A PORTABLE heater is a great way to stay warm and cosy on cold wintery nights without having to crank up the heating and risk hefty energy bills.
When temperatures begin to fall, houses can often take a while to heat up. If you're one of the many that can be impatient when it comes to feeling warm when it's cold outside, We've gone searching for the best portable heater and come up with a list of 12.
These household gadgets are an energy-efficient way to keep you toasty no matter the conditions outside.
How to use a portable heater
A portable heater is simple to use and set up.
Most heaters feature two dials – one is a thermostat to set the desired room temperature, and the other controls the wattage. Some models also have a timer feature.
A portable heater must be plugged into a socket using the cable it comes with before switching it on. Place the heater anywhere in the room, but it is recommended not to place it up against a wall.
Best portable heater at a glance
- Best portable heater: Pro Breeze® 1800W Mini Ceramic Fan Heater
- Best for home: Duronic Heater for Home
- Best portable heater with a thermostat: Chimnea Style Flame Effect Heater
- Best mini heater: Warmlite Portable Flat Fan Heater
- Best for baby room: Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Purifying Fan Heater
Princess Smart Glass Panel Heater
- Princess Smart Glass Panel Heater, £99.99 from Amazon – buy now
Add a bit of style to your portable heater purchase with this high-tech gadget that is unlike anything else on the market.
Sure, it requires a fair amount of setup that includes downloading the respective app and linking it to your Wi-Fi network, but once that’s complete, the rest is surprisingly simple.
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There’s a temperature setting, 24-hour timer and power level switch that can be operated via the dial or using the touch-sensitive controls on the screen that disappear when not in use.
Available in black and white, this Smart Glass Panel heater is super sleek, and if you don’t want a clunky gadget ruining your house aesthetic, then this is a stellar option as it will sit discreetly in any room.
Heat radiates from the grille at the back of the screen, and it takes ten or so minutes before you’ll start to feel the warmth.
With all of its features and sleek design, holding a 4-star rating comes as no surprise to us or shoppers since they rave about how it 'looks nice and heats well' or that its simple design means it's considered a 'tidy unit'for anyone looking for a product that will blend into their home.
power: 1500W Dimensions: 19.29 x 31.1 x 31.1 cm weight: 7.2 Kilograms
BeldraySmart Ceramic Core Radiator
- Beldray EH3108W Smart Ceramic Core Radiator, £169.99 from Amazon – buy here
There’s no more waiting for a room to eventually warm up as this smart ceramic core radiator from Beldray gets to work immediately and will have you toasty in no time.
Boasting 1000W, you can connect this smart radiator to your smartphone and control the temperature through Wifi, so you don't have to move once you're comfortable.
It might be compact – W31 x D194 x H224mm. – but the 1000W heater packs a punch and is packed with smart features to make your life simpler. One such feature is its open window function, automatically shutting off when it detects a window is open, making it extremely eco-friendly. The wheels are also perfect for easy transportation.
DIY-phobes will be glad to know there’s no assembly required. Simply unbox, switch it on, and you’ll feel warm almost instantly.
There’s a thermal cut-out device and lockable screen for optimal safety, so worrying someone will tamper with it can be a thing of the past.
As always, we went to check out what customers had to say about this 4-star device one calls a 'fabulous heater radiator' with another stating its 'great extra heating' and that they 'highly recommend'.
power: 1000W dimensions: 194D x 31W x 224H weight: 13.8 Kilograms
Pro breeze 1800W Mini Ceramic Fan Heater
- Pro Breeze 1800W Mini Ceramic Fan Heater, £44.99 from Pro Breeze – buy here
For under £50, this portable heater from Pro Breeze is a bargain, given its extensive features and impressive ability to heat rooms of all sizes.
The ceramic heating element provides fast heating and is more efficient than traditional heaters, perfect for saving money on energy bills.
There are two different power settings – oscillation and fan-only mode. The 60-degree oscillation is best for heating large rooms and spaces, whilst the fan-only setting works well as a personal heater.
