Kerosene is a much cheaper fuel source than electricity. If you use a kerosene heater, you’ll likely spend $70 less to operate it during the winter season than electric heaters.
While kerosene units are more efficient than electric models, not all of them are created equal. Some will be feature-packed than others, some will produce more heat than others, and some will be more efficient than others.
If you want to save even more money while heating your home, you must find the most efficient kerosene heater. According to Department of Energy projections, these kerosene units can help you save between $100 to $600 depending on your room’s size and geographic location.
Check out these kerosene heaters and pick one depending on your needs.
Most Efficient Kerosene Heaters For Indoor Use
How Does a Kerosene Heater Work?
A kerosene heater is a simple device. It’s an electric coil that heats up and warms the space around it, plus a glass container where you put the fuel. To use your heater for heating your room or as backup heat when the power goes out:
- Fill the tank with water to avoid air bubbles in the system that can cause pressure build-up, leading to damage of components inside.
- Place near any combustible items such as paper towels or curtains since they are likely to catch fire if exposed to high flame temperatures from being too close.
- Turn on within 18″ of all furniture so as not to melt delicate vinyl surfaces like those found on computer chairs or couches.
- Ensure a window is open in case of fire.
- Turn off if going to bed or leaving the house.
After using your kerosene heater, make sure you wait at least an hour before touching it. This will ensure that all components have cooled down, and any residual heat won’t cause damage when touched too soon afterward.
If you don’t do this, there’s a chance of burns, leading to serious injury! After turning off your kerosene heater, leave it on its side with the fuel tank cap slightly loose so as not to trap pressure inside (which can also result in dangerous consequences).
Take care never to overfill the water reservoir since doing so may crack welds surrounding walls holding glass components together; instead, fill around halfway.
In the event of a power outage, make sure your backup heater is filled with kerosene before turning it on since you won’t have access to water as an added safety precaution. If this isn’t possible, only use the heater for brief periods and never leave it unattended!
How to Buy a Kerosene Heater
Buying a kerosene heater requires you to check various factors to ensure you’re getting a high-quality product. Some of the things you need to check when purchasing a kerosene heater include:
- The room size the heater is designed to heat. Effectiveness of insulation or double walls in heating your home (if using for the whole house).
- BTUs/hour, which tells you how much heat the unit will produce.
- Automatic shut off if tipped over.
- How easy it is to maintain and fill with fuel.
- We recommend reading customer reviews online before purchasing a kerosene heater. This way, you can see what other customers are saying about their experience with different models. You’ll also be able to find price comparisons among various retailers so that you get the best deal possible.
Indoor Use of Kerosene Heater
There are various indoor uses of kerosene heaters. They include:
- Fueling – Fueling up your kerosene heater is easy, but it’s important to read the manual so that you know how much fuel your unit needs. If less fuel is added before starting the heater, this can cause some significant problems! Unvented heaters should be used in well-ventilated areas only and never inside a bedroom or other small room since they release carbon monoxide into the air.
- Locations – It’s important to find a good location for your kerosene heater. This best place is on an elevated surface, away from flammable objects and in a well-ventilated area.
- Precautions – Some kerosene heater models have safety features that shut off the unit if it is tipped over, but others do not. Make sure to read over your manual and understand any safety precautions before using this type of heating advice.
Kerosene vs Propane Heating
There are a few differences between kerosene and propane heaters. These include:
Kerosene heats more evenly than propane, which means it’s easier to keep the room at a comfortable temperature throughout.
Propane is considered less safe since you have to refill tanks regularly and risk spilling fuel; this causes danger for both yourself and your home.
The cost of using kerosene vs propane varies depending on where you purchase these fuels, as well as how much insulation or double walls there are in your house (for whole-home heating).
For indoor use only – neither type should be used outside because they produce carbon monoxide gas that can result in health issues such as nausea, vomiting, headaches, and dizziness.
Propane has a higher BTU/hour than kerosene heaters, which will produce more heat per hour when in use.
There are many benefits to using both types of heating devices, but for indoor use only! Both propane and kerosene heaters provide an alternative way to keep warm during the winter months without relying on electricity or other fossil fuels.
