Is It Safe to Sleep with a Propane Heater?

Indoor heat is a necessity in the winter. There is no getting around it.

And there is no getting around the fact that the temperature gets colder when the Sun goes down and it’s time to sleep.

And for the many people that have inadequate heating in their home, it is a tough call to tell somebody that they shouldn’t sleep with a space heater running.

  The truth is that it is unsafe to sleep with a space heater.

There is no company or business that’s going to tell you that it is okay to leave a space heater unattended even if unattended even if that means you’re in the same room with it, asleep.

  The amount of house fires that are started by space heaters is astronomical. And deaths caused by fires originating from space heaters are also insanely high.

If a company were to tell you it is okay to sleep with a space heater, the resulting lawsuits, even from one fire, would bury them before they got started.

But unsaid, it is known that people are going to sleep with the space heater running at some point.

 And that is why safety is the number one priority when purchasing a space heater.

And even more so if the space heater in question uses a gas like propane.

Is it safe to sleep with the propane heater?

It is not safe to sleep with a propane heater.

But if a person was in a position where the only heat they had available was a propane heater,

Here’s a couple of things to think about.

1.Only use a propane heater rated for indoor use.

Never use an outdoor propane heater inside of a house. They are meant to be outside because ventilation is not an issue when you are burning propane outdoors.

Indoor propane heaters have an oxygen depletion sensor that shuts them down if the oxygen in the room becomes too low.

2.  Ventilation

Indoor propane heaters have an oxygen depletion sensor because there is a chance that the oxygen can become too low in a room while heating with propane.

That means that you should provide extra ventilation to a room when you are using a propane heater. Even cracking the window a little bit.

  3. Carbon monoxide detector

One of the reasons heating with propane can be considered dangerous is because propane creates carbon monoxide as a byproduct.

Carbon monoxide can lead to poisoning or even death at too high of a level.
And even scarier, you cannot smell it or taste it.

A carbon monoxide detector is a must when using a propane heater.

4. Propane detector

Even if you have a carbon monoxide detector, it will not tell you if you have a propane leak coming from your heater.

A propane detector will ensure that you are alerted if there is a propane leak.

They can also be purchased bundled together with a carbon monoxide detector, as well as other natural gas alerts.

5.  Plenty of space

One of the biggest reasons that fires get started from using a space heater is that they are placed too closely to items that can catch fire.

Never place a space heater too close to a combustible item like a bed or curtains.

6.  Keep items off of the heater.

Never use a space heater to dry your clothes or to hang your clothes.

Summary

No one’s ever going to tell you that it’s safe to sleep with a space heater. Including me.

But anytime that you are using a space heater, especially a space heater that uses propane gas, you should take extra precautions.

 1. Only use a propane heater that is rated for indoor use.

2.  Ensure that there is plenty of ventilation. Oxygen can be displaced by carbon monoxide if you do not have proper ventilation.

3. Carbon monoxide detector and propane detector.
A carbon monoxide detector will alarm you when the carbon monoxide in the room becomes too high.
A propane detector will alarm you if you have a propane leak.

4. Make sure the heater has plenty of space around it and that you do not have anything on or hanging off of the heater. Like clothes for instance.

Do You Need Ventilation When Using a Propane Heater?

Propane is a very clean burning gas that is cheaper than heating with electricity and can be used for heating where there is no electricity.

  But it does have a bit of a downside in that it creates Carbon Monoxide as a byproduct when it does not fully combust or is used at a large volume.

   Carbon Monoxide, when it is breathed, can make you sick and even lead to death. That is why it is called carbon monoxide poisoning.

That is also why even though propane is a clean burning gas, it also requires that you take the proper precautions while using a propane heater to warm your area.

Do you need ventilation when using a propane heater?

Outdoor propane heaters do not require extra ventilation because they are as you say “in their natural habitat”.
Any carbon monoxide created while using one dissipates  naturally in the wind.

On the other hand

Propane heaters that are rated for indoor use have a number of safety precautions built in to help protect you.

An oxygen depletion sensor (ODS) shuts the heater down when it senses that there is not enough oxygen in the room.

  The reason there would not be enough oxygen in the room is that it is being displaced by carbon monoxide.

But even though that is an awesome feature, it does not however detect carbon monoxide or detect propane.

That is why that while using a propane heater indoors, even if it is rated for indoor use,

It is suggested that you provide extra ventilation and that you install a carbon monoxide detector as well as a propane and natural gas detector.

Rotten eggs

Propane in its natural form is completely odorless. For that reason, it has a chemical called Mercaptan added to it. The result is a smell that is similar to rotten eggs.

If you have a propane leak, the first indication is the rotten smell coming from the heater or Propane tank.

That’s the signal to turn the heater off and get it fixed.

But  depending on the smell itself is not full proof. There are many things that can blind your sense of smell

What about the garage?

The garage is a grey area when it comes to heating with propane.

If the garage is small enough then an indoor propane heater like a Little Buddy will give you plenty of heat.

But if you have a large garage, then you’ll probably want an industrial size heater.

But either way, you will need ventilation.

Summary

Do you need ventilation when using a propane heater?

Propane heaters are specifically rated for indoor or outdoor use.

When you are using an outdoor propane heater outside where it belongs, the wind provides all the ventilation you need.

  Indoor propane heaters come with extra precautions as a necessity because of the lack of ventilation inside of a house or building.

An oxygen depletion sensor is installed on indoor propane heaters to shut the heater down in case the oxygen in the room becomes too low.

  If the oxygen becomes too low, then the result is carbon monoxide. Which can lead to poisoning or even death.

Providing the extra ventilation will ensure that your oxygen depletion sensor never has to shut down your heater and that your room does not fill up with carbon monoxide.

