When things get cold, and you only have your quilt to warm up.
Traditional heaters do offer an alternative, but their running cost dwarfs that of the best infrared heaters. Similarly, as infrared heaters are more energy efficient, they require less energy to heat the same space.
And then there is the aspect of humidity.
For, traditional heaters usually operate between 170*F and 220*F, temperature levels which are intolerable unless you humidify the space, which means whether you like it or not you’d have to buy a humidifier. In contrast, since they operate between 100*F and 130 *F – temperature levels which humans can tolerate – the best infrared heaters require no such shenanigans.
Impressed by their credentials? Want to order the best infrared heater for your home?
This article will help.
How Do Infrared Heaters Work?
As you may remember from your science class, infrared light falls beyond the visible spectrum – that means we cannot see it. That is exactly how an infrared heater works, too.
Instead of heating the ambient air – which is how conventional heaters work – the infrared heaters warm up our skin. This type of heating has a major benefit, the fact that since the air is not heated, infrared heaters waste little energy.
Confused? Here’s another way of explaining things. Once we sit under the sun, the sunlight directly reaches us to give us warmth. However, as soon as we migrate to a shady place, that warmth disappears. The infrared heaters work on the same principle.
As long as you remain around them, they would continue projecting warmth. If the distance increases, the warmth would go away. It is for this reason that we recommend buying an infrared heater with a considerable wattage. Otherwise, the heater would be adequate only for a single room.
- 1 Our Top Picks
- 1.1 Dr. Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater
- 1.2 Homegear 1500 SqFt Infrared Electric Portable Space Heater
- 1.3 Ryzen H-5000 Pro Portable Infrared Quartz Heater
- 1.4 Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove
- 1.5 Haier 1500 Watt 5100 BTU Infrared Space Heater
- 1.6 VIVREAL HOME 1500W Infrared Heater with Carbon Fiber Tube & Adjustable Thermostat Control
- 1.7 Duraflame Infrared Quartz Electric Stove Heater
- 1.8 Dr. Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater with Humidifier
- 1.9 LifeSmart Large Room Infrared Quartz Fireplace
- 1.10 Duraflame DFI-470-04 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove
- 2 Best Infrared Heaters – Buying Guide
- 3 Features That Are Important
- 4 Wrapping It Up!
Our Top Picks
Dr. Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater
Although most people don’t realize it at the time of buying, the fact that the safety of the heater is as crucial as its performance cannot be stressed enough. For, what use would a heater be of if it requires a “NO TOUCH” sign on the top.
Thankfully, on both these counts – that of performance and safety – the Dr. Infrared Heater saves the day. In addition to oozing out 60% more energy than its traditional counterparts, this heater comes with an overheating protection technology.
As the name suggests, the “overheating” protection technology won’t allow the heater to pump out more energy than what is required, hence saving it and you from damage. What’s more, if you have kids in the house, the fact this heater will only be mildly warm to touch – even at the hottest heat setting – should cause you to relax a little.
Another important feature of this heater – one which average heaters can only dream of – is the provision of a humidifier. Yes, without paying anything extra, this heater will add moisture to its surroundings to make them more comfortable.
Although the heater is Amazon’s choice, some users criticized what they saw as its slow startup. In other words, you’d have to wait for a few minutes after turning this heater on to get maximum warmth.
Homegear 1500 SqFt Infrared Electric Portable Space Heater
Looking at this heater for the first time, and one may well mistake it for a wood drawer with wheels. That said, while the appearance of this heater wasn’t great, its performance was exactly the opposite.
Take, for example, the three heating modes that it provides. If it is too hot out there, use the digital thermostat or remote control (the heater provides both) to set it at the high heat setting. Tone down the temperature levels if you feel winter is departing.
Similarly, if you care for the environment, this heater also has an ECO mode. This mode maintains the temperature at 68*F – which means less consumption of energy without any reduction in performance.
Since we are talking about performance, the fan of this heater deserves a huge fan. While the average heater out there only produces heat, this heater disseminates the heat using its fan, thereby heating your home in less time.
