Weather is one of the most significant factors that influence any camping experience, and we have been battling the elements since the beginning of time. A tent heater is an excellent way to change the weather to your specific desire. Advancements in technology have given us more power and control over the environment.
When the weather is not perfect, and you have already planned an excellent trip, backing out is not always the option. You can easily plan with the weather forecast in the winter months, and a tent heater is an affordable addition that makes life easier for everyone. Whether you camp with your family or typically grab your one-person tent and go on solo backpacking trips, there is a heater suited for your needs. Using a tent heater is generally safe, and the heating capabilities are really impressive.
Mr. Heater Big Buddy Propane Heater
Great product from a reputable brand. With three different heating settings, this tent heater is a perfect accompaniment for those chilly nights out camping.
Best Overall Tent Heater
Mr. Heater is probably the most recognized brand for heating products. They are synonymous with top-quality heaters and have built up an excellent reputation. The Mr. Heater F274830 MH18BRV Big Buddy Portable RV Propane Heater is a small portable tent heater that generates up to 18,000 BTUs. The heater comes with three different heating settings and a slew of safety features making it the ideal companion for your next cold-weather camping adventure.
Best Value For Money
The Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater is a state-of-the-art heater designed to fit the bill of any stylish camper. Compared to some of the older space heaters, the design is much sleeker, with a smaller base that makes it more portable. This specific design also means that the heater has 360-degree coverage when it comes to heat distribution.
Best for Small Tents
The Honeywell HCE100B Heat Bud Ceramic Heater is one of the smaller versions and also works with an electric port, which means you’ll need access to an electrical power source. It weighs just over 1-pound and can almost fit into your carry bag when you are on the go. Perfect for heating a one-person tent or small confined space.
Best for Large Spaces
The Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater is massive and it has a colossal 60,000 BTU power output, more than anything we have seen so far. If you have a huge marquee tent or even an open outdoor area to heat up, this is should be your tool of choice. But be warned, it will suck through a bottle of propane faster than other heaters as well.
Warning: Tent Heaters Can Cause Fires!
Keep all flame and heat sources away from tent fabric. Any open flame or heat source, like stoves, heaters, and candles inside a tent is dangerous. It poses a possible fire hazard and can deplete oxygen levels in confined spaces. Always use any tent heater strictly in accordance and compliance with the manufacturers’ safety instructions and guidelines. Never leave tent heaters unattended.
Tent Heater Safety Features
Safety first! Any tent heater that you choose should have the right safety features and should be certified by the appropriate safety associations. These heaters can be dangerous and they might even lead to fires starting in your home or your tent. To ensure this does not happen, here are the most important safety features that we believe you should look for in your tent heater:
- Auto Shut-Off: The auto shut-off feature has many benefits and it means the heater will automatically turn off once it tips over, or when it detects that the room and the heater are becoming too hot. This safety feature is really functional and should ensure that you are protected at all times when it comes to camping.
- Oxygen Detection: Oxygen detection is not something we commonly find in every heater, but this is one of the most important features that Mr. Heater has been incorporating into their designs for the last couple of years. It means the heater will automatically shut-off once it detects low levels of oxygen.
- Timer: Whether you might think the timer is a feature or not, we believe it can make a massive difference. The timer will run the heater for a specific amount of time and this should allow the heater to turn off after this time. Now, you don’t need to worry about falling asleep or even getting distracted with the heater still running.
All of these safety features might not be available in all the different heaters, but the more of them you have, the safer the heater will be in the end. When it comes to safety, we definitely put this on the top of the list, especially when dealing with something like this. You should also heed the safety warnings and it is not recommended to use propane or even butane heaters indoors.
However, newer models of heaters are designed with fuel hoses. This means the heater can be used indoors and the fuel source, or the propane tank, will be placed outside of your home. Most companies using heaters to heat up a larger building should consider this initiative. You can also extend the hose if you feel the need to do so.
