Home Home & Patio Choosing the Best Patio Heater for Your Family’s Needs

Choosing the Best Patio Heater for Your Family’s Needs

by Nicole

We all love getting out in the garden during the warm summer months, spending time with family and friends and enjoying the sounds of nature. When the weather starts to turn colder, we still want to enjoy as much of the clear weather as possible but the cold can make this difficult. That is where a patio heater can be an excellent addition to your patio so you can keep enjoying the great outdoors even as it starts to turn colder. With many different designs and features available, there is a patio heater out there for everyone.  You are certain to find the right one for your family’s needs with a little bit Surf’n’Buy’s advice to help you get around all the information.

Fuel Types

The first thing to consider is how you plan on powering your patio heater. There are four main methods available: propane, natural gas, electric and wood. Each has their own benefits and drawbacks, and are suitable to different areas, so make sure you know which option you think will suit your needs best before you buy.

  • Propane

Propane patio heaters are incredibly easy to use as they generally don’t require any difficult set up or installation, you simply just assemble them, attach the tank and off you go. These patio heaters are fully portable and heat up very quickly due to the nature of the fuel. However, they are the more costly options since you have to regularly replace the gas tank and propane is more expensive than options such as natural gas. These patio heaters also shouldn’t be used in a covered space because they let out some emissions which can be harmful should they be allowed to build up.

  • Natural Gas

Natural gas patio heater will need some professional installation as they need to be attached to the gas line. This means a bit more upfront cost, however this will balance out in the long run since they are generally a cheaper gas option to use. This also makes them much easier to maintain as there is no need to keep replacing a tank. Natural gas patio heaters are the cheapest to use once installed but keep in mind that they also should not be used in covered spaces because this can be both a health and a fire hazard. They may also be difficult to move as they will be hooked up to the gas mains connected to the house.  So, once they’re set up, they’re set up for good.

  • Electric

Electric powered patio heaters are very convenient as they need very little set up and maintenance, and can even be stored away when not being used. All you have to do to set them up is assemble them and plug them in. They are also suitable for use in covered and enclosed spaces because there are no gas emissions. However, they will need to be close to an outlet which may require extension cables and some careful planning and they may be a little slow to heat up, which will take some forethought as the weather starts to cool down.

  • Wood

Wooden patio heaters are a consumer favourite because they add a certain atmosphere to an evening in the smell and the crackling of fire. They are also one of the cheaper options to buy in terms of upfront cost. Wooden patio heaters don’t require a lot of set up as they tend not to come in separate parts, but they will require more upkeep in the cleaning out of the pit and the need to keep replacing firewood. The firewood itself can also be an expensive extra cost to consider in the long run.


There are so many different designs and styles of patio heaters that you can choose from to suit your individual landscape.  However, there are four main designs as to where the patio heater sits. 

  • Standing

One of the larger options is a standing patio heater. These are probably the most common and can come as any fuel type. They give off a great amount of heat and can generally warm larger areas than most other designs.  However, they may take some time to install and can be too tall and heavy to move if you want to store it when not in use.

  • Wall Mounted

Wall mounted patio heaters need a little bit of installation but are an excellent space saver if you have a small area you want to heat. They simply attach to a wall or hand from a cover so that you can keep your area cosy without taking up to much room. Wall mounted heaters are generally electric, so keep this in mind when you buy.

  • Table Top

If you are just looking for something to provide a bit of heat in a small area, a table top patio heater is one to think about. These models are usually electric but can give out a good amount of heat to the surrounding area. These patio heaters are a very practical option for those who want to be able to move and store their patio heater as they are much lighter and more compact.

  • Chimeneas and Pits

If you’re looking to provide atmosphere to your garden with a wood burning patio heater, you are looking for a chimenea or a pit. These options are a little pricier to buy but offer a great deal of heat and a lovely, cosy atmosphere for those around it. They can be heavy and require a lot of maintenance, but they are well worth it for what they provide.

Patio heaters are ideal for late summer months when the weather gets cooler but you’re not ready to head indoors.  They give you the warmth you need to gather the family and enjoy the evening without having to worry about catching a chill. Depending on your needs, there are plenty of options to choose from to provide your garden area with an atmospheric warmth that you and the family will love.

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