However, they should not be used inside because they release carbon monoxide gas into your home’s air supply, resulting in serious health problems if you breathe too much of this chemical over time.
The best place for these heating devices is outdoors, where plenty of ventilation is available so that gases don’t build up indoors. Therefore, you should conduct proper research to ensure that you’re purchasing a high-quality kerosene heater.
How to Properly Care for and Maintain a Kerosene Heater
Kerosene heaters can last for a very long time, but they need to be adequately cared for and maintained to continue working efficiently. We have included a troubleshooting guide if your kerosene heater won’t light.
To keep your kerosene heater lasting as long as possible, you must adhere to the following guidelines:
- Use clean fuel – Dirt or water mixed into the fuel tank will clog the nozzle and lines, which prevents the flow of fuel from reaching the unit itself.
- Don’t spill any fuel when filling up – if spilled onto clothing; this is highly flammable, so make sure not to smoke around where you’re fueling up your heater! As well, never use gasoline instead of kerosene because it causes damage over time with continued usage.
- Always have enough fuel in your tank – this is an easy way to ensure that the unit doesn’t break down.
- Change wicks when necessary and scrutinize them before changing out – you can tell if a wick needs replacement by feeling it: if it’s brittle, cracked, or broken, then make sure to change it immediately! You must also know how long a kerosene heater wick should last before replacing it.
- If there are any small cracks or holes anywhere on the heater itself, don’t use it until they’ve been appropriately patched up because these areas aren’t safe for usage and pose a serious fire hazard.
- Ensure to store kerosene heaters away from children after using so that no one accidentally spills fuel onto themselves, which could cause burns and other injuries.
- Store at least two feet away from walls and any other flammable materials.
- Operate with an adult present and never leave kerosene heaters running when you’re not at home. Suppose the device is left unattended for even a brief period. In that case, it can lead to serious damages and injuries if knocked over by accident or bumped into by someone else in your household who didn’t realize that it was hot.
If you follow these guidelines, then regular maintenance will be easy and simple! Be sure to always check on your heater before using it each day to ensure there aren’t any problems arising from improper care and maintenance procedures.
The Best Safety Tips of Kerosene Heaters
To ensure that you’re using a kerosene heater safely and adequately, follow these tips, which will help to prevent accidents from occurring:
- Always use with adult supervision – This is especially important if anyone in your household has children or pets, as they could knock it over by accident. Although some models have been designed for indoor usage, even those should only be used under the direct guidance of an adult who knows how to operate them without fail!
- Keep at least two feet away from any flammable materials, including fabric curtains and furniture, since heat can quickly cause fires. Make sure the area surrounding your heater is clear before leaving, so no one accidentally bumps into it when walking through your home. Do not place on surfaces made out of wood because excess heat can cause it to catch fire.
- Kerosene heaters are excellent heating devices that provide quick and efficient energy for your home, but they need to be properly cared for to ensure safety at all times. Knowing how often you should change the wick and what needs regular patching up after accidents occur will help prevent any major damages from taking place, which could potentially ruin your heater!
- Do not use with extension cords or power strips – If possible, always plug directly into the wall socket without using an additional cord because kerosene heaters draw a large amount of electricity when turned on, so this poses a serious problem if there isn’t enough space behind furniture where outlets may be located.
- If you must use it with an extension cord, make sure it’s the proper size and length for your heater as well as heavy-duty enough to handle high power demands.
- Ensure that there is no water in the kerosene – If you’re refilling, always check inside the tank first before adding fuel because this could cause serious damage with continued usage. If any water gets into the container, then immediately stop using until a professional can fix the problem since this will lead to rusting/corrosion over time, limiting energy efficiency.
- Always be careful when filling up, so wicks do not become saturated by accident! Never use gasoline instead of kerosene – never substitute one product for another unless specifically instructed otherwise because gas causes more harm than good due to increased levels of fumes and vapors. This could lead to fires or even injuries if not handled carefully, so it’s best always to be sure of what you’re using before continuing with procedures!