Are Propane Heaters Safe to Breathe?

Propane gas is a very clean burning gas that at the right levels is very safe. But at high levels it can produce carbon monoxide.

That’s why propane heaters are sold both as indoor heaters and as outdoor heaters separately.

Indoor propane heaters are specifically designed to be used indoors.

And outdoor propane heaters are designed to be used outdoors.

Indoor propane heaters come with extra safety precautions that protect against any threat of carbon monoxide poisoning occurring because of the propane that is being burned.

Outdoor propane heaters are not required to have the same level of safety precautions as indoor heaters because any carbon monoxide that is produced while the heater is being used, dissipates very quickly and easily.

Are propane heaters safe to breathe?

Yes propane heaters are safe to breathe around.

Indoor propane heaters are outfitted with extra precautions to ensure safe breathing indoors,

And any carbon monoxide that is produced by an outdoor propane heater, quickly dissipates because of wind and airflow it comes with being outdoors.

Carbon monoxide detectors

In a perfect world, appliances work forever and never break down.

The same goes for a propane heater or any other type of heater that you have in the house or outside.

Heaters eventually go out.

And it’s for that reason , Carbon monoxide detectors are always a good idea when using a propane heater indoors.

And yes it is true that propane has a chemical additive called Mercaptan that causes propane to have a very sour smell similar to rotten eggs or a rotting corpse,

And it is put there precisely for you to be able to smell it and identify it if a leak were to occur.

But that also puts you in a position of having to rely on your sense of smell even when it’s not functioning at full capacity.

Space heaters are generally used in the winter when the outdoor temperature is cold. That also happens to be the time of the year when colds and viruses are at their peak.

And viruses are one of the big reasons that people lose their sense of smell.

That’s just one example of why relying on your sense of smell alone is not a good idea when it comes to carbon monoxide.

Carbon monoxide detectors will alert you if your propane heater has a leak whether or not you can smell the propane or not.

You can also purchase carbon monoxide detectors that are bundled in with other types of detectors like a propane detector as well as other natural gas and explosive gases. Click here.

Summary

Are propane heaters safe to breathe?

It is safe to breathe around a propane heater provided that you are using a propane heater that is specifically rated to be used indoors, or you are using it outside where any kind of carbon monoxide will easily dissipate.

Propane is a very clean burning gas but at high levels can produce carbon monoxide.

That’s why propane heaters are rated as either an indoor propane heater or an outdoor propane heater.

The difference is that indoor propane heaters have extra precautions to keep you safe against any threat that would cause you not to be able to breathe.

But even though that is the case, it’s always suggested that you use carbon monoxide detectors anytime that you are using a fuel burning stove or heater indoors. That includes the chimney that you are burning wood in.

Do Little Buddy Heaters Produce Carbon Monoxide?

Do Little Buddy Heaters Produce Carbon Monoxide?

The Little Buddy is a popular brand of indoor propane heater and propane heaters can release carbon monoxide if it is burned in too high of volume or if there is a malfunction in your heating appliance.

  And carbon monoxide is poisonous and can result in making you sick or even death if not detected and rectified.

The Little Buddy propane heater does not burn propane in high volume and is a properly working appliance. But like any other appliance, if there is a malfunction with the heater, then there is a chance of the heater producing carbon monoxide. 

As a propane heater intended for indoor use, it comes with the standard oxygen depletion sensor that will shut the heater off if it senses that the oxygen in the surrounding area is lowering.

A very nice feature since the absence of oxygen is the introduction of carbon monoxide.

Propane is actually a very clean burning gas that is very safe to use to heat a room or even a house. That is as long as the heater, like the Little Buddy, is rated for indoor use.

What’s the difference between an indoor and an outdoor propane heater?

Because rooms that are inside a house are normally tightly sealed,

Indoor propane heaters come with extra precautions to guard against the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Oxygen depletion sensors automatically shut the machinery off if they sense the oxygen level going down in the room.

Outdoor propane heaters are not required to have the same standard of safety precautions because any carbon monoxide that is created while burning, dissipates very quickly outside.

Carbon Monoxide detectors

And while using a indoor propane heater like the little buddy is not dangerous and the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning is very low while using it,

Carbon monoxide detectors are inexpensive and should be employed anytime that there is propane gas, natural gas, or even wood burning in your home to produce heat.

In most states it’s actually the law to have a carbon monoxide detector in your home if you use any sort of gas or have a fireplace.

And though the little buddy propane heater is well built and precautions have been added to ensure your safety, appliances can break.

Summary

Do Little Buddy Heaters Produce Carbon Monoxide?

Little buddy heaters are indoor propane heaters that are properly rated for indoor use.

That means that they have precautions built-in to help ensure that carbon monoxide poisoning does not ever happen.

There is very little threat of carbon monoxide being released while using a little buddy propane heater.

But like any appliance, propane gas heaters can malfunction for any number of reasons.

A malfunctioning propane heater can definitely be a threat of carbon monoxide poisoning. 

For this reason, before using a indoor propane heater or any other type of heater that burns fuel or wood,

You should install carbon monoxide detectors in your home or business.

Carbon monoxide detectors are fairly inexpensive and are often combined with Propane and other natural and explosive gas detectors in the same unit.

And since installing Carbon monoxide detectors is actually the law in most States, you probably already have them.

And this article may just be a reminder to make sure that they are working and that the battery is fresh.

Do You Need a Carbon Monoxide Detector with a Propane Heater?

Carbon monoxide can be an issue anytime that there is fuel being burned as a source of heat.

It’s for this reason that almost every state has a law in place that requires carbon monoxide detectors in some capacity whether it be in homes or daycares.

At the very least it is highly encouraged to have a carbon monoxide detector in your home.

Carbon monoxide is invisible, tasteless, odorless, and is a hazard to your health.