Finally, to complement its infrared technology, mica and quartz have been used as heating elements in this heater. Known for their high thermal conductivities – ease of processing heat from one end to the other – both these substances take the performance of this heater to a whole new level.
Although it claims to heat close to 1500 sq. feet of space, its users suggest that its heating space, at best, won’t exceed 1000 sq. feet.
Ryzen H-5000 Pro Portable Infrared Quartz Heater
Ask the users of ordinary infrared heaters, and they might tell that if there is one thing that could increase/decrease their running cost, it is the air filter. Since it blocks airborne particles, the air filter is your heater’s first line of defense, which means you cannot allow it to choke out.
While other infrared heaters also have washable air filters, none of them comes close to what the Ryzen H-5000 has provided: a lifetime washable Air Filter. Yes, no matter what the dust levels in your area are, you’ll NEVER have to replace the air filter.
Turning our attention to its performance, and once again this heater doesn’t disappoint. Apart from having a dual-timer setting – which lets you control its operation 12 hours in advance – it has a quite scrolling fan and a huge 6-foot power cord.
And if you are worried about its safety, relax as Ryzen H-5000 has achieved safety accreditation from both ETL and CSA – two of the premier rating agencies in the US. For those of you who want further proof, this heater has a cool-touch exterior and a lockable keypad, making it safer to operate even when children are around
Look at this heater’s controls, and you’d see the problem: they do not have any tags. All they have are symbols, making the heater needlessly complicated to operate.
Duraflame DFI-5010-01 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove
Want to impress your visitors with the sight of your heater – before they notice the heat it produces? If your answer to this question is in the affirmative, you need the Duraflame DFI. Beautifully decorated with beveled glass and side-viewing windows, it would become a standout feature in your home.
Despite the fact that it operates at 5200 BTU, this heater is safe to use, with no other feature guaranteeing its safety as much as the Safer Plug. Built for monitoring the temperature of the plug, it will immediately shut off if the plug’s temperature exceeds pre-determined safe limits.
Performance wise, this heater relies on what the EIA refers to as ‘zonal heating’. Rather than pumping heat to the unoccupied corners of your room, this heater – via its fan – lets you decide the direction of its heat, thereby saving money by consuming less energy
Another advantage of Zonal Heating is the freedom that it gives you. Since it would be you who would determine the direction of the heat, you’d also be able to maintain the entire room at a comfortable temperature.
Though the majority of the customers were satisfied with its performance, some pointed towards the legs of this heater to indicate their complaint. For, the legs are plastic, which means they are anything but long-lasting.
Haier 1500 Watt 5100 BTU Infrared Space Heater
To be honest, Haier isn’t as trusted a company when it comes to infrared heater brands as some other brands mentioned in this review. On the flip side, its lack of fame means Haier offers its products at below market prices to attract the attention of the customers.
Wouldn’t the below-average price have a bearing on its performance? Nope, as far as this heater is concerned. And one only needs to look at the safety features of this heater to gauge the truthfulness of this statement.
An internal switch guarantees the safety of this heater– as it would automatically turn off as soon as the temperatures reach a certain, dangerous threshold. Similar is the case with its performance, as, despite coming at well below market price, it offers all the three heating features (high, low, and eco) which high-end models like Dr. Heater provide.
And if that wasn’t enough, an easy to operate digital display plus remote control should remove all the apprehensions you have about the seriousness of this model.
Despite the fact that it weighs heavy at nearly 25lbs, this heater doesn’t have wheels. It means it is not easy to maneuver.
VIVREAL HOME 1500W Infrared Heater with Carbon Fiber Tube & Adjustable Thermostat Control
Think the best infrared heaters cost a bucket full of money? Think again, as the VIVREAL Home Infrared Heater proves an exception to this rule. And if its low upfront cost wasn’t enough to attract your attention, its low running cost should.
