Camping is fun. Nothing can be compared to the feeling of breathing the fresh air, watching the beautiful sunset, and listening to the nice melodies of birds chirping. But hey, just as nature is nice and beautiful, remember it can be hostile as well. The nights can be incredibly cold, especially during those cold months. Your camping blanket might not cut it. You need to invest in a tent heater to keep you warm and comfortable as you enjoy your time.
The best thing about a camping tent is that it has a wide range of applications. Apart from heating your camping tent to warm your sleeping area, you can also use a portable one for your fishing hut, hunting blind or even boat. Yes, they are that versatile!
But how do you know you are picking the right one? Are there things you should keep in mind as you begin your shopping? Well, we got all the answers for you in this review. Go through our best tent heaters as well as the buying guide to ensure you pick something worth your money and time!
Top 10 Tent Heaters of 2020 Reviewed
- Top 10 Tent Heaters of 2020 Reviewed
- 1. Mr. Heater F232017 MH9BXRV Buddy Grey Indoor-Safe Portable RV Radiant Heater
- 2. Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater
- 3. Heat Storm HS-1500-ISA Portable Infrared Heater
- 4. Honeywell HHF360V 360-Degree Fan Forced Surround Heater
- 5. Mr. Heater F215100 MH4B Little Buddy 3800-BTU Indoor Safe Propane Heater
- 6. Comfort Zone CZ707 1500-Watt Compact Utility Heater
- 7. Honeywell HCE 100B Beat Bud Ceramic Personal Heater
- 8. Camco 57331 Olympic Wave-3 3000 BTU Gas Catalytic Heater
- 9. Dr. Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater
- 10. TRUSTECH Air Circular Fan 2-in-1 Portable Quiet Cooling w/Space Heater
- How to Choose the Best Tent Heater – Buying Guide
1. Mr. Heater F232017 MH9BXRV Buddy Grey Indoor-Safe Portable RV Radiant Heater
- A lightweight, powerful outdoor heater
- Works in three different modes
- Has an automatic shut-off switch for safety
- Does not require electricity
- Designed for outdoor use only, you cannot use it in the house
- The package does not include a propane tank
- May cause fire if left burning overnight
Best RV Radiant Heater
It can get extremely cold when out camping. With the Mr. Heater Portable RV Radiant heater, you will never complain of a cold night again. It is a powerful, efficient heater that relies on a 20-pound bulk propane heater. When it comes to the heating ability, this is a heavy-duty device. It can heat up a space as big as 1,000 square feet. The head burner is adjustable up to 360 degrees and can rotate to the maximum angle of 180 degrees.
There is nothing technical about this product, given how easy it is to use. It has a TE ignition valve for quick, efficient ignition. Don’t be afraid of using it in wet and dump conditions since it is water-resistant. Its lightweight nature makes it suitable for camping and other outdoor activities.
With three different heating settings, the unit can provide 29,000 BTU, 36,000 BTU or 45,000 BTU. When you buy the heater, it will come without a propane tank. So, you have to buy it separately.
2. Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater
- An included base prevents it from tipping over
- Has an automatic shut-off valve for extra safety
- The burner is made of stainless steel
- It is likely to cause a fire if not appropriately used
- May cause carbon monoxide poisoning where there is no proper ventilation
Best Outdoor Propane Heater
What Texsport lacks in design, it has in functionality. It may not be aesthetically appealing to the eye, but it will definitely make your camping experience more bearable. If you are looking for a quick-acting, ultra-portable, outdoor propane heater, then this is it. The heater puts out more than 3,000 BTU of heat, making it an efficient, powerful product. Even though it lacks multi-stage controls, it has a valve which helps in fine-tuning to a temperature you want.
The Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater features a large 16.7-ounce propane tank making it suitable for prolonged camping sessions. It features an automatic shut-off valve to protect you from unnecessary fire accidents. That’s in addition to a pressure regulator. The burner is made of stainless steel.
When using it in a tent, you have to provide for adequate ventilation due to the likelihood of carbon monoxide poisoning. Since it relies on gas – a highly flammable substance – you have to be very careful when using it in a tent. Importantly, it comes with a base to stop it from tipping over.
3. Heat Storm HS-1500-ISA Portable Infrared Heater
- A compact portable heater
- The thermostat regulates the ambient room temperature
- Provides up to 5,200 BTU of heat
- May not adequately heat large spaces
- Likely to overheat the plugs
- Beeps loudly every time you switch it on
Best Portable Infrared Tent Heater
The fact that this is an infrared heater means it is safer than one powered by propane. It has a 1,500-watt heating element which provides up to 5,200 BTU. This much heat is enough to warm up a 1,000 square feet space. It weighs a paltry 10 pounds, which is light enough to carry with you when camping.
