5 Best Outdoor Patio Propane Heaters
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It won’t cost you anything extra.
Do you remember the days when you strolled into your local village, or to the city for a meal and saw for the first time, outdoor heaters that allowed for more customers to dine out in the elements? Well, those outdoor heaters are now even more popular and they’re not just for fancy restaurants. It seems anyone can buy one of these heaters now, even from their local hardware store. So below is a list of the best outdoor patio propane heaters that we’ve sourced this year.
But which one do you buy and how are they fueled. We’ve written a small buyers guide below to help you decide on which heater to buy. As far as running your heater goes, we’re going to concentrate on the outdoor patio propane heater. There’s 2 reasons for this. Firstly, it’s a more efficient heater and produces more heat than an electric heater. The second reason being that it’s doesn’t require leads or cords like an electric heater does.
So, for the reasons above, we’ve listed the 5 best outdoor patio propane heaters available today in our opinion. Below we’ll indicate some of the considerations to think about when making a purchase of a new outdoor patio heater.
Outdoor Patio Propane Heater – Buying Guide
Doesn’t every man-cave or outdoor garden area deserve one of the best outdoor patio propane heaters to warm everyone up? Especially now that they’re so much more affordable than when they first appeared on the market. Things change rapidly in this world and now that they’ve been around a while, the costs have come down considerably.
That doesn’t mean to say you can just go a buy the cheapest patio heater out there. There’s still considerations to be made as to why you’ll buy a particular heater. So, let’s go through some of these factors.
Your ideal patio heater needs to be stable enough to stand strong winds and young children! You may think I’m kidding but young children are unpredictable and for this reason alone, you’ll want either a heater that is very stable, or one that can be anchored. Another alternative if you cannot find a sturdy enough heater, is to put objects around the heater. Chairs being the perfect foil for kids. This is more of a visual barrier.
Some patio heaters can allow the wind to breeze through, which counteracts the wind velocity to blow it over. Others are basically the main stand and top burner. But the capping on top of the burner, which is used to keep the heat from rising, can collect the wind. Just be aware that you may need to put certain heater styles in more sheltered positions.
Before you purchase, you will know the rough area that you are required to heat. There’s such a measurement known as the BTU (British Thermal Unit).
There’s a great BTU calculator over at Heat Talk that will calculate the exact BTU you require. You can check this to find out the right amount of energy required to produce enough heat for your desired area. Then, check the BTU output on the product specifications.
Apart from stability, make sure you don’t have a too large BTU output (see above). This can result in your small patio garden being singed by a patio heater that is way too powerful.
Something to check is the ignition switch, which should be easily accessible. You want your temperature controls within easy reach also. If the heater is getting too hot, you must be able to access these controls to turn it off.
Also look for CSA Approval (Canadian Standards Association).
You’ll want a well-designed unit that is also rust proof. These heaters are made for the outdoors, so it should be made from whether proof materials. Stainless-steel is always a good material for its durability and strength, and you’ll want it coated in a rust-proof finish.
So, these are just some pointers for you to consider. The following is our list of the 5 best outdoor patio propane heaters we’ve found for this year.
#1 - Lava Heat Italia Propane Patio Heater
? Adjustable Temperature Settings
? Spiral Flame Within Tempered Glass Tubing
? Protective Commercial Grade Steel Grill
? CSA Certified
? No cover supplied
Standing at 6-feet tall, it pumps out a wonderful amount of heat due to the 36,000 BTU’s that we talked about in the buyer’s guide. This is enough to warm up a 5-6-foot radius which makes it perfect for sitting around enjoying the lighting ambience on chilly nights.
Apart from the heat strength, here’s what else I like about this great outdoor heater:
- It comes with adjustable temperature settings that are easily accessible.
- I really like the tempered glass tubing which encloses the elegant spiral flame. The spiral flame technology adds an unusual display of luxury.
- Surrounding the flames tube is a protective one-piece commercial grade steel grill that is safe to touch as it’s heat-resistant. It will also protect you and your children from getting too close to the flame.
- The heater is easily assembled and comes with simple instructions. It’s actually partly constructed when you receive it.
- Of course, its CSA certified.
- There’s a large storage area that will accommodate your propane gas tank, although as with nearly all outdoor heaters, the propane tank is not included.
The easier you can start an outdoor patio heater the better, and this model has an electric ignition which is easily triggered with a push button.
The Italian company ‘Milano’ is located in a proud area of Northern Italy that boasts a rich history of industry and design. They are known for their well-crafted products and this is no different.
Unfortunately, the outdoor heater does not come with a cover, but you can purchase a cover separately. You will however, like the 3-year warranty offered with this outdoor patio heater. 18 customers have all rated this 5-stars, so you know you’re on a winner.
#2 - Belleze Pyramid Propane Medium Commercial Heater
? Awesome Piece of Artwork
? Safety Tilt Shut-off Valve
? Adjustable Flame
? Does not pump out suggested heat range
This model pumps out more heat with up to 42,000 BTU’s which is an amazing amount of warmth for the size of the unit. Well at least that’s what the manufacturer says. Some customers have noted that the heat radiated is not as high as advertised.
One thing all agree on is the style and elegantly featured tripod design. It would look great in any backyard and not look out of place. Sipping wine around this outdoor patio heater will give you great pleasure!
Here’s a few things we’ve made note of:
- The flames are adjustable via an adjustment knob which can be easily accessed on the front of the unit, below flame height.
- There is a safety tilt shut off valve which will be triggered should an earthquake or other vibration occur.
- CSA approved which gives confidence in accreditation requirements.
