electric space heater on wood floor

Space heaters are a modern miracle to many owners who probably feel like space heaters save them when the cold months roll around. Older homes can have plenty of sneaky ways allow the heat in your home to escape while the cold air works its way in. If you’re considering a space heater, you may be struggling to decide what the best size is for you.  So you can determine if a small space heater is enough for your home, we’ve laid out the effectiveness and common uses for the smallest space heaters on the market. By the end of this, you’ll know how many watts does a small space heater use and if it will work for you.

Short Answer

The tiniest space heaters made for humans use about 250 watts of power.

These are the smallest available space heaters unless you want to go down to the 100-watt tier heaters, which keep chicken coops warm. Most people would classify a 1500 watt space heater as a ‘small space heater’, as these are used to warm up compact spaces.

How Much Space Can a Small Heater Warm?

A 250-watt space heater can warm up a room of 50 to 80 square feet, depending on the quality of the heater.

A 500-watt space heater can warm a space up to 100 square feet.

The largest space heater that we can still classify as ‘small’ would be the 1500-watt units that can warm a space up to 200 square feet.

What Are Small Heaters Best For?

The smallest heaters on the market are perfect for warming up your bathroom, your cold cubicle, or a tiny screened-in porch.

People search out tiny space heaters for many reasons, but no matter what you want to use them for, there is a perfect space heater out there for you!

Space Heater Sizing

A general rule of thumb is for every 10 watts the heater can warm 1 square foot.

This isn’t an exact measurement as there are many varying factors like humidity, poorly sealed windows, spaces between doors and frames, and many more aspects. Simply too many to account for all of them, so the best way to choose a size heater is by the estimated square footage it can heat.

Different Kinds of Space Heaters

These are the most common space heaters people like to use.

  • Oil-filled space heaters
  • Infrared space heaters
  • Fan space heaters
  • Electric space heaters
  • Ceramic space heater
  • Propane space heaters
  • Panel space heaters

How to Choose the Perfect Space Heater For You

Room Size

The first step to choosing a space heater is knowing how big a room you want to warm. If you are trying to heat an open-plan apartment, getting one large space heater is a better choice than many small space heaters.

Knowing the square footage of your space is a great tool for determining the ideal space heater for you.

 Safety Features

Because space heaters have a heating element, they can pose a hazard for homes with pets and small children. Space heaters can also trip circuits and overheat.

All of these things are a reason for concern; manufacturers have begun including safety features like automatic shut-offs, protective plates, and encased plugs and wires to diminish the risk of fire or injury.

Type of Heater

As noted above, there are a few different kinds of space heaters that operate differently and are made from different materials. They have different pros and cons, so you’ll have to do a bit of research to find the one that fits your needs.

Electric and propane heaters are the most effective for warmth, but also pose the most hazards.

Ceramic and infrared heaters are quieter and more aesthetically pleasing but might not make your space as toasty as you want.

These are just a few of the pros and cons of the different space heaters available.

Bottom Line

And now you know all there is to know about small space heaters and what they can do. Hopefully, you feel one of these compact units will b enough to meet your heating needs.

Luckily, the space heater industry has many options of all sizes and efficiencies, so you’re not limited by what we discussed in this article.

If you’re constantly throwing on blankets and shivering in your own home, you could really benefit from a small space heater that may be just the thing to make your home cozy and warm for all of winter.

Frequently Asked Questions

how many watts does a small space heater use
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Can I use two space heaters in one room?

Technically, you can do this, but we recommend you don’t. Space heaters use a heating element. This can create a manageable hazard, but a hazard nonetheless. If you’re thinking about using two small units instead of using one large one, we recommend just going with the larger space heater.

How many watts does a large space heater use?

The biggest residential space heaters reach up to 4,000 to 5,000 watts. These heaters can warm up a room of 500 square feet and is the best option to heat an open space with high ceilings.

Can I get a space heater if I have central heating?

Yes, absolutely. Many people buy and use space heaters to supplement their home’s heating system. Older homes have cracks and gaps between windows and doors, so heat can escape, leaving certain corners of the home chillier than you want. Adding a space heater to these areas can make a huge difference.