Types of Camping Tent Heaters
There are effectively 2 types of camping tent heaters, and this distinction has primarily to do with the heat source or “fuel” that generates the heat. Knowing where and how you typically camp will help make the decision on which tent heater is best for you. If you know which type you’re looking for, then jump there right now:
Find The Best Propane Tent Heater
1. Mr. Heater Big Buddy Portable RV Propane Heater
Mr. Heater is probably the most recognized brand when it comes to heating products. They are synonymous with top quality heaters and have built up an excellent reputation. The Mr. Heater F274830 MH18BRV Big Buddy Grey Indoor-Safe Portable RV Propane Heater is a small, but portable tent heater that actually runs on a propane tank for the power output.
The heater comes with three different heating settings, making it great if you need to change the temperature or if it feels like the tent is overheating. According to the manufacturer, the heater can heat up a large area, around 300 square feet, which is perfect for most tents, including the larger 8-man tents that many families choose for their camping trips.
The maximum power output of this tent heater is a staggering 18,000 BTU, but this can be changed as we have mentioned. You should also keep in mind that a higher setting means the heater will burn through propane much faster. The MH18BRV also includes a fan that could help to heat up the room much faster, ensuring you can simply turn it on once you enter the tent.
With any tent heater, safety is fundamentally important and I personally think that Mr. Heater is one of the leading brands when it comes to these safety features. If you use it above 7,000 feet, the heater will automatically turn off. This is all due to the lack of oxygen, which means it can be used if you actually fall asleep. The heater features an automatic tip-off feature that will turn it off immediately when it does fall over accidentally.
While the heater has an excellent output of heat that generally heats up the room really fast, it does burn through a lot of propane. It can be connected to either 2 1-pound cylinders or one 20-pound cylinder. The 1-pound cylinders work well, but you might need to replace them by the next morning. If you are camping for a longer stint, the 20-pound cylinder will be your best option.
The weak fan seems to be a small problem, but when you use it in a smaller tent; you should not even notice this problem. Using it on a larger patio is where the heater might be a little ineffective for many people. It is also worth noting that while the safety features are excellent; this heater is not recommended for use inside your home.
Mr. Heater is a fairly priced brand and this heater is not that expensive. It is portable and weighing it at only 2.75-pounds, you can carry it virtually anywhere when camping. However, the propane tank addition might not be the best option for your backpacking trips. The heater is highly recommended for those who love camping and want to ensure the temperature is perfect at all times.
2. Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater
The Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater is a state-of-the-art heater designed to fit the bill of any stylish camper. Compared to some of the older space heaters, the design is much sleeker, with a smaller base that makes it more portable. This specific design also means that the heater has 360-degree coverage when it comes to heat distribution.
The heater is lightweight, but since the propane tank has been added to the overall design, your weight will fluctuate depending on the size you choose for the tank. It has a massive power output of around 3000 BTU. This means the heater can comfortably cover most tent sizes and ensure that the heat has been evenly distributed.
Additionally, you will also need to decide on how many of these heaters you would like. Since they are rather small, you can choose multiple options that should ensure each and every corner of the room that you use it for has been covered. According to the manufacturer, the burning rate is around 4-6 hours per 1-pound propane cylinder. Off course, this will all depend on the burning temperature you choose.
Safety has been taken to a new level to ensure the heater can actually be used in your tent. It comes with a stable plastic foot stand and this won’t really budge when bumped into. It also includes a durable stainless steel cover for the tank. Additionally, the heater will shut off the moment it is tipped or if it reaches a point where overheating is possible.
This tent heater comes with an easy-to-use adjustment knob when you feel like changing the temperature. I found that it offers you more control than most heaters, making it possible to find the right temperature with more ease. Finally, the heater is really portable as well and this does make it really great for backpacking and camping trips.
The complaints of this heater are really few and far between. We did not really find any complaints about the heater, aside from it burning through propane a little too fast when at the highest temperatures. This could ramp up your long-term cost and you might not be able to use the heater for a long camping trip.
All these features and this size is surprisingly affordable when it comes to the overall design. We definitely believe this is great for campers and backpackers alike. However, using more than one of these heaters for your group trips is generally recommended. Since they are so affordable, it should not really affect your budget.
