Best Tent Heaters

When you purchase through links on our site we may earn a small commission. Learn more

Have you been camping in the winter recently and wondered how you are going to stay warm? Well, I know I have been freezing countless times while on my camping trips. It doesn’t have to be freezing, tent heaters are designed to be a portable space heater that you can bring into your tent with you to keep you warm.

They are designed to be used specifically for the inside of your tent.  They are very effective in cold freezing weather. Most of the tent heaters out there are either propane or electric powered. We have reviewed the best tent heaters on the market making sure you know which ones are the best contenders to buy. Check out our list and let us know what you think.

Top 3 Best Tent Heaters

Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy Indoor-Safe Portable Propane Tent Heater

Top Pick
Mr. Heater F215100 MH4B Little Buddy 3800-BTU Indoor Safe Propane Heater

Budget Pick
Mr. Heater MH12B Hunting Buddy Portable Space Heater

Runner up

Tent Heater Reviews

Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy Indoor-Safe Portable Propane Tent Heater

The Mr. Heater brand has been around a long time. They have a great reputation for their best ten heaters. This tent heater is very lightweight but packs a powerful punch when it comes to warming up a tent. The heater only weights ten pounds and has a convenient carrying handle for easy portability.  The heater uses propane giving you between 4000 – 9000 BTU’s.

Shut Off Feature

One of the best features of this tent heater is the safety features. The heater has dual sensors that will turn off in case of an emergency. If the heater falls over, it will shut off.  If the oxygen in the room or in the tent dips down low the tent will shut off.

Perfect for Camping

This is a great heater for your tent when you are camping. This tent is very light and portable so you can easily take it with you from campsite to campsite. It heats up quickly and you will immediately start feeling the heat right away. It is the perfect heater to use on super cold days and nights.

Pros

  • Made out of plastic, nickel, and steel.
  • Can be used in a space up to 225 square feet.
  • 4000-9000 BTU’S.
  • Uses propane.
  • Can be used indoors or outdoors.

Cons

  • If you are camping somewhere with an altitude over 7000 feet, the heater will not work.

Overall

The Mr. Heater brand is so well recognized and so trusted. They have made an excellent product that works great and comes with the best safety features. I can’t tell you how important safety features are to me. I want to be safe in my tent and I feel completely safe with this product. I think the price point is right on par with the other tent heaters on the market.

Check it out

Mr. Heater F215100 MH4B Little Buddy 3800-BTU Indoor Safe Propane Heater

Another fantastic product made by the Mr. Heater company! This heater is nicknamed the little buddy. It is smaller than the first heater we talked about but it still packs a powerful punch when it comes to heating up your tent. it is very lightweight and can be taken with you hiking, fishing, and much more.

Carbon Monoxide and Oxygen Detector

When you are resting inside your tent, the last thing you want to worry about is the possibility of carbon monoxide poisoning. This Mr. Heater has an oxygen sensor. So, if the oxygen level drop below normal the heater will actually shut off automatically. With this added feature you will gain so much peace of mind knowing you will be safe in case of an emergency like this.

Lightweight

The entire heater weighs six pounds, and the propane tank used only weighs one pound. Now if you are traveling to different campsites during your camping trip this is a huge plus for you. The lightweight nature of this product will make it easy for you to carry from place to place.

Best Budget Heater

This heater is our choice for the best tent heater on a budget. This heater comes at a very affordable price point making it one of the cheapest tent heaters we have seen. The best part is not only the cheap price but how the brand “Mr. Heater” is so well recognized as one of the best tent heater companies. This product is extremely reliable and priced fairly.

Pros

  • Super easy portable indoor safe heater.
  • Simple to use on and off buttons.
  • Can heat areas up to 95 square feet using 3800 BTU’s.
  • Used for more smaller tents.

Cons

  • Not as powerful as other heaters because it is smaller.
  • No specific heat setting such as high or low.

Overall

If you’re looking for a very affordable heater that you can use during those cold nights in your tent then you will love this one.  This heater can be used for five hours giving you a continuous amount of heat during that time. It weighs less than 6 pounds making it very portable.

