I am not a fan of winter, so I have really been enjoying the extremely mild weather this season. Not only do I not have to bundle up in multiple layers just to walk my dog, I am also saving on my home heating bill which is always nice. However Mother Nature didn’t want us to get too comfortable and has thrown in some bitterly cold days just to make sure we are paying attention. It is those colder days when I rely on my electric space heater to keep me cozy without the need to crank the heat up in the entire house.
There are many options available when it comes to space heaters, some are good, some are bad and some are just plain ridiculous.
Take for instance the recent popularity with Quartz or Infrared heaters, these heaters do work and are good for spot heating but will not heat an entire room. I caution you when looking for a quartz infrared heater as you need to know what you are looking for otherwise you could end up thinking you are buying a true quartz infrared heater but end up with a forced air electrical space heater that was wrapped around a fancy infrared marketing pitch. To help you understand what I mean and to make sure you are spending your hard earned money on the right product here is some information.
A true quartz/infrared heater works like this; there is an electrical element that sits inside a clear tube made out of quartz crystal. When the electric current flows into the wire it heats the tube. The quartz crystal traps the heat inside, causing the element to get even hotter. As the element gets hotter it begins to emit a large amount of infrared light. This light is then projected into the room where it continues until it hits a solid surface which then absorbs some of its energy, warming the object. These types of heaters are good for spot heating but are not good for overall room heating as they do not produce enough heat to warm the surrounding cold air in the room.
There are some heaters on the market that claim to be a quartz infrared heater but are really just a forced air electrical space heater. Here is how these units work; a fan draws the air into the unit, the air is then circulated around the inside of the unit until it passes over copper pipes or plates which have been heated by infrared radiation inside the unit. The heat from these pipes or plates warms the air as it passes over and through them and then the warmed air is forced out of the unit, which in turn heats the room. The problem with the claim that these heaters are a quartz infrared type heater is that the only infrared used in these heaters is to warm the copper pipes or plates which then warms the air inside of the box. Unlike a true quartz infrared heater, it is the warm air that warms the room not the infrared light as mentioned above.
If you don’t want the hassle of trying to figure out exactly what you are buying and don’t want to spend a lot of money on an infrared quartz heater or one that claims to be an infrared quartz heater, purchase a truly portable electric heater or forgo the portability aspect all together and install linear convector baseboard heaters in every room for the ultimate in comfort. If you really want to make a statement in style, choose an electric fireplace to heat a colder room. True electric heat products, including portable heaters, baseboard type heaters and fireplaces have come a long way in function and design and can easily warm most rooms in your house. With so many size and style options to choose from, you are sure to find exactly what you are looking for at a price to fit any budget.