Sunday, 28 November 2010

Using Your Patio in the Winter With Patio Heaters

You've worked hard to create and cultivate your outdoor living space - meaning your patio or your deck - so why let that all go to waste when it gets cold outside? There are a couple of different ways to make your patio a still comfortable and hospitable place to be, even when the weather is not so agreeable.

Mainly, you have to bring the heat back to your patio. There are a few ways to do this. One is to install an outdoor fireplace, which is costly and time-consuming. If you have the time for it, it is a striking and pleasant way to warm up your patio. Another way is to purchase a fire pit. These are portable basins that you can put logs in to burn. All kinds of fire pits are available on the market - from $30 fire pits to ones that are much more elaborate, bigger, and cost much more money. Lastly, and perhaps the most maintenance-free option, is the patio heater.

Patio heaters come in many shapes and sizes. Currently on the market are freestanding patio heaters, mobile, tabletop heaters, ceiling or wall mount heaters, and ground mount patio heaters.

Freestanding patio heaters can be powered by propane or with infrared technology. They are also called "mushroom heaters" because the tops look a bit like a mushroom. These provide radiant heat, so that if you are sitting near one, you don't feel the chill of winter.

All of the freestanding patio heaters are also portable, but they are rather large. Some portable heaters are smaller, and therefore easier to move around. They are generally powered with propane, and cost a great deal less than the larger freestanding heaters that you'll see at outdoor patios are restaurants, for example.

Tabletop heaters are a great option if you have a large patio with lots of tables. That way each group of people gets their own little heat source. They are powered by electricity, halogen, or propane, and are relatively affordable. Even if you one have one patio table, a tabletop heaters should provide enough heat to the people sitting around it, so it is an option for even a small family.

A ground mounted patio heater looks very much like a freestanding patio heater, but it is permanently mounted into the ground. The cost difference is not much between the ground mounted and freestanding heater, so if you live in a climate that has cold evenings even in the summertime, the ground mounted heater might be the one for you. Most of these types of heaters use natural gas, so you'll simply pay for your usage along with your gas bill every month.

Finally, ceiling or wall mount patio heaters are perfect for an indoor/outdoor enclosed space, or for a patio with a roof. They can be powered with natural gas, halogen, or have infrared technology. They generally are not as attractive as the other types of patio heaters, but they are less obtrusive as well.

With all of these patio heater options available, there is no reason to let your outdoor living area go to waste during the winter months.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Gas Patio Heater - A Guide For Safe Operation

Using a gas patio heater is a wonderful way to heat your outdoor patio. It can create ambiance in addition to keeping your guests comfortably warm even though they are outdoors. Gas patio heaters come in several different brands, models and styles, but they all have one thing in common: you need to be careful when you use them. Use the ideas in this guide to stay safe while you are using your gas patio heater.

Always supervise small children and pets when your outdoor heater is being operated. They produce a great deal of heat and can cause serious burns. Make your adult guests be aware of the danger as well. Don't let any of your guests touch your gas patio heater while it is being used.

Putting your towel on your heater to dry after you have a swim sounds like a good idea but it can lead to trouble. Never hang any flammable materials such as clothes or towels anywhere near an outdoor heater. You could have a fire or end up with scorched clothing.

Don't ever use your gas patio heater indoors. Doing this creates a fire hazard but it also could result in a gas leak. Fumes can escape even when an outdoor heater is not being used. The best idea is to never bring your heater indoors, period.

Never run your gas patio heater when there are high winds. Gusty wind can knock over the heater and cause a fire, or it could blow out the flame, causing gas to escape from the cylinder. Gas fumes are dangerous to breathe and you could have a medical emergency.

Make sure your outdoor heater is on a flat surface and away from all doors and other areas that get a lot of traffic. You don't want your heater to be knocked over and start a fire. The floor under and around the heater should always be clean and free of all debris. Take away anything you see on the floor near the heater. You might be preventing someone from tripping or falling into or up against the hot heater.

You should only operate your gas patio heater in a space that is well ventilated. Check for obstructions on a regular basis because you want the air near the heater to flow freely if any gas escapes. Do not run your outdoor heater on any indoor porch or patio, period.