Check it out

Mr. Heater MH12B Hunting Buddy Portable Space Heater

Here we go again with the famous Mr. Heater brand. This mh12b hunting buddy is easily one of the most popular being able to be used indoors and outdoors. It is perfect for hunting, fishing, and even lounging. It will heat 300 square feet of space and has a swivel regulator.

Built in Electric Ignition

Another great thing about this tent heater is that it ignites the flame for you. All you have to do is push and rotate the knob. There is a built-in electric ignition that doesn’t make any noise. This will do all the work for you and instantly light the flame.

Oxygen Depletion Sensor

Just like the other products from the Mr. Heater brand, we have an oxygen depletion sensor. This will shut off the entire propane tent heater if it senses not enough oxygen inside the tent. there is also an accidental tip-over shut off that will do the safe shut off it the heater falls to the ground. These features will give you peace of mind when you are out camping.

12,000 BTU’s

This model will provide you with 12,000 BTU’s of heat per hour. That is an exceptional amount of heat for this small compact heater. It has two heat settings that can be used on low or high. It can also use a twenty-pound propane cylinder which will last a lot longer on your camping trip.

Pros

  • Low oxygen shut off mode.
  • Tip over safety shut off mode.
  • It has a swivel regulator.
  • Works on high and low heat settings.
  • Propane gas heater.

Cons

  • Don’t use it outside when windy, the pilot light easily burns out.

Overall

This is a great purchase for someone who plans on doing a lot of winter camping. This will incorporate perfectly into your camping gear packing list. The price point is very comparable to the other Mr. Heater products. This heater will last you the years to come. A must-have!

Check it out

Texsport Portable Outdoor Propane Heater

The Texsport portable propane heater is the best outdoor camping heater. It is not recommended as tent safe but lounging by your campsite with your heater will keep you very warm. This heater has a simple design with great performance. It comes with a plastic food bottom to keep it stable at your campsite. Perfect choice for outdoor camping!

Paddle Foot Plastic

This propane tent heater doesn’t have a huge design her but what it does have is a special paddle foot plastic. What the paddle foot plastic does is it stabilizes the heater to keep it in place. It will be heard for this heater to fall over unless you are deliberately trying to knock it over.

Auto Fuel Shut Off

If the flame of the propane ever comes goes out from a big gust of wind or even rain; the heater has an automatic fuel shut off. This will shut off the fuel valve from distributing any propane into the air around you without you knowing.

Pros

  • 2890 BTU’s
  • Very portable only weighing a few pounds.
  • Auto fuel shut off valve.
  • Simple design.

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a flame source to start the heater.
  • Not recommended for indoor tents.

Overall

This is a quick heating heater that does not lack on its performance. I like the fact that it has its own foot paddle stand to keep it stable. I also really like the safety shut off features and how lightweight the entire heater is. The thing I like most of all is the price. This is the cheapest outdoor heater that still has great performance.

Check it out

Camplux JK-1000 Portable Butane Heater

This tent heater is powered by a butane cartridge. This heater is fast acting and heats up a 100 square feet area in less than five seconds. It may be a smaller heater but it packs a big punch with its heating capabilities. It is very lightweight and portable for any outdoor activities.

Multifunctional Tool

Something really unique about this butane heater is that it can be used to also cook or heat up already cooked food. It comes with an accessory that is food safe that can be placed on the heater.

Overheating Protection

There is a built-in sensor that can eject the canister and that will cut the gas flow of butane to stop it from overheating. This will also prevent a butane gas leak. It is very important that even when you have these safety features to always inspect and watch your heater.

Pros

  • 4,400 BTU’s of heat
  • Heats up within five seconds of being turned on.
  • 100 square feet of heating range.
  • Has a multifunctional design which allows you to cook.
  • Easy to use.
  • Overheating protection.
  • Uses butane as a fuel source.

Cons

  • I wish I could heat a bigger space.

Overall

If you are someone who loves the outdoors and does a multitude of activities such as camping, hunting, and fishing then you will love this butane heater. If you are scared to use a propane heater then this is a great option for you. The price is very affordable and it comes with some great safety features. It sets off a tremendous amount of heat of 4,400 BTU’s!