The heat output can be adjusted between 1000V and 1800W using the easy-to-use thermostat control. The control is built into the heater and will automatically ensure heating is at the optimal level and is energy efficient.
At 1.63kg, it’s easy to transport around the house. Its small size means it can be discreetly placed in the corner of a room and doesn't take up too much floor space.
4.1-stars is nothing to dismiss, and looking at what customers had to say about their purchase, if you're looking for a heater that 'packs a punch' or is considered a 'great little heater', you're definitely in the right place.
power:1800W dimensions: 13.2D x 17.5W x 24Hcm weight: 1.63 Kilograms
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Zanussi ZFH1001B 2000W Portable Upright Fan Heater
- Zanussi ZFH1001B 2000W Portable Upright Fan Heater, £24.99 from Zanussi – buy here
Weighing just 1kg, portable heaters don’t come much lighter than this. Its compact size – H23.8 x W21 x D11 cm – makes it perfect for small spaces, home offices and caravans, so no matter where you are when winter arrives, you can stay warm.
There are two heat settings – 1000W and 2000W, and both will warm up the room in a couple of minutes. The heater works best in rooms of around 10 metres squared.
The fan heater has an inbuilt safety feature that will switch the gadget off if it overheats. There’s also a one-year guarantee if anything goes wrong or you’re unhappy with the product.
Despite being a smaller device, this fan holds a great 4.3-star rating, with shoppers praising the fact that it's a 'quality and compact' device. Not being a massive heater doesn't mean it's any less effective, as one shopper left a 5-star review calling it 'powerful' and that it 'belts out heat.'
power 2000W dimension 4.33 x 8.27 x 9.37 cm weight: 1 Kilogram
De'Longhi HVA3220 Fan Heater – White
- De'Longhi HVA3220 Fan Heater, £30.44 from De'Longhi – buy here
This mini heater with a horizontal grille is perfect for small spaces and measures only 55.9 x 42.7 x 67.6 cm. Despite its small size, it packs a reasonable punch.
Alongside the two heat settings, it also features a summer ventilation function to keep you cool during the warmer months.
It’s operated using the two simple dials on the top of the grille, and it gets to work immediately – you’ll feel the warmth within minutes.
The fan feature does mean it’s slightly less quiet than a radiator, but overall the noise is not disruptive or particularly noticeable if you’re using it during the day.
Even with its small build, the mini heater from De'Longhi maintains a massively respectable 4.3-star rating, with shoppers raving about its great 'value for money' and anyone looking for a quick and easy option should most definitely look into this 'dependable, and easy to setup' device.
power: 2000W dimensions: 55.9 x 42.7 x 67.6 cm weight: 1.33 kilograms
Duronic Heater for Home
- Duronic Heater for Home, £89.99 from Duronic – buy here
This radiator-like portable heater might not be the most attractive, but it heats up impressively quickly and will keep you warm in the winter.
The heater can reach 2000W, full capacity, in under a minute thanks to the special mica panels that radiate heat more effectively and safely. Once the room is sufficiently warm, switch the setting to 1000W to help maintain the warmth and help you save money on bills.
The thermostat can also help with temperature regulation as you can set your desired room temperature. Once that’s reached, the heater will automatically work to maintain that level.
The way the panels operate means heat radiates sideways and upwards, making it perfect for a bedroom as it warms the whole room, not just one area. The dispersion of heat means it can be placed anywhere in a room as long as it’s not right up against a wall.
For enhanced safety, the heater features protective grilles and cool-to-touch carry handles that make it easy to transport. At 4.6kg, it’s not too heavy to lift, but the wheels are particularly helpful in moving it around the house.