When your heater is not running, remember that it is important to always keep it clean and free of any debris. Check to ensure there is nothing that will obstruct the heaters air holes or vents. Many things can block them, including spider webs. It is also important to regularly check the heaters hose connection for leaks. You can use soapy water to detect leaks, but if you do find one, take it in to be repaired by a professional technician. Always keep your gas patio heater out of the rain, and keep it covered whenever you're not using it. Always store your outdoor heater and its gas tanks outside, and never store flammable chemicals anywhere near them. Your heater and its gas cylinders should be stored in an upright position, not horizontally.

When you turn off your gas patio heater, always make sure the burner goes out. Before you touch or move it, make sure your heater has had enough time to cool off. Double check to make sure the gas is turned off when you are not operating your outdoor heater.

One more thing: always read and thoroughly understand your gas patio heaters entire operating manual. It will give you a good understanding of how to safely operate your particular outdoor heater. Do not even turn it on until you are certain you completely understand everything in the manual. If you have a hard time understanding something the manual says, ask a professional to explain it to you in detail. Safety always comes first when you are operating a gas patio heater.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Are Outdoor Patio Heaters Worth the Investment?

The first thing you need to know before discussing patio heaters are the basic functions. Many people enjoy sitting on an outside patio and enjoying the outdoors, which is why weather is an enormous factor to be considered. Obviously, during warmer months many people like to spend time outdoors; however, when the weather becomes colder families tend to stay inside and wait for warmer months to come. To make the most of your patio, no matter the temperature, considering a patio heater is crucial.

There are several design options in patio heaters but the bottom line is they are created to provide enough warmth for you to enjoy your patio year round, watching the changing seasons in comfort. There are directional heaters which will provide heat in one space or radiant heaters designed to heat up the space all around them.

You also have options in the type of energy you are going to use with patio heaters, each has their pros and cons. There are basically two popular types of patio heaters electric and propane. Electric heaters have no odor and many come with weather-proofed cords, however they may take some time to reach optimal temperature. Propane heaters on the other hand are completely safe and very fuel-efficient.

Patio heaters also differ in size, style and price. Many of these can fit easily onto an outdoor table and are decorative as well as affordable. For instance, the Coral Coast Deluxe Cast Iron Tabletop Patio Heater is made with a solid cast aluminum base with decorative lattice design.

It has a 100% safety shut off burner system, safety tilt switch that will turn the unit off if tipped, and comes with and electronic ignition. This propane patio heater heats an area up to 9 feet in diameter, and while its listing price ranges from $199.99-$229.99, you can pick this unit up on sale for under $130 at some online outlets.

Do you have a nice patio umbrella? There are patio heaters for use under your umbrella. You can easily attach the Dimples Patio Umbrella Heater to any kind of umbrella. This unit is a triple quartz radiant type heater that will fold away when not in use. The heater operates with whisper quiet efficiency, as there are no moving parts. It comes complete with an 8 ft weather proof cord and will provide you 1500 watts of constant electric heat. You can find this heater from many retailers at around $200 but you may find it on sale for about $150.

Are there benefits to owning patio heaters? Well if you enjoy sitting on the patio in any weather then the answer is a resounding yes! Even when the weather is questionable outside with a patio heater, you can enjoy the changing of the seasons, or even stargazing on a cool night.

You and your spouse or partner can enjoy an intimate moment together without freezing your tush off, or you can have a nice hot drink on the patio, even on a brisk morning. There are many benefits to owning a patio heater.

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Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Be Assured That You Are Not Misled by 'Commercial' in Commercial Patio Heaters

You shouldn't be misled by 'commercial' word in selecting commercial patio heater that can be bought by anyone including those not owning restaurants. People owning bigger outdoor spaces can choose commercial heating system to keep their customers retained. Same is the case with people with large patios wanting comfort. Larger areas can't be covered by ordinary domestic patio heaters. In case you are entertaining for maximum level by spending time in patio and cook, eat, play or relax their along with family then it is a must to have one.

