What is outdoor heating?

Outdoor heaters are rapidly becoming very popular garden accessories - you can add one to your patio to keep everyone nice and warm outside through the colder winter months! Also often referred to as patio heaters, they are a great option for installing near a fire pit or BBQ, so you can make the most of those garden features all year round. They come in a range of materials, sizes and designs, so read on if you need some help in choosing the best one for you!

Why should you use an outdoor heater in your garden?

Outdoor heaters, like all home and garden accessories, come in multiple design options. Stainless steel designs are popular choices for patio heaters, as are infrared heating and electric models. If you’re looking for a low price option, a more basic model may be enough for occasional use. Shop around and you could save some money! But if you have a bit more to spend, you’ll come across options with a range of useful features, like a protective cover to keep everyone safe while enjoying the garden.

You might have come across these accessories in public establishments, such as bars and restaurants with outdoor terraces or seating areas, as well as in a private garden or two. Whether you’re out and about or at home, there’s nothing like warming up next to a fire pit, chimenea or electric heater. They’re one of the best ways to help people enjoy a terrace, garden or patio space throughout the year.

Given these accessories come in so many shapes and forms, you’ll be sure to find a heater that perfectly suits your garden or patio and - of course - your budget! They vary in price according to their size and what features they offer. With various heating methods available (including infrared, gas and electric) and a vast array of designs and materials (such as steel or aluminium), your new outdoor heater will blend seamlessly into your home environment, no matter its size. Then, you’ll be free to enjoy that great view from your patio, make the most of your weekend BBQs and hang out around the fire pit for as long as you like, even when outdoor temperatures are low!

Did you know that you can remotely programme and control your heating with a Netatmo Smart Thermostat? Using your smartphone, tablet or laptop, its remote control feature lets you can adjust your heating quickly and easily.

Which outdoor heating setup should I choose?

If you’re thinking about installing an outdoor heater in your garden or patio area, there are several key factors to bear in mind. Firstly, the dimensions of your outdoor heater will make a significant difference to how much heat it will provide. Size is a factor in determining the temperature the heater can reach, while also affecting its price and how much energy it’ll consume, whether it's powered by gas, electricity or solid fuel.

Because of these factors, you’ll need to choose the size of your outdoor heater based on the size of the garden, patio or BBQ area you want to heat. Secondly, patio heaters come in all kinds of designs, layouts and performance levels, with differing delivery times for some models.

Should I choose a portable, wall-mounted or table top outdoor heater?

Aside from the various types of outdoor heating product available (gas, electric, infrared, and so on), there are multiple designs to choose from: portable, wall-mounted and table top, for example.

  • Portable: these are mostly lightweight, easy to move around and relatively inexpensive. Often, they run on fuel and can be positioned wherever you need them in your patio or garden space.
  • Wall-mounted: these types of outdoor heater are often electric or infrared models. They’re very safe options, usually with the option of directing their heat output specifically towards areas where people are gathered in the patio or garden space.
  • Table top: these tend to be less powerful than portable or wall-mounted patio heaters. However, they still provide a pleasant level of warmth, dissipating heat to all the people seated around the table within a garden or patio.

Outdoor heating with propane or natural gas

Depending on the design, some outdoor heaters can run on propane or natural gas. Propane outdoor heaters are highly portable, so will be easy to use anywhere you need within your garden and patio.

However, you’ll need to make sure you have a constant supply of propane. If your heater accessories run on natural gas, then you’ll simply need to connect your heater up to the natural gas network your house uses - this is a more affordable option.

Electric outdoor heating

This type of heater produces lower emissions, but is less powerful than a propane or natural gas patio heater. Often, you’ll see electric heaters in the form of heating parasol accessories for gardens and patios.

You’ll need a professional to install an electric heater, as there are certain safety standards that need to be followed. You may need to connect your electric patio heater up to the mains, making these heaters far less portable accessories.

Brazier outdoor heating

These are also known as outdoor fireplaces, as they emit real, rustic flames. While they’re not as powerful as other types of heater, these accessories are quite simply all about the aesthetic!

Infrared outdoor heating

These are the most efficient, effective and advanced outdoor heating accessories. They emit ambient heating via infrared light radiation, available in multiple radiation wave options.

They emit low levels of light as well as plenty of heat, creating a comfortable atmosphere. They’re fast-acting and powerful heating accessories that can be installed wherever you like - ideally a few metres above ground level, suspended over the garden, patio, BBQ or fire pit area.

How much does outdoor heating cost?

When calculating the costs of these items, we need to take several factors into account.

Purchase price

Electric or gas heating parasols are often the most inexpensive type of outdoor heating product, while the most advanced and efficient infrared heaters are the most expensive ways to heat your patio.

Usage price

The usage price of your outdoor heating accessories depends entirely on the fuel or power source they use. Propane patio heaters, for example, will be more expensive to fuel than outdoor heaters that run on natural gas straight from the grid.

The operating costs of your outdoor heating accessories will also depend on their dimensions, as well as the size of the area you want to heat. Choose the right option and you’ll be free enjoy your garden, patio, BBQ or fire pit all year round!