It is suitable for use in a tent since it has a proprietary heat exchanger with the capability to incorporate the humidity of the room for safe, soft heating. In other words, the heater hardly consumes oxygen nor reduces humidity in the tent. Unlike propane heaters, which may cause carbon monoxide poisoning, this product is safe for indoor use.
If you do not want it to provide the full 1,500 watts of heat, you can switch to the energy-efficient mode, which is about 750 watts. At that level, it will still heat up the tent but at a much lower cost. It comes with a thermostat which efficiently regulates room temperature and helps you know the ambient temperature. You won’t have to manually reduce or increase the heat. Importantly, you can use the remote controller to fine-tune the heat in the tent.
4. Honeywell HHF360V 360-Degree Fan Forced Surround Heater
- Provides heating up to 360 degrees
- Has a thermostat for ambient temperature regulation
- A portable heater suitable for outdoor use
- The side may begin melting
- May produce a whining sound while heating up
Best Fan Surround Tent Heater
It can be very frustrating when you try to heat up a room with many people using a unidirectional heater. You will have to keep turning it to adequately heat your space. With the Honeywell HHF360V 360-Degree Fan Surround heater, you don’t need to go through that hassle. No matter which side of it you are seated, the heat will reach you.
This heater is extremely safe to use. In addition to the easy controls, it has an adjustable thermostat to keep the ambient temperature at a certain level. With two heat settings, you can save a lot of energy by opting for the lowest but most efficient heat level. Importantly, the tip-over switch ensures it turns off when accidentally tipped.
When you are through using this heater in a tent, you can carry it home to complement your heating needs. You can find this heater in a range of options including an infrared, radiant, fan-forced, ceramic, and personal heaters. In short, you will find a heater that’s suitable for you.
5. Mr. Heater F215100 MH4B Little Buddy 3800-BTU Indoor Safe Propane Heater
- Has a dedicated ODS system
- An odor-free heater with a 45-degree heating angle
- Easy to use
- One propane tank lasts up to 6 hours
- Does not have a thermostat
- Has only one heating level
Best Indoor Propane Heater
If you want a heater that’s safe enough for use in a tent, buy Mr. Heater F215100 MH4B. This product is strong enough to provide enough heat for up to 75 square feet, which is slightly larger than a tent. Suitable for use with golf carts and motorized vehicles. It heats up to an angle of 45 degrees, which is large enough for a single-occupant tent. With an advanced ODS system, the heater automatically turns off as soon as the oxygen levels in the tent become too low. You won’t have to worry about checking the tent for carbon monoxide.
Apart from being compact, the Mr. Heater F215100 is easy to use. All you need to do is touch the on and off button. With the propane cylinder is a 1-pound, disposable affair. What you can do is pack several propane cylinders is you plan for extended camping. It is also lightweight and convenient to carry with you anywhere.
We are talking about a self-sufficient heater that’s also good value for money. It is powered by propane and does not require electricity to work. One propane tank lasts up to 6 hours.
6. Comfort Zone CZ707 1500-Watt Compact Utility Heater
- An adjustable thermostat for comfortable ambient heating
- Safe to use in a tent
- An energy-efficient heater
- Some users have complained of the product arriving broken
- Not suitable for a tent with many occupants
Best Compact Utility Heater
Need a good energy-efficient heater? Look no further than the Comfort Zone CZ707 1500-Watt Compact Utility Heater. You can save on your energy costs even as you enjoy the portability of this particular device. With the heater, the inconvenience of having to stick to only one level of heat is completely eliminated. You can move from a low heat level to the medium, and then onwards to the maximum level. All that depends on your needs as an individual.
To better regulate the ambient heat in a tent, this product has a dedicated thermostat. With this feature, it is easy to ensure the temperature remains at a level with which you are comfortable. At the same time, you can get the temperature readings directly from the thermostat.
With this heater, you do not have to worry about your safety. It comes with a power indicator, which cautions you when something is amiss. In case of an accidental fall, the tip-over switch will automatically turn off. That way, you will be able to avoid unnecessary fire accidents. Also, the device has an overheat sensor, which is an additional protection layer. It is safe to carry even when heating, thanks to the stay-cool metallic housing.
7. Honeywell HCE 100B Beat Bud Ceramic Personal Heater
- An energy-efficient 250-watt heater
- A portable, multi-use heater
- Has two heating settings
- Does not have a fan function
- The heat is not sufficient for a large space
Best Energy Effience Tent Heater
When it comes to the production of high-quality personal heaters, Honeywell stands out of the crowd. Like its other products, the Honeywell HCE 100B Beat Bud Ceramic Heater is energy efficient with a capacity of only 250 watts. It is ideal for use in tents on camping expeditions. Use it to make those cold nights bearable for you. The ceramic heating element evenly distributes heat to adequately warm you up.