A commercial patio heater can run either on propane gas or on electricity. Both of them are equally convenient, but if you are buying one to be used in the market place for truly commercial purpose, you should opt for the one that runs on the electricity. As these heaters do not have any live flame, there is less chance of a fire spreading from it. What is more, you will get the clearance far more easily because of that very reason. Only make sure the heater is properly earthed.

Don't make presumption that propane commercial patio heaters are unsafe. They are manufactured with best safety measures. You can shift them to a place where heat is needed due to easy portability options. An anti-tilting mechanism is developed and fitted in such heaters to ensure they don't trip. Suppose they still tilt accidentally or due to intentional pushing then they would automatically switch off. Make no delay and if you want a portable commercial patio heater then buy a propane heater instead of getting confused unnecessarily. Although electric heaters are equipped with chords and long wires still they won't make such things possible which propane heater does.

An electric heater has one more advantage. The propane gas patio heater needs to be placed strategically, away from the path of the wind flow. Otherwise, the heat produced by burning the fuel will be drifted away by the wind. This cannot happen in the case of electric heaters. As these heaters run on infrared energy, the heat so produced warms up only the solid elements in its path, not the air in between and so it has no chance of being drifted away.

You must have concluded by now that what is the exact type of patio heater you would like after observing all aspects related to them. We discuss few aspects here:

• Keep the desired area to be covered in mind. Be aware of the fact that if there is higher BTU you can cover larger space with them.

• Any tabletop heater with minimum BTU would do if your area is small in size. But to heat larger spaces you need commercial patio heater with sufficient BTU.

• You may look for mounting a heater in a fixed place or you intend to buy a portable one that can be moved easily.

• Choose an electric heater if you are willing to fix it. Go for propane heaters in case you want portable options.

• Are you residing in a very windy place? If the case is so then have infrared patio heater instead of propane heaters.

Few additional points need elaboration. No doubt portable heaters come with anti-tilting mechanism still you must mount patio heater on walls or on ceiling if you have active children or pets. Prefer aesthetically designed hanging patio heaters if you wish so. No matter what is your choice but you should ensure they are kept out if their reach for safety reasons.

It is necessary to have aesthetically pleasing patio heater which is integral part of patio decoration done. If you want complete enjoyment in outdoors then make it pleasing for which entire place needs aesthetic decoration with desired comfort level expected. Add desired patio furniture and knickknacks in them for best decoration and enjoyment. Don't forget to buy required accessories too for best comfort and seething impression.

Mere investing unnecessary money doesn't ensure best decoration of patio. It needs best imagination and creativity to have effective output. Contact garage sales or dollar shops to find accessories suiting you better. But saving money on patio heater through making compromise is not best idea. In case your need is of commercial patio heater then settling down with domestic one will be foolish step. Don't buy tabletop variety if you desire for standard heater. Get one from a reputed manufacturer otherwise you will remorse later stage. You will enjoy several upcoming winters through applying prudence.

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Sunday, 14 November 2010

Patio Heaters and Patio Umbrellas - For the Year Long Alfresco Lovers

What most people do not know about patio umbrellas is that they ward off the rays of the sun and also shield us from light precipitation as well as dry autumnal leaves. Patio Umbrellas are a low-budget answer to your shade requirement in your lawns, backyard or poolside. While ready-to-buy patio umbrellas are a popular choice, a handful of customers do go for the designer umbrellas. In such cases, patio umbrellas can be custom-made to meet the exact consumer needs. Though designer stuff will surely cost more than the ordinary patio umbrellas.

The framework of typical patio umbrellas can be made of wood or aluminum. A standard patio umbrella carries the following features:
Collar tilting mechanisms

If you wish to up the style and elegance quotient of your outdoor décor, go for the patio umbrellas. These form the main item of allure between your other outdoor furniture pieces. See that your new patio umbrella is coordinated with the color scheme of your patio cushions as you shop. Also, take care that patio umbrella you are buying comes with a heavy, robust base lest it is not blown away by strong winds. For avoiding this casualty, make sure you buy strong and heavy based patio umbrellas. Assess the worth of the patio umbrella carefully during purchase. See to it that a flawed piece is not sold to you.