Carbon monoxide poisoning can even result in death. It’s not be toyed with obviously.

   A properly functioning propane heater will produce nearly zero carbon monoxide.

But a malfunction in a propane heater can cause incomplete combustion. Which will lead to the presence of carbon monoxide.


And could lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.

Do you need a carbon monoxide detector with a propane heater?

Carbon monoxide detectors are  inexpensive and should be employed anytime you are using a propane heater. For any heater that uses gas.

And since the probability of you already having carbon monoxide detectors installed, it’s always a good time to make sure that they are working and that the battery is good.

Other Propane Heater safety measures

Oxygen depletion sensor (ODS)

Propane heaters that are meant for indoor use come with an oxygen depletion sensor as a standard protection mechanism.

This is a safety feature that causes the heater to shut off when the oxygen around the heater becomes depleted.

This is important because when the oxygen becomes low, it creates a void where carbon monoxide will fill it.

If the oxygen depletion sensor shuts down the heater, although there is a good chance of carbon monoxide, the ODS sensor will not detect it.

Another reason that a carbon monoxide detector is a must when using a propane heater indoors.

Propane additives

Propane is completely odor free at its origin. For that reason, a harmless chemical called Mercaptan is added to let you know when there is a leak.

The smell is similar to rotten eggs or a dead animal. So there is no mistaking when you smell it.

But relying on the sense of smell is not full proofed. One of symptoms common to cold and flu season is a reduced sense of smell.

For that reason, it is highly suggested that in addition to a carbon monoxide detector that you use a propane gas detector.

Multi function detectors like the Kidde Nighthawk Carbon Monoxide Detector & Propane, Natural, & Explosive Gas Detector

will add a higher level of protection from the threat of a propane leak or any other natural or explosive gas and serve a carbon monoxide detector in one.

Summary

Do you need a carbon monoxide detector with a propane heater?

A Carbon monoxide detector is highly suggested with the use of a propane because even though a propane heater may come with an oxygen depletion sensor, it does not have a carbon monoxide detector on board.

Carbon monoxide poisoning can be deadly and is not something worth risking since the price of a carbon monoxide detector is fairly inexpensive.

  Many people opt for multi-detectors that can measure carbon monoxide as well as gases like propane and other natural gases. And sound a loud alarm when they are detected.

Can You Use a Propane Heater Indoors?

If you are like me, you would probably say that a propane heater should not be used indoors.

It would seem pretty obvious. A heater that burns dangerous gas in the house? I’m thinking no.

But I would be wrong.

A little research reminded me that natural gas is used inside of the house in some fashion every single day.

The Central heat and air system burns gas, the oven in the stove uses gas (unless you have an electric stove top). Gas burning dryers are also very popular.

So it is definitely not a new thing to use gas to heat and cook inside of the house.

Propane is no different.

Can you use a propane heater indoors?

Propane heaters can be used indoors provided that they are specifically marked and rated for indoor use.

Indoor propane heaters have extra precautions to guard against carbon monoxide poisoning.

Propane is actually a very clean burning gas and with the right precautions, it is a very economical way to heat a room.

But remember, Not all propane heaters are built the same and they are not all intended to be used indoors.

What’s the difference between an indoor propane heater and an outdoor propane heater?

Indoor propane heaters come with tighter safety precautions to prevent CO2 poisoning.

Oxygen Depletion sensors monitor the air quality as the heater is operating. If the oxygen level in the room becomes too low, it  causes the heater to automatically shut off.

You probably have carbon monoxide detectors already in your house.

Because it is the law.

Household carbon monoxide detectors are required in any room that has a fireplace or heater, as per the carbon monoxide safety act.

Smoke detectors are also required.

This may be a reminder to check the batteries and make sure all your CO2 detectors are fully functioning.

Propane gas itself also has an extra layer of protection because of the way it is sold.

Because Carbon monoxide is odorless and tasteless, additives that create a smell like rotten eggs are added to propane so that a leak can be easily identifiable.

   The smell will alert you to turn the propane heater off immediately so you can identify where it is leaking and have it fixed.

Outdoor propane heaters are meant to be used in open air surroundings.

It is because propane dissipates very easily in the open air.

And because of this, there is no possibility of CO2 build up.

Can you use an outdoor propane heater indoors?

It is not recommended to use an outdoor propane heater indoors ever.

Outdoor propane heaters do not have the same safety precautions to protect you against CO2 poisoning that indoor heaters do.

They are all so much more powerful and hotter than you need to have inside of the house.

Just a brief look at the amount of BTUs that each uses makes it pretty obvious.

The average indoor propane heater is around 5,000 to 30,000 BTUs whereas an outdoor patio heater is around the 46,000 BTU mark. Forced air propane heaters can get up there in the 60,000 BTU range.

Quite a significant difference in the amount of power between them.

Should you use an outdoor propane heater in the garage?

You definitely start to get into a gray area when you are talking about using a propane heater in an area that is typically more open than the inside of the house. But it is not so open that it qualifies for being outside.

Propane heaters are not one size fits all. And neither are garages.

If you have a small garage and intend to keep it closed while you are working, then using an indoor propane heater will probably suffice and be a much safer option.

If you have a larger garage, then having a larger heater is going to be a better option. But remember as the size of the heater increases, the more ventilation that you will need will increase.

And having a heater so big that you have to keep the garage door open to use it is probably not the result you were looking for either.

And it’s important to remember that garages often double as storage areas where paint cans and other types of combustibles like gas and oil are often kept.

Keeping these items away from a heater is the utmost of importance.

But if you have a large garage that is well ventilated, there are certainly options available for you.

Forced air propane heaters can heat up a room as large as 3000 square feet.

