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Posted: 1/30/2011 6:05:40 AM EDT
Guys- I am in a house that is all electric and I am wanting a back up source of heat.

Is there a certain type or brand of electric space heater that is better than the rest? For emergency/back up use in power outages. Basically to run off a genny and keep one room warm.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 6:08:01 AM EDT
Originally Posted By jmt1271:
Guys- I am in a house that is all electric and I am wanting a back up source of heat.

Is there a certain type or brand of electric space heater that is better than the rest? For emergency/back up use in power outages. Basically to run off a genny and keep one room warm.


Several members of the Swedish Bikini Team will do the trick.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 6:08:06 AM EDT
My wife and I bought a decent one at Target. I don't remember the name offhand - I'll check when I get home.

It has a remote, too. It's really nice to be able to turn it on/off without having to break the blanket seal

It warms up a room pretty nice. I think it's a LASKO or something like that. Cost us ~$65. Was a hell of a deal considering our bedroom in our apartment doesn't have a way to heat it. Coldest damn room I've ever been in.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:04:30 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2011 8:10:54 AM EDT by batmanacw]
Running an electric space heater off a generator is the most inefficient possible way to heat your home. You are converting fuel to mechanical energy and heat, just to turn it back into heat. You will use much, much more fuel than necessary per btu.

A portable Buddy or Big Buddy heater would be massively more efficient with no smell. Google is you friend on this.


Kerosene is also efficient, but stinky.



ETA: I just looked up the Portable Buddy heater. It puts out 4,000 btu's for 6 hours on low. That cost about $2.5 for 24,000 btu's, but cost is a very small part of the equation for emergency heat.

I am guessing that with my little generator that runs 9 hours on 1 gallon at 25% load would only run for 1/4 of that on full load, so 1500 btu's for 2.25 hours per tank @ $3 per gallon. That means with my little, very efficient generator I could produce 3,375 btu's for my $3 per gallon.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:10:09 AM EDT
If you want a small portable electric heater, a $15 "milk house heater" rated for 1,500 watts will put out the same amount of heat as any other 1,500 watt electric heater.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:38:30 AM EDT
Originally Posted By AR-10:
If you want a small portable electric heater, a $15 "milk house heater" rated for 1,500 watts will put out the same amount of heat as any other 1,500 watt electric heater.


Yes This
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:45:04 AM EDT
Originally Posted By zw123:
Originally Posted By AR-10:
If you want a small portable electric heater, a $15 "milk house heater" rated for 1,500 watts will put out the same amount of heat as any other 1,500 watt electric heater.


Yes This


yup, the wife brought an additionall one home yesterday
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:51:12 AM EDT
We use Lasko ceramic rod tower heaters.
Because we keep parrots, the ceramic rod heaters use no teflon coatings and are safe for use around them.
Lasko had a bad reputation for some time due to faulty cords on heaters made in 2005-2006

They have upgraded their proiducts and they are one of the safer electric heaters on the market now.
http://www.shoplasko.com/?trk_src_ss=TCLPAYPCWEBMACSS||lasko%20heaters
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:51:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2011 7:53:09 AM EDT by AR-10]
We found them on sale at Mill's Farm and Fleet last month for $15.

After we took it home and got it out of the box, I wish we would have bought a second one. I figured for $15 it would be a POS, but it is nicer than the old one we have.

The milk house/utility heater, that is.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 7:58:12 AM EDT

Whatever you do, don't pay 300 or 400 dollars for the 'Amish Miracle', which is a chinese made 1500W space heater with a small crappy mantle around it.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 8:28:34 AM EDT
A 1500 watt milk house heater will heat one room just fine for a short power outage.
I use 2 in the garage to bring the temp up in the winter if I'm going out there to putter. Brings it from 25 degrees to a comfy 50 degrees or so and holds it there for <25 cents an hour. It's not worth fooling with other fuels at that price for 2-3 hours. I've lit the 170,000 BTU propane burner too for short use.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 8:40:31 AM EDT
Originally Posted By batmanacw:
Running an electric space heater off a generator is the most inefficient possible way to heat your home. You are converting fuel to mechanical energy and heat, just to turn it back into heat. You will use much, much more fuel than necessary per btu.

