Patio Heaters

With the colder months approaching quickly and restaurant restrictions at an all-time high, it’s no wonder why many owners would want to stretch their capacity by any means necessary. By keeping the patio open, restaurants are still able to cater to their patrons without having to break any rules.

The best way to keep your patio open during the cold months is to make sure your customers are comfortable while dining. Owning the best commercial patio heaters will entice customers to dine on the patio without having to bear cold winds and frigid temperatures.

Let’s go over what you need to look for when purchasing a new commercial patio heater as well as some of the different types available to you. We will also cover some of the best models available for purchase on the market today and which one may be the best fit for your restaurant patio.

Types of Commercial Patio Heaters

Essentially, commercial patio heaters are glorified space heaters. They are designed to expel an exponential amount of heat in their surrounding area. Most of the patio heaters use propane as a fuel source, but there are some that can be hardline into a natural gas line or use electricity to power the unit. For the most part, there are three different types of patio heaters.

Ceiling and Wall Mounted Heaters

There are two types of these heaters in terms of the fuel source they use. Electric powered heaters are very efficient and can heat up an area while using very little electricity. If you are worried about fuel cost over time, this heater will be able to cut down on the bill drastically.

(Gas powered heaters can put out a much larger amount of heat at a time)

Gas powered heaters can put out a much larger amount of heat at a time. This means they are able to heat a larger area than the electric heaters while using less units. They may cost more initially and have a higher fuel cost but will be worth it in the long run if you have a larger patio to heat.

Free Standing Heaters

This type of heater is able to heat a small area while mainly using propane tanks as the fuel source. The great thing about these heaters is that they are usually mobile and can be moved from one area to another with ease. These types of heaters are highly coveted for many restaurants with larger patios.

Tabletop Heaters

These heaters are usually stationary which also use propane as the fuel source. They are mainly used as a “fire pit” for guest to gather around when it is cold outside. They are not really all that practical for dining though since the table top is not meant for glasses and flatware.

What to Look for When Choosing a New Patio Heater

When choosing a new commercial patio heater there are a few factors to consider. Whether it is your first time buying a patio heater or you are replacing one, you still need to consider what you will be using the heater for and how you will be using it.

First and foremost, you want to make sure that the patio heater you decide to purchase is constructed of quality materials. Some of the better models are made from stainless steel and heavy-duty aluminum. Heaters constructed of these materials will be able to withstand the elements of a harsh cold rainy weather while also reduce the overall wear and tear of the patio heater.

The size of the patio heater should also be considered. Don’t just go buy the largest heater there is, especially if you don’t have a large patio. Depending on the style of the heater, they come in all sizes whether it is a small wall hanging heater or a 10-foot-tall heater.

The type you purchase needs to be able to fit on your patio while keeping safety measures in mind. If you have a smaller patio that is a bit more intimate than a large open dining patio, then you may want to consider a smaller unit you can mount on the wall or ceiling. If you have a larger patio of 2,000 square feet or more, then you will need to consider purchasing one or two freestanding units you can move around.

(Performance is key to a patio heater and with that comes efficiency)

You want to make sure the unit you purchase is able to output a decent amount of heat while still maintaining a stable fuel cost. Propane tanks are cheap to fill, but they can empty fairly quickly after a week of usage. Electric patio heaters are going to be the most cost effective but they will slack in the performance arena