Ceiling mounted propane heaters can also be a great option to keep the heater off of the floor and away from debris and combustibles that are often found in shops and garages.

Propane heaters can literally be found in just about every size for everyone’s needs.

Can you use an outdoor propane heater indoorsSummary

Can you use a propane heater indoors?

Propane heaters can be used indoors as long as they are marked for indoor use.

Indoor propane heaters are outfitted with safety precautions to help prevent carbon monoxide poisoning that outdoor heaters are not.

Indoor propane heaters that are intended to be used inside of a house are much smaller and do not create nearly the heat as an outdoor heater would.

An outdoor propane heater is specifically intended for use in the open air. And it does not come with the same carbon monoxide precautions.

But there is a grey area.

Propane heaters are very popular for use in garages.

Garages tend to be more open and have better ventilation than inside of the house.

But they are not so open that they do not warrant any type of safety precautions.

Garages are not all one size and neither are garage heaters.

And as the heaters get bigger and hotter, there tends to be less information provided on the CO2 safety side.

There seems to be a built-in acceptance that you are smart enough not to put too big of a heater into, too small of a space.

Ventilation is the key.

I think that the smart money is on using carbon monoxide detectors anywhere that you have a propane heater burning.

Regardless if it’s a small indoor heater, a full size outdoor heater, or a heater that you are using in the garage.

No Heat Coming Out of Vents in House-Help!

If you have no heat coming from the vents in your house,

There are 4 things that you can look for that are super easy and will save you a lot of money.

  1. Check the Filters
  2. Check the Thermostat Battery 
  3. Make sure the Igniter is firing
  4. Clean the Sensor

This article will layout a few tips on what to look for and how to easily get the heat back on.


Recently as me and my wife are going to bed on a Saturday night we begin to notice that our bedroom is getting cold.

Upon inspection, it became pretty clear that the whole house was getting cold including our two daughters’ bedrooms.

Our house is heated by a Rheem Criterion furnace that sits in the Attic.
Not the most convenient thing to get to late on a Saturday night so we decided to just bundle up and go to sleep.

And also since it was Saturday night and the next day would be Sunday morning, calling a HVAC service guy over to take a look at it was going to have to wait till Monday anyway.

We woke up to a house that was about 50°. Not the worst, but definitely chilly.

My wife lit the fireplace and everybody kind of migrated to the living room. So it’s not like we didn’t have any heat.

Having an HVAC technician come to your house is going to be potentially expensive regardless, so I knew I was going to take a look at it myself before doing so.

We’ve had a few instances in the past where we had to call out a heating and air service, so we knew a little bit of what to look for before we called up somebody.

Let’s just say that some of the problems that can occur with your heating can be so easily rectified that calling someone in to fix them can lead to embarrassment.

So these are the 4 things that I know to look for based on experience. There are probably way more things that can be the problem at any time, but these are the things that have helped me out more than a few times.

4 Things to Look for When You Have No Heat

That leads to the first thing to look for when you’re not experiencing heat coming from your vents.

1.  Check your filters.

 If they are too dirty, your system will not be able to get any air flow and it will eventually block the heat from coming out of your vents.

Paying a HVAC technician to come out and inspect your furnace, only to emerge with a dirty filter is an embarrassment and a cost that is easily avoided.

Ask me how I know….

Replacing the filters is too easy and could easily be your problem.

2. Thermostat Batteries.

 Make sure the batteries in the thermostat have not died. This is another super easy diagnosis that can be easily checked and rectified. And a huge embarrassment and cost to have someone come in and “fix”.

These days you can purchase thermostats that will send you alerts when your battery is dwindling down.

But I will venture to say that most of us don’t have that feature so it’s important to check your thermostat from time to time for a” change batteries soon” message on the actual display face.

If your heat is out and you go to check your thermostat to see what the temperature is but the display is blank, your battery is probably dead. Thus no way to control the amount of heat.

Simply, change the battery.

3. Igniter not working

 Now we’re getting a little further down the rabbit hole on possible things that could be keeping your furnace from heating your house.

This will require you to take the face off of your furnace and most of the time this is where most people will stop and just call a service man. And I don’t blame you.

But if it’s Sunday and you’re like me and don’t like to pay a bunch of money only to find out it was something super simple that I could have fixed myself,

Then let’s venture on.

Important , Be sure that you turn off the electricity to your furnace via the breaker box. The breaker box is a easy suggestion but you may find that there is a on and off switch that controls your HVAC close by ( because if you’re installing a HVAC in the attic, you sure don’t want to have to be running up and down to use the breaker box to turn it on and off). At the very least there’s probably an outlet that it’s plugged into that’s easily accessible.

Here’s what you’re going to want to watch for.

1.  Does the igniter get hot and light the furnace?

If you have an older furnace that has a pilot light, then you can tell very easily whether or not the pilot fire light has blown out.

If it has, set the dial to pilot, relight and hold the button down for about 10 seconds. The pilot light should stay lit and then you turn the dial on and you’re set.

But… And this is where most modern homes will fall,
If you have a newer furnace then you have an igniter called a “hot surface igniter” that heats up and eventually fires up the gas.

Here’s the important part:  If the igniter doesn’t get red or gets red and fizzles out real fast, then the problem with your heat is that your igniter is not functioning.

Igniters generally run under 30 bucks and come off with a screwdriver or a quarter inch socket pretty simply.

If you have a igniter that has stopped functioning, then replacing it is a simple process that will save you a bunch of money versus calling out a HVAC tech.

But they are a “part” that you can’t generally just go down to the hardware store and purchase. So if it’s a Sunday, prepare to wait it out another day till Monday to buy one.

Again, ask me how I know…

4. Sensor

 If your igniter works fine, then the next easiest thing to look for is the sensor.

