Top 8 Infrared Space Heater Reviews and Buying Guide 2019

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What is the best infrared heater?

There are many types and styles of infrared heater, and cost varies quite a bit. The best infrared heater for you depends on what you’re looking for – large room, portable, small, fireplace style, garage, most efficient, overall best space heater, etc.

This Best Infrared Heater Reviews and Guide starts with reviews of 8 highly rated models, each in its own niche.

The Guide that follows is a comprehensive source for research information that will assist you in choosing the right infrared heater for your purposes and budget.

Here are the top heaters in 8 categories.

      Image                    Product

Duraflame 9HM8101-O142 

  • 1500W, 5,200 BTUs
  • Overheat shutoff
  • Remote control, Thermostat

Overall Best

AmazonBasics

  • 1500/1000W, 2 Settings
  • Tip-Over And Overheat Protection
  • Real wood cabinet, Timer, Remote

Best Large Room

Optimus H-8013 Infrared 

  • 1500/1000/500W, 3 Settings
  • Overheat protection
  • Remote control, Extremely quiet

Best Portable

Duraflame 5HM8000-O142

  • 1500W, 5,200 BTUs
  • Tip-Over And Overheat Protection
  • Oscillation, Small footprint

Best Tower

Heat Storm Phoenix

  • 1500/750W, 2 Settings
  • HMS Technology
  • Remote Control, Built in thermostat

Best Wall

Duraflame Fireplace

  • 1500W, 5,200 BTUs
  • Flame color and brightness are adjustable
  • Over Heat Protection

Best Fireplace

Optimus H-5511

  • 800/400W, 2 Settings
  • Tip-Over And Overheat Protection
  • For Small Rooms

Best Affordable

Muskoka Patio Heater

  • 3 Levels of Heating up to 3000W
  • Water Proof
  • Remote Control

Best Outdoor

Reviews of The Best Infrared Heaters

These quick reviews of the top infrared heaters include an option to buy them at the lowest current price. Or simply select the link to get more information. 

We’ve worked to ensure the models we’ve selected are truly the best infrared heater in each category.

If you don’t like the model we’ve listed, Amazon will show similar models for you to consider once you click or tap the price link.

Best Overall Infrared Heater

#1 Duraflame 9HM8101-O142 Portable Heater

Duraflame is the most trusted name in the infrared heater market. The best infrared heater heats up to 1,000 square feet, stays cool to the touch and doesn’t dry out the air like a furnace. It’s a 1500-watt infrared heater.

  • Pros: Remote control. LED display. Thermostat. Furniture-quality cabinet. Overheat shutoff. Quiet operation.
  • Cons: No humidifier. A few models have them, but humidifiers break too easily. We don’t recommend heaters with humidifiers.
  • Best Use: Living room, Kitchen, bedroom suite, apartments, cabins – it has caster wheels and is easy to move. Portability makes it very versatile.

Best Large Room Infrared Heater

#2 AmazonBasics Portable Space Heater 1500W

Amazon picks popular niches and delivers a quality product. This unit costs less too, making it an excellent value.

  • Pros: Heats 1,000 square feet. Real wood cabinet. Timer. Remote. Tip-over and Overheat safety features.
  • Cons: Warranty just 1 year compared to the 3-year Duraflame warranty.
  • Best Use: Small apartments, bedroom suites, kitchens, living rooms, cabins. Safe for kids and pets.

Best Portable Infrared Heater

#3 Optimus H-8013 Quartz Heater

You save money with space heating by lowering your home’s temperature and using the heater to warm only the room you’re using. A heater that is easy to move like this highly rated model is ideal.

  • Pros: 500/1000/1500 watt settings. Compact design. Remote control. Extremely quiet. Half the weight (12lbs) of cabinet models. Overheat protection.
  • Cons: It doesn’t have casters (but it’s quite light).
  • Best Use: If you plan to use the heater in rooms of various sizes, this is perfect. It’s light and has 3 heat settings for personal/small room, medium room and large room use.

Best Tower Infrared Heater

#4 Duraflame 5HM8000-O142 Portable Tower Heater

This Duraflame infrared heater saves space with the tower design. And it oscillates too.