3. Mr. Heater F242300 MH15C 10,000-15,000 BTU Cooker
Last but certainly not least, Mr. Heater once again makes an appearance on this list. The Mr. Heater F242300 MH15C 10,000-15,000 BTU Cooker is a slightly different propane tent heater and it features a more unique design than any of the other heaters we have seen so far. While the design is unique, there is no doubting its effectiveness.
With a massive power output that can reach up to 15,000 BTU, you can cover a larger than average area. Many people also use it to cover an entire camping zone. If the design looks a little complex, you should not need to worry, the heater comes fully assembled and you only need to attach i9t to the stand, which should not take too much effort.
The heater might look large, but at only 3.6-pounds, it can be used by backpackers as well. Most propane tanks can be fitted with ease and you don’t need to worry about finding something specific for this heater. The heater has an excellent design that allows you to direct your heat output in a specific direction when needed.
According to our tests, this heater can cover an area of around 500 square feet, which should be ideal for the average room. However, we do not really recommend that the heater be used indoors. Propane is never recommended for indoor use and the gas can be really flammable and also lead to a few accidents.
As with much of the other heaters from the same brand, the safety features are some of the best. The auto shut-off is great for when the heater accidentally tips over. The only addition to the safety features that we would have liked to see, would be if it has an oxygen sensor that could potentially stop the heater when the oxygen does reach a dangerous level.
In terms of cons, I could only find the stability to be a little frustrating. The stand works well, but you do need a solid surface to ensure the heater remains in place. I generally use the heater on a solid surface like a table and keep people away from it to keep it from being accidentally bumped. Propane can also be a little expensive.
As per usual, most of the heaters designed by the Mr.Heater Company are affordable. They have made a point of providing reliable heaters at a really affordable price and adding decent warranties that could keep you protected. If you need something for your tent and you want a reliable brand, choose the Mr. Heater F242300 MH15C 10,000-15,000 BTU Cooker.
4. Tooluze Camping Emergency Butane Heater
Tooluze has designed a small, but still excellent heater that can be used by campers and backpackers. While the brand is not really the most well-known brand on the market today, it does offer a lot of value for most campers. Butane is not always the most efficient way if you need a lot of heat, but it is an effective way when camping.
This heater comes with a new feature in the design. If you need the heat focused on one specific area, the heater should be perfect for this. The heater comes with numerous angles that you can choose from when setting it up. Since it is one of the smallest heaters on the market today, it is also perfect when you need to place it in an area with limited space.
The 700 BTU power output is not the most effective for those extremely cold winter nights. However, it could be sufficient when you need low constant heating. This feature has helped quite a lot when it comes to buying a heater that can actually be used for the entire night, especially if you need something safe for during the night.
The heater also does not really expend too much gas. If you are looking for an environmentally friendly design that won’t force you to break the bank in the long run, this is definitely an excellent option for the outdoors. Unfortunately, it is not the best thing for indoor use, which means the heater, is not really as functional as many people might actually like.
This heater can also use a propane gas tank if you feel the need to increase the heat output. However, this does actually make the price a little higher in general. The heater is small and weighs only 5.4-pounds. It has been CE Certified for outdoor use safety, which make it great to be used inside your tent if needed.
Now that you have seen most of the features of this heater, it is worth noting that the heater is not really the best when it comes to the overall design. It also does not really look all that effective as well. The power output is also rather limited and might not really be effective for your colder weather conditions. These are all things you need to keep in mind.
As for the price, this tent heater is really affordable compared to many of the heaters we have seen so far. It offers decent features for those who need something small in medium conditions. While this is by no means the best tent heater or even a camping heater, it does work well when you need to save a couple of bucks or if you are tied to a budget.
5. Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater
Once again, Mr. Heater makes an appearance on this list, but this time we have a massive heater that not only works for your tent, but also for the entire camping site. The Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater is massive and it has a massive 60,000 BTU power output, more than anything we have seen so far
The tent heater features continuous ignition and works with the standard 20-pound propane tank that you could find virtually anywhere. When used at the lowest setting of 30,000 BTU, the manufacturer claims one 20-pound propane tank should last you up to 14-hours when used continuously. However, this is reduced as you up the different settings and heating.
The heater can heat up an area of up to 1500 square feet, making it great for your larger areas, including warehouses that do not have anything flammable for hazards that may occur. The heater features a unique design with a fan and the fan means it can be directed into one specific area if you need to have it heat up a specific zone.
With this heater, it is also the first time we see the QBT technology being introduced. This makes the heater function at its full capacity but reduces some of the sound and noise we generally associate with many heaters of this size. As we have already mentioned, the continuous ignition means you can basically run this heater for the entire day if you have the right propane tanks attached.
The safety features are considered some of the best on the market and Mr. Heater has even included a 10-foot hose, which means you can use it indoors and leave the propane tank outdoors. Thermoelectric safety vales should also give you some peace of mind and ensure that the heater is always safe in any situation that is being used.
The only downside we have found it the size. While it might still be small when compared to many of the other elite heaters, it is a little large for your tent. When it comes to your tent, you will need something lightweight that does not take up too much space around the tent. Unfortunately, smaller tents might not really work well when this heater is used to heat up the area.
As for the price, you would expect a heater with such a massive power output to be rather expensive. However, this heater is really affordable compared to many of the other large heater with such a power output. While we could not find any real information on the warranty, we do believe that it does come with an excellent warranty from one of the best brands in the heater industry.
6. UBOWAY Portable Butane Gas Outdoor Heater
Versatility is really important when you actually go camping. If you can find a product that serves numerous purposes, you will not only be saving on your camping expenses but if you have been trying to cut back on the weight, you should also be saving space. The UBOWAY Portable Butane Gas Outdoor Heater is not only a heater but a stove as well.
The heater actually works with Butane gas, but it features an additional adapter that should also work well when you have a cassette gas tank on hand for your heating needs. The heater has a decent power output, but this can all be changed depending on the specific temperature that you need. It also converts the design a little into a flat top.
This flat-top design is really effective if you are looking to use the heater for cooking purposes as well. While butane is a little more affordable than most of the propane gas tanks we have seen so far, this heater can work for up to 5-hours when using it continuously on a single butane gas tank, saving you some money with the lower burning rate.
This is also one of the lighter models you can choose. The weight is just 4.85-pounds, which is ideal for lightweight campers. Since the tent can also be folded, you save in storage space. However, one of the top features for me is adjustability. Since it can be adjusted, the heater is really easy to direct in one specific direction, especially when you need one area warmed up.
With so many great safety features, this still remains an excellent heater for virtually anyone. However, we do recommend that you consider reading the manual carefully before using it. You should notice fairly quickly that the heater is not designed for indoor use and the propane and butane gas can be really flammable if you are not careful.
On the downside, I would have liked a little more heat. The heat is adequate for cold temperatures but does not work as well when you reach the freezing poles of the Arctic. It should just do enough to melt some of the ice from frustrating you. One thing we would also like to mention is that using two of these tents simultaneously is really effective as well.
When you are looking for a heater, you don’t always have a massive budget to use on it. However, this is one of the more affordable options that should offer some great value for anyone. The heater is multifunctional, which means you already save on buying an expensive camping stove. All of this has led to us really recommending it to any camper
Find The Best Electric Camping Tent Heater
7. Allegro Industries 9401‐50 Tent Heater
If you are looking for a durable and portable heater that offers you the best in construction and weight, the Allegro Industries 9401‐50 Tent Heater is an excellent option to consider. It features a durable steel housing and since the heater is rounded, the core is really durable and should hold up well when standing on its own in the middle of the tent.
The heater features 5,000 BTU of power that is expended and this can cover up to 500 square feet in your tent. The heater should function well in the middle of the tent and it can shoot out rays of heat in a full 360-degree range. The heater can actually raise the air temperature by a massive 50 degrees Fahrenheit to make sure your area is fully heated.