Btw Congratulations if you’ve gotten to this point, because most people we’ll have bitten the bullet and called out a serviceman by now.

But this is another thing that is easy to fix and usually will not cost you a dime to do so.

But if you call out a HVAC technician, he will probably charge you over $100 for this.

The sensor on your furnace is usually located on the opposite end of your igniter. It is a small probe looking piece that is inserted into your furnace to tell the furnace went to come on and go off.

The problem is that these things get covered in Ash and soot from the flames.

And even though the part itself is very inexpensive, most of the time you can easily remove the soot from the sensor with a piece of sandpaper.

Look…Here is an easy diagnosis to determine whether or not your sensor is dirty
and needs attention is to turn your furnace on and watch as it fires up.

If the igniter comes on like normal and fires the gas up like normal BUT the furnace quickly fires down again.

Then you have a dirty sensor.

You may have to do a little Googling to find it on your specific furnace, but generally it will be held in with a couple of small quarter inch bolt screws at the other end of the burners from your igniter.

You simply pull it out and sand it clean. Reinstall it and turn the furnace back on.

I learned this trick by watching a HVAC guy that I called out to get the heating going in my house. He came in, looked at the heater for about 2 minutes, pulled a tiny piece of sandpaper out of his pocket, did some mysterious thing with the sandpaper, then wrote me an invoice for $120.

I knew right then, I was getting financially had over a tiny bit of knowledge that I did not have. And with the internet available 24/7, it was inexcusable for me not to have it.

Cleaning your sensor yourself is super easy and will save you that money!

No Heat Coming Out of Vents in HouseConclusion

That’s as far as the rabbit hole goes for me, but I’ve been able to diagnose and fix the problem based on these 4 easy solutions more than a few times.

Of course this is not an exhaustible list. Nor is it always going to be one of these solutions. For instance, if a new battery does not fix your thermostat, then it may be time for a new one or something else. Not everything is cut and dry.

But these tips have helped me and I’m glad to share them.

BTW, It was the igniter in the specific instance that I was sharing at the top of the article. Saturday night is a very inconvenient time for HVAC issues. To say the least!

Thanks for taking the time to read

Heater with Humidifier Combo-Good Idea or Not?

You might ask yourself why anyone would want a heater that has a humidifier combined with it?

There’s a good reason actually.

Heaters tend to dry the air out and having a humidifier running at the same time adds moisture back to the air.

As far as combination devices go, a heater that has a humidifier built in is probably the most logical of all combination appliances. At least as far as indoor climate control goes.

It makes sense.

Most appliances that combine more than one function are as not meant to use both functions at the same time or even in the same season.

For instance an air conditioner that has a heater will never run the AC at the same time as the heat.

Or a dehumidifier combined with a humidifier. Technically you can get all the components for both devices all in one shell,

but there is never going to be a time when you need to run a humidifier at the same time as a dehumidifier.

Even water air purifiers are only useful for about half of the year when your your home needs the extra humidity.

So the ideal of combining a humidifier and a heater together is actually a good one.  And they are both primarily winter appliances.

Some benefits to a heater with a humidifier

1. Cheaper (presumably)
2. Space saver
3. It makes sense to have a heater that also humidifies.
4. All the above

 

heater-Humidifier-comboBut with that being said, is there actually anyone that is building a heater with a humidifier combo that is getting it right?

Unfortunately, the ideal of what a heater with a humidifier combo could be doesn’t exactly match up with what is available.

For instance, You would presume that because you’re only talking about one device compared to two, that the price would be cheaper or at least not more than double.

And though this doesn’t apply to everyone, there are definitely some companies that think that combining the two appliances justifies raising the cost significantly.

Because the price is about three times as much as you would pay if you bought the two appliances separately.

It would be much different if there were units out there that actually justified raising the price that much.

But so far what I found is:

The heater function in these units seems to be standard. They do carry with them all the usual overheating and tip over protection features. Nothing special but will get the job done..

But…

Its the humidifier function that is the problem.

Think about it…

If I pay $150 for a humidifier and heater combo, you at least expect to get a heater that is worth $75 and a humidifier that is worth $75 also.

But…

$75 can buy you a nice Vornado heater packed with the latest technology and extra safety precautions.

Or…

$75 can buy you a extravagant Levoit humidifier. One that is fillable from the top, has a built-in hygrometer and humidistat. Can be used as a cool mist humidifier or a warm mist and a aromatherapy diffuser to boot.

In other words, the best heater and humidifier on the market.

But the humidifiers that come built in with these heaters, even the one that is on the Dr Heater series, is at best an afterthought.

They are 99% basic evaporative humidifiers that you will find in the pharmacy section in a big box store for 25 bucks.

To be fair, most of these heater humidifiers do not claim to be the best heater or humidifiers. Nor do they reflect it in price.

  Unfortunately the technology of a heater humidifier combo has not come anywhere near what you can get if you buy the two devices separately.

But they are a space saver, right?

This point I can give you. The size of these machines does not take up any more space than one or the other if you were to buy them separately.

Heater with humidifier. Good idea?

The ideal is there.

A fully functioning modern heater that has a fully functioning modern humidifier incorporated would be an awesome combination machine.

I could see it being sold as a standard product other than an exception to the rule.

But the market has just not caught up, quite yet.

Here’s a small list of some of the heater humidifier combos you can find on Amazon.

GeekHeat Portable Electric Heater with Humidifier

  • In contrast to traditional heaters, Geek Heat heater designs with humidifier functions, allowing you to enjoy warmth without drying the air.
    Plus, the both functions of heating and humidifier can be run separately or concurrently. Just lightly press the mode buttons to select the humidifier, heat or both. With the 90 degree oscillation feature, Geek Heat space heater spreads warmth and mist to your immediate area.

