Sunday, 2 August 2009

How To Choose The Right Commercial Patio Heaters

If you own a business, such as a restaurant or cafe, and are thinking of purchasing patio heaters for your outdoor area the following article will provide you with some valuable information.

Commercial patio heaters are truly an asset to business owners because they allow you to utilize your outdoor space during cooler months, which can add to increased revenue. Many people remember restaurants by whether they have an outdoor patio, but they will also remember if they have heaters to warm that area. So here are some tips that should help you decide on the right heaters for your outdoor space.

Electric Radiant Heaters

Electric radiant heaters can be mounted to walls or ceilings and use infrared heat, like the sun, to heat objects and people efficiently. There are also smaller portable heaters that can be placed anywhere you need warmth. The strip style heaters, that are mounted out of reach, come in a range of lengths which allow you to customize your heaters for your specific space. These types of heaters range in wattage from approximately 1500 watts to 4000 watts, the higher the wattage the more powerful the heater. Electric heaters require less space for ceiling and wall clearances which makes them a good choice for smaller spaces. It is suggested to have a professional install these heaters to make sure that they comply with local codes.

Propane Patio Heaters

Propane patio heaters are usually the post and cap style heaters that are basically self contained units that are fueled by propane gas tanks. These heaters provide heat by burning propane gas and radiating heat off of burner grids located at the top of the heater. These heaters can radiate heat out to a diameter up to around 20 feet depending on the specific BTU output of the heater. The higher the BTU's the more powerful the heater. These heaters are nice for restaurant owners because they do not require any installation and they can be moved around as needed. Many models come equipped with built-in wheels which makes moving them easy. Ceiling clearances for propane heaters are typically around 18 inches which is important to keep in mind when you are selecting your heaters.

Natural Gas Patio Heaters

Another type of commercial heater is the natural gas heaters. The main advantage of these heaters, over propane heaters, is that they are directly connected to gas lines, so there is no need to be constantly checking and refilling propane tanks. They are permanently mounted, so they cannot be moved around, so make sure that you are purchasing enough heaters to effectively cover your outdoor space. These heaters, like some electric heaters, do require professional installation, but once they are installed they are relatively worry free. You should definitely look for models that are made of corrosion resistant materials and have features like safety shut-offs, and stainless steel fasteners.