Check it out

Portable Gas Catalytic Heater

This heater is really special because it has a flameless heat. No, it’s not an electrical heater, it is actually a propane heater. It has foldable legs that will make it super easy for you to set up. You can bring this heater anywhere because it is so lightweight and portable. It can work up to seven hours on a pound of propane.

Super Compact

The legs on this heater make it very special because they can fold out to prop the heater up in place. When you are done using the heater just fold the legs back in and it becomes more compact. The heater can easily hit into a storage container, backpack, and even a duffle bag.

Flameless Heater

This heater is also flameless. This means the gas doesn’t produce a flame that is visible for you to see. It is a safer alternative to a regular tent hearer that has a flame. There are also safety features in place to prevent the heater from overheating.

Pros

  • Flameless heater.
  • Has fold out legs for the heater to prop itself on.
  • Seven hours of heat on one propane container filled.
  • Delivers 3000 BTU’s.
  • Super compact and easy to travel with.

Cons

  • On the more expensive side of tent heaters.

Overall

This heater is on more of the expensive side of ten heaters. It does have the cool feature of flameless and it does last seven hours. When you use a regular flame heater, they waste about 45% of the heat produced, with this heater, this won’t happen.

Check it out

Pro Breeze 1500W Mini Ceramic Space Heater

The Pro Breeze Heater is a very nice sleek heater that comes ion three different heat settings. It can be used in low, high, or fan mode. The unit itself is very lightweight. It has a ceramic technology that makes the heater heat up fast.

Three Heat Settings

This electric heater comes in three different heat setting; the first is low, high, and then fan mode. It is nice to have some choice on what heat setting you would like. There is also an automatic thermostat that will monitor the heat temperature. It will automatically adjust for you.

Ceramic Technology

The heater is made with ceramic elements throughout the heating system. This ceramic technology with heat up fast and more efficiently. After it heats up quickly you will notice a huge change right away with the temperature in the room.

Safety Features

This heater also features some great safety features. It is important to think about these safety features to keep you safe. This heater has an anti-tip over function that will shut the heater off when it falls over.

Pros

  • Uses electrical ceramic heating.
  • Fully adjustable thermostat – can be placed on fan, low, or high.
  • Built in safety features that will shut the heater off if it overheats.
  • If the heater falls over there is a trip over switch which again instantly turns off the heater.
  • Easy to transport around your home or at a campground with electricity.

Cons

  • The heater can be hot to the touch when picking it up.
  • Higher noise level.

Overall

This is the perfect electric heater if you are in a campsite that has electrical hookup. This heater is lightweight and very portable. It uses ceramic technology to heat it up quickly. It comes at a very affordable price range. This is my pick for the best electric tent heater.

Check it out

andily Space Heater Electric Heater

The Andily Heater is a small compact heater that can be easily transported to different areas. There is an adjustable thermostat to find the perfect temperature for you. There is also an LED light that turns on when the heater is running. This will let you know when the heater is running.

Heat Quality

The heating quality on this heater works very well. It can easily heat up a big area. If there is electrical hookup at your campsite you will be so surprised about the amount of heat that comes out of this heater.

Thermostat Control

There are two heat options that you can choose from 750 and 1500 watts. There is thermostat control so you can adjust the temperature either up or down to get the perfect setting for you. There is also a fan option where it will have a fan blowing air but no actual heat will come out.

Pros

  • Adjustable thermostat.
  • Three heating settings – low, high, and fan only.
  • Safety cut offs.
  • Adjustable thermostat.

Cons

  • It’s not the most energy efficient heater on the market.

Overall

This heater has several safety features. It comes with three modes that are changeable to your desired heat setting. The price is extremely affordable compared to other heaters. Over I think this small heater packs a powerful punch and will get the job done.

Check it out

AmazonBasics 500-Watt Ceramic Small Space Personal Mini Heater

Are you ready for a stylish compact heater that actually works amazingly? I know I am! Amazon Basics has created this small portable ceramic heater that will heat up a room in a matter of seconds. Don’t let the cold get you down when you don’t have to!