  • Safe humidifying: Unlike the conventional built-in humidifying heater for water tanks This portable heater uses an separate water tank to isolate the humidifying system from the heating system, ensuring complete peace of mind. Additionally, the water tank is independent and is simple to refill and keep clean. With a capacity of 200ml and the ability to spray up to 6 hours.

  • Multi-protection: Apart from the usual tip-over protection and heat protection from overheating. We also create a design that has an auto shut-off feature. It will automatically shut off the humidifying or heating mode after continuous 8 hours or 5.5 hours of work. Additionally, the power switch as well as function switch are separate to prevent accidental touching. ETL certified. More secure than you think.

  • Small and compact: 5.2 x5.5×9.8in and 2.8lb when placed on your desk will only take just a tiny corner where you can take in the warm mist and warmth closely. The sleek black design blends with the surrounding area easily. You can put it to use in your office and study rooms as well as bedrooms. It provides you with comfortable moisture and warmth during cold winter months.

Remarks
This heater humidifier combo gets the best reviews on Amazon. It has a separate cylinder type water tank that can be easily removed and refilled.
The humidifier is nothing special but it is easily refilled and can last for 9 hours
Out of all the heater with humidifier products available, this one comes in at the top.

Dr. Infrared Heater DR998, 1500W, Advanced Dual Heating System with Humidifier

 

 

  • Dr. Infrared Heater functions in the same way as the light from the sun, heating objects, not air. The infrared light is natural and is efficient in energy use making use of 100% of the heat that is generated and causes virtually zero loss of heat with a minimal cost.
  • Easy to Maintain
  • Equipped with an adjustable filter that’s simple to clean and replace to allow for a clean start each time you need it.
  • Ultrasonic Humidifier & Oscillation Fan. The inbuilt ultrasonic humidifier helps to add much-needed moisture to winter’s dry air. Its oscillation function disperses moist and warm air throughout the entire space quickly.
  • Make use of a water bottle instead of the water tank
  • The Ultrasonic Humidifier as well as the heating mode are able to be operated in a separate manner
  • Can operate as a fan, either with or without humidifier. Ideal for summer heat.

Remarks
This is another standard heater that has a humidifier option. The humidifier in this case is a slot for a water bottle.
Water bottle humidifiers are a cool idea on their own and it does seem like a good idea to combine with the heater.

But the price is around the $150 mark. And neither the heater or the humidifier constitutes paying that high of a price. Plus there’s a replacement filter.

HRC 2-in-1 500W Office/Desktop/Bedroom Space Heater with Mist Humidifier

 

  • Contrary to conventional heaters, HRC heaters with a humidifier function allow you to enjoy the warmth and not dry. Plus, the functions for heating and humidifier can be run separately or concurrently. Lightly press the buttons that indicate mode to select the humidifier, heat, or both. With the 90deg oscillation, the HRC space heater spreads the warmth and mist to the area around you.

  • Warm and comfortable without waiting for the winter months with the PTC Ceramic Heating Technology, the space heater requires 3 seconds to warm the air surrounding it and provide you with instant heat. It is designed with intelligent cooling that allows the heater to run for about 30 minutes to release the heat after turning off the heating. Extending the life of the unit.

  • Safe humidifying: Unlike conventional built-in humidifying heaters, this portable heater utilizes an independent water tank. This keeps the humidifying system separate from the heating system, ensuring your absolute safety. Furthermore, an independent water tank is simple to refill and keep clean with a capacity of 200ml that allows you to mist for up to 6 hours.

  • Multi-protection: Other than the standard tip-over protection and the protection against overheating, we have added an auto shut-off feature. It will automatically shut off the heating mode or humidifying mode after a continuous 8 hours or 5.5 hours of work. Additionally, the power switch and function switch have been designed separately to prevent accidental touching. ETL approved. It’s safer than you think 

Remarks

Basic heater and basic humidifier combination unit.

This unit is very small it only produces heat up to 500 w. A typical heater is 1500 w on high and 750 on low.

It has a small carrying handle that you can fit your finger into.

The price is set about right though at around $40

Yivibe Electric Heater-Humidifier

 

  1. Spray working modes Continuous adjustable spray/intermittent spray/ direct spray for about 5 hours. The intermittent spray lasts approximately 9 hours 2. It comes with double spray humidification. The skin is not dry anymore while remaining warm, and the skin remains hydrated.

     

  2. 120-degree shake head feature and area heating. Wide selection of shaking head heating that heats indoor air Close heating is more convenient.

     

  3. This button can be adjustable by 135deg of rotation. The blowing angle can be adjustable to the desired angle and can be obtained by changing the knob.

     

  4. The temperature control is available at three levels that correspond to different requirements for use and can be adjusted to a comfortable temperature by pressing the switch.

     

  5. The water tank has an ambient lamp that can serve as lighting for the night when it’s switched on, with minimal sound and silence, making it easy to accompany you as you sleep.

     

  6. Safety protection, if the fuselage gets bumped or tilted more than 45 degrees, the fan heater will shut down automatically and turn off the power.

Remarks

Very similar to The Geek Heat unit. Pretty much a copycat other than the price tag that runs about $40 more.

VItCSM 3 IN 1 Multifunctional Heater Desktop Office Household Night Light Humidifier

  • A powerful and compact personal heater that ensures you don’t get cold in winter. It is portable and easy to use.
  • If the plug is in place for two seconds and warmth will flow out. It’s not only secure to use it, but also extremely energy efficient
  • The slim and attractive design is ideal for your bedside desk, table, or coffee table-no matter where you’ll need it.
  • Ideal for study rooms, reading areas as well as dormitories, work office spaces, home offices, campers, work spaces as well as basements, benches garages etc. 
  • The quiet fan that whispers and soft light at night make it perfect to use all night long to sleep in a peaceful way
  • Product size: Diameter 135mm Height 212mm
  • Area of application: 15M2.
  • Power: 800W
  • Water tank capacity: 400ml

Remarks

This heater and humidifier combo looks more like the traditional oscillating heater.

