Having an electric patio heater is in our opinion, a necessity. There’s nothing worse than sitting outside enjoying the summer weather, and in the evening feeling a chilly breeze whip across your shoulders!

Although we’d like to say that the UK has scorching summers and mild winters, we’d by lying if we said so. An electric patio heater doubles up as not only a source of heat to keep you toasty, but also a gorgeous glow – meaning you don’t have to put on all of your outdoor lights just to enjoy summer evenings.

Patio heaters aren’t just exclusive to summer, though. They can be great all year round, especially if you have one that can be used both indoors and outdoors. Some conservatories naturally get colder due to the absence of insulation, so having a patio heater that can toast your conservatory is always an added bonus.

If you’ve never purchased an electric patio heater before, or, you’re looking to upgrade – we’ve taken time in this buyer guide to review the top 10 products that we recommend. Within this guide we speak about each product’s key features, their pros and cons as well as real-life reviews to help you make the best decision.

We’ve also included a detailed buyer guide and FAQ at the bottom to answer any of your burning questions.

1

Heatlab Electric Garden Outdoor Indoor Patio Heater

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The Heatlab 2KW FreeStanding Water Resistant Infared Electric Garden Outdoor Indoor Patio Heater – 3 Power Settings is a versatile heater which works both indoors and outdoors, meaning that it is perfect for patios, conservatories or gardens, too. With 2kw of heat, and an oval-shaped heater, there is plenty of surface area to ensure that you are warm and toasty. There is a choice of 3 heat settings, 650W, 1350W and 2000W, and the stand can be adjusted in height. The freestanding heater lamp will also provide a glowing light as well as keeping you warm.

Key Features:

Corded lamp

Warmth and lighting all in one

Easy to use and install

Specification:

Brand

Heatlab

Colour

Black

Power source

Corded electric

Item Dimensions L x W x H

50 x 50 x 210 centimetres

Pros

Great for those who want a heater they can use indoors and outdoors

Cons

Sizing may not be suitable for everyone

2

Blumfeldt Hot Roddy - Free-standing radiant heater

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The Blumfeldt Hot Roddy – Free-standing radiant heater is a beautifully designed patio heater which has been designed to give you pleasant warmth,  a soft glow light and keep you comfortable even on breezy nights. It can work well in a conservatory, as well as in your garden on patio, decking or level grass. It’s easy to use, and is completely adjustable to your needs. Great for winter evenings too, and you won’t get that “burning” sensation that sometimes can occur with freestanding patio heaters.

Key Features:

Lightweight electric patio heater

Robust and sturdy design

Easy to use

Completely adjustable to your needs

Specification:

Brand

Blumfeldt

Colour

Black

Power source

Corded Electric

Weight

8.2 kg

Pros

Adjustable height is great for those who want this option

Can be used indoors and outdoors

Cons

Wattage and heat may be too much for some

3

Oypla Electric Garden Patio Heater

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The Oypla Electrical 2KW Quartz Free Standing Outdoor Electric Garden Patio Heater is a well-designed freestanding electric patio heater. It has a robust structure which means it’s ideal both for domestic and commercial use in some cases. There are three heat settings, as well as the stand being completely adjustable to suit your needs. It will keep you warm on colder summer nights, give you a glowing light and work well in commercial spaces in winter for outdoor dining and drinking.

Key Features:

Completely adjustable

Freestanding electric patio heater

Easy to use

Suitable for residential or commercial spaces

Specification:

Brand

Oypla

Colour

Black

Power

2kw

Item Dimensions L x W x H

54 x 21.5 x 53.5 centimetres

Pros

Great for those who would use this both indoors and outdors

4

Neo Electric Garden Patio Heater

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The Neo 2KW Electric Quartz Outdoor Standing Waterproof Garden Patio Heater Heating is an adjustable electric patio heater which is completely freestanding. This features an adjustable height which allows you to suit any setting. It also has the option to adjust the heat which has three separate settings. Robust and sturdy, this is great for indoor or outdoor use.

Key Features:

Adjustable design

Three heat settings

Robust and sturdy

Specification:

Brand

Neo

Colour

Black

Power source

Corded electric

Item weight

5 kg

Item Dimensions L x W x H

2.05 x 0.6 x 0.5 metres

Pros

Adjustability is great for those who are looking for something that allows for customization

Cons

Heat settings may not be enough for some

5

Set of 2 Heatlab Electric Garden Patio Heaters

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The Set of 2 Heatlab 2kW Outdoor Freestanding Electric Quartz Bulb Garden Patio Heaters – 3 Power Settings is a pair of sturdy and powerful electric patio heaters which is multifunctional and allows for both heat and light to come through. This pack of two is perfect for  larger gardens or patios which need additional heat. They can work well behind furniture or in front of a table so they’re facing you, giving you optimum heat and light. They work well in the summer in the evenings as well as in autumn when you’re outside and need an extra boost.