Compact Heating Solution

This heater uses a ceramic element that doesn’t force air through the heater to make it hot. It heats up in seconds and is small and compact enough to be put on a table or at a campsite. It is available in four stylish colors, black, blue, pink and white.

Pros

  • Compact personal heater.
  • Ceramic coils that heat up very fast.
  • Comes in four different color options.
  • Safety features put in place to make sure it doesn’t overheat and cause problems.
  • Perfect for small spaces.

Cons

  • Not very energy efficient.

Overall

This is a very cheap heater. I don’t mean cheap as in materials because it sure doesn’t use crappy materials. I mean cheap as in price. Anyone can afford this heater. Why be cold this winter when you don’t have to. This heater is very compact and lightweight. It is perfect for any winter situation.

Check it out

Safety Tips for Using a Tent Heater

Before you go on your camping trip it is important to know some safety tips when using a tent heater. You can’t just start using it if you don’t have the knowledge of what to avoid and knowing the proper placement of the tent heater.

Proper Ventilation

Even though most of the propane ten heaters will have some exceptional safety features to keep you safe, you want to still be cautious. When you are using the propane heater it is important to have a good airflow of free-flowing air. This will keep everything properly ventilated and will make sure there isn’t to much carbon monoxide in the air.

Read Your Instructions

Remember when purchasing the best tent heater for you that you read all the instructions provided before using it. Make sure you have everything set up correctly and that all the buttons work properly.

Correct Positioning

Make sure that you have positioned your tent heater in a place where it won’t be able to burn anything near it. Make sure it is also positioned on a hard, even surface so it will not fall over. You don’t want to start a forest fire. This is a very tricky situation because depending on where you put the tent heater will directly affect how much it is actually being able to heat up the tent.

Is it Tent Safe?

Remember when searching for a tent heater that it is rated for indoor use for a small area such as a tent. All the brands that we have reviewed above are tent safe. Now if you are doing your own research looking for tent heaters make sure they are tent safe. If they are not, you can make huge complications for yourself on your next camping trip.

Don’t leave It On when Sleeping

Remember it isn’t safe to leave your tent heater on while you are sleeping. I understand that it may be freezing outside but the best option is for you to warm the tent up really well right before you go to sleep. Then turn it off and use your blankets to keep you warm at night. If something were to happen why you were sleeping It could be very dangerous so it is better to play it on the safe side and turn off your tent heater.

How to Set Up a Tent Heater

Safety is a very important thing when we talk about tent heaters. Make sure you have your tent heater properly set up is important. You do not want it to malfunction when you are out. Here are some easy steps to set up your tent heater. Make sure to always read the instructions for your specific heater.

Unboxing/Reading Instructions

When you first get your tent heater you will need to unbox it. I always unbox anything I buy carefully in case it wasn’t what I was truly expecting. Second, you will want to read over the entire instruction manual. This will have key information to what type of fuel you may need, to actually setting up the heater.

Propane Hookup

Every type of propane tent heater will have a hookup area where you can connect the heater to the propane. Find this area on your specific heater and connect it. Then you need to turn the valve. Make sure you have your heater and propane in a sturdy spot where it will not tip over. If your heater is electrical you do not need to worry about this step.

Butane Cartridges

If your tent heater uses butane than the setup is very similar to the propane setup. Butane comes in small cartridges that burn and give off the same amount of heat as propane. If the area on your tent heater where the butane cartridge goes into. It should be very easy to find. After that it should be working like a charm.

Turning the Heater On

To turn on a propane heater or butane heater you need to use an electric igniter to make the heat source start to burn. Then just flip you’re on switch on. When you are ready to turn it off you need to also turn off the heat source. Turn the valve off for the propane and the butane.

Types of Tent Heaters

When you look for a type of tent heater the difference is going to come down to the type of fuel being used. The two main type are propane and electric; sometimes you see a third type using a chemical heating source. We are going to talk about the difference in each one.

Propane

  • Most used and most widely known as outdoor heaters.
  • Comes in all different sizes and shapes.
  • Most propane heaters have built in shut off mechanisms.
  • Also, most propane heaters have a carbon monoxide sensor that shuts off the heater when it is detected.
  • Portable and easy to operate.
  • Typically, can heat for seven hours.

