Gas vs Electric: Which Heater Should I Choose for My Patio?

It’s that time of the year again. The weather is getting colder, the nights are getting longer and still, one of your favourite things to do is sit outside and enjoy your patio. But as days start to get a bit chilly, you want to feel warm and cosy while enjoying some fresh air in your yard.

Patio heaters are effective at keeping you warm all year round, and especially during cooler seasons. More and more homeowners are deciding to upgrade their yards with some type of heater, but some can’t decide which one to get. Should you choose a gas or buy an electric heater for patio? This is something many folks try to figure out. But once you understand the specifics of each, you can make an informed decision when purchasing.

Exploring the Aspects of Gas and Electric Patio Heaters

electric heater for the patio next to the plants

Most of the open spaces and restaurants use gas heaters during the colder months. But, can you use an electric heater on a patio? Absolutely yes. It does a really good job at keeping your outside area warm and cosy during winter months.

Both gas and electric heaters have their unique specifications and both serve great purpose at what they are supposed to do. However, there are several distinct features that can influence you in making your final decision. This is not to say that one is better than the other. It simply means that an electric heater for patio has something different to offer than a gas heater, and vice versa. You just need to figure out which one will serve your specific needs.

Efficacy and Heating Capacity: Which Option Will Suit My Patio Layout?

Outdoor electric heaters are favoured for their efficacy in providing immediate warmth. You don’t need to wait for them to warm up. This is especially convenient when you have unexpected guests come to your house and they also want to spend some time in your yard.

Also, if you don’t like the noise some heaters produce and would rather enjoy the silence instead, these operate quietly and make a more suitable solution for people who are bothered by the noise of the motor. They also come in various styles and aesthetic finishes and you can easily find one that fits your cosy patio space.

Electric heaters are a good option for open patio areas as they offer heating for targeted areas. So if you or some of your family members and friends sitting outside, they can immediately feel the warmth and no heat is lost in the process.

However, an outdoor electric heater is more convenient for smaller yards and patios, as they have limitations in heating large open areas.

Gas heaters, on the other hand, are more efficient for warming up larger patios, as they don’t heat only targeted areas. But here’s the thing. Gas heaters are better for covered or partially covered patios. If your patio is completely open, meaning, there is no roof, the heater may not provide you with the desired heat. Although there’s a lot of heat coming out of it, it basically rolls up in the air, and you’re losing some proportion of that heat.

But gas heaters are pretty effective for covered patios and can warm up large places enough to make it enjoyable to stay outside. And because they do in fact emit higher temperatures, they suit well for colder climates. However, they still make an excellent choice for warming up spacious areas.

Installation and Portability

closeup of the electric wall heater

An electric heater for outdoor settings is pretty easy to install. The installation process requires minimal setup and allows greater placement flexibility. For instance, they can be wall-mounted, and freestanding, or they come as tabletop and can be plugged into standard electrical outlets. Freestanding and tabletop heaters can easily be moved to locations where you need them. The simplicity of installation and portability is what makes them a convenient and versatile outdoor heating solution.

For installing gas patio heaters, you might need professional help if you don’t have experience in doing it yourself. Since you’re working with gas, the installation requires safety precautions and involves securing the heater in place and connecting it to the gas supply.

Although they are freestanding and do not require to be mounted, the nature of the installation process may impose some limitations on the placement of the heater. They offer portability only in the designated area. However, they still make one of the most widely used heaters for outdoor settings due to their broad heat distribution. They are a steady and reliable source of warmth. Consider purchasing a gas heater if your patio has any type of roof as they are more effective in those settings.

Safety Considerations

When it comes to safety, electric heaters are generally viewed as a safer option because they don’t involve open flames as gas heaters do. Therefore, there is a lower risk of fire and exposure to carbon monoxide. However, you still need to monitor and check the cords and plugs as a safety precaution.

But that is not to say that gas heaters are not safe. Although they do pose a higher risk of fire, if installed properly, they can operate with no issues at all. Also, proper ventilation is needed when using a gas heater. So, make sure to place it in an area where there is an airflow. Still, regular maintenance is needed to ensure the heater runs properly and see if there are any issues to be fixed.

Mia Hadson

Mia is a passionate blogger. Her obsession with beauty, health and shopping started young. Her philosophy is based on simple things, regardless of whether it is about applying makeup, decorating a room or cleaning a home. She believes simplicity is the basis of beauty and she implements this ideology in all spheres of her life.