A fully sealed motor also means the heater is actually rather quiet when it is used in quiet environments, which means you can actually take a nap with the heater actually still running. The heater also comes with a 5-blade fan and this could help when you need the heat to reach a farther distance and also speed up the heating process.
In terms of safety features, this heater has been UL and CSA approved, which means the heater is actually designed to be used indoors and outdoors. The power output of 1500-watts is more than enough to heat up the house really quickly. As you should have seen by now, this heater can actually be used inside your home or inside your tent.
With a weight of 14.1-pounds, the heater might be a little heavy compared to some of the others we have seen. This means it might not be one of the best options when it comes to backpacking ventures. Fortunately, it is mostly recommended for campers and for indoor use on your patio when you are having a few guests over in the winter.
Lastly, the air flow is really special and an impressive 115 CFM airflow is more than enough when you need to have fast heating of the tent and the environment. The single-phase motor also appeals to me as it is really effective. When you need a continuous ignition and burn, this could be the ideal heater for all your needs.
We could not find much wrong in terms of the cons, but the heater is a little expensive compared to some of the other elite brands. However, the efficiency is really great and the heater should work well for outdoor camping. We would definitely recommend it for the versatility and the value that it offers to all campers and outdoor enthusiasts.
8. Honeywell HCE100B Heat Bud Ceramic Heater
Honeywell is a brand we have already featured on this list and they have a reputation for providing real value for your money. The Honeywell HCE100B Heat Bud Ceramic Heater is one of the smaller versions and also works with an electric port, which means the heater is designed specifically for home use near a power source.
The heater is really small and portable. It weighs just over 1-pound and can almost fit into your carry bag when you are on the go. It has 2 different settings to choose from, with the maximum setting being 250-watts. The dimensions are 5 x 4 x 7.8 inches, that also means it can be placed on your desk when you are working late nights.
A small light is added to the heater and this will be really handy. You will notice that this heater is really quiet and silent when it is turned on. This light will help you see that the heater is actually turned on and you need to turn it off when you are done. It eliminates the accidents that have happened so many times from people neglecting to turn off their heaters.
As for the design that might look a little flimsy, you will be happy to know that this heater is actually constructed from durable flame-resistant materials. However, we do not recommend putting in in the flames and trying out this feature. In addition, we have not yet seen any problem of fires being started by this heater that could be really dangerous.
Following on the previous feature, this heater has numerous safety features included. These features include the tip over feature that means the heater will be shut off automatically when it does fall over. Since it is powered by an electric source, it might not be the best option for your tent and you should once again need to make sure there is a power source.
With such a weak power output, this heater is definitely not designed for all camping situations. It is actually really weak for colder temperatures. The heater takes quite a while to start up and it only heats up in one small direction. To heat up an entire room will definitely take some time to ensure it has been done correctly.
Lastly, the price is probably the best part for most people. This heater has one of the most affordable prices, but we would not recommend it for heavy-duty use. I won’t really choose this as my main heater when going on a cold camping trip. However, it should work well as a supplementary heater that could potentially help speed up the heating process.
9. Honeywell HZ-0360 Surround Heat Heater
Honeywell is another brand backed by a powerful reputation and the Honeywell HZ-0360 Surround Heat Heater is one of the best heaters that heat up an entire room from the middle. The design is what makes it so special and it shoots out heat in a full 360-degree circle when it is placed in the middle of your large tent.
The rounded shape also gives the heater a sturdy base and it is designed to sit flat on the ground, minimizing the potential risk when it comes to tipping over. Portability is generally a key aspect when looking for a tent heater and this one comes with a durable handle. The handle is designed to make it simpler and more effective when you carry it around.
When it comes to the adjustment, this heater includes two heating settings. Depending on your specific needs, it is much easier to find the desired temperature without too much effort. The additional fan is also great if you are to balance the temperatures on your trip, basically turning it into your very own adjustable thermostat that you now have in a tent.
