Best Space Heaters to Make Your Home Cosy in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update December 2, 2019
Portable space heaters are used all over the world where the weather is not warm enough. They are used to create a comfortable atmosphere in a room, cottage, and so on. There are many types of room heaters, so we have selected and analyzed 5 best of them for you. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2019
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Designated Heating Area
Safety
Ease of Use
Warranty
 
PROS

Provides a special "Chimney" effect that circulates the cold air through the housing of the heater and keeps a room warm at all times.

CONS

The unit is somewhat heavy (around 17 kg).

OUR VERDICT

A 2kW oil filled radiator from DeLonghi will heat up a large room (of up to 75 m²) in a matter of minutes, thanks to the innovative technologies that are utilized in this model. The best solution for your house, especially if you don't have a central heating system.

detailed parameters
Designated Heating Area

2000 W

Oil-filled heater

For large areas and rooms

Safety

Anti-frost protection, Overheat protection

Ease of Use

3 heat settings, Adjustable thermostat, 24-hour mechanical timer, Carry handle and wheels for easy transportation, Cord storage

Warranty

10 years

PROS

Even at the maximum heating setting, this radiator from Dimplex is still quite energy-effective.

CONS

The power cord is quite short (only 1.3 metres).

OUR VERDICT

Although this heater may look like a regular oil radiator, thanks to the special oil-free technology it can heat up twice as fast and without any annoying sounds or smells.

detailed parameters
Designated Heating Area

1500 W

Oil-free radiator

For small and medium rooms

Safety

Overheat protection

Ease of Use

2 heat settings, Adjustable thermostat, Carry handle and wheels for easy transportation, Cord storage

Warranty

3 years

PROS
Oil radiator can maintain room temperature after if it's been turned off for a long time.
CONS

The radiator is rather bulky but not that hard to transport.

OUR VERDICT
Dragon-4 is an oil heater done right. Awesome choice for average to large spaces. Works ultra silently and super effectively. Thanks to the anti-frost feature, you can have it as a main and only heat source in a country house.
detailed parameters
Designated Heating Area
2500 W, Oil heater, For average to large bedrooms and dining rooms
Safety

Overheating protection, Anti-frost mode

Ease of Use
Two handles and 4 wheels for transportation, Up to 24 hours programmable timer, Hook for storing 1.2 m cable
Warranty
10 years
PROS

The oil-free configuration of the heater allows for warming up the room in a matter of minutes, thanks to the powerful 2000 W heating element and two heat settings.

CONS

The wheels' build quality is somewhat poor for the price.

OUR VERDICT

The free column design makes it easier to cover larger areas without consuming too much power at the same time. This easy to use heater from Dimplex that fits pretty much any small or medium-sized room will definitely be a good pick in case you are looking for an affordable unit.

detailed parameters
Designated Heating Area

2000 W, Oil-free radiator, For medium rooms

Safety

Anti-frost protection, Overheat protection

Ease of Use

2 Heat settings and adjustable thermostat, Carry handle and wheels for easy transportation, Cord storage

Warranty

3 years

PROS

This relatively low-weight appliance (10.8 kg) is supplied with 4 castor wheels and an ergonomic handle that eases the transportation significantly.

CONS

The carry handle is hardly ergonomic.

OUR VERDICT

This 11-fin oil radiator from VonHaus disperses the heat across the room evenly: the array of temperature settings available will make your winter life as comfortable as ever.

detailed parameters
Designated Heating Area

2500 W

Oil-filled heater

For medium rooms

Safety

Tip-over protection, Overheat protection

Ease of Use

3 heat settings, Adjustable thermostat, 24-hour mechanical timer, Carry handle and wheels for easy transportation, Cord storage

Warranty

2 years

Delonghi Dragon 4 TRD40820T

Designed to Impress

Designed for medium to large flats and houses, the radiator heaters are a perfect way to warm up the room in a short period of time. And this model from DeLonghi is not an exception.