The product description says near nothing about the humidifier. But the picture shows the water sitting at the top. Which in my guesstimation means it’s a top fill unit which would make it much easier to manage.

The price is set pretty good at around the $60 mark. Which would be about the same amount if you bought these units separate.

Recap

The ideal of a fully functioning heater with humidifier combo appliance is a good one.

Heaters are known for drying out the air in a room.
And one of the primary reasons people use humidifiers is to combat the dry air caused by a heater.

Why not combine them into one?

Unfortunately even though you can currently purchase a heater with humidifier,

The ones available on the market are quite simple.

Modern heaters and humidifiers come with a full load of bells and whistles when you purchase them separate.

But combining them seems to reduce them down to the most basic of both.

And in some cases the price can be as about as much as three times the price of one or the other.

It’s a Great idea.

Just one that hasn’t fully developed into what it could be and hopefully one day will be.

Are Space Heaters Expensive to Run?

Heating and cooling are easily the most expensive items on your utility bill.

If you have central heat and air in your home, you don’t have to wonder what’s eating your lunch and raising your payment.

That being the case, it is no wonder that many people try to find a way to supplement their heating and cooling to lower their bill.

Vornado VH2 Whole Room Space Heater

Space heaters tend to be the first thing you think about when you’re trying to find a way to get the heating bill down.

And even though central heat is meant to warm a whole house, you may know by experience that there are plenty of areas in the home that don’t quite get as warm as you would like them.

So using a space heater to supplement the heat in those areas may be needed.

Space heaters are generally small mobile heaters that run off of electricity.

Heaters that use gas are not used inside of a house unless they are properly vented. Which makes them not useful as mobile space heaters.

Not to mention the threat of carbon monoxide poisoning that is present with   gas heating.

Are space heaters expensive to run?

Space heaters are expensive to run, yes.

Space heaters use a lot of Watts. 1500 w on high is the standard for all space heaters.
As a point of reference, 1500 w is the most that any outlet can handle.

That means that if you plug anything else into the same outlet with your space heater, you are most likely going to blow a circuit.

(Space heaters most usually come with a auto shut off safety precaution feature that shut the heater off before the circuit blows, but hopefully that illustrates the point)

space heaterSupplementing the heat in a room that is not getting enough heat from your HVAC with a space heater is definitely not going to be a money saver.

But if you only need heat in a specific room and are not going to run the heating in the rest of the house, then running a space heater will cost you less.

In other words it costs less to run a space heater rather than a whole house system.

But one space heater is definitely not going to warm up the entire house.

And putting a space heater in every room will use more energy than running the whole house HVAC system.

Obviously not everyone is trying to supplement their utility bill using space heaters.

There’s plenty of times you’re just trying to find a way to heat a space without breaking the bank.

Space heaters are not intended to heat up a whole house.

They’re more geared to keeping the bathroom warm while you’re taking a shower or warming your legs and feet while you’re sitting at your desk, doing your work.

The best way to spend less with the space heater is to find one that is more efficient at heating a room.

The space heater that can heat a room well on a medium temperature is going to cost less to run in a space heater that has to be turned on all the way to do the job.

The amount of time you plan on using a space heater everyday plays a big part on what type of space heater to buy also.

Ceramic type space heaters warm up fast and can get pretty hot. A good type of heater if you need a way to warm your hands or feet.

But if you’re planning on using a room for an entire day, an oil heater takes longer to heat up a room but it will do it more consistently.

But the heat that comes off of an oil heater is not the type of heat that you will be able to warm your hands by.

Suggested Space heaters

Vornado is a very good brand of heater that outweighs the competition in just about every capacity.

Not only rated the highest for efficiency, they are rated the highest for safety precautions also.

And for style, they have a heater that can fit in most any decor.

The Vornado VH2 is widely reviewed as one of the best small heaters you can buy. It uses what they call Vortex air circulation.

The heat that it produces is not as intensely hot but it moves a lot of air which warms up a room nicely..

 

Vornado VMH500 Whole Room Metal Heater with Auto Climate

One of Vornado’s Cadillac models is the vmh500.

It features a thermostat that controls your climate on auto and has a 12-hour timer.

The construction is metal so that you do not have to worry about any plastic parts melting.

It also features advanced safety features like cool to the touch exterior, a two-stage auto shut off, and tip over protection.

It also has a remote.

Vornadobaby Sensa Nursery Heater

Vornado also carries a heater that is specifically made for the baby’s room.

Vornadobaby Sensa

This heater is designed to shut off when any excessive heat is detected.

It is cool to the touch and delivers a heat that adjusts to ensure that the crib stays warm but never gets hot to the touch.

The controls are all lockable to ensure that children cannot tamper with them. It also has no sharp edges and shuts off immediately if tipped whatsoever.

wifi space heaterWi-Fi Space Heaters

This year’s heaters are finally starting to catch on to the Wi-Fi trend.

Almost every appliance has a Wi-Fi version these days. So make a lot of sense, some not so much.

Space heaters are an appliance that actually makes sense to be incorporated with smart technology.

Being able to schedule a heater to come on to warm a room before you get in there is a pretty great feature.

And think about the fact that if you’re already in bed or comfortable on the couch, you can simply tell your heater to turn up or turn down without having to get up. Nice.

Atomi has a nice Wi-Fi Incorporated space heater that oscillates. Also a great feature for a space heater.

The heater is not meant to be in the children’s room.

Though it has the standard safety features required for space heaters it can get hot to the touch.

