Best Greenhouse Heaters Buying Guide The greenhouse, though simple in appearance, is a marvel of functional design. By concentrating heat and keeping cold air at bay, greenhouses extend the growing season and improve yields.
But a greenhouse is, by nature, passive, unable to stave off cold temperatures indefinitely. Enter – the greenhouse heater.
Economical and unobtrusive, greenhouse heaters – from electric to paraffin-powered – help maintain warm temperatures, further extending your greenhouse’s functionality. Keep reading to discover the best greenhouse heater for your needs.
1. Bio Green PAL 2.0/GB 2KW Palma Heater with Digital Thermostat
With a front end resembling a coiled range element, The Bio Green PAL 2.0/GB 2KW Palma Heater is a robust, high-powered electric fan greenhouse heater designed to operate predictably over a wide range of temperatures for maximum versatility.
Bio Green PAL Greenhouse heater Key Features.
A short, cylindrical design and low centre of gravity, combined with a simple and effective slip-resistant hinged base, give the Bio Green PAL greenhouse heater great stability – there’s little risk of knocking this unit over.
And its horizontal orientation makes it easy to place on a variety of surfaces for optimal positioning and heat dispersion.
The thoughtfully positioned carrying handle lets you move the Bio Green PAL around the greenhouse with ease.
A wide-range digital thermostat – with settings of -50°C to +99°C – accurately controls heat from the powerful 2000-watt heating element, while a strong, shielded fan provides a circulation rate of 163 cubic metres per hour, quickly and evenly spreading warm air throughout your greenhouse.
The high level of temperature accuracy (+/-2°C) greatly improves efficiency and makes this 2000-watt powerhouse heater less of an energy hog than you might imagine it is.
However shielded from the elements a greenhouse maybe, it’s still full of water and dirt. Fortunately, the Bio Green Palma heater features IPX4-rated sealing, making it splash-resistant from any angle.
That means you can use it not only in greenhouses, but other damp environments such as workshops, cellars and garages. Splash resistance doesn’t just protect the Bio Green heater from inadvertent damage – it makes it safe to use without fear of an electrical short.
There’s no pretending otherwise: the Bio Green PAL 2.0/GB 2KW Palma Heater is expensive. Lower-cost electric fan heaters may be adequate – though some are lacking in build quality, accuracy or temperature breadth.
An isolated report of the remote thermostat interrupting airflow suggests the design could be refined – however, the majority of users are well pleased with Bio Green’s top-tier portable electric greenhouse heater.
2. Bio Green WM-P5 Warmax Power5 Paraffin Heater
Also from Bio Green, the WM-P5 Warmax Power5 Paraffin Heater utilizes an entirely different fuel source: old-fashioned paraffin oil. This electricity-free greenhouse heater is affordable and classically styled.
How does it compare to Bio Green’s more expensive electric option?
Let’s begin with the obvious: it requires no electricity. That means no cable, no risk of shorted wires or blown fuses, no bothersome extension leads – and the ability to keep your greenhouse warm and plants alive even during a power outage.
The WM-P5 Warmax Power5 Paraffin Heater is perfect for off-grid living.
And Bio Green’s extra-long, 33 cm wick provides a 40% longer burn time, maximizing the performance of this already economical greenhouse heater.
But wait – is it temperature adjustable?
Yes, and with no wick trimming required.
Rather, light one, two, three or all four of the wicks to reach the desired heat level. Granted, greater accuracy is attainable with a thermostatically controlled heater, but the WM-P5 is about functional simplicity, providing a respectable 600 watts of heat with a minimum of fuss.
And did we mention it looks great?
Its brass filler cap resists corrosion, snuffers make short work of extinguishing flames, and the handsome, racing green enamel paint adds an attractive layer of protection to the metal fuel tank.
Its vertical orientation and lightweight construction make the WM-P5 paraffin wax heater more prone to falls and damage than the robustly constructed PAL 2.0/GB.
The operating instructions could be clearer, and at 600 watts of heat output, its use is limited to smaller spaces.
As with any product, there are tradeoffs.
What the WP-P5 loses in durability and power, it gains in simplicity and reliability—even when the power is out.
3. EcoHeater 55W / 50cm Tube Heater with Built in Thermostat by Elixir Gardens
From Elixir Gardens comes the TH01 55W / 50cm Tube Heater. At first glance, the TH01 55W / 50cm Tube Heater resembles a hand blender attached to a fluorescent tube—or perhaps a very poor facsimile of a lightsaber. Spoiler: it’s neither.
Rather, this unique greenhouse heater promises effective, low-cost performance in a sturdy, portable package. Does it deliver?
The TH01 55W / 50cm Tube Heater is tougher than it looks. The tubular heating element is comprised of powder-coated steel – a sealed design without exposed wires, coils or blades – and provides multidirectional radiant heat without the use of an electric fan or combustible fuel.
