Can anyone recommend a really good portable heater?

(9 Posts)
Scarletohello Tue 15-Oct-13 18:23:00

So I'm currently living in my dad's house, trying to look after him as he has dementia. They never spent much money on it and the room I'm staying in is really cold! I'm trying to get a heater for no more than £40.00 that will give out a fair amount of heat and isn't too expensive to run. Went to Argos today but it was v confusing looking at all the diff heaters so I thought I'd ask the good people of MN, am sure someone will have some good advice...

<waits patiently but shivering in the corner >

poshme Tue 15-Oct-13 18:25:58

Don't suppose you're on the south coast? I have an oil filled radiator you could have for free..
I'm not very knowledgeable, but oil filled (electric powered) radiators provide a steady background heat & are very safe- ie. can be on a timer to come on overnight or when you're out. Convector heaters hear a room quicker I think, but must never be left alone.

Scarletohello Tue 15-Oct-13 18:43:07

Thanks for the kind offer, I'm actually in the Midlands! But useful info about oil filled radiators, I'm totally clueless about what sort to get, saw some oil filled ones in Argos today but really don't know which ones are safe, efficient etc.

specialsubject Tue 15-Oct-13 19:05:14

is this a long-term thing? Elderly and disabled people are eligible for all sorts of heating and insulation grants.

delasi Tue 15-Oct-13 19:17:16

As specialsubject said, I think it's called the Warm Front scheme. Have a look into and see if your dad could be elegible, you can get a grant towards fuel costs (and possibly other things too).

As for an actual heater, I second the oil filled radiator suggestion. You can get a decent enough one for around £30-40 in Argos iirc - however have a look around Wilkinson's if you can, and other similar stores, as these things often go on offer. Granted those offers are usually in spring/summer, but there are still sales and offers on at this time of year smile I'm not an expert but I think you might want at least 1.5kw output to heat a room, depending on how big it is. Most of the radiators I've seen are around 1.5kw, a few that go up to 2.5kw, and the cheapest at 0.5kw but these seem to struggle heat anything larger than the immediate area around them.

Also if see what else you can do to make the room warmer - eg rugs, heavy curtains, an electric blanket, provided these aren't already present. I realise you have a budget, but perhaps there are things around the house/in a loft/attic/spare room not being used, or also you could look on sites like Freecycle or Freegle, or also local eBay offers.

delasi Tue 15-Oct-13 19:18:05

Apologies for typos/grammatical errors smile

PigletJohn Tue 15-Oct-13 19:36:25

+1 on oil-filled. AFAIK they cannot start a fire, as they are not as hot as electric convectors or fans, and will not burn you, so safer.

I would get one that screws to the wall so it can't be knocked over. Get one with a thermostat but not a timer, as the timers go wrong. If he is in a fair sized room, go for 1500W or so, with a high/medium/low switch. 500W is adequate for a bedroom at night, unless he is liable to get up and sit in the cold. The maximum power you can get is 3000W (3kW) which will heat a fair-sized living room but will cost 45p an hour at full power. If necessary you can get plug-in timers for a few pounds.

There are a few just under £40 at Screwfix and Wickes. You may find one at Tesco or Argos, though I didn't see then online.

Girlsbrigadewashorrible Tue 15-Oct-13 19:52:25

Agree that an oil fired radiator is the best option. We bought one last winter when our gas boiler was giving up. It was a lifesaver during very cold days, and I believe they are fairly economical. I recommend one with a timer.

PigletJohn Tue 15-Oct-13 22:11:14

saw them in Tesco starting at £20 for a little one and £25 for a medium.

Big brands more than double.

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