Electric

  • Recommended if you are near an electrical supply hookup.
  • Comes in different sizes and shapes.
  • Two types of electric heaters – convection and radiant heater.
  • Can heat a tent very quickly.
  • Known to be one of the safest type of tent heater.

Chemical

  • Easy to transport in a backpack.
  • Contain nontoxic materials – water and sodium acetate.
  • Two types – one time use and reusable.
  • Can heat up to 15 hours.
  • Reusable pack be used over and over again around 500 times.

Features to Look for When Deciding to Purchase A Tent Heater

Now we need to discuss the best features to look for and to decide upon when purchasing a tent heater. If there is something specific you want in your tent heater check out this list.

Type of Heater

We talked about this above the difference between each one but you need to ultimately decide if you want to go with an electric, propane, or chemical heater. Depending on your weather conditions when you go out camping will reflect what type of heater you may need.

Safety Shut Off

Most of the above heaters we have reviewed have a safety shut off put in place to protect you. If your heater accidentally falls over you want to know that it will shut off and not catch anything on fire. If carbon monoxide is detected you want to know that it will shut off before it gets too dangerous. This is a very important feature.

Heat Output

Heat output means the amount of heat the heater can actually produce. This is also referred to as BTU’s on the tent heaters. Tents are very small so the outside climate greatly influences the temperature in the tent. You need a very powerful heater to heat up your tent. You will want to calculate your BTU’s for the size of the tent. typically, you will want around 2000 to 6000 BTU’s of heat.

Size/Ease of Portability

Size varies on what type of heater you buy. If you have a very small tent then you should probably buy a smaller size tent heater. If ease of portability is important to you then try to find a tent heater with a convenient handle. This will make it easier for you to carry to your campsite.

Durability

This is one of the most important factors in any piece of equipment. You want your tent heater to be able to withstand the harsh elements of the great outdoors. You want to have the peace of mind when using a tent heater that will work your entire camping trip.

Ten Heater FAQ

Q: What are Tent Heaters?

A: A tent heater is a small heater that is very powerful. They can be powered by either fuel, electrical source, or even sometimes something chemical. People usually use them when they are out camping. Tent heaters can be useful in other activities too but mostly people use them for camping especially when they are sleeping at night.

Q: What Kind of Heater Can I Use in a Tent?

A: There are three main types of heaters for tents; they are propane, electric, and chemical. The most common type is propane because there are no electrical outlets usually in the woods to plug in your heater. All of these types of heaters have their pros and cons. Look at my detailed list of the type of tent heaters above to learn more.

Q: What is the Safest Tent Heater?

A: There are a few models out on the market that I would say make very safe tent heaters. The Mr. Heater brand makes very safe reliable heaters. Also, the Texsport brand is another brand with excellent safety features.  Each of these brands have safety shut off features where if the heater overheats it will turn off. Also, they have a tip-over feature where if the heater falls to the ground without you knowing it will turn off.

Q: What Size Heater for a Tent?

A: There are all different sized tent heaters out on the market. The biggest thing you need to do is measure your tent and se how many square feet it is. Once you know that you need to times it by your insulation rating which should be located on the tents tag. Then you will get your recommended BTU’s look at the BTU’s when shopping for a tent heater, this will give you an idea of what size tent will work best in your heater.

Q: What Type of Fuel Does a Tent Heater Use?

A: Propane is the most commonly used fuel source in tent heaters. Propane isn’t too expensive and if you know how to properly use it is safe. There is another type of fuel that can be used call butane. Butane is a small cartridge usually used in cigarettes.

Q: What Temperature Do You Need Heater for Tent?

A: All of the tent heaters that I have reviewed above will do an excellent job of heating up your tent. the temperature increase with tent heaters varies depending on the size and how many BTU’s is being expelled from the heater.

Tent heaters will definitely keep you warmer than not using them. These tent heaters are designed for people who camp out in extremely cold weather. You need proper insolation in your shelter and layers on your body to really enhance the use of your tent heater.

