seconds. You can set the heater to three different power levels, including a high mode at 1500 watts, a low mode at 900 watts and an ECO mode. It also features a programmable thermostat on top of the different modes so you can get the room’s temperature set to your exact liking. Built-in safety features include overheating protection, tip-over protection and a unique grill design that prevents little fingers from getting through to touch the heating element. If you want a cooling system in your living room that’s built into your home, take a look at one of the best large ceiling fans too.
Award: BEST QUALITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: This heater offers a unique, wall-mounted placement that is perfect for heating small spaces and keeping it away from kids and pets. It’s also built incredibly well with a modern design that includes a helpful LED display and adjustable thermostat.
The Heat Storm Deluxe heater is a unique option that mounts directly on the wall instead of being placed on the ground or countertop. This gives you more flexibility in placing the unit without losing any floor space, making it the best space heater for apartment applications. Of course, the wall mount does require installation, which is a little more involved than just plugging the unit in and placing it where you want. Fortunately, the package includes a mounting template that’s easy to use, even for most beginners.
The Heat Storm is an incredibly efficient infrared heater, which heats up quickly and keeps your room safe even after the unit is turned off. The heater features a Safe Touch grill, which is made from materials that won’t burn your skin. It also includes auto shut-off functionality if the unit overheats or falls off the wall. We were also impressed with how easy the Heat Storm was to use. It includes a simple remote and the unit features a digital LED display that clearly shows you the room’s temperature and allows you to adjust it with ease.
Award: BEST FOR LARGE ROOMS
WHY WE LIKE IT: The Lasko ceramic space heater can heat up large rooms quickly with its 1500 watt motor that produces 5000 BTUs of heat, powerful blower fan and oscillating tower design. It’s also easy to use and extra portable.
If you need extra heating power for large rooms, look no further than the Lasko 755320 ceramic space heater. For starters, the Lasko features an effective tower design that oscillates back and forth to better spread heat across larger spaces. It also features a powerful blower fan that can effectively push the heat out to all corners of the room. We were a little disappointed that the Lasko only feature high and low fan settings, with no medium option, but the adjustable thermostat still gives you a certain amount of customizability.
Overall usability is also worth nothing on the Lasko 755320. It features a comprehensive control panel on the top of the unit, and even includes a handy remote. The remote was of surprisingly high quality and can operate the unit at long ranges. If you’re looking for the best space heater for large room applications, the Lasko 755320 is a hard option to beat. But, if you’re looking to cool down a smaller room and have an option for portability, then take a look at the best small portable air conditioner guide.
When we first started testing the heaters we purchased, we first looked at heating performance across a variety of different room sizes. One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to heaters, so we considered each option relative to its power output. We gave bonus points to heaters that included features to more efficiently spread the heat throughout your living spaces, like powerful fans or oscillating designs.
Next, we only included heaters on our list that were easy to use. The best heaters include helpful usability features like digital LED displays and remote temperature controls. These make the units much more convenient to use overall. We also favored units that gave you greater flexibility in the way you heat your room. The best options include adjustability thermostats with more than two heat settings (e.g. low heat/high heat) and different heating modes.
Finally, we only included heaters on our list if they were safe to use. We measured options based on their built-in safety features and excluded options that didn’t make an effort to keep you and your home safe from accidents. Safety features like automatic shut-off, burn-free materials and housing that’s cool to the touch were all important during our testing.
We have what you need for both heating and cooling. Whether it is the best space heater for a large room, or our best garage heaters guide. You can also read about the best patio heaters.
There is no one best brand of heater, rather, there are a variety of brands that are best for a variety of different applications. Some of the best brands include options like Mr. Heater, Lasko, Pelonis and Dr. Infrared Heater. Other home appliance brands are also worth looking into. These brands include Dyson, De’Longhi and and LifeSmart.
For the most part, infrared heaters are the cheapest type of heater to run. They usually run on the lowest wattage for the amount of heat they provide. Oil-filled heaters are next in the running. They can run for much longer than other kinds, so they make the most out of the electricity they consume.
The most efficient electric heater on our list is the Dr. Infrared Heater DR-968. It offers an impressive 1500 watts of power with extra-efficient heat production that doesn’t require any more power than is necessary. Pair this power with a high-efficiency blower and you’ve got the most efficient electric heater available.
Power companies typically charge customers by the number of kilowatt-hours they consume on a given day. If you use a 1500 watt heater for 24 continuous hours, you’d be consuming 36 kilowatt hours. On average, power companies in America charge 13 cents per kilowatt hour. This means that 24 hours of constant usage on a 1500 watt heater will cost you just under $5.
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