- You’ll find that the heater is not just a practical item of outdoor furniture, it’s also a lovely piece of art for your garden.
- The unit also comes on small wheels making it portable, and easy to move from location to location..
As with most outdoor patio heaters, the propane gas tank is not included. You can always purchase this online, or at your local hardware store.
Just 2 things to mention. Firstly, the internal plastic wrapping around the steel frame can be quite difficult to remove before assembly. Secondly, The instructions state “reduced efficiency below 40 degrees”. A couple of customers have noted that the heating is not very efficient, maybe they used it whilst under 40 degrees.
However, this is a popular outdoor patio heater with over 50 customers giving it a 4.3-star rating.
#3 - Dyna-Glo Premium Stainless Steel Patio Heater
? Large Reflector to Keep Heat From Rising
? One-Step Electronic Ignition
? Shut-Off Safety Feature
? No hatch for tank
Displaying this heater on your back patio will entice all your guests to come back time and again. At 7-feet tall it’s a good size for taller adults to huddle around. Just be sure you have the head space with no obstructions for this unit to fit in your desired space.
Here’s what we’ve noticed with this well priced outdoor heater:
- You’ll notice there’s no hatch door for the propane tank to enter. Instead, the tank is placed onto a base plate, and the whole heater unit slips over the tank and sits in place. This also helps with keeping the weight at the base. The downside to this, is that it may take two people to remove the unit to replace the propane tank. Having said that, one 50-year old lady has stated she changes the tank by herself!
- I love the reflector which directs the heat downwards so that you don’t lose heat. This also helps with pushing the heat to a larger radius.
- Starting the heater is made easy by the one-step electronic ignition with variable heat control for adjusting to your requirements.
- As with all good heaters, it comes with a shut-off safety feature.
- Storage will be made easy as it comes with wheels on the base of the unit. Simply roll it away in the summer months.
The instructions are well written, and assembly is very simple. Out of the 16 customers, only one has given a bad review as this person couldn’t get it to light very quickly. It seems to me, they may have been doing something wrong or had a faulty heater. This one review has bought the rating down to 4.4-stars from 4.9-stars.
All other customers have been extremely impressed and offered full marks.
#4 - Sunglo Stainless Steel Portable Propane Outdoor Patio Heater
? Quick-Connect Gas Coupling
? Pilot-Thermocouple 100% Safety Shutoff Control
? 93 inches in height
? Wheel kit bought seperately
You’ll find this is a perfect heater for outdoor entertaining as it consists of a deep-dish reflector which directs the heat sideways as opposed to up into the air. This produces a radiant heat radius of approximately 12-feet. With an input rating of 40,000 BTU’s, you can appreciate the warmth produced.
Some great features of this heater are as follows:
- Disassembly is quick and easy via a quick-connect gas coupling in the pole, which allows for storage. As there’s no need to have your heater out during the summer months, this is ideal.
- As with some other models, safety is a priority and this model utilizes a pilot-thermocouple 100% safety shutoff control.
- The front of the heater provides a manual control knob for adjusting the temperature and igniting the flame. As the battery-operated spark ignition is within this control, relighting is made easy.
- At 93” (7.75-feet) in height, there’s adequate room for taller friends to mingle and not have them bump their head on the reflector.
I love the fact that there is also an option to purchase a tie-down kit so that you can secure it to your patio and not have to worry about strong winds. The base is heavy anyway because that is where the propane tank sits.
The standard propane tanks for any of these heaters is a 20lb cylinder which offers approximately 10 hours continuous use.
As a side note, there are no wheels with this model, but you can purchase a Sunglo wheel kit separately.
At the time of writing, only 3 of these have been sold on Amazon with 2 x 5-star and 1 x 4-star ratings, giving a 4.4-star average.
#5 - Heatstar Radiant Propane Heater
? Compact design
? Connects to 100lb cylinder
? Very Quiet Heating Unit
? Shut-Off Safety Valve Known to Trigger Prematurely
Standing at only 35-inches tall, it heats an area approximately 3,000 square feet. That’s an amazing radius and I’d suggest it’s an ideal accessory for camping. With dimensions of 35” x 16.4” x 16.1”, it weights 39.7lbs so it is certainly a portable size.
Here’s some of the features we like:
- The unit is run on propane gas (100lb cylinder is preferred) so no electricity is required. A 20-foot hose with regulator is supplied, so all you are required to do is hook it up.
- This outdoor patio heater is extremely quiet, so your neighbors will not complain.
- Comes with a safety shut-off valve for peace of mind.
- I really like that is comes with a welded frame the you and your children are protected from accidental falls or knocks.
From all the reviews and recommendations submitted for this heater, only one has been negative and we think they may have got a faulty unit as they said, ‘the control knob stripped itself from the gas valve on first use’. This doesn’t seem like a design standard feature as nobody else has experienced the same problem.
This review brings the average rating down to 4.0-stars which can be a little misleading compared to all other reviews. If you’d like to take the time to read the reviews to make a decision, simply click on the accompanying image.
An outdoor heater can not only enhance your outdoor patio area, but its also one of those furniture pieces that serve a very useful purpose. If you’re anything like me, cold weather is a burden and I’d rather do without it. But that’s not to say I don’t appreciate sipping a nice scotch whiskey whilst sitting around an outdoor warming heater.
If I can give you some advice though, do not use any of these outdoor heaters, INDOORS! They are purposely made for outdoor use, and you may find problems occur that can damage your internal features.
If you’d like to share your favorite outdoor patio heater with us, please feel free to add to the discussion below.