A portable Buddy or Big Buddy heater would be massively more efficient with no smell. Google is you friend on this.


Kerosene is also efficient, but stinky.



ETA: I just looked up the Portable Buddy heater. It puts out 4,000 btu's for 6 hours on low. That cost about $2.5 for 24,000 btu's, but cost is a very small part of the equation for emergency heat.

I am guessing that with my little generator that runs 9 hours on 1 gallon at 25% load would only run for 1/4 of that on full load, so 1500 btu's for 2.25 hours per tank @ $3 per gallon. That means with my little, very efficient generator I could produce 3,375 btu's for my $3 per gallon.



You might want to pay attn. to this guy.

Electric heat really isn't backup heat. What if your genny quits? You need a non-grid heat system for backup.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 8:43:56 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2011 8:45:44 AM EDT by batmanacw]
Originally Posted By Powderfinger:
A 1500 watt milk house heater will heat one room just fine for a short power outage.
I use 2 in the garage to bring the temp up in the winter if I'm going out there to putter. Brings it from 25 degrees to a comfy 50 degrees or so and holds it there for <25 cents an hour. It's not worth fooling with other fuels at that price for 2-3 hours. I've lit the 170,000 BTU propane burner too for short use.


you might want to check your numbers. Can you generate 1500 watts of power for $0.25 per hour? I have a very efficient generator that will make 400 watts for $0.33. Your price to buy electricity from your provider is not even close to the price to make it with a generator.

It would cost me around $1.24 to make 1500 watts for an hour.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 8:45:13 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/30/2011 8:46:21 AM EDT by paris-dakar]
Originally Posted By andrasik:
My wife and I bought a decent one at Target. I don't remember the name offhand - I'll check when I get home.

It has a remote, too. It's really nice to be able to turn it on/off without having to break the blanket seal

It warms up a room pretty nice. I think it's a LASKO or something like that. Cost us ~$65. Was a hell of a deal considering our bedroom in our apartment doesn't have a way to heat it. Coldest damn room I've ever been in.


I got one at Target for $35 that does a really good job, a Holmes unit.

Looks like a stand up radiator.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 8:47:21 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Fast_Jimmy:

Whatever you do, don't pay 300 or 400 dollars for the 'Amish Miracle', which is a chinese made 1500W space heater with a small crappy mantle around it.


agreed. 1500 watts is 1500 watts. Some of that power is used up by the fan, but they all put out similar amounts of heat. I have always wondered if the bigger heaters with lots of surface area and no fan would put more of the 1500 watts into heat, but its hard to say.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 8:57:38 AM EDT
I forgot to mention that the portable buddy heater is way, way easier to start up than a generator. Your wife might not like running a generator, and providing security for that generator while you are away. The little buddy works great and takes a few seconds to start while never leaving the house. It's silent.

If you have an electric start generator, then its most likely it will burn way more fuel that necessary to run a space heater.

portable buddy
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 9:11:25 AM EDT
You are going to want a radiator style heater if you are actually wanting to heat a room/rooms.

The heat blowers with the fans are not that great.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 9:13:09 AM EDT
Originally Posted By stutzcattle:
Originally Posted By batmanacw:
best info in this thread.



You might want to pay attn. to this guy.

Electric heat really isn't backup heat. What if your genny quits? You need a non-grid heat system for backup.


This

He also has a few post in the SF forum on the heater subject

OP do not buy a genny to run a electric heater, waste of money

A 20lb propane tank, and a mr heater attachment, or a buddy heater would get you alot farther with less money.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 9:16:58 AM EDT
I just picked up one of the lower priced 1500 watt electrics. I already have one similar and one of the oil filled "radiator" heaters. This will have to do for now.


I hear what you guys are saying. I am going to pick up something that will run on the little propane cannisters that fuel my Coleman camp stoves eventually. Just needed something now in case this ice storm materializes.


Hopefully it will be just snow, but the 1/2" to 1" of ice they are talking about scares the shit out of me. Went thru "the" Ice Storm of 94 when I was living in TN and remember well what it was like to be without power for 6-7 days. Am much better prepared now.

