Tip-over safety feature shuts off unit when it’s not placed flat on the ground. Adjust temperature and fan manually to customize heat settings. Round air filter is located at the front of unit for easy cleaning and maintenance.
Can be expensive to run for a prolonged time. Some consumers report that readout can be difficult to read, especially across a room.
Economical; only uses 400 watts. Has built-in overheat and tip-over protection. Cute and compact. Lightweight yet sturdy. Puts out a lot of heat for its size. Great price.
A little on the loud side, particularly given its size. Some reports of this option dying fairly quickly (within weeks). Other buyers felt that it didn't put out enough heat.
Your choice of silver or black. Comes with fan, low, or 1500-watt high settings. Features adjustable thermostat. Tip-over and overheat safety features. Small in size, but can quickly heat a small room. Decent price.
Heater has a hum to it, which may annoy some. It has to be on a very flat surface to work; even carpeting will keep the tip-over switch from completely depressing. Some find this option to be too small.
Has a great look. 1500 watts of power, and the heater oscillates to cover a full room. Features include adjustable thermostat, seven-hour timer, and remote. Good design. Makes about as much noise as a fan.
Some buyers find the remote to be worthless, as you have to be standing right over the heater anyhow to see what it is set at. Some complaints of a strong chemical smell. The plug can overheat, so it's recommended you use this heater with a fire safe wall plug.
Features an adjustable thermostat and your choice of fan, low, or high settings. Many buyers describe the sound it makes as similar to white noise. Warms quickly and heats well. Tip-over protection. Small and lightweight.
Some durability and quality issues have been reported, with units arriving broken or breaking within a few weeks. While the fan isn't too loud, it may still be an annoyance for some.
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If you want to stay warm in the winter without cranking up the thermostat, a space heater is a valid option. Ceramic space heaters are especially popular because they can quickly heat an entire room and are known for being durable. And because they can efficiently self-regulate temperature, ceramic heaters are considered to be a fairly safe choice.
But that doesn’t mean that one ceramic heater is as good as the next. Various products have different features, safety settings, and heat output. It’s important to understand all of your options before purchasing a ceramic heater.
To help you make the most of your money, we offer this overview.
The most important factors to consider when choosing a ceramic heater are safety, size, and heater type.
Modern space heaters are much safer than their older counterparts, but you still should exercise caution. Choose a ceramic heater that has been certified by an independent testing agency like Underwriters Laboratory (UL). The best ceramic heaters have built-in overheat protection that automatically shuts off the heater if it exceeds a safe temperature. Some units have tip-over protection as well, which shuts off the heater if it falls over.
Households with animals or small children should opt for a unit that has a cool-touch housing. Otherwise, someone could accidentally burn themselves by coming into contact with the outside of the heater.
How large is the space you wish to heat with a ceramic heater? Be sure to choose a model that’s sized appropriately. Obviously, larger rooms will require higher heat output, but there are other factors to consider as well. If your home is drafty, for example, you may need a more powerful ceramic heater to combat the cold air seeping in. Generally speaking, you should plan on needing about 10 watts of power for every square foot of space. So if your goal is to heat a 100-square-foot room, you would need a 1,000-watt ceramic heater.
Ceramic heaters are available in three main types: floor, tower, and wall. Floor ceramic heaters are what most people think of when they picture a traditional space heater. These compact units sit on the ground and put out heat in all directions. They’re usually lightweight and portable, but it all depends on the size of the heater you choose.
Tower heaters are tall and thin — a great choice for tight spaces. Some have an oscillation feature that rotates the unit back and forth, evenly dispersing heat throughout the room.
Wall ceramic heaters are usually permanent installations that must be wired into the wall. Some people choose to place them in select rooms of the home, such as the bathroom, for supplemental heat. If you don’t own your home, however, the installation of a wall ceramic heater may not be an option.
Slim and powerful
This tower ceramic heater has a compact footprint but packs a big punch. It generates 1,500 watts of power and oscillates to disperse heat evenly. You can adjust the heat and timer settings using the included remote or on the heater’s digital control panel.