The 2 KW Dragon 4 heater is able to heat up the rooms no larger than 60 square metres, which is a quite economical power/spent electricity ratio. Thus, the radiator is suitable for medium to large rooms such as living rooms, offices, etc.

Instead of a digital timer, this version of DeLonghi Dragon 4 features a manual dial for setting a timer, which will be convenient for people that prefer preheating rooms or using the heater only at a certain time of a day. The heater has a switch that features an indicator light that will conveniently show if the device is on. Alternatively, when the convector reaches a maximum temperature it will automatically turn itself off with a distinct click sound, which some users may find a little bit loud. However, it doesn’t reach a non-safe level of 20 dB so it should not annoy or bother you that much, once you get used to it.

Moving on, the radiator has a special handle, which in combination with pre-assembled castors makes it quite easy to transport or carry around the house, despite the fact that the heater is quite heavy.

Review of Delonghi Dragon 4 TRD40820T Oil Filled Radiator

Passive Heating Capabilities

Thanks to the special “chimney” effect, the radiator is able to act as a convector heater. So, the way it works is quite simple, a radiator in pair with the special construction of the housing pushes the cold air through the lower part of the heater and channels it through the top of the device. This way your room, no matter how big it is, is always heated from the bottom to top.

Although the device features a safety thermostat that will automatically turn the device off when it reaches a certain temperature level, it doesn’t feature a thermal cut-off function, unlike most recent models of Dragon 4. Thus, with a two-step safety system onboard, you are getting a high-quality thermostat the can be reused numerous times, unlike a thermal detector that has limited reusability and will have to be changed every couple of years.

Owing to the convector effect the heater can effectively heat up not only one floor but two in case you live in a multi-story building. Of course, the effect of such kind of heating will be rather passive, however, in case you tend to leave the heater on for a night it can warm up the room above in just a few hours.

To wrap things up, the Dragon 4 TRD40820T from DeLonghi will be a good investment in case you are the owner of a big house or flat and don’t have a central heating system installed.

Delonghi Dragon 4 TRD40820T Oil Filled Radiator in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Dimplex OFRC15N

Feature Rich

The Dimplex OFRC15N is an exemplary oil free radiator that shares a lot of features with more expensive models, while being a relatively budget-friendly option, compared to other models in its price range.

The device has two heating modes that will allow you to both save up on energy bills and heat up the room effectively at the same time. The first mode is called "Eco Mode" and lets you keep the room warm while consuming little energy, while the latter works at a full 1500W power and is generally used for preheating the room. Once the desired temperature is reached, all you have to do is switch the modes from full power to Eco Mode. After that, the heater will automatically turn itself off each time the comfortable temperature has been reached.

Since the radiator is oil free it does not use any heating liquids in order to warm up your home. Moreover, the durable heater can reach the maximum temperature twice as fast as an oil radiator. The rapid heat up time comes with a price, unfortunately. The device requires more energy than premium oil radiators since they don’t have any means for keeping the temperature stable as heaters with oil inside do. On the other hand, however, with an oil-free radiator, there is no risk of oil leaks in your house since they do not have a pressurised container and that gives you that much-needed peace of mind.

Review of Dimplex OFRC15N 1.5 KW Oil Free Radiator with Thermostat

Save up with Dimplex

While being more economical than oil radiators, in reality, the oil-free heaters can only offer 7-11% of energy savings. Some customers may find these numbers unimpressive, however, in the course of the winter months you can save up almost the half of funds on your energy bill that would otherwise be spent on more bulky heaters requiring a lot more electric power. Speaking of bulkiness, this model from Dimplex weighs only 8kg, which makes it fairly easy to transport.

As for other additional features, the device also has a handle to lift the unit up, a special compartment for storing a power cable, and four castor wheels. The heater comes with the castor wheels unassembled, thus in order to get the heater running, you will need to attach them first. Some customers may find the 1.3m length of the power cord to be somewhat limiting, especially in big flats and houses that require a heater in the centre of the room rather than near an AC outlet.