According to the manufacturer, this heater exceeds the industry standard when it comes to safety features. It has an anti-tip shut off feature for the accidental earthquake that is needed to actually tip this heater. Additionally, the overheating feature is a great feature that will offer you optimal protection if you accidentally forget about the heater.
While this is an electric heater, it is still an effective way to heat up your tent and the camping site if you have access to a power source. If that is not the case, the versatility is really impeccable and the heater works well inside your home. With no propane being used, you should not need to worry about leakages or any other real problems.
The heater features a maximum power output is an impressive 750-watts, this will ensure that you have decent heat. It weighs only 4.65-pounds and this means it can be used for camping and backpacking. As we have already mentioned, the only thing you need to keep in mind in that the heater needs an electric power source to ensure that it can be turned on.
This heater is one of the more affordable options and it is available in two different colors. It comes with a 1-year limited warranty that offers you some peace of mind. Since it can be used virtually anywhere, including in your home with the safety features, this is an excellent option for those who need a versatile heater. Many people use it for their desks underneath the table as well.
10. AmazonBasics 1500 Watt Ceramic Space Heater
The AmazonBasics 1500 Watt Ceramic Space Heater is one of the ultimate budget heaters I have ever seen. The heater is really stylish when looking at the design, but the small and portable design makes it perfect for your lightweight camping trips. As we mentioned about the style, it is available in 2 colors and both of them are really effective for your home when it comes to décor.
The heater has a maximum power output of 1500-watts, which gives you optimal power when heating up the room quickly. It comes with 3 different settings and each of these settings will ensure that you as the user have optimal control. The power indicator does not help you with the settings, but it should let you know when the heater has been plugged in with power supplied.
As we have already mentioned, the heater is actually really small with the maximum weight being around the 3-pound mark. It comes with a carry handle and this should ensure that it is easy to transport. According to the manufacturer, it also allows you to heat up only one specific area in a room. This can save you a couple of bucks on your electricity costs.
Once again, safety is taken really seriously when you are looking at these features, you will notice that the heater comes with an overheat protection feature. It will also shut off automatically when it is tipped over and it has been ETL listed. However, the manufacturer does not recommend it for use in high humidity rooms, which should not be a problem as humidity is generally associated with existing heat.
The control settings are often frustrating for many people, but AmazonBasics have ensured this is a user-friendly heater, with an impeccable design that should work for anyone. All of this is manually operated and the knobs are really durable. We have not had any real problems with the knobs actually being stuck or showing any weakness.
Since this is another electric heater, it might not be one of the best heaters for outdoor use. Yes, it does offer you versatility, which means the heater can be used in your home. If you plan to buy, it for camping purposes, you should also be sure to have some sort of electric power supply. Many camping spots do already provide this for users.
As mentioned, the heater is probably one of the cheapest models available on the market today. This does make it an excellent option for all users who are looking for a new heater for the home. The limited 1-year warranty gives you a little peace of mind as well. We recommend this heater for the really affordable price tag.
Key Features To Consider When Choosing The Best Tent Heater
Now that you have seen the heaters we believe are some of the greatest ever designed, you should have a better understanding of some features as well. However, we have also done a lot of research to make these features more clearly. If you don’t like any of these heaters we have chosen, you should look at these features when it comes to choosing a different heater for your camping needs or for home use:
We’ve discussed the minimum safety features that you should look at the top of this article already, but want to add this to the top of our features list again. Look for a tent heater that has a built-in shut-off mechanism when it tips over or even tilts too much. Look for oxygen level and room heat detectors in your heater and get a heater with a built-in timer so your heater will automatically shut off should you fall asleep. Never leave a tent heater unattended or place it near the fabric of your tent or any other flammable material like sleeping bags.
Tent heaters are available in a wide array of different types, and you need to keep this in mind when first buying a new heater. The tent heater should be portable and functional for use in any situation. This is where a gas-powered propane tent heater is one of the most effective to ensure that you are not solely reliant on electricity for the tent heater.