Before you buy a ceramic heater, check out its thermostat. Some ceramic heaters have a single heat setting or simple low, medium, and high settings. Others let you select the precise degree of heat that you want. Some thermostats give you the option of pre-programming your desired temperature. If the room drops below this temperature, the thermostat will turn on automatically and continue to run until your desired temperature is achieved.
Some ceramic heaters have timers. You can program these units to run for a certain period of time and then shut off — a nice option if you’re prone to forgetting to turn your heater off before bed or before you leave the house.
Some ceramic heaters include a remote so you can adjust the settings from across the room. Not everyone will want this, but it’s a handy feature to have, especially for those with limited mobility.
All space heaters use some electricity, but how much depends on the size of the unit. Larger units require more electricity to run, so you can expect a larger energy bill. How often you use the heater is also a factor. Some ceramic heaters have an energy-saving mode to help cut costs.
If you plan to move the ceramic heater around the room with you, opt for a model that has a handle on top so you can pick it up easily. For larger heaters, you may also want a unit with wheels so you can push it without lifting. Cord length is important to consider, too. Think about where the outlets are in your home and where you want to put the space heater.
Some space heaters are louder than others, and you may find a loud space heater to be distracting. If this is a concern for you, be sure to select a quality space heater with a reputation for low noise output.
Keep your ceramic heater at least three feet away from anything flammable.
Consult the owner’s manual before using your ceramic heater for guidance on proper usage and maintenance procedures.
Try not to place the cord of your ceramic heater somewhere where it could become a tripping hazard. At the same time, for safety reasons, you should avoid placing it underneath a rug.
Most ceramic heaters for home use range in price from $20 to $100. If you just need a compact unit to heat a small space, you could probably get by with spending less than $50. Plenty of durable units exist in this price range, including some with programmable thermostats, remotes, and other advanced features.
Larger ceramic heaters, including tower heaters, cost a bit more: most start around $50. These heaters are more powerful and often have advanced options, such as a built-in timer and oscillation, to help spread heat evenly.
A great fit for small spaces
The Brightown Personal Ceramic Portable Mini-Heater is an economical choice for those who only need to heat a small area. It’s affordable and generates a surprising amount of heat compared to other ceramic heaters in its price range. In addition to a cool-touch housing, this heater has overheat and tip-over protection to help reduce the risk of fire.
Never leave your ceramic heater on when you leave the house or go to bed.
Keep the area around your ceramic heater clear, and don’t point the heater directly at anything flammable.
Do not plug large ceramic heaters into extension cords or power strips.
Don’t use ceramic heaters around water or in damp areas (like a bathroom) unless the unit is specifically designed for it.
Check the cord periodically to make sure the wires are not exposed or frayed.
If you only need to heat a small area, you may be interested in the Lasko MyHeat Personal Space Heater. This small tabletop model generates 200 watts of power and quickly distributes the heat throughout the space. It includes overheat protection and a cool-touch exterior so you don’t need to worry about burning yourself.
A more versatile choice is the instecho 1500W Quick Heat Ceramic Space Heater. In addition to two heat settings, it also has a cool wind setting, so it can double as a fan in the summer. At 1,500 watts, it’s one of the larger ceramic heaters available, so it can cover larger spaces. What’s more, it has built-in overheat and tip-over protection.
Q. How do ceramic heaters work?
A. Metal coils are surrounded by ceramic plates. When the heater is plugged in, the coils heat up, which in turn heats up the plates. The unit then releases the heat into the room. Because the metal coils are not exposed, the ceramic heater housing is able to stay cooler, so there is minimal risk of burns.
Q. Will my ceramic heater require much maintenance?
A. No. Ceramic heating elements are known for being extremely durable, so you shouldn’t need to do anything to the heater aside from vacuuming dust out of the vents periodically.
Q. How much will my ceramic heater cost me to run?
A. There are several factors that influence this, including the wattage of the heater, the cost of electricity in your area, and how often you use the heater. To estimate this amount, take the wattage of the heater and divide it by 1,000 to get the kilowatts per hour. Then, to determine a total, multiply this number by the number of hours the heater is in use and the cost of one kilowatt of electricity in your area.
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