This heater has a low running cost because of its carbon fiber heating element. Despite producing a lower output – which means less consumption of energy, a carbon fiber infrared heater is more efficient at heating the skin, which means you’ll feel warm.
That is, instead of heating the space around it, the carbon fiber heating element directly warms your skin. In this way, your skin would feel the warm regardless of the ambient air around it.
As for its installation, this heater is a cinch to get up and running. All you have to do is to fasten its two brackets to the heater’s backside – before fastening two more brackets to the wall – and finally joining all of them with each other.
It doesn’t matter how much we rave about it, the heating element used in this heater is NOT foolproof. Since it only warms, the carbon fiber heating element is good enough only for small spaces.
Duraflame Infrared Quartz Electric Stove Heater
When we talk about infrared heaters which are uber-expensive, we want them to have certain features to justify their price tag. For starters, we want them to be lightweight, durable, powerful, and easy to operate.
Thankfully, though it doesn’t come cheap, the Duraflame Infrared Quartz fares brilliantly on all these counts. It comes in a stylish black design which is cool-to-touch and is also lightweight, meaning you can move it to any place in your home without having any apprehensions about its safety.
Another important feature of this heater – though one which has nothing to do with its performance – is the fact that the heater and flame work independently of each other. That is, if it is hot out there and you don’t want the heat – but still wants to enjoy the aesthetics of the flame, this heater allows you to do just that.
What’s more, this heater comes with both a thermostat and remote. That said, the lack of digitality in this heater means you won’t be able to set its temperature. Rather, you’d have to experiment quite a lot of times before reaching at the heat setting which makes you comfortable.
Finally, while this heater will provide you with a fan blown heat to spice things up, it will also give you the feel of a real fireplace with realistic embers and flames. Yes, the flames might not be super realistic, yet they are fun to watch and mesmerizing anyway.
Apart from the fact that it doesn’t offer a digital display, the little noise produced by this heater’s fan was concerning some of its users.
Dr. Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater with Humidifier
Fell in love with the earlier Dr. Infrared Heater which we reviewed? Still, think it has something missing? For, in case you do, this heater would tell you what was missing from its colleague: a humidifier.
It is true that infrared heaters won’t dry out the winter air as much as their traditional counterparts. Still, they DO remove moisture particles from the surrounding air, which means the mist of a humidifier could make a huge difference to add to the pleasantness of the room.
This heater has a rating of 5200 BTU, making it more than capable of heating large spaces. That, however, isn’t its most important feature. Rather, it is the usage of the dual heating system which makes this unit unique.
Most infrared heaters worth their salt use a quartz heating element, and the Dr. Infrared is no different. What made it different, therefore, was the usage of PTC heating element, which gives this heater two unique properties.
First, since it constitutes rubber as its major building block, a PTC heating element gradually heats up – so you won’t have to wait for minutes before this heater starts churning out heat. Second, and this is important for your safety, it has a built-in safety feature.
The properties of this heating element are such that, with the increase in temperature, its resistance increases. So much so that when a temperature reaches a certain level, the rubber – which was earlier acting as a heat conductor, will now resist it. For this reason, many people call it as a self-regulating element.
When a heater is offering so much, you can’t expect it to come cheap.
LifeSmart Large Room Infrared Quartz Fireplace
With all due respect to other infrared heater brands, none of them could give the same fireplace appeal in your home as this LifeSmart Heater. Brandishing an oak finish with a realistic fire glow, this heater would give an aesthetic appeal to your home.
Talking about enjoyment, one aspect of this heater that we really enjoyed was the look of its realistic flickering flames. The fiery glow of the flames gives you two levels to choose from: single fire output and double fire output.
Consequently, if the weather hasn’t taken a turn for the worse, a single fire output will save money while keeping you warm. Conversely, amp up both shelves and this heater would keep the winter cold at bay.
The thermostat has three heating settings – including an ECO mode – to keep the room temperature at a comfortable level. There is a remote control on offer too if you don’t feel like leaving the comfort of your chair.
