Patio Heater Basics

Patios are an extension of the home that bring quality time with friends and family outdoors. This ambiance can extend into the cooler months, as patio heaters keep the space warm year-round. Before purchasing a patio heater, homeowners should understand their options and the required safety measures.


The chiminea is a popular patio heater option because it can be used as a heater and a grill for cooking. This heater can use charcoal or wood, but charcoal is mainly used when cooking. The chiminea is often shaped in a round, square, or oriental shape, like a pagoda, and is made of clay or cast iron. Heat radiates from the chiminea in all directions while smoke escapes from the top chimney. The outside of the chiminea can become hot, so caution must be used to prevent burns. These patio heaters can be left outdoors when not in use, adding to their convenience.

Electric patio heaters are portable heaters that can be positioned precisely where heat is needed and quickly moved indoors when not in use. Many of these heaters can also be used indoors. These heaters are best when in need of a practical, low-cost solution.

Patio umbrella heaters are a type of heater installed on an umbrella pole that folds up with the umbrella. This efficient type of electric patio heater is easily concealed and does not take up extra ground space.

Tabletop heaters are gas or electric and are designed to sit in the center of a patio table. They are portable, lightweight, and efficient heat sources for small areas. Extra caution should be taken with these types of heaters, as they are set in close range to people and could easily be touched or knocked over by accident.


Before purchasing a patio heater, carefully read the safety warnings included with each heater before purchasing. Only use the recommended type of fuel and follow the included operating and maintenance instructions. It’s essential to be educated on the risks of patio heaters to avoid any dangerous situations. Keeping safety measures in mind helps a patio heater amplify the environment of a patio without any worry of accidents.