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Space Heater Cost

How Much Does a Space Heater Cost?

low costBasic Electric Heater: $15-$65average costElectric Ceramic Heater: $30-$150high costPropane Heater: $80-$250
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Either portable or wall-mounted, space heaters add warmth where and when it's needed. There are two basic types: convection heaters (either natural convection or fan-forced) provide warmth by blowing or pulling air over a heated surface while radiant heaters warm up the object they're aimed at (rather than the air in the room).

Typical costs:

  • Prices start around $15-$65 for a basic electric convection heater fan with a standard metal-coil element, but can go up to $70-$250 for models with more options. The heating element can be designed to be turned off so the fan can be used to cool the room during hot weather.
  • A electric ceramic convection heater starts around $30-$60 but high-quality models can be $70-$150. Electricity heats a ceramic plate, the heat is absorbed by aluminum baffles and a fan blows the resulting hot air into the room. A ceramic heaters will quickly provide warmth but its individual parts stay relatively cool to the touch (a safety feature to avoid burns).
  • Radiant quartz or halogen electric heaters range from $50-$170. They are best for providing heat in one close area rather than to an entire room.
  • An oil-filled electric radiator heater (which uses a non-radiant convection system but looks like the old-fashioned radiators found in many older buildings) costs $50-$110. Powered by electricity, it's permanently filled with oil in a closed system so it never needs replacing. Oil-filled heaters provide steady heat for an entire room.
  • Propane heaters range from $80-$250, can provide almost six hours of heat from a one-gallon tank of propane and are good when the power goes out. Kerosene heaters are available for anywhere from $130-$500, but are much less common than they used to be, mostly due to safety concerns.
Related articles: Gas Central Heating, Attic or Whole House Fan

What should be included:
  • Generally space heaters are a supplemental heat source, used to warm only one or two rooms at a time. A radiant space heater is best for spot heating, such as when you want to be warmer while curled up in front of the TV. A convection heater covers a larger area, and is better when there are several people either moving around or in different parts of the room. The U.S. Department of Energy provides an overview[1] .
  • Options include a tip-over safety switch, temperature controls, multiple fan speeds and direction settings, a timer and a remote control device.
  • Space heaters can cause fires if used improperly; the US Consumer Product Safety Commission[2] provides detailed safety tips.
Shopping for a space heater:
  • The Missouri Department of Natural Resources[3] provides a guide for picking the right space heater. Space heaters are sold at most home improvement, drug or big-box discount stores, and are available online at Target[4] , Sears[5] and Amazon[6] .
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
In response to Mr. Roberts...
Amount: $0.00
Posted by: Brad Johnson in St Louis, MO.Posted: April 22nd, 2009 02:04PM
Type: Infrared HeaterBrand: Comfort Zone
Model: 1500
In response to Mr. Roberts, the only issue I can see with your assertions is that I fail to see how a space heater can effectively heat an area of this magnitude comfortably or efficiently. Please explain to me how this unit can be as efficient as a standard central heat system. Thank you for your time.
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Keeping our new home comfy
Amount: $397.00
Posted by: Garrison Roberts in Rapid City, SD.Posted: April 10th, 2009 03:04PM
Type: Infrared HeaterBrand: CZ Infrared
Model: 1500P
Good Morning, my name is Garrison Roberts. My wife and I just bought our first home 5 months ago…moving’ up and finally realizing the American Dream. So shortly thereafter we found that it could be very costly during the impending winter to pay the higher propane costs that heating a 1800 sq ft home is…we needed a better solution. So we looked around and found some friends using 2 CZ Infrared 1500P heaters to supplement their home heat. It seemed to do an excellent job in the main areas of their home. So I took the leap of faith and invested in 3 units...they do not disappoint whatsoever. We run our thermostat at a constant 55 F and supplement up to 75 degrees F in our living room, one in our kitchen/dining area, and one in our finished basement that is converted into an office/study. The units perform perfectly and we set them to delay start about 45 minutes prior to coming home for an even, comfortable heat. I run our 3 units for about 12 hours per day for the cost of $1.58 per day or less than $50.00 per month in electrical cost per unit. It has saved us hundreds in potential propane costs this heating season already. I am so glad that I took the leap of faith and decided to choose Infrared heat to keep my new home comfy and warm. Thank you, CZ Infrared.
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