Key Features:

Pack of two lamps

Robust and sturdy design

Multiple heat settings

Specification:

Brand

Heatlab

Quantity

2

Colour

Black

Item Dimensions L x W x H

20 x 7 x 71 centimetres

Pros

Perfect for larger gardens or those who need extra heat/light

Cons

Pack of two may be too much for some

6

LIVIVO Electric Garden Patio Heater

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The LIVIVO 2KW Outdoor Free Standing Quartz Electric Garden Patio Heater 2000w Waterproof- 3 Power Settings is an advanced and modern free standing heater that provides heat within seconds. It has three heat settings giving you complete control over how hot you want to be. It also allows for a 45 degree head tilt giving you complete adjustability. Weather and dust proof, the patio heater has an explosion-proof net and a tip over switch for safety – meaning no accidents.

Key Features:

Adjustable free standing patio heater

Easy to use and erect

45 degree head tile

Weather and dust proof

Specification:

Brand

Livivo

Colour

Black

Voltage

230

Material

Metal and quartz

Pros

Additional safety benefits are great for those who have smaller families/prone to accidents

Cons

Style may not be to everyone's taste

7

Blumfeldt Heat Guru 360

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The Blumfeldt Heat Guru 360 – Infrared Heater, Radiant Heater, Efficient Heater, 600 W or 1200 W Power is a robust infared heater with a complete oscillation function. Fast heating and high power, you have the option of either 600 or 1200 watts depending on what you prefer. The compact dimensions and carrier handle makes this easy to to move around and heat either indoors or outdoors. Thanks to IPX4, the radiant heater is protected against splash water. Thanks to its compact dimensions and low weight, this is ideal for most individuals.

Key Features:

Robust and sturdy patio heater

Carrying handle included

Multiple heat settings

Specification:

Brand

blumfeldt

Colour

Black

Power source

Corded Electric

Heating method

Radiant

Pros

Carrying handle means this is better in terms of safety and accessibility

Cons

Size and style may not be to everyone's taste

8

OPRANIC 2KW Electric Patio Heater with Cover

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The OPRANIC 2KW Electric Patio Heater with Cover is a small but mighty heater that is operated completely by infared. Safe, stylish and warming – this patio heater has all the qualities that you’d expect. Not only does it keep you warm and toasty on chilly nights, but it also works well to brighten an area, and also works outdoors and indoors. It also works out cheaper than a fan heater – a win win for all.

Key Features:

Powerful infared electric patio heater

Small and compact design

Lightweight and easy to move around

Specification:

Brand

Opranic

Colour

Black

Power source

Corded electric

Item Dimensions L x W x H

19 x 12 x 100 centimetres

Pros

Great for those who don't want tall patio heaters

Cons

Style may not be to everyone's taste

9

Luxeva Carbon Infrared Floor Heater

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The Luxeva Carbon Infrared Floor Heater is a luxurious and beautifully designed heater that is for indoor and outdoor use. The product comes with infared carbon technology with maximum energy efficiency. It works to provide heat and light, and due to the elegant design it takes up minimal space in your garden, patio or in your conservatory, too. Overall it’s a beautiful product that delivers exactly what you’d expect it to.

Key Features:

Elegant and stylish design

Multiple heat settings

Lightweight and easy to move around

Specification:

Brand

Luxeva

Colour

Black

Power source

Corded electric

Item Dimensions L x W x H

7.5 x 18.5 x 98 centimetres

Pros

For those who are bothered about aesthetics, this is one of the most stylish products on the market

Cons

Sizing may not be to everyone's taste

10

Steeler Freestanding Electric Patio Heater

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The Steeler Freestanding Electric Patio Heater is a modern and stylish patio heater that has a minimal design and would work well in smaller conservatories and patios with not much space. Due to the height and width of the heater, you can place this without fear that it will take up the room or look clunky. It still provides substantial heat and light, and overall is perfect for smaller patios that just need a little boost of heat on a cold summers night.

Key Features:

Lightweight and stylish electric patio heater

Easy to use product

Multiple heat settings

Specification:

Brand

Steeler

Colour

Grey

Material

Metal

Power source

Corded electric

Pros

Great for those who need something "skinny" which won't take up too much space

Cons

Style may not be to everyone's taste

Summary

As you can see, there are so many different electric patio heaters on the market, all of which have their own benefits, key features and downsides. Think of electric patio heaters as an upgrade from conservatory radiators, as they aren’t just useful inside the home. Electric patio heaters are great because their versatility means that you often get better value for money, which if you’re on a budget – is a huge plus. Electric patio heaters are also considered an upgrade from gas heaters because they tend to cost less and use less energy overall.

We do know, however, that if you haven’t bought a patio heater before you may not know where to start, never mind which one is the “perfect” heater for you. We’ve listed a few things for you to consider below, as well as an FAQ to answer some of your burning questions.

Quantity

If you have a small conservatory or outdoor area, buying three or four heaters is probably excessive and unnecessary. It’s important to think about how many people you plan to have over (as well as how many you have in your household) as a maximum and use that as a rule of thumb. DIY conservatories naturally take longer to heat due to their infrastructure, so you may want to invest in at least two heaters for every three meter length you have in your conservatory.