Butane is also used in many heaters, but this is slowly phasing out with substantial evidence backing propane to be a little more effective when you are looking for optimal heat generation. Propane burns at a much higher level, and while you might be using a little more, you will also have a little more heat to play around with. This should be excellent when camping in areas like the cooler Arctic.
The electric tent heater is the last type of heater that you need to look for, but as you might already know, these heaters can actually restrict your usage quite a bit and lead to a lot of frustration for many people. One of the benefits is definitely the long-term costs that are associated with the heater and it is a little more affordable to use electricity instead of propane.
Nevertheless, you will ultimately need to make the decision as to which one of these heaters will do the job for you. We have personally used propane heaters most of the time, but there is also a few substantial risks that can be associated with these heaters. Propane is highly flammable and should not be used indoors. This is generally indicated on most gas heaters.
You should also read propane vs. butane if you want to know a little more.
Will you be using this heater for camping or backpacking purposes is one of the key questions that you need to ask. If it is used for camping, the weight might not have such a great effect, and you will have the resources to carry it along. The weight on a backpacking tent heater should not really exceed the 5-pound mark, as you will also need to use this heater with a propane or butane gas tank.
As we have already mentioned, the electric heater does not require you to add an additional gas tank, and this keeps the weight to a minimum. With the weight being a minimum, you can use the heater to travel, but the downside will be that you need to have a solid supply of electricity that will help you power the heater. This is not always possible when taking extended backpacking trips through the backcountry.
The power output will tell you how much heat can be generated by the heater. The higher the power output, the more heat you will have to work with. Gas heaters have a power output that is measured in BTU or British Thermal Units. An electric heater generally has a power output that is measured in wattage.
The higher the power output, the larger area your heater can cover. However, this is also dependent on whether the heater has a fan installed or not. You won’t need to have such a massive power output for smaller tents. If the heater can cover an area of 200 square feet, you should be fine when it comes to your tent being heated.
Lastly, you also need to keep in mind that the power output is directly linked to the amount of fuel the heater will be using. If you find the heater using too much gas, you can easily turn down the heater to ensure that it does not use up all the fuel at once. Most heaters will tell you how long the heater can run on a 1-pound cylinder of propane. However, we generally recommend choosing the 20-pound cylinders for the best value.
Just because the heater you choose has a power output of 30,000 BTU’s does not mean you actually need to turn it up to this level. When looking for a new portable camping tent heater, it is important to check the settings as well. If the heater has numerous adjustment settings, it does make the heater a little more functional to use in different condition types.
Most of the top heaters come with an adjustment knob that should allow you to easily dictate the right temperature that is needed for your camping. If you travel the world quite often, you will find that it is not always possible to use a tent heater on the highest level, as it might drain the oxygen in the air quite rapidly if you are not careful.
Design and Stability:
Whilst doing research and testing these heaters, we could not find anyone who put an emphasis on the stability of the heater. However, this is actually one of the most important aspects to consider, and the design is something you always need to keep in mind. Not only does the heater need to look aesthetically pleasing, but also it should be functional.
The design can vary from tent heater to heater, especially since the heaters are constantly adapting to modern technology. One-directional heaters can generally heat the room, but they are pointed in one specific direction. The multi-directional heaters will heat up the room for the full 360-degrees and should offer you a little more functionality.
As for stability, the heaters that can heat in multiple directions are generally considered more stable. Having a stable heater is important, and you won’t have to deal with the tip over feature or even potential hazards when the features do not activate. While many people do not take this seriously as one of the top heaters, we have learned through experience how important I can actually be.
The heating capacity is also something that you need to keep in mind, and this directly refers to the room size that the heater can be used in. Most tents are not more than a couple of square feet, and if you are only using it as a tent heater, you can definitely stick to something smaller, but why don’t you want a functional hater that can be used elsewhere.
The heater should be able to heat a decent-sized room, which means it can be used indoors or even on the patio when you have a propane heater. However, the heating capacity definitely has an effect on the price and you need to be willing to take the hit of paying more as well. It might still be worth it if you live in extremely cold temperatures.