With a highly impressive 4.5-star rating, the Duronic heater may be the perfect addition for anyone after a heater that is 'quiet and puts out a lot of heat'. Then this 'great heater' is a great choice for anyone looking to heat the whole room.
power: 1800W dimensions: 25 x 46 x 55 cm weight: 4.5 Kilograms
Warmlite Portable Flat Fan Heater
- Warmlite Portable Flat Fan Heater, £19.10 from Warmlite – buy here
Portable heaters don’t come much easier to use than this one from Warmlite – we’re confident that everyone will be able to set this machine up in minutes and use it without any problems.
There are two power settings – 1000W and 2000W – controlled by one of the turn dials on the top of the heater. There’s also the option to set it to cool mode, which works as a fan in the summer.
The other dial is an easy-to-adjust thermostat so you can change the intensity of the heat until it is the right level for you.
At under £20, it’s a good value mini heater that can be easily transported and placed on the floor or any surface such as a cabinet or table, so the heat disperses around the room quicker.
At a respectable 4.2-star rating, this simple and 'easy to use' heater has many reviews calling it simply 'great', so if you're after a 'very economic' heater with an 'excellent heat output' warmlite's cost-conscious portable heater is a great option.
power: 2000Wdimension: 13.5 in diameter weight: 1.08 kilograms
Beldray EH3327 Climate Cube
- Beldray EH3327 Climate Cube, £24.99 from Beldray – buy here
At just £25, the Beldray Climate Cube is the cheapest portable heater on our list.
Measuring 23.9l x 21.6W x 21.3Hcm, this budget-buy works remarkably well in heating small rooms and would comfortably fit on the corner of a desk in a home office or bedroom. There’s a convenient carry handle for transportation, and its 1.75kg weight means it’s easy to take anywhere.
Alongside the heating setting, there are also cooling features and a fan, so you can use the product all year round. The cube has a 300ml refillable water tank for the cooler function.
With 500W heating power, you’ll be able to keep yourself warm whilst also reducing your bills as it will use far less energy than other models that reach 2000W.
With customers calling this heater the 'best small heater for the price' and another stating that it's 'small but effective' if you need an extremely portable heater to keep you warm on the colder days and cooler when the sun is out, this is a great option especially if you're sat at a desk but don't want to run the heating bill.
power: dimensions:23.9 x 21.6 x 21.3 cm weight: 1.75 kilograms
Chimnea Style Flame Effect Heater
- Chimnea Style Flame Effect Heater, £100 from Dunelm – buy here
Portable heaters don’t have to ruin that perfectly curated aesthetic in a room, instead, they can complement the decor, and we love Dunelm’s Chimnea Style Flame Effect heater.
This rustic-style heater is available in either black or white and is propped up by three wooden legs, so it’s easy to place in the corner of a room.
The dials are conveniently located on the top of the heater, and there’s one thermostat dial and another to control the heat levels. The heat levels can be set anywhere from 900W to a maximum of 1800W. There’s also the option of flame only, which offers a fire-like effect without the warmth.
The sleek gadget is made from recyclable packaging and can heat areas of 20 to 30 metres squared.
With an extremely impressive 4.5-star rating if you're looking for a 'stylish and efficient' heater or even a 'first-rate product' we recommend the Chimnea style Flame heater for anyone looking for something to keep them and conversation warm in the winter.
power: 1800W dimensions: 4cm x 48.5 x 36.5cm
Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Purifying Fan Heater
- Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Purifying Fan Heater, £399.99 from Dyson – buy here
For a premium portable heater that comes with all the whistles and bells, you’d expect for almost £400, the Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Purifying Fan is a solid option.
Dyson’s heater not only heats and cools the air but also purifies it and automatically removes 99.95% of allergens and pollutants from the air. The smooth oscillation and long-range projection mean the Dyson gadget purifies the air in an entire room, regardless of size.
There are two powerful airflow modes for heating. The jet focus control means you can pick between long-range personal heating or fast, even room heating that will bring warmth to the whole room.
The self-regulating ceramic plates work efficiently and effectively in creating long-lasting warmth. It’s also impressively silent compared to other portable heaters that often have a low hum background noise. This makes it the perfect heater for a bedroom, as it won’t disrupt your sleep.
