The 8 Best Radiator Heaters
This wiki has been updated 10 times since it was first published in October of 2019. If you've got a relatively small space that could benefit from some supplemental warmth, one of the radiator heaters on our list might do the job. They are filled with oil that heats up and radiates throughout a room, and require very little to no maintenance. We've ranked them here by the speed and intensity of their heating, their ease of use, durability, and mobility. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki. If you'd like to contribute your own research to the Wiki, please get started by reviewing this introductory video.
January 26, 2021:
These oil-filled radiators are small enough to be moved around easily from room to room and often have casters on the base to do so. Their finned design maximizes the surface area to promote airflow and to radiate as much heat as possible. Some models also feature built-in timers, providing heat at specific times in the day and thus conserving electricity.
In this most recent update, we ensured the ranking features a variety of designs for different heating requirements. Smaller models, such as the Tectake Portable or the Homeleader Personal are ideal for placing under a desk for personalized heat, but have quite limited functions, and won't have much impact in a large room. larger heaters with a higher output can warm a whole room and often have additional features allowing for greater control. The Airchoice Oil-Filled Digital and the Pelonis Champagne both have a 1500 watt output and a digital display with built-in timers, and can be adjusted via remote control, whereas, the DeLonghi Full Room features a thermal slot design that helps to direct warm air through the center, this promotes air circulation throughout the room, while maintaining a low surface temperature and reducing the risk of burns.
November 01, 2019:
Given the potential dangers posed by an inferior space heater, it was crucial for us that we stick to reputable brands and proven models, and avoid the inclusion of heaters coming out of foreign factories with unpronounceable names. To that same end, features like tip-over protection and automatic overheat shutoffs were given priority, even though the heat generated by the average radiator model is insufficient to create fire on contact.
Some models, like the Delonghi Full Room and the Pelonis Indoor Full Room take these precautions a step further, adding vented coverings to prevent scaling and to guide heat out in particular directions. This can be both a safety benefit and a way for the models to direct the heat they generate in the most efficient way possible. It also increases the perceived rate at which the units heat a small amount of space, as a user can really feel the warmth flowing from these openings.
A word of warning to new owners, though: it takes time for any of these to effectively heat a space. I have an open floor plan between my living room and dining room, and a single 1500-watt heater is enough to heat it sufficiently when the temperature outdoors is around freezing, but it takes a good 12 hours to get there. That's why a model with a good timer function might be vital to ensure your home is as cozy as possible when you need warmth the most.