It is designed with a simple on/off button which makes it easy to use. At the same time, the heater is safe to use. Some of the safety features include overheating protection, cool-touch housing, and a tip-over switch. You can be sure that freak fire accidents won’t happen.
Since you will be using the heater in a tent, you will appreciate the fact that it is compact and portable, all at the same time. Simply load it in your car and hit the road to camp. The thermostat enables you to maintain to a level where very little energy is consumed. Apart from using it in a tent, this heater will come in handy at home, school or office.
8. Camco 57331 Olympic Wave-3 3000 BTU Gas Catalytic Heater
- Has a safety shut-off valve to prevent fire accidents
- A silent heater suitable for all-night heating
- The heating capacity is adjustable to two levels
- Tends to accumulate carbon monoxide in a less-ventilated tent
- Does not come with a thermostat
Best Indoor Gas Tent Heater
When it comes to heating your tent during a camping trip, you need a heater that allows for adjustment from one heat level to another. That way, it is easy to adapt to the environment. To make that easy for you, the Camco 57331 Olympic Wave-3 3000 BTU Gas Catalytic Heater comes with two heat levels at 1,600 BTU and 3,000 BTU. It is basically a wave heater which utilizes low-pressure gas. When you return home from camp, mount it on the wall to heat up the room. It is powerful enough to heat 100 square feet.
Since it does not require a rechargeable battery or an electrical outlet, this heater is ideal for dry camping. You can carry it with you to the middle of nowhere and still maintain extra comfort. Don’t worry. You can leave the heater on while sleeping, given it produces no blower or fan noise.
To minimize chances of freak fire accidents at camp, the heater comes with an automatic shut-off valve. This prevents accidental discharge of gas which can easily be ignited to cause a fire. Talk about a worry-free camping experience.
9. Dr. Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater
- It has a thermostat which can be set to a range of 36 degrees
- A super-quiet heater
- Safety features such as overheat protection and tip-over protection
- May stop working without much of a warning
- Not suitable for use off-grid
Best Portable Tent Heater for Large Tents
Electric heaters come in all shapes and sizes. However, very few live up to their billing as tent heaters. Not so for the 110 volt Dr. Infrared Portable Space Heater which is energy-efficient and safe to use. Since it relies on electricity, it is suitable for use in a tent near a dedicated power source. It will serve you well when camping in your own backyard.
It has two energy settings at either the low or high levels. The wonderful part is that it automatically goes into the power-saving mode after a short while. Every 12 hours, the automatic shut-off timer hits into motion. Additionally, the heater is extremely easy to use, given the remote controller. You can use the heater in a tent while sleeping, given the extremely low noise levels. At 39 dB, the high-pressure blower is one of the quietest.
You can set the electric thermostat to anything between 50 and 86 degree Celsius. So, it is possible to set the ambient temperature to a level you are truly comfortable with. It is a 24-pound portable heater, which you can use in a tent and any space in your house.
10. TRUSTECH Air Circular Fan 2-in-1 Portable Quiet Cooling w/Space Heater
- It functions as both a heater and an air conditioner
- Circulates air for uniform tent heating
- Comes with several safety features
- May stop working without warning
- Some users have said the fan is too loud
- May work only on hard surfaces
Best Tent Heater for Small Spaces
Regardless of the time of the year, you are going camping, you will need a dedicated heater to withstand the cold of the night. This TRUSTECH heater comes in handy. With two heating modes, it can produce either 750 watts or 1,500 watts of power. Of course, that simply means the heat will be much less at the lower wattage. What this feature does is to allow you to choose the heat intensity you want to enjoy.
It is not just a heater. Rather, the product comes with a fan to circulate air in the room, thus balancing the ambient heat. That effectively means that it can stand in when your air conditioner fails to function or when you want to save on your energy costs. The same efficiency with which it heats up an office, home or other indoor space can be put to great use in a tent. Since it is a highly-portable heater, you can take it with you anywhere.
Should any part of the heater overheat, the device will automatically shut off. add to that the tip-over switch and your safety is assured.
How to Choose the Best Tent Heater – Buying Guide
Given the utmost importance attached to a tent heater, it is important that care is taken to choose only the best. You want a tent heater that will not only warm you up but also do so more efficiently. Apart from enjoying your time camping, you will also be able to avoid frostbites and other cold-related complications. So, what’re the criteria for choosing a good tent heater? In this section, we provide a detailed explanation of the things to look at.