It can be a very good means of advertisement. Usually, companies have their logos and slogans printed on the patio umbrellas. Wooden kind give an aesthetic look to the outdoors. They have a pulley system that limits its versatility. It can be either table mounted or ground mounted. For the table mounted patio umbrellas, there is a provision on the center of the table for the attachment. Sometimes, the patio umbrellas do not come with good stands, due to which you might need to buy one separately from the market.

It can withstand harsh environmental conditions because of the material used. Tilting the patio umbrella is also very important. Most of them come with the tilt feature to enable you to tilt them in the direction of the sun. Maintaining them is very easy and can be washed with regular detergent and water. Periodic washing of them ensures the long life of the it. If they have a metal pole, you need to provide the necessary coating to prevent it from environmental damage.

Sunny summers may be taken care of by them, but the chilly winters herald the need of patio heaters. These heaters weave their magic and turn cool wintry evenings into pleasantly warm ones. If you wish that summers had never gone and want to make use of your outdoor spaces for an extended period, this is the one need. Usually, patio heaters provide heat in a 10-15 foot radius and increase temperatures by 10-15 degrees. Be it domestic or commercial, patio heaters find good use. For the homeowners, lawns, backyards and decks can be warmed by patio heaters.

Commercially, patio heaters are used in open air restaurants, pubs and other such places to have fun. Patio heaters may utilize electricity or gas as fuels. Electric patio heaters heat by radiation. They have the added advantage of not flickering in gusty evenings. However, the caveat with them is that they do run up the electricity bill. Bigger electric heaters consume more electricity. Put in other words, power consumption is a function of the size of the electric patio heater.

Gas patio heaters utilize propane gas to give heat. Gas patio heaters have greater transportability than their electricity-fuelled cousins. Electric heaters can warm efficiently smaller areas of 10-25 feet. For areas beyond, gas heaters can be utilized. Some designs of gas heaters resemble mushrooms in shape, and are thus called as mushroom heaters sometimes. Natural gas may also be used as fuel in gas patio heaters. Propane as well as natural gas are quite cheap and hence used frequently.

Patio umbrellas and patio heaters cannot be done without if what you are planning is an outdoor party. Patio umbrellas ward off rays of the hot sun while patio heaters keep the icy fingers of winter away. Patio umbrellas and patio heaters serve the one purpose of upping the comfort quotient of your kith and kin alike.

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Thursday, 11 November 2010

Patio Heaters In Business

If you run a restaurant, pub or any business using outdoor facilities in a temperate climate zone, then you will know that business is likely to drop off when the weather gets colder. You know that you would not sit outside shivering yourself, so you do not expect anyone else to do it. The only answer is to modify the outdoor ambient temperature to a suitable level.

I have seen this done to stunning effect in Prague in October when there were heavy snow storms. People wanted to sit outside and get pleasure from the snow storm as long as they were fairly warm. A person's primary heat comes from the body and is retained with decent clothing, but it is nice to have a patio heater near-by just to add a glow to your face and hands.

If you have a business that only opens when it is warm enough, then you have an expensive business and these days expensive businesses do not last long. You need to wring every last cent out of your business real estate and if that means putting patio heaters in, then that is what you ought to do.

Patio heaters come in a range of forms, but they are not that dear to buy. Sometimes you can hire them too. Most of these outdoor heaters run on canisters of propane or butane gas, but there are mains gas varieties too. There are also electric ones, but they tend to be costly to run, unless you can generate your own electricity.

I think that the best two types are the box type where the gas canister goes inside the apparatus and the heat is directed at foot to knee height and the street lantern style, where the heat comes down from about seven or eight feet in height. The gas cylinder also fits inside these models lowering their centre of gravity and making them more difficult to unintentionally knock over.

These heaters are very safe although patrons should be warned to exercise care if they have young children with them. A standard heater will keep up to two tables and eight people warm enough to enjoy themselves even when it is snowing.

The hire of a few of these patio heaters or even their purchase will soon be off-set by your increased custom, particularly if your competitors are not using them. My wife and I will never forget our time in Prague, when it was snowing, drinking coffee and eating cake outside, watching people go by while we were as warm as toast due to the restaurateur's foresight in providing patio heaters.