Radiant heat is advantageous in environments where blowing dust or strong air currents are a concern, making the TH01 Tube Heater perfect for warming sensitive seedlings, as well as use in residences, commercial buildings – even caravans, kennels and boats.
The portable shape and size of the TH01 means it can be safely used almost anywhere it fits. It’s as at home in a greenhouse as it is in a damp cupboard, where the radiant heat provides steady, drying warmth.
The fanless design is silent, and the flame-free element both reduces fire risk and eliminates the need for venting. And an IP44 rating means the TH01 is splash resistant.
Despite the low price, this tube heater includes an indicator light and temperature control to adjust output. Though capable of running uninterrupted, the TH01’s redeveloped heating element can withstand frequent on-off cycling. Cons The TH01 gets hot.
That’s a desirable trait in a heater – but also a potential safety hazard. Because the white-painted heating tubes appear cool to the touch, it can be easy to accidentally touch or lean on them.
In fact, Elixir Gardens recommends the use of a separate tube heater guard to minimize the risk.
And to ensure correct operation, the heater must be installed horizontally. Those minor complaints aside, the TH01 remains a great choice as a versatile, unobtrusive small space or auxiliary greenhouse heater.
4. MODERN LIFE Industrial Electric Fan Heater 3000w
Rounding out our list of the best greenhouse heaters is the MODERN LIFE Industrial Electric Fan Heater 3000w.
With a compact, brightly painted, rolled steel body, protective fan screen and temptingly low price for a 3000-watt unit, the Industrial Electric Fan Heater is an attractive choice for heating your greenhouse on a budget.
It’s red; it’s round; and though somewhat lacking in refinement, the MODERN LIFE heater is made up of the same basic components as the costlier Bio Green PAL 2.0: a base, body, heating element, fan, protective grille and handle.
An IPX4 rating means the MODERN LIFE heater is splashproof and safe for use outdoors or in a busy greenhouse.
The chunky, rectangular base makes it almost impossible to knock this heater over, while the tough, moulded handle is easy to grab.
A fully enclosed and fairly quiet-running copper-wound electric motor provides power to the heating element and rust-proof alloy fan blade.
Temperature is controlled by means of an integrated, four-setting rotary switch and adjustable thermostat that ranges from 0°C to 85°C, allowing the heater turns on automatically, and eliminating the need for manual control.
The MODERN LIFE Industrial Electric Fan Heater has a relatively low range of thermostatic adjustment, and the base, though securely affixed, doesn’t permit vertical angle adjustment.
The heater’s claimed output of 3000 watts may not be entirely accurate – but it’s hard to beat this greenhouse beater on price.
How to Choose a Greenhouse Heater Large Space or Small?
The size of your greenhouse should determine not just the heat output of a greenhouse heater, but the type of heat that it produces.
Large spaces benefit most from a forced-air heater with a strong electric fan that moves heat along the length of the greenhouse.
Conversely, smaller spaces are well served by radiant units – think paraffin oil and tube heaters – which emit heat in no one particular direction, but sufficiently warm a small, enclosed area.
Fuel Me Once, Shame on You. Fuel Me Twice… Wait for a Second, That’s Not How it Goes
If your greenhouse is wired for electricity, close to a mains outlet, or you don’t mind running an extension lead from another building, an electric greenhouse heater is a good choice, providing reliable performance and power.
But – if the space allows it – consider a fuel-burning greenhouse heater.
They’re a bit more labour-intensive, requiring manual refilling, lighting and extinguishing, but may save you money: an electric heater often draws high current, necessitating costly, heavy-gauge extension leads, whose thickness increases proportionately with distance from the source of electricity.
Making a Splash
Water and electricity don’t mix. That’s why, unless watering your plants only with irrigation drip lines, it’s important to choose an electric greenhouse heater with an IPX4/IP44 rating.
Heaters bearing those ratings can withstand splashes of water from any angle – important when watering manually or using hoses and overhead sprinklers!
Is precise thermostatic control necessary?
Not in all cases, but it is nice to have – particularly if outdoor temperatures fluctuate significantly throughout the day, or if growing seedlings or other especially sensitive plants.
Most electric greenhouse heaters include a thermostat or other form of temperature control. Thermostatically controlled heaters are the most convenient, automatically adjusting themselves to changing conditions accordingly.
Do I Really Need a Greenhouse Heater?
No – but try one, and you’ll likely never go back.
A warm greenhouse is not only more pleasant during fall or winter but can improve plant health and size, crop yield, and extend the growing season.
Whether that means for you more flowers, tastier herbs, or more nutritious fruits and vegetables to put on the table or take to market, an electric or fuel-burning greenhouse heater can help make it happen.
Even the costliest models provide a long-term return on investment. Thanks for reading our guide to the best greenhouse heaters!
Here’s to making the most of your greenhouse, to a long growing season, and to an abundance of healthy plants.