There's no better feeling than being nice and snuggly with your cats during the cold winter time. To keep your area warm, you might think to invest in a space heater, as it can be cheaper than turning on your home's central heating system. However, be cautious, as some heaters pose a hazard to your cats. In this guide, we'll go over the best type of space heaters to keep your furry friends warm, safe, and cozy. We'll also point out 11 key features to look for when purchasing your own space heater.
Interested in a quick list of the best products? Check out our list of the best cat-friendly space heaters.
The best cat-friendly space heater type is ceramic.
Ceramic heaters are strong, lightweight and durable. These appliances are made up with a ceramic shell in the outer region that surrounds the electric heating system. The shell is cool to the touch, so won't harm your cats if they're up against it directly. The lack of a dangeorus metal heating element makes this the ceramic heater heater great for pets and children.
Ceramic heaters come in several different flavors.
The Ceramic Tower Heater is best for the conventional user. Most designs are tall and skinny, with a motor that allows for the unit to rotate along its axis. This sleek design allows for the warm air to disperse across the room. If you and your cats live in an apartment or within a single room, this is the perfect choice for you.
These models are great for personal use, but are not great for heating the the entire room. They are often placed under or on top of one's desk. Their lightweight figure makes them good for personal use, but aren't good for heating the entire room.
Lastly, there are ceramic wall heaters. These are built into the wall, and carry more power than the other above two counterparts. However, they are more permanent so consider buying one only if you are interested in a more powerful, higher-quality room heater.
Heat output is measured in wattage. It's important that your space heater wattage isn't too high or too low, as a high wattage can cause your heater to fail, while a low wattage will keep your room cold.
The best way to figure out what wattage you need is to look at the chart below. To obtain the square footage, simply multiply the width and length of your room in feet. Consider adding more wattage if your room
Let's now go over the many different features ceramic space heaters can come with. It's important to have most of the following features, but obviously not necessary to have all.
Space heaters with the Auto Shutoff function turns off the heater if it is tipped over. Additionally, if the heater measures internal compoments above a certain threshold, it will also turn off. This is an important safety feature to have, especially with cats and/or small children.
Most ceramic heaters are already cool to the touch. The central heating unit is embedded within the ceramic shell, and the outer layer is well insulated. Thus, the chance of burning yourself is very unlikely. Additionally, the source is often guarded with heavy duty plastic or metal grills.
Having a small remote control can be the difference between getting up, out of your bed and walking to the heater to adjust it, or adjusting the temperature from the comforts of being under your sheets. How convenient is it to lie in bed while turning the heater on or off?
Programmable timers allow you to set the heater on and off at specific intervals. As keeping the heater on throughout the night can overheat the room as well as increase energy costs, this is a great feature to have.
Additionally, some heaters come with auto shutoff, where the unit shuts off once it reaches a target temperature. After the temperature reaches about two degrees lower, the heater will turn itself back on again.
Some heaters help purify the air that it takes in. If you're interested in clearing the air of allergens and litter dust, check out our guide to selecting an air purifier.
Some heaters (especially the tall ones) can rotate 90, 170 or 360 degrees. This allows the heater to distribute the air easier.
Consider checking out the noise rating (measured in decibels), especially if you plan to use it while sleeping.
There are some heaters that have an energy save option. Consider this if you are really trying to cut down on energy costs.
Heaters should have a handle so that it is easy to carry, or have attached wheels on the bottom if you plan to move it from room to room.
Most heaters come with a high, medium or low setting. Other more high-end versions have a built-in thermostat that adjusts its output temperature accordingly.
Consider checking to see if the space heater has been validated by a third party. The three largest inspectors include Underwriters Laboratories (UL), ETL Intertek and Canadian Standards Association (CSA).
Underwriters Laboratories certifies, validates, tests, verifies and inspects household appliances. WIth the UL Certificate logo on your product, you can be rest assured that your space heater has been validated to be safe, energy efficient and of the highest quality.
A product holding the ETL certification means that it has been tested and met the minimum requirements for safety standards. The qualifications of an ETL certification is similar to that of a UL.
Lastly, the Canadian Standards Association develops standards in over 50 different areas to promote efficiency, effectiveness and safety of products.
Even with the safety features such as auto shutoff that are included in a good quality ceramic heater, consider following these safety rules to minimize risk
Now that you know all about ceramic heaters and what types of features to look for, check out our recommended products.
The Lasko 755320 Ceramic Tower has a modern and sleek look. Also included are an auto shutoff feature with low/high speed settings. You can set the device to a specific temperature, and once your room reaches it, the unit will automatically shut off. Once the unit goes below 2 degrees of that temperature, the unit will turn back on.
With a total wattage rating of 1500 watts, this will be a perfect addition to heat up your room to keep you and your cats warm.
This ceramic oscillating heater fits great with any surrounding decor. Some of the features include oscillation, automatic overheat protection, and a full 1500 watts of comfort. Also included are a low/high quiet comfort setting with auto thermostat control.
If you're looking for an area other than a bedroom to heat, the Full Circle Warmth Ceramic Heater may be what you're looking for. This ceramic heater is able to give you a full circle sweep, spreading the warmth to a larger area.
Hopefully that gives you a good overview on the best cat-friendly space heaters. Have any questions or suggestions? Comment below!