Albeit some minor flaws, this oil-free radiator from Dimplex still rates as one of the better options of space heaters in its price range.

Dimplex OFRC15N 1.5 KW Oil Free Radiator with Thermostat in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Delonghi TRD4 1025T

Designed for Your Comfort

Delonghi is one of the world's leading manufacturers of climate equipment and consumer electronics. Since 1902 when the company was founded, it has proved to be a fine maker of high-quality technics. And this Dragon-4 oil is not an exception. Let’s take a closer look at what it's got on offer.

As it's been mentioned above, the key feature to look for in a heater is its power rate. Dragon-4 has an ice-breaking 2.5 kW maximum output. For reference, if set in a room with a 2.4 m ceiling, it can easily heat 4 x 8 m room pretty quick. Adjust heat levels and reduce power consumption to minimum 1.1 kW or 1.4 kW for smaller rooms. You can regulate the temperature and set it to switch off when the needed warmth has been reached. This means you can leave this space heater on overnight or during the whole day and worry not it may overheat or burst into flame. Delonghi space heater has been designed with your comfort in mind.

Review of Delonghi TRD4 1025T Oil Filled Radiator with Timer

Fire Breather

Speaking of this heater's design, it can blend in any room with its natural white color. The outer walls around the radiator sections create a chimney effect. The cold air is drawn from below and breathed out from the top after being warmed up by the hot radiator filled with oil. Thus, the air in a room is heated both inside and outside the device without drying it out since there's no direct contact between the heating element and the air. Moreover, you can manually set the timer for it to turn on automatically at any given time. Imagine coming from a freezing cold outside right into the warming embrace of your cozy house.

The unit is standing on 4 multi-directional wheels that help roll it from one room to another. There are also two handles on the sides to pick it up if necessary. Finally, there's a special hook at the bottom of one side to loop the power cord around and fix it for storing during warm seasons. Furthermore, if the only heat source you use in a room is a heater and you, for example, plan a trip away from home, you can switch the unit in an anti-frost mode to maintain 5°C and conserve the energy.

As a verdict, we can give Delonghi Dragon space heater the max score considering the number of useful features it's got. It struck us with a whisper-quiet operation and heating performance. Unlike many other heaters, this one doesn't dehumidify the air and steadily maintains the selected temperature all day and night so you can be sure your place is going to be comfortably warmed and safe.

 

Delonghi TRD4 1025T Oil Filled Radiator with Timer in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


VIDEO
Delonghi Dragon-4 TRD4 1025T Oil Filled Radiator Review
 

Dimplex OFRC20C

Effectiveness at a Reasonable Price

When oil radiators are just too bulky to use in your flat, a less heavy free column heater might just fit the bill. The Dimplex OFRC20C is an oil-free radiator that surprises with its lightweight and tremendous heat output.

The electric heating element of this model has a 2000-KW heat output, which makes the appliance ideal for use in small to medium-sized rooms in both flats and houses. What is more, the heater can warm up a medium-sized living room in just 15-20 minutes, which is quite impressive for a budget-friendly model.

The only issue we’ve had with this model is the fact that the build quality of its castor wheels leaves much to be desired. Hence, we recommend transporting the appliance with care if such a need arises. Fortunately, the heater has two convenient handles on the sides and since it is not that heavy you can carry it from room to room without breaking a sweat.

The oil-free design of the radiator makes it ecologically friendly and fairly energy efficient. In addition to that, you can utilize the heater in energy-saving mode when you don’t need the full heat output. This way, the appliance will turn itself off once the target temperature is reached and will turn back on after a while. This subtle, yet highly convenient feature allows saving on energy bills and keeping the house warm at the same time. The trade-off is the clicking sound of the thermostat that goes off every time the device turns on and off. But that said, it is not loud so it won’t bother you in your sleep even if you decide to utilize the heater in the bedroom.