Whether you’re trying to supplement your home’s heating system or if you are just trying to find a space heater that you can use to warm your office.

You should know beforehand that space heaters are one of the more energy consuming appliances that you can buy.

That’s why finding a space heater that is more efficient and can be very effective on a low setting is important.

Atomi Smart WiFi Portable Tower Space Heater

What Heaters are Safe to Leave Unattended Overnight?

Easily one of the most important questions you can ask about a space heater is whether or not it is safe to be left on all night while you’re sleeping?

Safety is and should be one of the main features you search for in a space heater.

Especially when it comes to needing a space heater to warm up a room that will be unattended.

It’s a touchy subject. And no one wants to suggest a product or a way of using a heater that causes a fire and God forbid an accident of death.

And you’re not going to find a manufacturer that doesn’t tell you to “never leave a space heater unattended”. That’s just asking for a lawsuit.

However impractical,

When you’re talking about leaving a space heater on while you sleep,

You’re going to cross a line. So make sure you do it gently.

What Heaters are Safe to Leave Unattended Overnight?

There are certainly some types of heaters that lend themselves to keeping a room warm with less worry than others.

For instance, an oil heater doesn’t get nearly as hot to the touch as say a ceramic heater. And it is encased in steel whereas most space heaters are made out of plastic these days.

But if you are wanting to use a room and need it warm, you will have to turn the oil heater on a while before you use it.

Because oil heaters do take a while to heat up a room. And unless they are on a dedicated circuit, they tend to auto shut off pretty fast if you turn them on high.

Which all pretty much adds up to leaving the heater unattended while the area warms up.

It’s a built-in problem because no one  is going to sit in a freezing room waiting on an oil heater to make a difference in a room.

And let’s face it, sleeping is practically the same thing as ” left unattended” for most people.

Most any type of “electric” space heater will be safe provided it has the proper safety protection features installed. 
 
  I say electric because fuel type room heaters that use propane or kerosene are not meant to be used in a closed off space. 
 
 The risk of carbon dioxide poisoning comes with burning fuels.
 
 Leave those for the shop and garage.

 

Perhaps a better question than:

 ” What type of heater is safer?”

 is instead

 “What heaters provide the best safety features?

Space heaters have improved remarkably since I was a kid.

I remember having a steel contraption that glowed orange and buzzed loudly sitting on my carpeted bedroom floor. You didn’t want to touch it either. It was super hot.

It was a different time with a whole different mentality towards safety.

(But I’m glad I was a kid then instead of now).

The safest heaters that you can get away with sleeping with them on, are going to be the ones that have the better safety features.

What types of safety features should you look for in a heater?

 

1. Long Enough Cord
2. Tip over protection
3. Cool to the touch
4. Thermostat/Auto Shut-Off
5. Timer
6. Thermostat

1. Long Enough Cord

  One of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to space heaters is that they call for being centered in a room away from anything that could possibly be a fire hazard.

  But the cord that they come with is usually so short that you have to have the cord stretched through the air to come anywhere close to long enough to get centered on the floor.

That makes the cord on a heater a major tripping hazard that can easily lead to Knocking your heater over.

Getting a heater with a long enough cord is definitely a must for using a space heater safely.

2. Tip over protection

A pretty standard safety precaution that comes on nearly all space heaters these days is tip over protection.

This is a safety feature that turns the heater off as soon as it tilts.

This keeps the heater from starting a fire on the floor or even burning it.

And as we discussed before, the cord on a heater can easily become a tripping hazard because of its length.

Tip over protection is put in place for just this type of problem.

3.  Cool to the touch

Modern space heaters are much cooler if you happen to touch one then they used to be.

  A space heater that doesn’t burn you when you touch it is a feature that no one should do without.

And certainly an added protection if you decide to run your space heater while you are sleeping.

4. Thermostat / Auto Shut-Off

A thermostat and auto shut off go hand in hand. Without them your heater would just continue to heat.

Auto shut off keeps from overloading the breaker as well.

Both of these features are a requirement if you are going to leave the space heater unattended for any length of time.

5. Timer

A timer is a great protection feature that will allow you to run the heater for a period of time and shut down.

Some timers offer a scheduling feature that will periodically turn the machine on and off during the night.

Though “smart heaters” are not be as available as say a smart air purifier or humidifier, smart plugs offer the capability of scheduling when a certain outlets are powered.

unattended space heater overnightOther precautions

Easily one of the most prevalent and dangerous things you can do with a space heater is to drape something over it like clothing.

Using an electric space heater to dry clothing is asking for a fire accident.

The best rule of thumb is to keep the heater at least 3 ft away from anything considered the least bit flammable.

As over dramatic as it may seem, this would include things like curtains, coats, especially boxes, fake plants, etc.

  Even sitting a heater on carpet is a scary proposition. A much safer option is the place it on a large cookie sheet.

To keep it away from anything remotely flammable is the ideal.

Leaving a space heater unattended sitting on a desk is a recipe for an accident.

Recap.

A space heater you can leave on while you sleep is not an easy thing to shop for.

No one wants to be responsible for a fire. Nor does anyone want to be on the butt end of a lawsuit.

So using a room heater while you sleep is a personal choice. But one you can make some good decisions about if you absolutely need to.

First, the safest heaters come pre-installed with the best safety features including: auto shut off, tip over protection, cool to the touch, and a long cord that doesn’t have to be stretched through the air.

Other precautions include never draping anything over a space heater. Never using a space heater to dry clothes, and keeping a space heater at least three feet away from anything combustible.

And if you have to place it on the carpet floor, use a buffer like a large cookie sheet between the heater and the carpet.

The point being, take the utmost of precautions if you are in a situation where you need to have a space heater running while you sleep.