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Best Low-Wattage Space Heater in 2021

Find the best low watt heater to stay warm through the winter!

When those freezing winter months close in, it can be tough to stay warm, cozy, and comfortable. Some parts of your home just won’t stay as toasty as others, and constantly running your central heating system on high can escalate your energy bills. There are only so many extra layers of jumpers and wooly socks you can pull on to keep warm!

To solve this icy issue, you should invest in a low-wattage space heater! The best low-wattage heaters are versatile, portable, affordable, and exceptionally energy-efficient. There are plenty of types to choose from, but not all will be best suited to your needs or the space you want to heat. 

Keep reading to learn about the pros, cons, and key features of low-wattage space heaters. If you’d prefer, you can jump to my top picks of the best you can buy today using this table of contents. 

I’ve been helping families stay warm in the winter for over a decade working as a licensed Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) expert. Being cold, especially in your own home, can make you feel miserable. So I’ve put together this buying guide and review to help you find the best low-wattage space heater for your home and specific needs.

First, let’s look at the different types of very low-wattage space heaters that you’ll need to choose between.

Types Of Low Wattage Space Heater

There are 3 different types of low-wattage heaters, each with its unique advantages and drawbacks:

Ceramic

A ceramic space heater works by using metal coils and a heated length of ceramic. The coils pass electricity through the ceramic heating element, which warms it up. This heat is then released into the surrounding air. You should notice a temperature increase very quickly. 

Ceramic heaters provide quiet and fast heating. A ceramic heater will sometimes also have a fan that makes heat distribution even faster. Just bear in mind that they need to be plugged into a power outlet to keep heating. You’ll need a low-wattage space heater to keep the electricity cost down.  

Oil Filled

An oil-filled radiator heater is a common type of convection heater. The oil inside the heater is warmed by an electrical heating element. It’s then moved around the heater’s internal cavities by convection, producing long-lasting heat. 

An oil-filled heater is cheap to run, eco-friendly, and quiet once it reaches the desired temperature. 

They can also be heavy, slow to warm up, and aren’t the best choice for larger spaces as there is no airflow to distribute the heat. 

Infrared

Infrared space heaters work by converting electricity into radiant heat. This type of heat mimics sunlight, so using an infrared heater can have lots of health benefits without the danger of UV rays. Other types of heaters can cause dry sinuses and skin, but infrared heaters don’t reduce the humidity or oxygen levels in a room. 

Like the sun, they’re most effective when pointed directly at the area you’re trying to heat. They stop heating once they’re switched off though, so keeping your electricity bills down will depend on using the lowest energy space heater you can find.

Low Wattage Space Heater Buying Guide

Now it’s time to think of your specific needs, and how you intend to use your space heater. The following points will help you understand what makes the best low-wattage heater for you.

Efficient Heat Distribution

As we’ve seen, low wattage electric heaters will heat using convection or radiation. Infrared heaters need to be pointed at the object you want to heat. They’re great for warming you, not spaces!

Convection heaters are better at warming larger areas, but it’s unlikely that using a low-wattage heater will create adequate heat for an entire room. They’re best used to heat specific ‘zones’ or areas of a room, rather than trying to heat a whole room.

Buy a convection heater to heat small areas of a room or more than one person at a time. For personal heating, an infrared heater is the better option.

Watt Density – Heater Lifetime

The watt density of a heater is different from its wattage. Knowing the watt density of the heater you’re thinking of buying can help to determine how long it should last.

Watt density measures the heat flux that a heater emits for every square inch of its heating element. This is measured in units of watts per square inch. 

A higher number means the heater uses a higher temperature to operate and is more likely to burn out sooner or get damaged from scorching. A lower watt density heater operates using a lower temperature, will last longer, and is less prone to build up.

Look for a heater with a lower watt density!  

Controls

To use as little energy as possible, the best very low wattage heaters will use extra features like timers, thermostats, remote controls, and more. You should look for a heater that uses as many of these as possible to keep its operation simple and convenient. Some of the most important features to look for include:

Timers

A timer conserves energy and minimizes unnecessary usage by allowing you to set your heater to turn on or off at specific times. 

Thermostats

An adjustable thermostat is a great feature that lets you select an optimum temperature. When the heater reaches this temperature, it will automatically switch off, giving you extra control over how much power your heater consumes.

Programming Capabilities

A programmable heater combines the best features of a timer and thermostat. It allows you to set specific temperatures for your heater to reach at certain times of the day. That’s great when you need more heat during those extra-chilly mornings!

Different Heat Settings

Different heat settings, usually high, medium, and low, will use different amounts of electricity. A heater with at least 2 or 3 settings can give you real flexibility over power consumption. You can turn it down to save power, or for the cost of a higher electricity bill, you can crank the heat up to a higher setting when it’s extra-cold.