Finally, if you hate walking into a cold kitchen on those winter mornings, take help from the on/off programmer on offer. Apart from providing a 12-hour timer, it also features a heat-free mode – so that you can enjoy the aesthetics of the flickering flame without any heating.
Though at 5100BTU this heater is as powerful as they come, some of its users feel that it was a bit underpowered to heat their surroundings.
Duraflame DFI-470-04 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove
Mimicking a wood stove, this is an attractive little quartz fireplace stove from Duraflame. Similar to other Duraflame heaters mentioned in this review, it combines infrared heating with fan-driven convection to give an above-average heating capability.
On the positive side – and this heater has too many of them – Duraflame has attached the whole heating mechanism at the bottom. Though it may be bad news for those with bad knees, the absence of heating controls on its upper part gives this heater a decorative appeal.
Despite the fact that it looks solid, this heater is surprisingly light-weight (it weighs a mere 15lbs). Had it not been that big, you have easily picked it up with a single hand. Once the door is swung open, you’ll see two dials and a 3 red switches.
The first dial serves as a thermostat, whereas the second one gives you the option to modify the lighting effects on offer. As for the three switches, the first one sets power at 1500W, the second one at 1000W, whereas the final one can be used for turning the heater on/off.
Since the heating element is away from your sight – and underneath the cabinet, shielded via a metal grill, it is nearly impossible for anyone to touch it.
If you want this heater to operate at 1500W, the fan which will already be running by then will become visibly noisy.
Best Infrared Heaters – Buying Guide
Always choose value, the advice our elders give whenever we decide to buy any product. But what is value and can we quantify this term? We cannot, and this is why we need some tangible features to identify what separates the best infrared heaters from the riffraff.
Features That Are Important
After its performance, the one thing which you should look for in an infrared heater is its safety features. And there are three of them which are the most important. The first among those is the Timer. A timer allows you to determine when the heater would go off – hence saving you money while also preventing overheating.
Second, it should come with an anti-tip shutoff feature. In this way, if/when you tip over the heater for any reason, it will turn off. Consequently, the risk of accidental fires would be minimized.
And finally, even if you don’t have pets or children around, your infrared heater must be cool-to-touch. And not just its body but also the grill – where the heating element is placed – should be cool-to-touch.
Ask experts, and they’d tell you that the best infrared heaters have a negligible running cost. That said, if its filter is NOT washable, the running cost of an infrared heater would increase manifold.
As you might already know, it is the filter of the heater which keeps airborne dust particles at bay. With the passage of time, the filters get choked due to dust, therefore requiring periodic maintenance.
Therefore, if your heater doesn’t provide a washable filter, you’d have no option but to replace it every time it gets dirty. On the contrary, washable filters just need a few splashes of water to get going again.
Despite the fact that their running costs are already low, you can further decrease your heater’s running cost – while also meeting the orders of your Government – by installing a zonal heating infrared heater.
As their name suggests, zonal heaters do not heat up the whole house. Instead, they heat certain zones – which can be your room or any other space you may choose.
Since the area which zonal heaters target is small, they consume less energy and weigh less heavily on your pocket.
In contrast to the other, must-have features, those relating to the design are a bit of a luxury. It means that whether you’d be good off with them, their presence – or absence – would have no bearing on the heater’s performance.
If you don’t have enough space in your room, look for either a wall-mounted or a tall infrared heater. They take less floor space but, on the other side of the picture, are easy to tip over.
Next, if you do not want to look at its remote to check at which setting the heater is operating, go for a digital-display heater. This feature is more important if your heater has a timer – as it would let you know in advance after how much time the heater would turn on/off.
Wrapping It Up!
There you have it; ten of the best infrared heaters, each having its own advantages and pretty of useful features. So which of these heaters gets our nod? Well, though the choice is extremely tough – we have been able to come to a decision and it is the Dr. Infrared Heater which we think deserves your money.
Apart from being Amazon’s choice, this heater has a plethora of useful features, doesn’t have an astronomical price tag and comes from a reputed brand. What more can you ask for!