Q: What BTU Measurement for Tent Heater?

A: BTU simply put stands for British thermal units which is the amount of hot or cold energy the heater can produce. So, to do this you need to figure out the square footage of your tent. To find square footage of something you need to figure out the height, width, and length measurements of your tent.

After that, you will want to look for your tent’s insulation rating. All tents should tell you the insulation Rating somewhere on a tag or on the inside of the tent. Once you see that number multiply it by the cubic feet of your tent. For example, say you have 150 cubic feet tent X 5 (insulation rating) = then you need around a 750 BTU heater.

Q: Who Makes the Best Tent Heater?

A: In my opinion, I think the brand that makes the best tent heaters is the Mr. Heater brand. They have perfected the technology and safety of using a heater inside a tent. they are portable and lightweight and can be taken from campsite to campsite. They come at a great price range and they have many different tent heaters to choose from that way you can pick the best one for you.

Q: Tent Ventilation When Using a Heater

A: Tent ventilation is another important aspect to think about. If you do not have the proper tent ventilation it could lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. Make sure you have good airflow when using a tent heater.  You need to make sure that you have constant oxygen flow coming in and out of your tent.  if you don’t have that it can lead to a severe amount of health issues.

Q: How to Heat a Tent Without a Tent Heater?

A: A tent heater is one of the best ways to heat up your tent/campsite, but if you don’t want to use one there are some other alternatives that will work in a tent. The biggest thing is that some aren’t as safe and they don’t generate the same amount of heat like a tent heater would.

Candle Lantern

A candle lantern in a metal cylinder that you can put a candle inside. It will burn the candle and release off the heat. They don’t provide as much heat as a tent heater but if you are in a small compact space, they should provide you with a ten-degree difference in temperature. Remember to follow all safety rules and blow out your candle lantern before going to sleep. You don’t want to start a fire.

Camping Stove

If you can manage to bring a big camping stove with you on your camping trip then it will keep you really warm. You cannot put a camping stove inside a tent because it is truly not safe. If you put it outside in your campsite it will generate a lot of heat and you can also use it to cook food.

Heat Packs

Heat packs work for all sorts of situations, but they do not necessarily work to heat up your tent. you can use these inside the pockets of your clothes, sleeping bag, and even your shoes to give you that extra warm feeling you need to feel cozy. They do generate some good heat and they can last up to ten hours which is amazing. Another great option for you to try.

Q: How Well Do Tent Heaters Work?

A: Tent heaters once again work amazing. They can really help prevent hypothermia. They give you such piece of mind when your camping to know that you can warm up next to a heater instead of having to freeze. They are a camping game changer in my book! Make sure you check out my list above with the best tent heaters.

Q: How Much Do Tent Heaters Cost?

A: Tent heaters are actually really affordable. I think everyone can afford a tent heater because they can get as low as fifty dollars or less. There are some higher end tent heaters but they come with a lot of great options and features. This really boils down to you and what you want in your heater.

Q: How Are Propane Tent Heaters Safe?

A: It may surprise you to know that propane tent heaters are actually safe. You still need to follow simple safety guidelines though. Check to make sure the propane heater you want to use says that it is safe to use in small enclosed spaces such as a tent.

Remember to always turn off your heater before going to bed. If you are cold, warm up your tent before you go to sleep. Also remember to buy one of the tent heaters with safety features already in place such as carbon monoxide detector, automatic shut off, and proper ventilation.

Q: Are Tent Heaters Noisy?

A: It really depends on which model you are planning on purchasing. Yes, some can emit some amount of noise around you. When you weigh all the positives of tent heaters, a little noise can be overlooked.

Conclusion

As you can see tent heaters are a fantastic invention and can really make your camping trip more enjoyable. Any of the above best tent heaters will be a great choice on your next winter camping trip. Just remember to follow all the safety rules when using your tent heater. Enjoy your relaxing camping trip filled with all the same comforts that you have at home!

If you have any questions or concerns about any of the products or just questions; send us a message and we will get back to you as fast as possible. We would love to talk to you. Thank you.

Leave a Comment