5 Best Tabletop Patio Heaters of 2020 [Napoleon, Fire Sense, Hiland]

tabletop patio heater reviews

Want to keep the grill going into the evening and as temperatures drop? Enjoying your patio shouldn’t be restricted to just the summer sun. Getting a tabletop patio heater can be a great way to keep the crowd warm as the air turns cold.

Patio heaters are a great alternative to traditional fire pits in almost every aspect. They’re easier to control, are much safer, and provide more direct heat. This makes them reliable and cost-efficient, especially after months of use.

In this guide we’ll take a look at the best tabletop patio heaters that the world has to offer, and let you know the most important things to look out for when choosing your new heater.

Let’s get into it.

Napoleon 11,000BTU Propane Patio Heater

The Napoleon propane patio heater is a nice choice if you have a large space to heat. With its 11,000BTU heat output, this tabletop patio heater is among the most powerful units you can find out there. In terms of space, you could expect it to provide heat at up to a 7 feet radius.

This tabletop patio heater also has a few handy safety features – an anti-tilt switch + oxygen depletion sensor. The oxygen depletion sensor isn’t that useful outdoors, but we won’t say no to that feature.

We like the build of the Napoleon propane patio heater too. It’s made of stainless steel, so rust shouldn’t be an issue for it. Not only that, but this tabletop heater has an attractive industrial vibe to it, which may fit some patio designs really well.

One thing to keep in mind with this propane heater – it runs on 1-pound non-refillable cylinders by default. If you are going to use your propane heater more or less often, then think about purchasing a standalone propane tank and tank gauge. This will allow you to avoid wasting money on cylinder replacements over the long run.

Pros:

  • Produces a lot of heat.
  • Anti-tilt protection along with an oxygen depletion sensor.
  • Provides warmth at up to a 7 feet radius.
  • Quality build with an industrial vibe.

Cons:

  • Runs on non-refillable 1lbs propane cylinders (though you can hook it to a separate propane tank)
Napoleon 11000 BTU Propane
  • Up to 11000 BTU's
  • 304 Stainless steel construction
  • 7 foot heat radius

Fire Sense 10,000BTU Propane Patio Heater

The Fire Sense propane patio heater is a slightly weaker alternative to the Napoleon heater we’ve just reviewed. With about 10,000BTU output, it will most likely heat up to a 6 feet radius, maybe a little more.

Other than that, the Fire Sense heater is very similar to the Napoleon heater. First up, the Fire Sense tabletop heater has safety features such as anti-tilt protection and an oxygen depletion sensor.

Next, when it comes to overall feel and design, the Fire Sense tabletop patio heater is pretty much identical to the Napoleon heater. It again boasts an attractive stainless steel build with an industrial vibe, and it’s tough enough to withstand heavy use and corrosion.

Notably, Fire Sense offers expert assembly for this propane patio heater, though you may also assemble it on your own to save money.

Due to its similarities to the Napoleon tabletop propane heater, the Fire Sense heater retains its main downsides – the disposable 1-pound cylinders. Again, think about hooking this thing to a standard propane tank to save money.

Pros:

  • Anti-tilt switch + oxygen depletion sensor.
  • Quality stainless steel build.
  • Good heat output.
  • Expert assembly available.

Cons:

  • Runs on disposable propane cylinders by default.
Sale
Fire Sense Stainless Steel Portable Outdoor Heat Lamp
163 Reviews
Fire Sense Stainless Steel Portable Outdoor Heat Lamp
  • A Must Buy Item.
  • Built To Last.
  • Great Item To Give as A Gift.

Hiland HLDS032-GTTHG 9,500BTU Propane Patio Heater

The previous three tabletop heaters sure do look unique, but they won’t work with every patio. If you care about aesthetics, the heaters reviewed so far won’t work too well for patios whose vibe doesn’t match their style. And most likely, most people don’t have industrial-style patios.

If you don’t think that our previous picks will work for your patio, then have a look at this Hiland propane heater. It has a more restrained design, and although it’s also very attractive, it will work with a wider range of patio designs.

Interestingly, the Hiland heater is available in two styles – bronze and stainless steel. Both will work well outdoors since they are resistant to corrosion, but we like the look of the bronze heater more.

When it comes to heating, the Hiland heater has 9,500BTU output, so it will be a little weaker than the Fire Sense heater. However, safety should be comparable – this heater has anti-tilt protection, though it doesn’t seem to have an oxygen depletion sensor. Not a big deal outdoors.

Once again, keep in mind that this heater runs on disposable propane cylinders.

Pros:

  • Attractive design that will work with most patios.
  • Good heat output.
  • Available in bronze and stainless steel.
  • 1-year warranty.

Cons:

  • Pricey.
  • Fragile glass tube.
  • Runs on disposable 1-pound cylinders.
Hiland Portable Propane Pyramid Glass Tube
183 Reviews
Hiland Portable Propane Pyramid Glass Tube
  • 39-Inch tall portable glass tube patio heater
  • Hammered Bronze finish. Quartz Glass Tube
  • Heat output: 9500 BTU's. Electronic Ignition

Geek Heat 1,200W Portable Tower Infrared Heater

Geek Heat Outdoor Infrared Heater

The Geek Heat tabletop space heater is unique in that it is based on infrared heating technology. 

Basically, infrared heaters heat objects directly, which allows for nearly instant heat. In contrast, traditional heaters heat the air around them first, and the heat then transfers from the air to objects that are in contact with it.

With that, the Geek Heat heater will not directly heat up the air, so you need to have a clear line of sight with the heater to receive any warmth.

Technology aside, the Geek Heat infrared heater also offers tip-over protection and, needless to say, requires no propane or gas. It’s therefore easier to start using than our previous picks. 

Interestingly, the Geek Heat heater also has 120-degree oscillation, so it will cover a little more ground than what you may be expecting. It also has two heat settings.

What’s also nice about this portable heater is that it’s more compact than the previous patio heaters. With that said, the Geek Heat heater is accordingly weaker – it won’t be heating large patios too well.

Pros:

  • Tip-over protection.
  • Requires no propane or gas.
  • Delivers near-instant infrared heat.
  • Fairly compact.

Cons:

  • Relatively weak heat output.
Geek Heat Outdoor Infrared Heater
22 Reviews

Hiland HIL-1821 1,500W Electric Patio Heater

The Hiland HIL-1821 electric patio heater is also an infrared model, but it has 300 more watts than the Geek Heat heater we’ve just reviewed. With that, it should cover more ground – up to 50 square feet, according to Hiland.

Aside from the heat output, what also differs in this heater is design. It’s similar to our first two heater picks, boasting a tough stainless steel build with an industrial touch.

The HIL-1821 infrared heater is on the heavier side too due to the stainless steel build, but it should serve you way longer than the Geek Heat heater. It’s also backed up by a 1-year warranty, which is fairly nice.

Pros:

  • Requires no propane or gas.
  • Provides instant infrared heat.
  • Stainless steel build.
  • Tip-over protection.
  • 1-year warranty.

Cons:

  • Rather heavy.
Hiland HIL-1821 Tabletop Indoor/Outdoor
86 Reviews
Hiland HIL-1821 Tabletop Indoor/Outdoor
  • 38-Inch tall tabletop electric patio heater. Provides Instant Heat
  • Indoor and Outdoor Use. 96 inch Power Cord
  • 1500 Watts Made of Stainless Steel
close up of tabletop patio heater
close up of tabletop patio heater

Last update on 2020-09-08 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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