Tent Heater Types
There are two main types of tents namely, propane, electric, and chemical heaters. It is important to know the type of heater you are buying since it will determine how you heat your tent. Also, some tent heaters tend to be a lot safer than others. Now a detailed examination of the different types of heaters.
1. Propane Heaters
Due to their portability, propane heaters are the best suited for camping purposes. They rely on propane for heating purposes. Since they are made by different manufacturers, they are available in different shapes and sizes. Some can heat huge spaces while others can only heat tiny spaces. If catalytic, it would be without an open burning flame. A common feature among propane heaters is the auto turn-off functionality.
Some propane heaters can last for up to 7 hours heating while others last longer. It all depends on the size of the propane tank. However, propane heaters require proper tent ventilation while in use. If not, you may end up suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning. Also, watch out for possible fires which may result from the heater coming into contact with combustible material.
2. Electric Heaters
If your tent is close to a power supply, you are better off with an electric power supply. If you are off-grid, then you need a hookup or EHU. In short, this heater requires electricity to operate properly. For most heaters without a proper supply of electricity, this type of heater just won’t work.
Electric heaters may be convection or radiant in nature. Convection heaters rely on fans to push warm air around the room, thus providing heat. They are the best heaters for large spaces and rooms. Radiant heaters, on the other hand, are the best for smaller areas. Instead of heat moving through the air, it is sent out in the form of infrared rays.
Electric heaters are quicker when it comes to heating up a room. They are safer than propane heaters, especially the ones that rely on ceramic heating elements. Importantly, they come with built-in safety mechanisms to prevent fire accidents. However, it may leave you with stuffy unconducive air.
Things to Be Extra-Careful About
When choosing a tent heater to buy, there are certain things you cannot overlook. They will ensure you are protected in terms of heating efficiency and safety.
- Tip-Over Switch. With this mechanism, you can easily avoid a fire when the heater accidentally tips over. It is mainly found on electric heaters to enable automatic turning off when the devices fall. Since you can never foretell some things, you can’t overlook this feature.
- Automatic Cut-Off. There are times when you will forget and fall asleep when the heater is still on. The automatic cut-off is designed to turn the heater off after several hours of continuous use. That way, you will be able to avoid unnecessary fire accidents.
- Overheat Protection. Since they produce heat, these products are prone to overheating. To avoid a situation where the unit gets spoiled or leads to fire accidents, most of them come with an overheat protection feature. It works through a dedicated temperature sensor, which then triggers the automatic shut-off of the whole unit.
Size and BTU Rating
For a tent heater to provide adequate warmth, it should be of considerable size. Anything too small and you will still end up feeling the cold. Here, we are not talking about the physical size but the amount of heat the unit can produce. In that case, you must look at the unit’s BTU rating. With a considerable BTU rating, the heater should be able to heat a sizeable space. But that doesn’t mean the BTU rating must be fixed at a certain level. In fact, the best tent heaters have adjustable BTU ratings for easy adaptability.
Apart from the BTU rating, you also need to consider insulating the tent, especially during winter when it gets too cold. The point is to keep the warmth within the tent to ensure you get the heating you need.
There are some certifications that a good tent heater must just have. This is important since a heater should provide you with the utmost safety. Among the common certifications for tent heaters include CE, ANSI, and CSA. With these certifications, you can be sure that you have a heater that is as safe as can be. However, don’t ignore the built-in safety measures we have already discussed above.
Ease of Operation
Most tent heaters come with a manual from the manufacturer. Before you start using it, read the manual. Not only will you know how to use it but you will also be able to do it safely. In short, you should never take indoor a heater that’s marked for outdoor use only. The key to safety is to stay within the parameters provided by the manufacturer.
The Built Quality
Tent heaters are like just like any of your camping equipment. So make sure you buy a durable heating unit, which is going to withstand the ravages of frequent transportation from one camp to another. It should also have the ability to withstand extreme weather in the outdoors. For that reason, some tents are waterproof while others aren’t. Look at the tent specifications as well as the reviews left behind by past users of the tent heaters.
The best tent heaters can serve several purposes. Apart from serving you in a camp, they can also be used indoors. Depending on how you intend to use a heater, find out if it can serve you in all the ways you want it. For outdoor heaters, choose only the products meant for that purpose. So don’t just rush to buy anything. Carefully consider your options before settling on a particular device.
The central part of tent heaters in giving you a comfortable camping experience cannot be gainsaid. They can make your camping memorable and serve you at home as well. Unless a heater is clearly marked as suitable for the outdoors, you can use it virtually anywhere. If you want a portable heater, then buy one that’s compact and a handle. Check out the different products featured in the review as well as the buying guide. With such good advice, you can never go wrong. Trust me!