Overheating Kill Switch

An overheat protection switch will shut off the power to your heater if it ever gets too hot. Safety features like this can drastically reduce the chances of a fire or a damaged electrical circuit. 

Portability

One of the best things about a small electric heater is portability. Portable space heaters are easy to pick up and move around from room to room, giving you the flexibility to use them wherever you need them most. 

Most low-wattage space heaters are small enough to be placed conveniently on a desk or bedside table for heating in your office or bedroom.

Noise

Noise is a common complaint when it comes to space heaters, so you should look for a space heater that’s as quiet as possible. There are some space heaters available that emit less than 40 decibels –  about the same amount of noise as your refrigerator. 

Best Low Wattage Space Heater Reviews

Now that you understand how different low-wattage space heaters work, and what you should consider when buying one, let’s look at my reviews of some of the best you can buy today!

Lowest Amp Space Heater 2021

Lasko Heating ‘MyHeat’ Personal Space Heater
Editor’s choice
B005Q1APZS
Check price on Amazon
Features
Runs on just 200 watts of electricity
Easy to use straight from the box
Quiet operation

This extremely portable space heater would be a great addition to your office, study, or even kitchen countertops. Moving this heater around to different spaces is no problem thanks to its lightweight and compact design. With a footprint of just 4 x 4 inches, it takes up hardly any space at all!

It uses safety features like overheat protection and a cool-touch exterior that make it super-safe. You can use it right out of the box since it doesn’t need any assembly, and switching it on or off is as simple as the touch of a button.

This personal space heater won’t trip breaker switches in your home or office since it only needs 200 watts of electricity to operate. That’s just 2-amps of power! It will keep your energy costs nice and low all year round.

What We Like:

  • Runs on just 200 watts of electricity
  • Small and compact 4” x 4” footprint
  • Quiet operation
  • Easy to use straight from the box

What We Don’t Like:

  • No thermostat or timer

Best Budget Low-Wattage Space Heater

Amazon Basics Ceramic Personal Heater
Runner up
B074MXC3PN
Check price on Amazon
Features
Ceramic heating technology
Small and compact
Low upfront cost

Amazon Basics promises to deliver ‘highly-rated products at low prices’, and this small space heater lives up to that promise! For a very low upfront cost, you get a ceramic heater that’s small, compact, and super simple to use. Just plug it in and use it anywhere you like. 

This energy-efficient space heater uses ceramic technology to quickly heat the immediate surrounding space. Running on just 500 watts, it uses less power than traditional space heaters and provides enough heating power for smaller spaces in your home or office. 

Tip-over protection switches the unit off if it’s knocked over for extra safety. With a choice of 4 colors, you’re sure to find a unit that blends into your environment. Just be careful not to touch the front grille when it’s been on for a while. It can get very hot!

What We Like:

  • Ceramic heating technology
  • Tip-over protection switch
  • Low upfront cost
  • Small and compact
  • Available in 4 colors

What We Don’t Like:

  • No extra features or remote control
  • Front grille can get very hot

Best Low-Wattage Heater For Small Room

Honeywell HCE100B Heat Bud
Runner up
B00I4UVGHO
Check price on Amazon
Features
Made using flame-retardant material
Multiple safety features
2 heat modes

This indoor ceramic heater draws just 250 watts of electricity to operate, far less than most conventional space heaters. This low wattage keeps your bills low, with enough power to warm air in your immediate personal space. 

Ceramic technology means this small room heater heats smaller spaces quickly. Two heat settings let you switch between 170 and 250 watts, so you’ll save energy. There’s no programmable thermostat though, so you’ll need to stay nearby to stop the unit from overheating.

Safety features include tip-over protection and an exterior that’s cool-touch and flame-retardant. These can keep your home or office safe from fires, making this energy-efficient heater a great choice if you have kids or pets.

What We Like:

  • Runs on just 250 watts
  • Made using flame-retardant material
  • Multiple safety features
  • 2 heat modes

What We Don’t Like:

  • No thermostat control 

Best Low-Wattage Space Heater For Home Use

Brightown Mini Space Heater
Runner up
B07Y37VTKR
Check price on Amazon
Features
Uses just 400 watts
Sleek and portable design
Cool-touch housing

This personal space heater uses just 400 watts to provide nice, subtle heat in smaller rooms and can be placed on tabletops, desktops, or kitchen counters. You might not want to take it to use in the office though, since it’s quite a bit noisier than any of the other units that I’ve reviewed. 

The minimalistic design gives the heater a sleek and modern look that would look well in any room around your home. It’s also surprisingly sturdy, so you shouldn’t worry too much about breaking it if it’s knocked over or dropped.