If you plan to use the heaters outside, see how many people can fit in your garden and how much furniture you have to accommodate them. For example, if you have two rattan side tables, this probably means that you can seat around 8 people in your garden. We’d recommend around two to three heaters. Remember, you can always buy more if you need them, so start with one or two and work your way up should you wish to do so.

Style

Whether it’s tall, short, fat, round, old-style or modern – you want to ensure that your electric patio heater doesn’t look out of place or awkward in comparison to the other furniture you own. The main styles are in the shape of a lamp, often an oval which holds the heater on a thin pole, or, a fatter, more “traditional” heater with a grill and fatter rungs. The traditional heaters often look quite retro and chic, and come in slates, charcoals and darker colours. The lamp style electric patio heaters look more minimalistic and usually take up less space due to the thin pole holding it. This style is also easier to store. Definitely factor all of this into your purchase before deciding which style you’d like to go for. It’s important to be practical as well as stylish.

Indoor/outdoor

If you don’t have a garden, or you don’t have enough space for your heater, then you can be slightly more refined with your search as you won’t need to find something that works both outdoors or indoors. However, if you decide you want the best of both worlds – you must factor this into your search. Most models do take into account both indoor and outdoor features, but ensure that you double-check beforehand.

If you’re unsure whether you would have a patio heater outdoors, have a think about whether you have intentions of having seating outdoors or entertaining guests outdoors. If the answer is yes, then you’ll probably want to ensure that you buy a heater which is also useful for outdoors as well.

FAQ

What is the best electric patio heater?

We’d be biased if we told you which electric patio heater is our favourite, but in our opinion if you have a smaller garden to go for the taller, lamp style heaters, and if you have a bigger garden with extensive furniture such as cascading water features, hammock stands and tons of plants, then you’ll probably want to opt for a chunkier, retro style which may take up a bit more space, but would work in a larger garden where you could entertain more guests. At the end of the day, it’s all down to personal preference and what works for you.

Do electric patio heaters use a lot of electricity?

It depends how much you use them, however, as a rule of thumb – electricity is a lot cheaper than gas. With that in mind, you’re likely to get more value for money from an electric patio heater than you would from a gas heater or an open fire which constantly needs tending to. We don’t recommend using an electric patio heater constantly, it should only be turned on when you need it and turned off the moment you’re finished using it. Like any electric appliance, if you use it too much, then you’ll have to pay the price point. This is why patio heaters are great in the summer as you usually don’t need them on a high setting. In the winter, it seems almost pointless to have them on full blast when it’s freezing outside. Usually it’s a lot nicer to be cosy indoors.

Are electric patio heaters better than gas heaters?

Yes. Gas heaters naturally use more energy and will end up costing you more money. Electric heaters are better for keeping the heat flowing without completely draining your bank account. This doesn’t mean you should throw away your gas heater – in fact, they are still pretty good cost wise. However, if you compare the two – electric patio heaters are much better.

Are electric patio heaters safe?

Of course! Providing you follow the instructions and don’t put them near anything flammable (such as bird netting or cloth/pillows) then you’ll be absolutely fine.

If you notice that your heater starts to malfunction, cease using it immediately and contact an electrician and your supplier for more information. A faulty electrical item should be replaced, or fixed with the fee charged to the supplier if they sent you a faulty product. Always check your electric patio heater’s before use to ensure that they haven’t broken.

What are the downsides to electric patio heaters?

The only downside to electric patio heaters is that they can often cost a lot more money for households that use them over households that don’t. Aside from that, we believe that they’re a great investment that you’ll use for years and years. Another downside to an electric patio heater is the general hazard that it can be, especially if you have pets or young children. To combat this, use your patio heater away from your children as much as possible and teach them the importance of not touching things that are hot. If you still see this as an issue, you may want to invest in a different heating system that won’t pose as much of a hazard overall.

How do you store a patio heater in the winter?

Unless you have a gas patio heater, you can simply turn off the heaters in the winter and cover them either with their respectable covers that come (depending on your supplier) or tarpaulin that you have cut up and made to keep them away from the elements. Ideally, if you have a garage you can store them in there until you need them next. Make sure that you don’t leave your patio heaters completely exposed to the elements as they’re more likely to be damaged by wildlife, or by the rain. Finally, make sure you don’t cover or store your patio heaters until they are completely cool, otherwise, they could catch fire and cause serious damage.

Can you use an outdoor heater under a covered patio?

Yes you can. As long as the heater isn’t too close to the top of the cover or the sides, then you’ll be absolutely fine. Please note that for covered patios you will probably have to tilt your heaters downwards so the heat doesn’t melt or burn the actual cover. If you choose to opt for shorter heaters, these will be best placed on top of a glass table (not rattan) or directly on the patio floor. Think of a covered patio as the equivalent to having your heater on inside your conservatory – keep it away from anything that may be flammable.