Review of Dimplex OFRC20C Electric Oil Free Column Heater

Hot but Safe

When it comes to the means of control, this space heater from Dimplex features a thermostat knob and a two-step mode selector, which you can use to pick between full heat output and energy-saving modes. The former, on the other hand, does everything you would expect from a thermostat, but when combined with the energy-saving mode you can actually set up the desired temperature without the risk of the appliance malfunctioning.

Speaking of risks, the device comes with special overheating protection that won’t let it get too hot, even if the maximum heat output settings were selected. Owing to this, the heater will automatically shut itself down when it gets too hot. Alternatively, the heater features an anti-frost setting, that will come in handy in case you want to keep the room from freezing while you are away. In order to activate the setting, you will have to turn one of the heat settings on and turn the thermostat down to a point labeled on the dial.

In the end, the Dimplex OFRC20C column heater will be a good pick for users looking for a reliable appliance that is both effective and easy to use. Designed for rooms of up to 15-20 square metres in size, it makes all the difference when it comes to heating up your house quick.

Dimplex OFRC20C Electric Oil Free Column Heater in the use

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

VonHaus 2514047

Heats up Unlike Anything You've Seen

This 11-fin oil radiator model from VonHaus has all it takes to be one of the top picks in the medium price range.

The device has a pretty impressive array of safety features that will definitely come in handy at some point. The tip-off safety switch will turn the device off in case it accidentally falls on the floor. Alternatively, the automatic thermal protection will switch the device off if it reaches a dangerously high temperature. On top of that, the heater has an adjustable thermostat that you can manually set up in order to conserve the electricity. Handy if you want the heater working overnight. Turning to the heat settings, the unit has 3 dials and a few switches that together allow for full control of the climate in your house.

The 3 heat settings (1000W, 1500W, and 2500W respectively) provide you with enough choice of what heat level to choose when you feel chilly. You can choose the desired temperature in just a few clicks using a temperature dial on the side of the heater. Alternatively, you can tinker with a thermostat and as a result, the heater will automatically turn on and off to keep the temperature in the room stable. While the thermostat will help you save on the electricity bill, the 11 fins of the device will help you save the time needed.

Review of VonHaus 2514047 2.5 kW Oil Filled Radiator

Adjust as You Want

For your convenience, the radiator has a 24-hour timer. With this handy feature at your disposal, you can set the device to automatically turn itself on and off at a specific time of day. On top of that, the unit has a special mechanical device that "remembers" the settings so you don't need to adjust them every use. When the heater turns off, it makes a distinct clicking sound that some customers may find a little annoying at first. Still, this sound isn't as loud as in some budget models so even if you place it in your bedroom it won't wake you up in your sleep.

Nitty-gritty details aside, the heater has all usability features an appliance like this is expected to have. It comes with castor wheels, a convenient handle, and a power cable compartment where you can safely store the 1.5 m cable when you don't need the device. The only inconvenience is that this heater has only one side handle, which can be a bummer if you happen to grab it on the other end without a handle. However, this is a minor gripe given all other features and the overall quality of the heater.

All in all, the VonHaus 2514047 will be a suitable choice for any small to medium rooms and land you a helping hand if your central heating doesn't work as well as it should.

VonHaus 2514047 2.5 kW Oil Filled Radiator in the use

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

What Is a Space Heater?

As cold weather's coming, people start huddling up near fireplaces, in their beds or in electric blankets (if they have it, of course). Unfortunately, central heating is not always sufficient to effectively warm up big premises. Which is why if you live in a big flat or house, investing in a space heater can be the best solution. Being fitted with a powerful heating element, space heaters are able to warm up quite big living areas in a very short amount of time, bringing the maximum comfort to you and your family during the colder months. Of course, these heaters can be used not only at home. Due to their rather compact dimensions, you can set one in your office, garage, small store or workshop. In fact, you can place it anywhere if there's a power socket nearby. That being said, we'd recommend against placing a space heater in areas that leak air; otherwise you run a risk of ending up with an elevated electricity bill and huge heat losses.