The heater can be an inexpensive camping addition, but there are also numerous expensive brands that might cost you a little more. When selecting a new heater, it is important to find one that matches your budget in general. Most of the heaters we have selected are to help beginners in the camping or outdoor industry with something a little cheaper.
In addition, there is no use for you to choose an expensive high-end heater if you constantly use the thermostat at home and camping is only a hobby. This will only lead to the tent heater being packed up and stored away in your shed. All of these things will eventually deteriorate and you could have wasted too much money. This is one of the main reasons we have selected these affordable options.
A brand is really important when you are looking for a good quality heater. These heaters are tricky to design, but many knock-off brands are trying to replicate the original heaters and this could cost you at the end of the day. The heaters might look exactly like something from Mr. Heater, but the features and the technology is not on the same level and this might not work out well.
When it comes to choosing a brand new heater, you should definitely try to do some additional research on the brand that you have selected. Information can easily be found on the top brands like Mr. Heater. This specific brand is highly rated and probably the current leaders of the heating technology in the world at the moment. If not, they do have some of the best prices.
Last but certainly not least is the warranty. Many people actually look past the warranty, but the warranty is an important part of the heater. Since many of these features are driven by technology and they assembled in mass by companies, you might occasionally find a few manufacturer defects that slip past the eye of the quality control operator.
The industry standard for a tent heater warranty is around 1-year on the full heater, but this is occasionally more, depending on the brand. The top brands will have much better warranties backing them, and this is only to show their confidence in their products. This is another one of the reasons we always try to recommend some of the leading brands and products.
You might also want to have a look at customer support. Should something go wrong, you will need to contact customer support to assist you.
Frequently Asked Questions:
We believe that everything related to the top camping heaters and propane heaters has been covered. However, we have noticed a few questions that many people might not want to look for in all the information. Many people commonly ask these questions we have talked to, especially the newer campers who have limited experience.
Are Gas Heaters Safe To Use In A Tent?
Gas heaters can be safe to use in your tent, but you need to ensure that the heater has been designed for small and enclosed spaces. A large heater with a massive power output might overheat the tent, and in some instances, the heater might even melt the materials if the temperature is too high. If you do not trust the gas heater due to all the rumors running around about the safety of propane gas, you can easily settle for the electric heater.
What Are Chemical Tent Heaters?
Chemical tent heaters cannot reach the same BTU output that many of the top propane heaters can. However, this does not mean you should completely disregard the chemical heater if you can buy it. The chemical heater is mostly used for emergency purposes. These heaters are not the safest for the environment either, but they will keep you warm when you run out of propane gas or the power goes out. Having one of them as part of the backup plan is definitely important and should ensure that you have something to protect you in those times of need.
Will Carbon Monoxide Build Up In The Tent?
Yes, carbon monoxide will build up in the tent, but if you turn the heater of periodically or when the desired temperature has been reached, you can control and CO2 buildup. Top tent heater brands incorporate oxygen detection technology built into their heaters. Low oxygen level detection will automatically turn off the heater to ensure that carbon monoxide buildup is limited.
What Power Output Is The Right For A 4-Person Tent?
The power output will vary depending on the tent size and if the tent has various rooms or not. However, anything around the 5,000 BTU mark should be sufficient for a 4-person tent in relatively cold temperatures. You also need to keep the temperatures in mind, as this will greatly impact the type of heater you choose.
These tent heaters are phenomenal in their own right. Many of them are designed for specific purposes, but the larger majority of these heaters can be used virtually anywhere and anytime. We highly recommend all these tent heaters for you as an avid camper, and we believe they should keep you warm this coming winter. Now, it is your turn to let us know which tent heater you like or think we should have included.
Mr. Heater Big Buddy Propane Heater
Great product from a reputable brand. With 3 different heating settings, this heater is a perfect accompaniment for those chilly nights out camping.
Jean lives in Vanderbijlpark, South Africa. He is an outdoor enthusiast with years of experience reviewing gear. Jean holds a Bachelor of Commerce in Industrial and Organizational Psychology from North-West University.
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