Our range of Calor Gas portable heaters can be used as a primary heat source and is an ideal top-up for central heating in chillier rooms. Even better, you don't have to spend a fortune on a gas heater to raise the temperature effectively.
In this guide, we hope to answer the most frequently asked questions and provide an understanding of what you are buying.
Types & Styles
Infrared Radiant Heaters
These heaters have been around since the early seventies and are probably the most recognisable gas heater on the market today. While the units are smaller than their seventies cousins, the principles remain the same today.
The infrared heater predominantly uses radiation generated by very hot heating panels.
Infrared heaters can be easily recognised by the fine-pored ceramic plates that turn to an intense red when glowing.
The heat is generated by a gas burner that burns the gas oxygen mix inside the ceramic plates at a temperature of around 900°C.
The benefit of an infrared heater is that its heat is perceived as stronger and more direct, particularly when positioned in front of it. Especially when feeling cold, you will get a fast, pleasant heat response from an infrared heater.
On top of that, it is easily recognisable if an Infrared Heater is switched on thanks to the red, glowing ceramic panels.
Heat outputs range from as low as 1kW to an impressive 4kW.
Gaining popularity, gas catalytic heaters offer a well-balanced ratio between radiation and convection heat. The hot surface works at a much lower temperature, so the radiation is softer.
Catalytic heaters burn gas at a lower temperature because the catalytic panel is made of aluminium fibres. This is how the heater got its name. The catalytic panel is coated with catalysers, allowing the gas oxygen mix to burn without emitting any flames.
As catalytic heaters have no flame and don't emit a strong direct heat, there is a minimal risk that an object covering the heater or positioned close to the heater will get damaged or catch fire.
Catalytic heaters also have a low CO2 emission. These properties make the heaters user-friendly as the power can be easily adjusted, and the product operates silently.
They are commonly used in shops, hospitals, garages and site huts.
Heat outputs range from 1kW to 3kW.
Living flame heaters are the next generation of portable gas heaters with more pleasing coal or log effect real flame burner. They are sure to catch the attention of your guests and visitors!
Not only do these heaters look good, but they also retain the impressive heat outputs and portability of their more traditional cousins.
Heat outputs from 1kW to an impressive 3.4kW.
Portable and powerful, blue flame heaters (also known as convection heaters) are a more traditional form of heating. These heaters work by warming the air around them. This causes the hot air to rise, heating the room's entire space.
This might not be the best choice if you have a house or building with high ceilings. And if you have an older house with drafts, the air will cool down very fast. These types of heaters are ideal for smaller, insulated spaces.
What type of gas cylinder do I need?
All portable gas heaters for domestic use work on butane gas (LPG), available nationwide from Calor Gas.
For the Super Heat Mini Infrared Radiant Gas Heater, a 5kg Butane Calor Gas cylinder, which is yellow is required in Ireland & Northern Ireland.
For Standard Infrared Radiant, Living Flame, Blue Flame & Catalytic Gas Heaters, a 15kg Butane Calor Gas cylinder is required. These are blue in England, Scotland and Wales. In Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, an 11.34kg Butane Calor Gas cylinder is required. These are yellow.
All heaters are supplied with a 35mm Butane Regulator & Hose
How long will a gas cylinder last?
A very common question! As with most gas heaters, it depends on your choice of heating setting. Most heaters these days have three heat settings; however, some have a fully adjustable control from low to high.
Depending on the model, heaters with three settings - 1 to 1.4kW, 2 to 2.8kW and 3 to 4.2kw.
Depending on the model, heaters with fully adjustable heat control – 1 to 3.4kW.
An easy way to work the kW hours is to use the following equation:-
Number of hours burn time = 14 x cylinder size (15kg) ÷ Power output of heater (e.g. 4.2kW)
For example, a 14 x 15kg gas cylinder ÷ 4.2kw = 50 hours on a maximum heat setting.
This is for guidance only and can vary dramatically depending on the heat settings chosen.
Are they easy to ignite?
Yes, they are easy to ignite.
Traditional cabinet-style gas heaters generally have a piezo ignitor that does not require batteries; however, you may have to press this more than once for the heater to ignite.
The more expensive stove-type/living flame gas heaters are supplied with an electronic igniter and will require a battery to power them. They are much easier to use.
Are they Portable?
Yes, very! All heaters incorporate either 4 or 5-directional casters, allowing the heater to move from room to room quickly and easily.
What happens if the gas blows out?
All gas heaters, regardless of cost, are supplied with an integrated pilot, which will cut the gas supply to the burner if blown out (Flame Supervision Device).
In addition, all gas heaters are supplied with oxygen depletion devices which will automatically turn the heater off if oxygen levels drop to a dangerous level.
It is strongly recommended that any gas appliance used indoors should be used in conjunction with a Carbon Monoxide Alarm.
Are there any rooms a portable gas heater should not be used in?
- Where highly flammable or combustible materials are used or stored.
- In bathrooms or shower rooms.
- In bedrooms, tents or any type of sleeping accommodation.
- In rooms smaller than the size specified in the manufacturer's instructions.
Does the gas heater require ventilation?
The room in which the gas heater is being used must be well ventilated to ensure that the gas heater receives an adequate supply of fresh air to ensure property operation of the appliance.
You should always read and follow the instructions in the owner's manual.
Do gas heaters cause condensation?
Water vapour is a natural emission produced by a cabinet heater. Providing the correct amount of ventilation in and out of a room will prevent condensation from becoming an issue. Please refer to the owner’s instruction manual for recommended levels of ventilation.
Can my heater produce carbon monoxide?
Carbon monoxide (CO) is a highly poisonous gas that can be produced if the gas heater is not working correctly. It is difficult to recognise as it has no colour, smell or taste.
Symptoms of exposure to Carbon Monoxide:
- Loss of consciousness
CO symptoms are similar to flu, food poisoning, viral infections and fatigue. That's why it's quite common for people to mistake this very dangerous poisoning for something else.
Other signs that could point to CO poisoning:
- Your symptoms only occur when you are at home and seem to disappear when you leave home.
- Others in your household (including pets) are experiencing similar symptoms, and they appear at a similar time.
If you suspect you're gas heater is producing carbon monoxide,
- Get fresh air immediately. Open doors and windows, turn off gas appliances and leave the house.
- See your doctor immediately or go to the hospital - let them know that you suspect CO poisoning. They can do a blood or breath test to check.
- Switch the gas heater off and do not use it again until a competent person/gas installer has checked it.
Do I need to service my gas heater?
Yes, it's essential to check that your portable heater is safe for use and complies with all relevant safety legislation.
As with all gas appliances, we recommend getting your portable gas heater regularly serviced by a qualified technician, in line with the instructions provided by the manufacturer.
In addition, we advise that the appliance's regulator be replaced every 10 years to ensure it's functioning correctly. We also suggest that the hose is inspected regularly for signs of cracking or general wear and tear. Your hose needs to be replaced a minimum of every five years. However, if any signs of damage appear, you should replace them immediately.
Useful Safety Tips
- Always turn your portable heater off before leaving your property or going to bed.
- Ensure all the heater parts are well maintained, including the regulator hose and hose connectors.
- Do not use aerosols or flammable cleaning liquids/sprays near the heater.
- Avoid sitting or standing too close to the heater.
- Always ensure that the room is well-ventilated, and open a window if it becomes stuffy to allow fresh air to circulate.
- Always follow the manufacturer's guidelines carefully.
- Ensure that the position of your heater is away from any flammable materials and is not blocking any escape routes.
- Never place clothes or other items over your heater.
- Do not move your heater whilst it is in use.