Are you hoping to turn your patio from a summer retreat into a four-season oasis to spend time in? If so, then a ceiling-mounted patio heater could be the perfect solution. The following tips can help ensure that the heater you choose provides the most comfortable temperature possible, even when the temperature plummets.
1. Choose the Right Type of Heater
Your two main choices will be a mushroom heater or a box heater. A mushroom heater disburses heat in a circular region, much like the heat is radiating out from a mushroom cap, which works well when you need to gently heat a large area. A box heater, sometimes called a vertical heater, consists of a box with vertical heating elements running through it. This type of heater typically puts out heat in only one direction, although there are some models that put out heat in two directions by running the heating elements under a V-shaped deflector cover. Box heaters provide more targeted heat. The type you choose depends on the space you hope to heat.
2. Install at an Appropriate Range Distance
The heater you choose should list the prime heating range of the unit. Your goal is to place the heater so that it is close enough to your patio area to provide warmth without causing overheating. Generally, ceiling-mounted heaters radiate out to a distance between 6 and 20 feet, depending on the size and style of the heater. If your patio ceiling is only 10 feet high, opt for a mushroom heater on the low end of the distance spectrum or opt for a more powerful box heater that can be set at the perimeter of the seating area in order to maximize distance.
3. Consider the Use of Multiple Heaters
Don't try to heat a larger patio by choosing a more powerful heater if it has too great of a range since this will make the area directly beneath the heater too hot for comfort. It's a better idea to use multiple heaters for larger patios. Measure your space carefully, and choose heaters with ranges that will just barely overlap each other so you can maintain a relatively even temperature over the entire patio.
4. Don't Overlook the Angle
Mushroom heaters are installed flush to the ceiling, but box heaters can be installed at varying angles. When installing these heaters, make sure they are angled in a manner that directs the heat outward and downward toward the main seating and use area of the patio. Otherwise, most of the heat will be lost before you can enjoy it.
Contact a ceiling-mounted patio heater supplier for more help.