  • Pros: Heats up to 1,000 square feet. Oscillation. Small footprint. Attractive oak cabinet. Available in Cherry too (just choose the link, and select the Cherry option).
  • Cons: A small percentage don’t work when they arrive (true of most heater brands). But Amazon has a free, easy return policy.  
  • Best Use: In rooms where floor space is limited. Also works well in a corner, oscillating to distribute heat to the room.

Best Wall Infrared Heater

#5 Heat Storm Phoenix Floor to Wall Space Heater

Get your heater entirely off the ground with this versatile infrared heater. Most users mount it on the wall, but if you prefer portability, attach the feet and move it anywhere.

  • Pros: 750/1500 watt settings. Saves floor space. Remote included.
  • Cons: Designed for just 300 square feet (15x20, for example). 
  • Best Use: It’s ideal for the bathroom, bedroom, RV and anywhere you want to reduce floor clutter. When wall-mounted, it isn’t a trip hazard, so it is popular with anyone concerned about trip-and-fall risks.

Best Fireplace Infrared Heater

#6 Duraflame Electric Quartz Fireplace Stove

If you enjoy ambience with your heat, this highly rated Duraflame infrared heater helps to create a cozy, warm setting. It’s available in 5 colors. Follow the link below and pick your color. This unit has all the feature bells & whistles.

  • Pros: Realistic fireplace design. 3D flame effect. Flame color and brightness are adjustable. Heats 1,000 square feet.
  • Cons: It’s not easily portable, though weight is less than 30lbs. 
  • Best Use: Dens, bedrooms, cabins and other places you want warmth and beauty.

Best Affordable Infrared Heater

#7 Optimus H-5511 Quartz Radiant Heater

If you need a heater once in a while and don’t want to spend a lot of money, this quartz infrared heater is a bargain.

  • Pros: 400/800 watt settings. Tip-over & Overheat shutoff.
  • Cons: Not as durable as most.
  • Best Use: Occasional heating in small rooms such as bedroom, bathroom or office. Nice for under a desk too.

Best Outdoor Infrared Heater

#8 Muskoka SunWave 3000W with Remote Patio Heater

Enjoy your deck or patio earlier in the spring and later into autumn with this powerful, waterproof infrared heater. This unit is popular for shops and garages too.

  • Pros: 3 levels of heating up to 3000 watts. Commercial-grade quality. Waterproof design. Remote control.
  • Cons: 220/240 volt outlet required.
  • Best Use: Decks, patios and garages.

You might also like:

A less expensive 1500-watt SunWave is available too.

The Muskoka Heater Stand is perfect for the 3000 or 1500 watt heater. It allows you to move the heater, making it portable.

Guide Section

The top issues consumers research are discussed in this guide. Use this Navigation to read the information that fits your interests.

Are Infrared Heaters Safe?

Yes. Infrared is totally safe. In fact, it is safer than most space heaters because the risk of fire is far less. More on that later.

Similar questions are:

  • What is Infrared Heat?
  • How does Infrared Heat Work?

Infrared isn’t a term most of us hear every day. It sounds a little sci-fi. That’s especially true when you read one expert’s definition:

“Infrared heaters radiate electromagnetic waves causing molecules to vibrate and release energy, heating up any object hit by these waves.”

But again, infrared heaters are safe. Here’s why.

First, yes, infrared is a type of radiation. That simply means the energy “radiates” or moves out from the source. If we say, “radiant heat,” it doesn’t sound as risky.

Even standard “resistive/resistance” heat space heater with a hot coil provide radiant heat unless they have a fan. The coil gets hot, and the heat gradually moves further from the heat source.

But infrared heaters don’t get hot like that. Most use terminology like “cool touch” in their description.

  • The bulbs that emit the waves don’t get very hot.
  • The infrared waves don’t heat until they contact an object.

Secondly, the waves from an infrared heater are not strong enough to penetrate your skin. They just hit the skin and warm it up. It is a very weak, very safe kind of energy.

Infrared heat is the type of heat the sun provides. Stand in the shade, and you’re cool. Get out into the sun, and its radiant heat hits you – warming you up instantly.

Are infrared heaters safer than other types?

Again, the answer is a definite YES.

Infrared heat sources are relatively cool to the touch. They do not cause burns, and they do not catch things on fire.

That’s why in marketing pictures for infrared heaters you often see a child and/or a pet close to the heater.

