The Best Propane Heaters to Keep You Warm This Winter

A couple is getting ready to cook a meal over a propane fire ring while camping.

There are a lot of options out there when it comes to buying a propane heater. Knowing which heaters are decorative outdoor fire pits and fireplaces or indoor portable space heaters will help narrow down your choice and find the perfect heater to keep you warm. Using a propane heater during winter isn’t just a great way to stay warm it’s also environmentally friendly and easy to use. On top of that, propane is one of the most efficient and cost-effective fuels you can use and is one that offers remarkable heating power.

What Does BTU Stand For?

When purchasing your propane heater, one of the things you want to know is what is the BTU rating. BTU stands for British Thermal Unit; one BTU is equal to the amount of energy used to raise the temperature of one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit. The average portable propane heater produces approximately 22,000 BTU’s. That’s enough energy to heat a 10 x 10 x 10 (L x W x H) space to approximately 72 degrees Fahrenheit. Remember to always place your portable propane heater an area which allows good ventilation away from any flammable materials like curtains or overhanging table cloths.

How to Select a Propane Heater

With so many options, it’s important to know what you are looking for so that you can choose the best propane heater to fit your needs. Here are some things to consider when selecting a propane heater.

  • Location of Use: A heater’s designation as an indoor or outdoor propane heater matters for safety purchases. If you’re looking to use one indoors, make sure it is classified as such.
  • Heating Area: The more BTUs a propane heater puts out, the larger the area that heater can efficiently heat. For an RV, for example, 1,000-5,000 BTUs should be enough to heat comfortably.
  • Heater Size: If you’re trying to heat a small area, you want to be wary of purchasing a propane heater that is too large and potentially could cause an issue if it's not safely set up and maneuvered.
  • Additional Uses: If you’re using an outdoor propane heater, keep in mind that some heaters can do more than just keep you warm. For instance a propane fire pit is the perfect heater for keeping you warm and cooking s’mores!

Types of Heaters


Outdoor heaters, propane fire pits and fireplaces are decorative as well as functional. They range from stationary to portable and come in a variety of sizes. These heaters are attractive conversation pieces that provide toasty warm flames on brisk fall and winter nights.

Camp Chef Propane Fire Ring - 55,000 BTU makes this little table top propane fire pit a workhorse. Perfect for your backyard, patio or take along on your next camping trip.

Indoor and Portable Heaters

Portable propane heaters, also called space heaters, are a great solution if you’re looking for a heating solution that can be easily moved and when an electrical supply isn’t readily available. These portable heaters can be used both indoors and outdoors making them perfect for outdoor parties in brisk winter months as well as a toasty indoor solution without the need to heat up an entire house. Portable space heaters have many practical uses such as outdoor patios, garages or hunting and fishing trips.

Buddy Portable Heater - This portable heater will warm up to 200 sq ft of space. Use this portable propane heater for camping, hunting, fishing or anywhere else you need to warm up.

Mr. Heater Portable Cooker and Heater - This lightweight versatile unit is perfect for the outdoor enthusiast.  Great for cooking at tailgate parties and heating the crowd after the sun goes down.

Mr. Heater Triple Tank Top Portable Heater* - Bring convenient heat to outdoor jobs, loading docks and sporting events.  Light all three burners or just one depending on your heating needs. You’ll find this unit very flexible for your indoor or outdoor heating jobs.  *see also Mr. Heater Double and Single Tank Top Portable Heaters.

Forced Air Propane Heaters

Forced air heaters are among the safest space heaters on the market.  The case stays cool to the touch and with the unique method of blasting heat into the area, you can rapidly heat up to 3000 sq ft depending on the size of the heater you chose. These fan forced propane heaters are perfect for job sites and warehouses.

Mr. Heater 170,000 BTU Forced Air Propane Heater* - The Mr. Heater liquid propane heater comes with a standard 10 ft hose and is ready for connection to a 20lb propane tank or larger. This heavy duty heater will have you feeling comfortable on any job site. Also available in 125,000 and 85,000 BTU models.

Hero Cordless Forced Air Propane Heater - This easy to use cordless heater includes many features such as push-button controls and quiet burn technology that allows you to run your heater without disturbing everyone around you. This unit recharges in about 5 hours and can be operated while charging.

Propane Heaters and Indoor Safety

While we’ve covered both indoor and outdoor heaters, it is important to remind our readers that propane heaters designed and made for temporary indoor use are created with the intent in mind that they will be used indoors. Any portable heater sold through the U-Haul store is chosen for it’s robust safety features. These include having accidental tipping safety shut-offs, a feature that automatically shut the heater off so you don’t have to worry should one get knocked over. Another feature is the wire guard that is fixed to the front of the heaters which will help keep the heating element protected from any outside items accidentally ending up making contact with it.

As with any propane product, it’s important to read and follow all safety instructions that come with whichever propane heater you decide on.

Whatever your propane needs are this winter season. U-Haul has the right one for you. Shop online for your heater today. Don't forget to refuel your propane cyldiners as well - find a propane refill station near you.

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