If you want to enjoy your outdoor space well into the night or even when it gets chilly during fall, then a patio heater is a wise investment. Whether it’s propane or electric, free-standing or wall-mounted, you’d want one of these heating appliances at home. To help you choose, we’ve narrowed down the best patio heaters on the categories that matter. Below, we’ve reviewed highly-rated models from Pamapic, Dr. Heater, hOmeLabs, Amazon Basics, and Briza.
Best Patio Heater Comparison Chart
|Reason to Buy
|Pamapic Pyramid Patio Heater
|Stylish outdoor heater perfect for outdoor living spaces
|Dr. Heater DR-238 Infrared Heater
|Budget-friendly electric heater with remote control operation
|hOmeLabs Gas Patio Heater
|Sturdy and weather-resistant patio heater
|Amazon Basics Outdoor Patio Heater
|Feature-packed, value-for-money propane heater
|Briza Infrared Patio Heater
|Sleek-looking infrared heater that’s child and pet-friendly
Most Stylish Patio Heater
The stainless steel frame, pyramid form, and quartz tube make this Pamapic patio heater a classy addition to any outdoor space.
With its stylish pyramid design and stainless steel construction, the Pamapic Pyramid Patio Heater is a welcome addition to your outdoor space. The heater also brandishes a decorative quartz tube to house the flame, a classy-looking feature that will complement any patio furniture. But looks aren’t everything. Beyond appearances, Pamapic’s heating appliance is a favorite for its ease of use. As one reviewer puts it, “this was not too difficult to assemble with care, but once done it is beautiful and worked wonderfully.“
Running on propane fuel, the patio heater relies on a pulse ignition system to start. There’s also a built-in valve to regulate temperature. Moreover, you get pretty good heating coverage in the immediate vicinity up to 18 feet. Like most gas-powered heaters, the Pamapic doesn’t include the propane tank upon purchase. However, a waterproof polyester fabric cover comes with the heater, ensuring the appliance is protected against the elements. While the pyramid heater is heavy, it does feature wheels at its base for mobility.
Type: Free-standing | Fuel: Propane | Output: 42,000 BTU | Weight: 61.72 lbs | Heating Coverage: 18 feet
- Offers variable heat settings
- Stylish design with tip-over protection system
- Includes wheels and a cover
- Not as warm as other heaters
- Not suited for indoor spaces
Best Budget Patio Heater
Dr. Heater’s versatile infrared heater is not only budget-friendly but eco-friendly, too.
Electric patio heaters typically cost less than propane heaters. They’re more eco-friendly, too. So if you’re someone on a budget and who’s environmentally conscious, an appliance like the Dr. Infrared Heater DR-238 from Dr. Heater is a good option. Made from weatherproof anodized aluminum, this corded electric heater works in both indoor and outdoor settings. It’s also compatible with wall mounts as well as tripods — making it one of the best patio heat lamps as well.
Because it runs on electricity, the Dr. Infrared Heater is slower to heat the surrounding space. What it lacks in speed, however, it makes up with clean and odorless carbon infrared heat. Homeowners can also choose from three output levels: 900W, 1200W, and 1500W. Plus, users can also set a timer for the heater and even control the appliance via remote control. Dr. Heater shares that the DR-238 already comes with wall and ceiling mounting brackets. The tripod, on the other hand, is an optional accessory.
Type: Mounted or free-standing (optional tripod) | Power: Electric | Output: 5,120 BTU | Weight: 8 lbs | Heating Radius: 11 feet
- Versatile mounting options
- Features a timer and remote control operation
- Slower to heat compared to gas heaters
Best Patio Heater for Windy Areas
The gas patio heater from hOmeLabs is designed to withstand the elements thanks to its rust-proof construction and special base reservoir.
Although free-standing heaters are great for outdoor spaces, windy weather is typically its Achilles’ heel. Thankfully, there are “weatherproof” options in the market. One of them is the hOmeLabs Gas Patio Heater. Similar to other lamp-style heaters, this gas-powered appliance is quite tall, with an adjustable height that reaches up to 87 inches. Despite its slender appearance, however, the hOmeLabs heater is designed to withstand the elements.