Additionally, infrared heaters:

  • DON’T create flames, like propane, gas and other fossil fuel heaters
  • DON’T produce carbon monoxide like fossil fuel heaters
  • DON’T reduce oxygen levels like heaters that need oxygen for combustion
  • DON’T use super-hot elements like electric heaters

The bottom line is that infrared heaters are the safest way to heat your home. Check other Top Safest Space Heaters in our website.

How Will You Use your Infrared Heater?

Your answers to a few questions will assist you in deciding which type is best for your purposes.

How large is the space you want to heat?

Obviously, the larger the space, the more heat the heater should produce.

There is no absolute guideline for size because the outside temperature and the insulation value in the walls and ceiling are not the same for every situation.

However, let’s consider that your home or commercial building has decent insulation and a central heat source that is working.

If so, here is how to size an infrared heater that will provide a boost in heating to make the area more comfortable:

Capacity Needed

Area To Be Heated

400 watts

Up to 225 square feet

500 watts

Up to 300 square feet

750 watts

Up to 550 square feet

1000 watts

Up to 700 square feet

1500 watts

Up to 1,100 square feet

3000 watts

Up to 2,200 square feet

400 to 500 watts is right for under a desk or on a desktop or workbench when you want to warm your hands. It’s a decent size for a small bedroom or home office too.

750 watts is a good size for a medium-size room such as a living room or bedroom suite.

1000 watts will heat a large room, upstairs of a 1500 square foot home or a small or medium-size apartment.

1500 watts is a good choice for larger apartments, basements and cabins.

These are for indoors, obviously.

There are too many factors to consider when sizing an infrared heater for outdoor use. Basically, the colder the temperature, the bigger the heater should be.

Do you want to move the heater?

Some infrared heaters are easier to move than others.

If you plan to use the infrared heater in rooms of different sizes, consider one with two or more heat settings.

Larger units have casters to make them easy to move.

Is floor space tight?

Large-room infrared heaters are the most popular type. But they occupy a good chunk of floor space.

If space is at a premium, consider a tower infrared heater or a wall-mounted unit. Either will take up less space.

The benefit of tower space heater is that it is portable.

The advantage of a wall unit is that it is off the floor entirely. This optimizes floor space. And if you have kids or pets that “get into everything,” a wall unit can be mounted out of their reach. 

What is your budget?

Infrared heaters start at about $30. The average cost is $65-$200 depending on its type, size and features. Some cost quite a bit more.

The next section is about types. Each type (Large room, tower, portable, etc.) is explained, and costs are given. It will help you select an infrared space heater in your price range.

What’s your Style? Infrared Heater Types

In our list of the Best Infrared Heaters, we identified 7 different styles. Here they are with a description, pros, cons and costs.

Large Room Infrared Heaters

These are the bestselling infrared heaters. All the top brands make them including Duraflame, Mr. Infrared, HeatSmart, EdenPure and AmazonBasics.

Cost: About $80 - $300.

Pros

  • Large capacity to heat up to 1,100 square feet. Many have attractive wood cabinets, so they look like a piece of furniture rather than a heater. Thermostats are precise.

Cons

  • Most are 1,500 watts, and that consumes quite a bit of energy. Just keep in mind that these are intended for use as supplemental heat, and shouldn’t be the main source of heat in your home.

The AmazonBasics Portable Space Heater 1500W made our Best Infrared Heater list because it offers good quality at a very competitive cost.

We really like the Unique Heat infrared heater for its quality and durability. You get what you pay for, but still, it’s on the high end of the price spectrum. We’d call it a premium infrared heater. It is highly rated by users.

Portable Infrared Heaters

An infrared heater is most energy efficient when used wisely. In general, any electric heat source costs more to operate than central heating like a heat pump or furnace.

However, you can reduce energy use and cost by keeping your home cooler and using an infrared heater only in the room you are occupying.

That’s where a portable infrared heater is so useful. Turn the central HVAC thermostat down, and keep the kitchen, TV room or bedroom toasty warm with a portable infrared heater.

Cost: $30 or so for cheap portable infrared heaters. Cost increases to about $100 for the best portable infrared heaters.

Pros

  • Most have lower heat settings, 500 watts or 1,000 watts, than a large-room infrared heater.