- Always have a fire extinguisher on hand – This is especially important when refilling the fuel tank and during any heating/operation process for your kerosene heater. If there does happen to be an accident, then having one readily available can help put out flames quickly without causing damage due to spreading too far within the home itself!
- Keep vents clear of debris – make sure all heating vents are free from obstructions such as furniture or clothing because these blockages will prevent heat from escaping, which leads to dangerous overheating issues over time.
- Make sure you replace the kerosene heater wick as recommended by the manufacturer
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Kerosene Heater Fumes Harmful?
When appropriately used, kerosene heaters are considered safe for indoor use, but they still produce fumes that aren’t healthy to breathe in. To avoid any issues with carbon monoxide poisoning, always keep your heater vented to the outside of the home!
This will help ensure safety while eliminating chances of contamination inside the air itself, leading to serious problems like dizziness and headaches over time due to prolonged use.
Although kerosene heaters do put out some harmful levels of gasses within the surrounding area, it’s important not to panic too quickly because there are ways you can combat this issue.
One way is by using a fan at low speed behind the heater vent since this helps circulate fresh air throughout the room without pushing contaminants back into your living space.
Is It Safe to Sleep with A Kerosene Heater On?
Yes, you can safely sleep with a kerosene heater on as long as it’s the proper size for your room and there is no combustible material within several feet.
Be sure that all windows are closed before going to bed at night because this will ensure that fumes won’t escape into the outside air, which could be harmful if inhaled suddenly without enough time to react accordingly.
Although some consumers may prefer electric heaters since they tend to take less time to warm up rooms, these devices also have disadvantages such as higher energy bills over time due to consistent use.
In contrast, kerosene heaters provide instant warmth from the fuel tank but remain just as efficient when not in constant operation, so it depends on your personal preference.
What Is The Best Way To Store A Kerosene Heater?
First and foremost, kerosene heaters should not be kept with still kerosene in the tank. Before storage, all fuel should be removed. It must be properly cleaned and packed after purchase using the packing in which the item was delivered.
Wrap the electrical cord carefully with a twist tie to prevent damage when the appliance is not in use. Finally, keep the heater, as well as the kerosene containers, away from any dampness.
Are Kerosene Heaters Efficient?
Kerosene heaters are more efficient than electric space heaters and other types of heaters. Kerosene is cheaper than electricity. You will pay higher amounts for using an electric heater as a supplemental heat source in your house than when using a kerosene heater.
Besides, kerosene heaters tend to have higher heating capacities than electric heaters. The inbuilt fan in kerosene heaters ensures the effective distribution of heat across large indoor and outdoor spaces.
Therefore, the relatively high heating capacity and the low operational and maintenance costs of kerosene heaters make them more efficient than electric heaters.
How Long will a Gallon of Kerosene Burn?
Although kerosene heaters have different sizes of tanks, the larger types can hold 1.2 liters when full. A 1.2-gallon fuel tank can keep a heater running for up to 14 hours.
This means that 1.2 gallons of fuel can be used to provide warmth for 14 hours. Therefore, one gallon of kerosene can keep a heater on for 11.6 hours.
Remember that the rate at which a heater burns fuel depends on the settings. If you keep the heater in a high-temperature setting, then the quality of consumption of fuel will be correspondingly high.
Always use high-quality kerosene for maximum efficiency. Using 1K-grade fuel is more efficient than utilizing lower-grade types that retail at low prices.
Here are small kerosene heaters for maximum efficiency
Does Kerosene Burn Cleaner than Diesel?
Kerosene burns cleaner than diesel because of its properties. Kerosene is designated as the number 1 fuel because it is lighter than other types, including diesel.
Because of its light nature, kerosene produces much less energy than diesel when burned. A gallon of kerosene produces 135,000 BTUs of energy while that of diesel produces 139,000 BTUs.
Furthermore, kerosene produces less soot and other byproducts of the combustion process, including Sulphur dioxide and carbon monoxide gases than other fuels.