The lack of blades and grilles ensures the product is safe to use and easy to clean.
With shoppers calling this product 'a great product for hot summer and cold winter,' and another a 'great fan', it becomes clear as to why this impressive fan holds a 4.4-star rating amongst purchasers.
power: 2090W dimensions: 63.2 x 22.2 x 11.2 cm weight:3.94 kilograms
Futura Deluxe Outdoor Heater
- Futura Deluxe Outdoor Heater, £69.95 from Futura – buy here
An outdoor heater is the perfect addition to any garden and will allow you to enjoy more of your green space, despite the chilly weather.
These wall-mounted heaters from Futura are waterproof, easy to affix to any outside wall and incredibly versatile. They come with a 1.75m cable and a full wall mounting kit, so you don’t need any external tools.
There are three heat settings available – 750W, 1500W and 2000W – and these can be controlled via the handy remote control.
Thanks to the infrared tubes, heat is felt almost immediately. They work best in spaces up to 20 metres squared – great for keeping you warm on the patio in the evenings.
Holding a rating of 4.3 stars, one reviewer calls it a 'very good well-made heater', and for those trying to get the most out of every summer, another customer claims it's a great way to 'extend the summer in your garden.'
power: 2000W dimensions: 1 centimetre in diameterweight: 3 kilograms
De'Longhi Bend Line, Ceramic Fan Heater
- De'Longhi Bend Line, Ceramic Fan Heater, £55.15 from De'Longhi – buy here
If you're hunting for a budget-friendly heater that comes with impressive features, we recommend the Bend Line ceramic fan heater.
With a power of 2000W, this compact fan heater comes with an oscillating base to easily warm up smaller rooms of around 20 meters squared without leaving you with any cold spots.
It also has a smart eco function that means you won't have to fiddle with the settings too much to find the right temperatures for you. Simply turn on the eco function, and it will select the ideal comfort level based on the temperature of the room.
Safety is covered. Should the heater ever fall over, the appliance will automatically switch off to avoid any accidental mishaps.
You don't have to worry about getting up and changing the settings since it also comes with a remote control for convenient usage.
Taking a look at the reviews left on the 4.3-star heater, one customer calls it 'absolutely brilliant' and 'well worth the money', so if you need a heater for a smaller room that you want to turn on and forget about, this might be the product for you.
How much does a portable heater cost to run?
A portable heater will undoubtedly save you money on energy bills as you won't need to crank up the central heating as much.
The amount it will cost depends on the wattage and number of hours it's in use.
On an average energy tariff, using a 1000W heater under the new October price cap will cost 34p an hour. That means if you used it for three hours in the evening, it would cost £1.02. For those looking for a portable heater to keep warm during those work-from-home days, it would cost £2.72 to keep it on for eight hours.
A higher-wattage portable heater will cost you more, whilst a 500W heater will be cheaper to run.
Which portable heater is the cheapest to run?
There are several different types of electric heaters on the market – the main ones being halogen, oil-filled and fan.
Fan heaters are generally the cheapest to purchase upfront and can cost under £20. However, in the long run, they may be more expensive to run as they will use more energy.
Halogen and oil-filled radiators are the cheapest heaters as they provide instant heat and long-lasting warmth, so they don't need to be used for as long. Heaters that distribute heat upwards are also cheaper to run as the room warms up quicker.
Which is the most energy-efficient portable heater
The most energy-efficient portable heaters are oil-filled ones, as 99% of the electricity used is converted into heat. The diathermic oil inside the heater retains the heat for longer versus other heaters such as fan ones.
To find out how energy efficient your portable heater is likely to be, check the product's energy rating. The higher the rating, the more efficient it is likely to be.
Where to buy portable heaters in the UK
You can buy a portable heater online or in person at homeware stores. There are hundreds of different makes and models, so it's worth thinking about your budget, desired size and the type of heater you're looking for before shopping around.
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