Link Posted: 1/30/2011 9:32:01 AM EDT
Originally Posted By jmt1271:
I just picked up one of the lower priced 1500 watt electrics. I already have one similar and one of the oil filled "radiator" heaters. This will have to do for now.


I hear what you guys are saying. I am going to pick up something that will run on the little propane cannisters that fuel my Coleman camp stoves eventually. Just needed something now in case this ice storm materializes.


Hopefully it will be just snow, but the 1/2" to 1" of ice they are talking about scares the shit out of me. Went thru "the" Ice Storm of 94 when I was living in TN and remember well what it was like to be without power for 6-7 days. Am much better prepared now.



If you are prepping for a possible 1/2" to 1" of ice your electric heater will do you no good. You aren't going to have power. I'd go out right now and buy a 20 lb. bottle of propane and a propane heater. Then I'd buy at least two more bottles off propane.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 9:48:37 AM EDT
Originally Posted By batmanacw:
Originally Posted By Powderfinger:
A 1500 watt milk house heater will heat one room just fine for a short power outage.
I use 2 in the garage to bring the temp up in the winter if I'm going out there to putter. Brings it from 25 degrees to a comfy 50 degrees or so and holds it there for <25 cents an hour. It's not worth fooling with other fuels at that price for 2-3 hours. I've lit the 170,000 BTU propane burner too for short use.


you might want to check your numbers. Can you generate 1500 watts of power for $0.25 per hour? I have a very efficient generator that will make 400 watts for $0.33. Your price to buy electricity from your provider is not even close to the price to make it with a generator.

It would cost me around $1.24 to make 1500 watts for an hour.


I was off on a tangent there. You are correct.
If the OP is talking about longer term outages (over 1/2 a day), he should go with stand alone kerosene or propane heat.

Link Posted: 1/30/2011 9:53:48 AM EDT
Originally Posted By stutzcattle:
Originally Posted By jmt1271:
I just picked up one of the lower priced 1500 watt electrics. I already have one similar and one of the oil filled "radiator" heaters. This will have to do for now.


I hear what you guys are saying. I am going to pick up something that will run on the little propane cannisters that fuel my Coleman camp stoves eventually. Just needed something now in case this ice storm materializes.


Hopefully it will be just snow, but the 1/2" to 1" of ice they are talking about scares the shit out of me. Went thru "the" Ice Storm of 94 when I was living in TN and remember well what it was like to be without power for 6-7 days. Am much better prepared now.



If you are prepping for a possible 1/2" to 1" of ice your electric heater will do you no good. You aren't going to have power. I'd go out right now and buy a 20 lb. bottle of propane and a propane heater. Then I'd buy at least two more bottles off propane.



Propane or K1. Propane is sless stinky and easy to store as K1. If you where closer I have a few of the Dynaglow heaters that you could borrow.



Link Posted: 1/30/2011 10:03:56 AM EDT
Another +1 on the heater buddies. I rode out a power failure last year with one of the small ones. I now have a large one in addition to the small one.

An electric space heater is the backup for when the ignator on your furnace goes.
Link Posted: 1/30/2011 10:21:18 AM EDT
For local portable spot heat the buddie heaters are just the ticket. The little milkhouse heaters are great little supliments ––I use one down the shop/basement when it gets really cold as there is no active heat down there off the furnace––running one off a genny ? really inefficent as others have pointed out. Another way I sometiimes go when I am in a remote area or in the event of an outage is to run an 100,000 BTU propane torpedo heater off of a 100lb propane cylinder with the genny used to supply the AC for the fan(minor) ––in an outage I am using the genny to run lights and fridge anyway––I can also run it off of an inverter if need be or just off house AC if you need it for supplimental heat. I use that in the garage and the whole place is about 80-85 in ten mins and I have to kick it off or run it on low.
It does not have as much odor or fumes as a kero/diesel heater. if you do the conversion you can run the generator off of propane too.
BTW as the next month draws to a close Lowes and Home Depot begin clearing out winter stock and heaters and stuff are sold at clearance prices ––usually good deals abound I got my Buddy heater for $25 one year and the propane torpedo heater about $75 both on clearance ––usually you can find the same thing about two weeks after a hurricane or some other event as all the bozos return "unused" generators and such so you get out of box deals on perfectly good equipment.
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