Its chemical composition is less complex than that of other fuels, including diesel. The difference in the weight and level of chemical complexity are the reasons why kerosene burns cleaner than diesel and different types of fuels.
For more information read out kerosene vs diesel heater guide.
Most Efficient Kerosene Heaters Reviews
1. Dura Heat Indoor Kerosene Heater
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Thanks to its remarkable heating capacity, the Dura Heat Indoor Kerosene heater is one of the most efficient kerosene heaters.
With a BTU rating of 23,000, the heater can provide sufficient heat to warm large indoor and outdoor spaces. Moreover, it can provide warmth and light during cold winter nights when an interruption in the power supply occurs.
You will find it convenient to use this heater because the control knobs are appropriately positioned on its surface. You can get the heater up and running or switch it off at the flip of a switch.
This control level makes it easy for you to switch the heater off when leaving the house and getting back on and running when you get back.
The only significant drawback of using this heater is that its surface becomes very hot after some time. You will have to keep your kids and pets away from the heater to avoid burns and related accidents.
- Excellent heating capacity, thanks to a 23,000 BTU rating
- Easy control because the buttons are positioned for easy reach
- The 360 degrees design provides effective heating
- Its surface and the guard become very hot
2. Sengoku HeatMate 10,000-BTU Portable Indoor/Outdoor Omni-Radiant Kerosene Heater
- Perfect for emergency heating or zone heating of rooms up to 380 square feet
- The large capacity 1.2 gallon/4.5 liter fuel tank will keep you warm for up to 14 hours on one fill
- Features an automatic safety shut off, easy push button start (no matches or electricity required), EZ Flame adjuster, tip over switch, and protective safety grills.
- This heater is also great for outdoor usage on patio, deck, gazebo and other recreational areas
- It’s new burner design protects from the wind and ensures proper performance.
- Ideal for both everyday supplemental heating and emergency situations
- Portable 10,000-BTU kerosene heater for rooms up to 380 square feet
- Automatic push-button ignition; 1.2-gallon fuel capacity provides 12 to 14 hours of heat
- Ideal for both everyday supplemental heating and emergency situations
- Fuel gauge; automatic safety shut-off; siphon pump and batteries included
The Sengoku HeatMate is designed to heat small indoor and outdoor spaces that measure up to 380 square feet. It features a specially-designed burner that can withstand strong winds and other elements’ effects and continue delivering excellent heating performance.
Additionally, the heater is very portable because of its compact design, small footprint, and large grills. Moreover, it has large grills at its bottom to maximize its stability. This feature reduces the chances of the heater falling when it is accidentally knocked.
The Sengoku HeatMate has all the safety features that you would expect to find in a high-quality kerosene heater. The automatic switch prevents the occurrence of explosions if the temperature of the heater rises rapidly. The tip-over switch, which is activated when the heater falls, prevents fires if the fuel spills.
Despite its excellent level of portability and inbuilt safety features, this has several weaknesses. The most significant one relates to its 10,000 BTU rating.
This capacity is the lowest level for kerosene heaters that are currently available on the market. Although the heater can properly warm indoor and outdoor spaces, its usefulness is limited to small areas.
- Ideal for indoor and outdoor heating because of its portability and heating strength
- It has advanced safety features, including automatic shutoff
- Highly portable for convenience and ease of use
- Small heating capacity of 1,000 BTU rating that is suitable for small spaces only
3. Sengoku KeroHeat 23,500-BTU Indoor/Outdoor Portable Convection Kerosene Heater, CV-23K
- Excellent emergency heat source
- No matches or electricity needed
- Heats approximately a 1000 square foot room
- Fuel capacity of 1.9 gallons
- 1.9 gallons of kerosene will provide 12 hours of heat
- Push button start, EZ flame adjuster and automatic shut off
The Sengoku KeroHeat is a versatile and highly efficient kerosene heater ideal for large indoor and outdoor locations.
With a massive fuel capacity of 1.9 gallons, a sturdy design, and the presence of protective grills, this heater can withstand all the challenges of being used outdoors. You can rely on it to provide warmth for more than 15 hours after one fill of the fuel tank.