While on the note of energy consumption, we recommend using a thermostat that can help reduce electricity waste by automatically adjusting the heat in accordance with the ambient temperature. While if you're looking to upgrade your old blanket, make sure to take a look at this comparison of duvets.

What Features to Compare

When you are about to choose a space heater, you need to consider some important features. There are many room heater reviews available online and they are so different. However, we've tried round up the most important characteristics that are worth paying attention to when selecting one.

Heating Area

The first thing to consider when buying a space heater is how big of an area it can actually heat. This parameter is determined by the heating element, precisely its power, and the particular type of a heater you choose. Regarding the heating element, you'll need at least 10 Watts of power to effectively warm up an area of 1 square meter in size. The higher this value, the better. As for the types, space heaters fall into the following 5 types: oil radiators, fan heaters, radiant heaters, gas heaters (or catalytic combustion heaters), and infrared heaters. Which of these five to choose totally depends on your needs. For instance, if you want to buy a heater that could be used not only indoors but outdoors as well, consider infrared heater models. In case you need only a small thing to warm up your bedroom, look towards fan heaters. Big fan heaters, as it's easy to infer from the very name, are designed to heat bigger spaces like workshops, garages, warehouses, etc. The power of a space heater is directly linked with its type.

Safety

Another thing you should certainly pay attention to is the safety features. You don't want to incur trouble, especially if you have kids and pets, so it's vital to check if a model has tip-over protection which powers the heater down in case someone accidentally walks into it and an auto shut-off feature which turns the whole thing off if it starts to overheat.

Usability

Usability features are also quite important. Though you don't buy a heater (we hope) to take with you on your trips, you need to make sure that it offers you a convenient way of moving it. With that in mind, consider if the chosen space heater has a carry handle and wheels, allowing you to move it around your living area without burning your hands. Also, you may want to look at the appearance of a heater. Obviously, nice looks aren't what we usually buy a heater for, but given that it's going to be highly visible in a room, it'd still be more sensible to go for a nicer-looking option.

Did you know?

How to Make Your House More Energy Efficient

It is well known that space heaters cannot replace the main heat source and should be used only as an addition to the centralized heating system. Still, it's possible to maximize their heating effect without raising the electricity bill, following these simple steps. First of all, you might consider insulating all doors and windows in your house to prevent the heat from escaping your rooms. Secondly, you can use natural sources of heat such as sunlight. On sunny winter days, leave blinders and curtains open in the morning and afternoon and keep them closed at night. Additionally, you can put a carpet or a rug on the floor. You will be surprised to find out how much heat you'll be able to save! In addition, you can enhance the effectiveness of your heater by removing furniture that stays in the way of the device and placing a sheet of tinfoil on the wall behind it so that it will reflect the heat towards you instead of heating the wall. Also, don’t forget that space heaters are used to heat up rooms individually, so be sure to close all doors to the rooms you are not using often. Consider buying a fixed space heater dedicated to the room you use most of the time and portable heaters for other rooms such as bedrooms and living rooms. Following these easy tips, you will be able to make your heating system more cost-effective.

How to Use Space Heaters Safely

More than 20,000 fires occur each year due to improper use of portable heaters. Moreover, if you use a heater too often it can cause a carbon monoxide poisoning. If you don’t want to become a statistic be sure to always read the manufacturer’s installation instructions, manual and safety precautions thoroughly to avoid malfunction of the device. Always make sure to pull the actual plug instead of the cord when you want to unplug the heater. Do not overload the power socket and do not use other electrical devices in combination with a space heater. Never leave the device unattended and turn it off when you leave the house or go to bed. Do not neglect to check twice if the heater is turned off. Remember: safety should always come first!

