Need an Outdoor Heater? Learn the Benefits of Using a Gas Heater
Gas heaters are an efficient and effective way to stay warm. Some are fixed, requiring professional installation; however, ideally they're portable - so you can take them with you camping, use them in your backyard, or benefit from them at work. Whatever your needs, consider using one to meet them. It's a great source of year round heat.
The many benefits of using a gas heater are:
- Instant warmth
- High heat output
- Pay as you go heating
- Easy setup
Now let's explore gas heating basics and the ins and outs of different fuel types.
Gas, Oil, and Propane Heating: The Basics
Natural gas is a fossil fuel produced from oil and gas fields. It's distributed through pipes. Typically these heaters get heat from a main heat source controlled by your local heating company.
It's measured by therms or CCF (hundreds of cubic feet). One therm equals 100,000 BTUs or British Thermal Units. Natural gas burns the cleanest - a benefit that the environmentally aware might appreciate.
The problem - it's not always available. You must tap into a natural gas main to use it; therefore, it's not easily accessible. Using this kind of heater outdoors would require accessing your main gas line.
An oil- filled version burns 400 times hotter than natural gas and is generally safer than natural gas heating. It's a petroleum product and commonly used in the Northeast. Heating oil is stored in tanks that must be refilled. Refilling an oil filled unit is easy and inexpensive.Propane gas heating fuel is a by-product of natural gas processing and petroleum refining. It's a gas stored under pressure in liquid form. Like the oil filled variety, it's measured in gallons, and stored in tanks that require refilling.
Propane gas heating is inexpensive and effective. It's a cleaner burning fuel than heating oil, so if you're going green, this is a great alternative.
Gas Heater Types
There are 3 types of outdoor gas heating options: fixed, portable, and freestanding. All are effective.
Fixed outdoor models are exactly as the name suggests. This type of heater isn't portable. It connects to your gas line and provides heat through the natural gas process. Typically, professional installation is required.
This unit isn't as convenient as other types because of the installation process; however, it's effective and will keep outdoor areas warm. Using this kind of gas heater will increase your energy bill. The cost will be attached to your indoor heating bill, another feature that must be considered before selecting this option.
Portable types are small and easy to transport. These units typically burn oil or propane gas. Although it requires a tank, it's easy to hookup and you won't be billed through your energy provider.
These heaters allow you to manage costs better. Everything is prepaid. There aren't any unexpected hikes in energy costs. Another added benefit - depending on the model you choose - is that these heaters are great for camping or any other outdoor event you attend.
Using this option, you won't have to endure the cold bundled in ski jackets, scarves, and gloves. A portable heater, whether propane or oil-filled, will keep you sufficiently warmer.
Free-standing designs are larger and not as easy to transport. These heaters heat a wide spread area and are ideal for patios - commercial or residential use. Again this model typically operates on propane gas, a form of heating that's efficient. As indicated above, it's the most efficient fuel source outside of natural gas.
If you enjoy outdoor entertaining then consider a free-standing patio heater. You and your guests will enjoy the warmth this gas heater provides. This type of heating system is popular at local restaurants, too, enabling dinner guests to enjoy an outdoor table on a chilly evening.
Now - Let's Talk More Benefits
With a gas heating unit you can enjoy outdoor socializing and dining all year round. Summer might be over but that doesn't mean you have to stop taking pleasure in a poolside meal. With a free-standing patio heater you'll be comfortably warm. Most models warm up to a 20 sq. ft. area, sufficient heat for outdoor spaces.
Some propane and oil filled heaters are small enough to pack, so you can take one on your next outdoor vacation. If you're a backpacker, this is an ideal option. This variety is lightweight and easy to transport, offering enough warmth to keep you feeling comfortable when the sun goes down.
Spending the morning fishing? Get rid of the morning chill instantly. Set up your portable unit on the bank next to your chair. Since fish are morning feeders - the best time to catch fish being just before or daybreak - sitting out by the lake can be cold. With a portable gas heater you can relax and enjoy the sunrise.
Where else can you use a portable unit? Maybe you plan on attending a holiday parade. Thousands gather to see floats and high school marching bands, some camp for days waiting. Why not use a portable model to keep warm while you wait. Whatever your plans are - local parades, camping or fishing - stay warm with a portable outdoor heater.
Oil-filled and Propane Gas Heaters
Clearly, the benefits of using an outdoor heater are great. The uses are endless. No matter what your plans are, you'll benefit from using one. They're efficient and effective. Depending on the BTU produced, many models warm spaces as large as 200 sq. ft.
Enjoy effective heating, pay as you go costs, convenient portability, and easy setup. Outdoor heaters are ideal for anyone taking pleasure in an outdoor environment at anytime of the year.