They look nice, and they can keep you warm, but – Do Infrared Heaters Save Money?
When it comes to infrared heaters, the question I hear asked most often is “Do Infrared Heaters Save Money?”
The Short Answer is “YES, when used correctly in the right conditions!” The first winter I owned my Infrared Heaters I carefully monitored my energy usage and ended up saving 36% on my total heating cost over the previous winter which was not as cold. However your savings would probably be different.
To use the absurd to make my point, if you are currently using a wood-burning stove to heat a 800 square foot cottage built with logs and no insulation in Fairbanks, Alaska the answer would probably be NO. This of course would depend on the cost of the gasoline to power your chainsaw and wood splitter and the cost of food to replace the calories you burn. In an extreme situation such as this an Infrared Heater would not make sense.
Infrared Heaters as Single Source vs Zone Heating!
Please don’t be offended, but some of the negative customer reviews I read are from customers who bought a (for example) $150 portable infrared heater with a 5000 btu heat output with the expectation that it would replace their $5000 gas central heating system with a 24,000 btu heat output and then write a negative review because. Come on, lets get real!
A portable infrared heater is perfect as a Single Heat Source for an area that is within the heaters heat output. Depending on other factors that area could be from a couple hundred feet up to 1000 plus feet. In that situation, a portable electric infrared heater would make perfect sense and potentially save you money.
Where a portable infrared heater really shines (perhaps, a better word would be glows) is when its used for Zone Heating. Zone Heating is simply using supplemental heat sources in only the rooms or areas that you occupy instead of using a central heating system to heat the whole house, including rooms that are seldom used.
Nobody Can Guarantee How Much Infrared Heaters will Save!
I don’t believe anyone can accurately predict or guarantee how much money you will save on your heating costs. I am aware that the manufactures make some pretty bold claims trying to sell you their heater. But the key words to keep in mind are “Up To!” And those are the words you will find in any infrared heater marketing material from a reputable infrared heater manufacture or dealer.
It is kind of like the EMPG (estimated miles per gallon) printed on the sticker of a new car. Perhaps under laboratory conditions that car might achieve that kind of mileage but there are just too many other factors that affect it in the real world.
Based upon my own experience and research your actual savings will depend upon factors such as:
Average outdoor temperature
Exposure to Wind and Sun
Cost of primary heating utility such as electricity, natural gas, heating oil, propane, wood, coal, etc.
Personal habits such as leaving doors open for long periods of time
Ceiling height and not just square feet to be heated
Placement of portable infrared heater (Always follow manufacturer’s instructions for maximum heating efficiency.)
Objects in the room. Are they shiny or flat?
Hopefully this information has provided you with a better understanding of How Infrared Heating Works and what to expect with an Infrared Heater in your home.
So, my answer to the question Do Infrared Heaters Save Money needs a little more qualification. If you have a good quality Infrared Heater like the ones I recommend and use it the way it was intended, for Zone Heating, it ABSOLUTELY Can Save You Money! Blessings, Will