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Equipping your outdoor porch or patio with the right heater allows you to spend time enjoying the outdoors, regardless of the weather conditions. Best of all, finding the best outdoor heater will help you create a year-round livable space for friends and family. Surprisingly, there are many outdoor heaters on the market, but most units are equipped with infrared heat. But do infrared heaters work outside?
Well, that’s what we’ll be looking at in this article. First, let’s look at how infrared technology works!
How infrared heating technology works
Typically, infrared heating technology detects heat in objects instead of producing it. This heat is then smartly harnessed to provide large amounts of warmth in almost any environment.
Outdoor infrared heaters usually work in the far infrared spectrum. This type of IR radiation generates sun-like heat that is tuned between 9 and 14 micrometers, but with no safety or health issues. More importantly, the electromagnetic waves cause the molecules to oscillate and generate energy, making us feel warm. Better still, this narrow range of IR radiation is perfectly safe. So, unlike the UV rays produced by the sun, it will not result in any serious skin damage and conditions like cancer.
In addition, infrared heaters target specific objects instead of air and propel them with energy from electromagnetic waves. The objects then dissipate the energy in the form of heat, providing a uniform, consistent and pleasant temperature.
Are outdoor infrared heaters energy efficient?
Heaters fueled by gas and oil use a lot of energy trying to heat the air around them. This warm air soon rises and escapes your deck or outdoor patio, making them incredibly inefficient.
However, unlike traditional outdoor heaters, IR heating directs energy to the surrounding objects instead of air. This increases its efficiency and provides more warmth. In other words, outdoor infrared heaters work the same way the sun that heats the earth’s surface, and not the atmosphere. The produced IR heater rays travel through the air and bounce off items around your deck or patio, giving you a great deal of warmth.
Infrared Heating Vs Regular Outdoor Heaters
Regular heaters are suitable for warming areas that are generally enclosed like bedrooms, kitchens, garages, or living rooms. This is because the heated air will not escape the room, thus warming the entire space. However, if you use the same heater in your outdoor space, all its efficiency will disappear. Instead, the warmed open air will likely be blown away by the slightest breeze on your patio or deck.
On the other hand, infrared heaters work by providing cost-effective warmth to objects in your outdoor space, instead of warming the surrounding air. As a result, they will keep you and your friends warm while enjoying your outdoor space, regardless of how often the breeze blows across your deck/ patio. Moreover, they will; ensure that every object or person in its wide radius stays warm and comfortable!
Other Outdoor Infrared Heater Benefits
In addition to providing instant heater and incredible efficiency, using infrared heaters in your outdoor spaces offers the following benefits;
Gas and oil outdoor heaters emit toxic carbon emissions, which can be harmful if breathed in and pollute the environment. However, infrared heating is an eco-friendly alternative since it’s completely clean and only uses a small wattage of electricity.
Unlike conventional outdoor heaters, IR heaters don’t use fans to distribute heat throughout the outdoor space. As a result, they provide a quiet operation, making them suitable for creating a serene ambiance and peaceful outdoor environment.
Since outdoor IR heaters warm up specific objects and areas, instead of air, they don’t waste energy. Consequently, this helps you save a lot of money on your electricity bills.
Considering IR heaters don’t have any moving parts, they have minimal maintenance costs. For instance, you don’t have to be concerned about worn-out motors or improperly lubricated components for the units to work properly.
As already mentioned, conventional heaters take a while to warm up an outdoor space. This is because they have to warm up the air, which quickly rises up and escapes. However, with an IR heater, people directly in the vicinity of the unit will receive a uniform spread of warmth right away. In addition, these heaters are safe to use, since they don’t produce any harmful radiation that can cause serious skin conditions.
Fuel sources for outdoor Infrared heaters
When looking for the best outdoor infrared heater for patio, you’ve to consider the type of fuel it uses. This is because outdoor IR heaters can be classified into various categories depending on their fuel type. Moreover, gas heaters (natural gas/ propane) produce a large amount of heat in a short time. On the other hand, electric IR heaters are a bit more cost-efficient than gas units.
Natural gas heaters
A natural gas IR heater is a viable option if you already have an existing natural gas source in your home. Moreover, this type of IR heater is commonly used to make outdoor areas permanently comfortable. The only issue with natural gas heaters is that they minimize flexibility, but some models can be installed overhead.
Propane is one of the most popular fuel sources for outdoor IR heaters for businesses and homeowners for various reasons. One, propane heaters are equipped with relatively lightweight tanks at the base, making them quite easy to move around. On top of that, these tanks are affordable to refill and buy. Best of all, propane is one of the most cost-effective energy sources on the market.
Similar to natural gas heaters, you can easily connect electric infrared heaters to existing power sources. Better still, most of these systems are easy to manage with precise heat control tools to maximize energy use and comfort. Moreover, there are various heater management systems you can use to control your infrared heaters.
Conclusion; do infrared heaters work outside?
To answer your question; Yes, infrared heaters are suitable for use in outdoor spaces, thanks to the technology behind these appliances. Specifically, they use the same principles as the sun, but without the harmful effects of UV rays. This will allow you to spend time outdoors and interact with your family and friends, even during the cold winter season!