This heater comes with all the accessories that you would need for convenient use, including four C batteries and a manual siphon pump. The manual siphon pumps help in the safe and clean transfer of kerosene to the heater.
The automatic ignition system and EZ flame adjuster enhance the level of convenience and efficiency of the heater. By properly adjusting the flame, you can ensure that the heater burns all the fuel and air mixture in the proper ratio.
This simple trick minimizes the production of toxic gases and soot and provides the effective conversion of fuel to heat.
- The heater has a long runtime of more than 12 hours because of a massive 1.9 fuel tank
- Excellent 360-degrees heating performance ideal for providing heat across entire spaces
- The EZ flame adjuster and automatic switch improves convenience and efficiency
- Its narrow base does not provide adequate protection if the heater is knocked over.
4. Dyna-Glo RMC-95C6B Indoor Kerosene Convection Heater
- 23,000 BTU/hour
- Heats up to 1,000 SQ.FT.
- NO ELECTRICITY NEEDED
- Save on utility bills!
- Dependable - Ideal for emergency use or daily use
- Economical – Cut heating bills by warming only occupied areas
- Convenient - Easy to use automatic ignition and one-touch shut-off
If you are looking for a highly effective kerosene heater for warming spaces such as basements, cabins, garages, and RVs, then the Dyna-Glo RMC-95C6B may be the ideal choice. It is designed for warming large areas that measure up to 1,000 square feet.
Furthermore, it is easy to move the heater around and provide zonal heating in larger areas. By so doing, one can have a warm and comfortable space without wasting much money on fuel or even electricity.
It is straightforward to use this heater even in emergencies. The automatic ignition and one-touch shut-off system save time and help get the heater on or off instantly.
Sadly, this heater has shorter runtimes than those of many others with similar heating capacity. Some kerosene heaters with 23,000 BTU-rating have runtimes of more than 12 hours while the Dyna-Glo RMC-95C6B can provide warmth for only 11 hours when its tank is full. This small difference may be significant in emergencies or when you need heat outdoors for long periods.
- It can be used for zonal heating for efficiency
- Suitable for heating spaces that are as large as 1,000 square feet
- The automatic ignition system and one-touch shut off system maximizes the ease of use
- Relatively low runtime of 11 hours
5. Avenger Portable Kerosene Multi-Fuel Heater
- True multifuel capable: kerosene, #1 and #2 diesel fuel, #1 and #2 fuel oil and JP8/Jet A fuel; not for use with biodiesel
- Thermostat offers easy heat adjustments between 40-95 °F
- Outdoor/weatherproof design; Durable black powder coating finish
- Heavy duty steel construction with 1" steel handles
- Thermally protected motor for long life
The FBD125T can be a powerful heating solution for large outdoor spaces because of its exceptional performance, ease of customization, and general design. It has two large wheels and a handle to ease mobility. Therefore, one can move the heater to any position to provide zonal heating.
This heater is exceptional because it is genuinely multifuel capable. You can conveniently use kerosene, diesel, and jet fuel in this heater to provide warmth.
Apart from the ability to warm large areas and utilize different fuel types, the FBD125T has advanced controls that you can use to personalize its performance.
One can use the thermostat to determine the heating level of this device according to the environment’s requirements. Also, you can choose the ideal heating temperature from a broad range of 40 degrees Fahrenheit to 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
However, you cannot use this heater in an indoor environment. Its massive heating capacity and sturdy design features are ideal for commercial-level heating at sites for outdoor activities.
- You can customize its performance using a thermostat and by selecting from an extensive heating range
- Highly portable because of the wheels and a sturdy handle
- A massive heating capacity of 123,000 BTU is enough for spaces as large as 3,000 square feet
- Designed for outdoor use only
You can also read about Reddy heater troubleshooting tips
A kerosene heater is an important type of space heater to include in your winter heating plan. The most efficient kerosene heater will not only reduce your heating bills but also be helpful during power outages.
If you use them as per the manufacturer’s guidelines, kerosene heaters are safe and will help keep your home comfortable and your energy costs lower.