Cons

  • Less heating capacity than a 1,500 watt heater.

That’s one of the reasons the Optimus H-8013 Infrared Quartz Heater is so attractive. It has 3 heat settings: 500, 1000 and 1500 watts – and its portable. Select the heat capacity you need for the size of the room, from a bathroom to a large zone in your home. It’s versatile. You never have to use more heat than you need.

Tower Infrared Heaters

This style is also available in ceramic heaters.

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Pros

  • The small footprint is perfect for areas where space is limited – a small bedroom, your RV/camper or a busy living room. Many have oscillation to distribute heat from 50 to 90 degrees. Most tower infrared heaters have excellent features like LED display, digital/precise thermostat and multiple heat and fan stages. They’re portable.

Cons

  • Infrared tower heaters easier to knock over than cabinet style heaters. Most will automatically turn off if tipped over, but still, it’s a hassle to have to pick it up if the dog or a rambunctious toddler keeps knocking it over. 

Cost: The price range is $100 - $200.

Wall Infrared Heaters

If you really want to clear up floor space, then a wall mounted infrared heater is ideal. Our readers choose wall infrared heaters for tight spaces and when someone in the household is at risk for tripping and falling.  

Pros

  • The heater is off the ground. Some, like the Heat Storm Phoenix Floor to Wall Infrared Space Heater in our list come with attachable feet for use on the floor. If placed on the floor, they can be set against a wall without risk of heat damage.

Cons

  • Mounting a heater on the wall can be a bit difficult. And it puts holes in the wall that you might have to patch later.

Cost: About $80 is the average.

Fireplace Infrared Heaters

Fewer homes have wood-burning fireplaces these days. That’s where an infrared fireplace heater can fill a void.

Cost: Pricing starts at about $100, but expect to pay $150 to $200 for the most realistic appearance of fire.

Pros

  • There’s no risk of fire. The heat is more efficient too. With wood fires, most of the heat goes up the chimney. Most infrared fireplace style heaters weigh about 30 pounds. That makes them light enough to carry from the living room to the bedroom or out onto the deck. You can enjoy the ambience wherever you want it.

Cons

  • There’s no crackle, snap or the aroma of burning hardwood. And some offer a more realistic look than others. We chose the Duraflame Infrared Fireplace Stove because it has the most authentic look to the “flames.” The classic freestanding fireplace design is nice too. It comes in 5 colors.

The Duraflame Electric DFI-550-36 Infrared Quartz Fireplace Stove Heater looks more like simmering coals, but wow, the price is fantastic. It has the same heating capacity.

Affordable Infrared Heaters

If you want an affordable infrared heater that won’t catch anything on fire, this category is worth considering.

Pros

  • Cheap – as in not very expensive. Most create enough heat to be personal or small-room heaters.

Cons

  • These are not designed to be “workhorse” heaters. We stress “occasional” use when discussing infrared heaters in this category. If you live in a warm climate and only need a little extra heat once in a while, then one of these heaters will likely meet your needs. They are a good choice for part-time uses too like an RV, cabin or guest apartment.

Cost: Less than $50.

Outdoor Infrared Heaters

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These heaters allow you to enjoy outdoor living for more of the year. Quality and performance varies, so research your options thoroughly before buying.

Pros

  • Direct, high-capacity heat. Some, like the Muskoka Lifestyle Products Commercial SunWave are waterproof for use in rain or snow. Most can be mounted to a wall or hung from a stand for portability.

Cons

  • The waterproof models are pretty expensive, but it really depends on how much you value being able to take fuller advantage of your deck, patio, swimming pool or other outdoor space.

Cost: Cost starts about $200 for 1500-watt models. The price of 3000 watt outdoor infrared heaters is $400-$500.

Infrared Heater Best Practices

Here are a few tips for using an infrared heater most efficiently.

Use an infrared heater for supplemental heat. This probably goes without saying, but no space heater including an infrared heater should be your primary heat source. They are designed to boost warmth in a room or area not adequately heated by the furnace, heat pump, boiler or other central heat unit.

Read and follow the User Manual information. Safety is always a concern with heaters. Many of the fires caused by heaters are the result of not using the appliance properly or using it properly.

It is true that infrared heaters are far less likely to cause a fire than other space heaters. Knowing the correct way to use any heater is still a good idea.

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