It would make a great desktop companion that won’t chew through electricity when the cold creeps in!

What We Like:

  • Uses just 400 watts
  • Sleek and portable design
  • Cool-touch housing

What We Don’t Like:

  • Too noisy to use anywhere but at home

Best Radiator Heater

Amazon Basics Portable Radiator Heater
Runner up
B07HG923KN
Check price on Amazon
Features
3 heating settings
Backed by a 1-year warranty
Durable and rust-resistant

This radiator heater isn’t quite as energy-efficient as the other units on this list and uses around 1,500 watts to run. That’s still enough to reduce your central heating usage, though, and other radiator heaters I’ve tested just haven’t cut it. 

This heater provides quiet, radiant heat to spaces up to 144 square feet, so it’s a good choice if you want to warm a small room. You can choose from 3 different heating settings for complete customized comfort or to lower power usage. 

The unit is a bit heavy, but still portable thanks to strong wheels that click into place. The exterior and interior parts are made of rust-resistant steel, so you don’t need to worry about repair or replacement too soon down the line. In any case, this heater is backed by a 1-year warranty to cover any mishaps or breakdowns.

What We Like:

  • Powerful enough to heat a small room to 144 square feet
  • 3 heating settings
  • Multiple safety features
  • Durable and rust-resistant
  • Backed by a 1-year warranty

What We Don’t Like:

  • Higher heat consumption than other heaters on this list

Best Low-Watt Heater With Thermostat

Andily Electric Heater
Runner up
B07V33HTX4
Check price on Amazon
Features
Adjustable thermostat
Anti-overheat system
3 heat modes with fan

This electric heater uses ceramic heating and an adjustable thermostat to provide 3 different heating options. It can use less power to take a chill out of the air or use more to leave you feeling warm and toasty, and a fan helps to distribute heat evenly and effectively.

An anti-overheat system will switch the unit off if it gets too hot, so you can rest assured there’s less risk of fire. It’s perfect to use as an under-desk heater, but the indicator light makes it too bright to be used comfortably in the bedroom. 

What We Like:

  • Adjustable thermostat
  • Ceramic heating elements
  • Anti-overheat system
  • 3 heat modes with fan

What We Don’t Like:

  • The indicator light is too bright

Best Designed Personal Space Heater

GAIATOP Space Heater
Runner up
B08FHXP7P8
Check price on Amazon
Features
Unique retro design
Tip-over protection
Lightweight and compact

This stylish little heater has retro looks straight out of the 60s! You wouldn’t even recognize it as a heater at first! This cool and unique design means it can be discreetly placed in your living room, office, bathroom, or practically anywhere else that you need supplemental heating.

Aesthetics aren’t the only thing this ceramic space heater scores highly on. For such a small heater, it’s surprisingly powerful. There are 3 heating modes to choose from depending on your needs, and each gives you control over the amount of electricity you’re using.

Even when running on high heat mode, I barely noticed any noise coming from the unit at all. The manufacturers say it can run at below 35 decibels, making it a great addition to your chilly office when you need to be able to concentrate. 

This ceramic heater also includes tip-over protection that will switch the unit off if it’s knocked over by more than 45°. That’s perfect for keeping pets or curious kids safe around the home! 

What We Like:

  • Unique retro design
  • Tip-over protection
  • Ceramic heating element
  • Lightweight and compact

What We Don’t Like:

  • Can overheat when used with an extension power cord

Low Wattage Space Heater: Frequently Asked Questions

Is A Low Wattage Space Heater Effective?

A low-wattage portable space heater is effective at heating your personal space and smaller rooms. A small space heater isn’t suitable to warm air in larger indoor spaces. 

How Many Watts Is A Good Space Heater?

Most traditional types of space heaters consume around 1,500 watts of electricity, and this can cost about 15 cents an hour to run, which can add up if the heater is left on for several hours a day.

A low-wattage portable heater will be able to heat small spaces using as little as 200 watts. A portable heater that uses around 500 watts can still be considered very low!

Can I Leave A Space Heater On All Night?

You should never leave a space heater running while you’re asleep! Even though some heaters may have safety features like overheat protection, an electric heater can get very hot. If left unattended for too long, this could cause a fire to break out. 

Are Low Wattage Space Heaters Energy-Efficient?

The best low-wattage space heaters are very energy-efficient. They’re a great way to reduce your power consumption and keep your electricity bills low.

My Final Thoughts

As we’ve learned, the lowest-wattage space heaters can keep you warm and cozy in the winter without costing a fortune in energy bills. They’re often smaller, more portable, and far more efficient than traditional heaters

Every low-wattage space heater I’ve tested and reviewed is effective and energy-efficient. Choosing to buy one of these will keep the temperature high and power consumption low!