Convection Heater vs. Oil Radiator Heater

There are many different types of electric space heaters that serve the same purpose - which is keeping your house warm in winter. They all do it differently, however. Before picking a particular heater you need to ask yourself a question, “What do I need a heater for?”. It is important to understand that your lifestyle will determine if a particular type of heater suits you (or not). Convection heaters, for example, are best used as stationary sources of heat that keep a constant warm atmosphere in your room. The convection works in such a way that it circulates the cold breeze through the bottom and emits the warm air through the top. As a rule, they come without fans so there is no way for a heater to move the hot air. Ceiling fans are best suited for active people who rarely sit still and tend to move a lot around the house doing different household work. Oil radiators work in a slightly different way. They contain a coil that heats the oil inside the heater and turns off automatically when it reaches the maximum temperature. This allows the heater to slowly cool off after it has already been turned off. This feature makes them one of the most economical and practical solutions for people who seek a heater capable of providing the extended warmth.

FAQ:

Q: Does the top of the heater get hot?

A: Yes, it does. You should never touch the heater when it is on with your bare hands or you might get them burned. Same goes for any other objects that are placed in proximity to the device. Try not to place flammable objects near it. That includes furniture, curtains, beddings. Keep them at least 1 meter away from the heater.

Q: Does the oil heater smell when in use?

A: When you turn the oil heater on for the first time it might emit a chemical smell. It's a normal reaction that comes from the process of the oil being heated inside the radiator. Which is exactly why manufacturers of oil heaters recommend running heaters for a couple hours with opened windows and doors so that this smell goes away. You might need to repeat this several times. To remove the smell completely, it's important to read and follow all the instructions provided by the manufacturer. And when in use, make sure to always air the room to prevent carbon monoxide from concentrating.

Q: Can I place the fan heater on my desk?

A: We do not recommend placing any kind of heaters on tables, desks, drawers, and anything that is above the ground level. In terms of safety measures, it is recommended to place the device on the floor. Since some parts of the heater can get hot, they can damage the surface of the desk or even burn it and leave unsightly stains.

Q: I have small children in my house, Is it safe for them to use the heater when I am not at home?

A: As it goes with any electrical devices you should not let kids use them without supervision. In case it's not possible, make sure to instruct them how to use the heater in a safe way. Fortunately, many heaters today have several security features like a tip-over switch, overheating protection, etc. Thanks to these, even if your child tips the heater over accidentally, it will not cause a fire.

Q: Air filter in my ceramic heater got dirty and it does not work properly anymore. Is there any way I can clean it?

A: Yes, you can actually clean the filter on your own! To do this, you will need to unplug the heater and let it cool. Then you will need to clean the air intake and the grille. Next, you'll need to remove the grille by gently pulling it outwards. Now you can put the filter back inside the heater. The cleaning is done.

Q: Can I put the heater on the floor and use it to dry my clothes?

A: No, you can’t. The heater emits strong heat that can damage clothes and even set it on fire. To prevent that from happening, never put anything on top of the heater.

Q: Does the heater work quietly?

A: It depends on the type of heater you use. The oil heaters tend to make somewhat loud clicks when they reach a maximum temperature. This sound means that a thermostat inside the heater is working properly and turns the device off automatically to save electricity. Not only oil heaters emit noises. Any type of heater that has a metal construction may produce some noise during operation which is explained by the fact that metal tends to change its shape under the effect of heat.

Sources:

1. Choosing a Room Heater to Fit Your Lifestyle in 3 Easy Steps, Air & Water.

2. Gary Foreman Choosing a Space Heater, Power to Change.

3. Space Heater Buying Guide, ConsumerReports. August 2016.

4. Space Heater Buying Guide, Wayfair.

5. Chris Barnes What to look for in an electric heater, Choice. May 24, 2016.

6. Regina All About Portable Space Heaters – Which One Is Best, The Fun Times Guide.

7. Types of Space Heaters Fact Sheet, Overstock.

8. Infrared Patio Heater Pros and Cons, DoItYourself.com.

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