Key to the patio heater’s strength is its 18.1-inch diameter base reservoir, which users can fill with either sand or water. On the other hand, the heater’s body boasts a stainless steel construction with a bronze hammered finish. It also features a double-layer protective mesh that is rust-resistant. When it comes to heating, hOmeLabs doesn’t disappoint. Together with its 32-inch reflector, you get a heat output of 41,000 BTU that’s also adjustable thanks to a variable heat-control knob.
Type: Free-standing | Fuel: Propane | Output: 41,000 BTU | Weight: 35.2 lbs | Heating Radius: 20 feet
- Features built-in wheels for mobility
- Durable construction
- Comes with auto-shut off feature
- Does not include a cover
Best Propane Patio Heater
Amazon Basics’ stylish outdoor patio heater delivers instant heating and comes with several safety features at an incredible price.
If you’re looking for the best patio heater, most of the time you’ll look at the best-sellers. With the Amazon Basics Outdoor Patio Heater, this tenet is especially true. The heater’s popularity is also largely due to its value-for-money reputation. At under $200, you’re getting a gas heater with a heat output of 46,000 BTU and a decent range of 9 feet. It’s also constructed from aluminum, plastic, and stainless steel, ensuring a stable and weather-resistant appliance.
Users are particularly impressed with how fast the Amazon Basics heater warms a space. As one homeowner puts it, “(it) turns on almost instantly in sub-zero temperatures.” Like most gas-powered heaters, you get a couple of safety features with this model. Amazon Basics shares that the appliance has an auto-shut-off feature for when it tilts. It also comes with a reliable push-button for start-up and a water box for adding weight to the base.
Type: Free-standing | Fuel: Propane | Output: 46,000 BTU | Weight: 35.2 lbs | Heating Radius: 9 feet
- Affordable propane heater
- Comes with wheels for mobility
- Reliable Piezo ignition system
- Assembly can be confusing
Best Patio Heater (Electric)
The Briza Infrared Patio Heater is a safe and reliable electric heater for indoor and outdoor use.
Electric heaters aren’t just affordable alternatives to propane models. They’re also ideal in spaces where natural ventilation is limited. In this line, the best model to consider is the Briza Infrared Patio Heater. Great for indoor and outdoor use, the sleek-looking appliance uses carbon infrared technology to safely heat spaces. It’s also IP55-rated, which means it holds up well against snow, sand, and dust.
Just like the Dr. Infrared Heater, the Briza heater is dual-use. You can mount it on the walls or set it on the included 7-feet tripod. What makes it especially practical, however, are the safety features. For instance, a built-in sensor shuts off the heater once it is detected to be tilting or falling. The main heating elements are also covered with a protective metal sheath, so the surface can be touch without getting burned. This makes it a welcome addition to homes with pets or young children.
Type: Mounted or free-standing (tripod included) | Power: Electric | Output: 1,500 Watts | Weight: 17.16 lbs | Heating Radius: 7 feet
- Lightweight and weather-resistant
- Safety cover on heating elements
- Requires minimal maintenance
- Not as warm as a propane heater
The Amazon Basics Outdoor Patio Heater and Briza Infrared Patio Heater are the best propane and electric patio heaters, respectively.Amazon product
Choosing the right patio heater definitely depends on your needs and preferences. For outdoor space where there’s better ventilation, a propane heater is a better option. In our list, however, the Amazon Basics Outdoor Patio Heater is a clear standout. Given its price, you’re getting all of the standard safety and convenience features already. Plus, it looks stylish and boasts a durable construction as well.
For smaller outdoor spaces or even for indoor use, an electric heater is recommended. Between Dr. Heater and Briza infrared heaters, however, the latter has a slight edge. Although both models can be mounted or free-standing, the protective cover on the Briza makes it a safer option for most households. It’s well-designed, too, and looks more premium compared to Dr. Heater’s.
One of the easiest ways to care for your patio heater is to get a patio cover. While some brands include a cover with the actual heater, users can also buy them separately.
Yes, a propane heater offers better heat output. This is due to the natural combustion of gas.
The Amazon Basics Outdoor Patio Heater comes in several color variants, including blue, gray, and brown wicker.
Electric patio heaters are easier to use and produce safer, odorless heat compared to propane. Electric heaters typically come with remote control operation, too, and are more lightweight compared to their gas counterparts.