That cold draft right after the hot water stops flowing out from your shower head is the worst feeling ever. Even though your room is completely sealed, the temperature is just too low to not spread inside your house. Add that up with your exhaust fan that’s making a big current in the cold room.
It’s horrible. You hate the shower because of this. It’s really time to get a bathroom heater and not feel cold right after a hot shower.
Our review contains a guide on how to choose your bathroom heater and types that are available out there. We have also reviewed the top 7-bathroom heaters you can choose from along with their pros and cons.
Types of Bathroom Heater
Bathroom heaters are different because they are required to operate under the presence of a wet environment. This makes it hard to just bring in your portable heater into the room.
Below are the types of heaters that work well in a bathroom:
- Heat lamps are lamps that are designed to burn the filament effectively to emit heat. These incandescent light bulbs work similarly with traditional light bulbs, except that producing heat is the main purpose of providing vision as the second. Heat lamps are instant heaters and sometimes come with an exhaust fan that helps spread the heat quickly as you start your shower.
The heat produced from the lamp is similar to infrared radiation, which is not always visible, which is why the bulb may not look as bright. This means you have concentrated heat at only the location where the bulb is installed, which is why it’s good to install one of these in small areas like bathrooms.
- Strip heaters are the name used to call bars of radiant, metal heaters which runs on electricity to fire it up. Metal absorbs heat easily, which is why it is a great way to get warm quickly, but definitely not something you want to go with if you spend 2 hours in the bathroom every trip. The power used to burn on this heater can be costly, but it is effective in heating up the room almost immediately compared to others.
The type of heat you get from a strip heater is radiant, which means heat is mostly absorbed by the skin. Your body will get warm much quicker, although energy consumption is higher with this one.
- An underfloor heater as the name implied, is the heater that is installed right below where you step. This is the type of heater commonly found in Japanese houses, called Yukadanbo. Taking the first step out of the shower is the worst thing to do when your bathroom floor is as cold as ice. Warming up the floor will keep your toes warm and cozy.
This type of heater easily warms up the room as warm air naturally goes up and cold air is pushed down, creating a good circulation of air. There are several ways of underfloor installation, each with its own advantages. It’s also worth noting that underfloor heaters work significantly effective on a certain type of flooring materials.
- Electric fan heater works like air conditioners. They can swing and breath hot air into the room in the direction that you want. Electric fan heaters don’t warm up the room immediately, but you can feel the warm air blown into your face as you step out of the shower. It might take 5-10 minutes, just as much time as you need to finish your shower, to get the room temperature higher.
One reason this is a rather effective choice is that the installation process is simple and the cost of a single unit is generally low. It can be mounted on the wall, screwed inside a space in the wall or the ceiling or even in the form of a portable heater. An affordable small product that makes your shower experience less jolting.
Top 7 Best Bathroom Heater
The first contender comes from Panasonic. The giant company design a ceiling heater that is mounted with a fan which draws air in warms them up and then blows them out into the room. As Panasonic knows how important it is to get the machine up and running warm immediately, they promise 1-minute warm-up.
The ceiling heater makes use stainless steel as the heating element which heat is blown out with a fan. The sheathing has nichrome wire as well as magnesium oxide to ensure minimum heat loss during transfer or exchange. Electrical insulation is provided together with thermal fuse protection and 3-layer safety device for a safe and warm experience.
WhisperWarm is a fan heater that is manufactured by Panasonic, a company that claims to design fans to work with less energy compared to conventional ones. Thus, your fan is less likely to overheat while making effective use of the energy spent. This means less time spent to replace the motor as the fan runs cooler most of the time.
WhisperWarm claims that the fan heater runs for really long life – about 30,000 hours. This is equal to about 6,000 weeks of use if you spend 5 hours a week in the bathroom.
The fan works by sucking in air with two blowers from the side. One fan with blowing it out through your exhaust duct while the other one blows hot air into the bathroom. This makes it easy to remove cold air quick and replacing them with warm air immediately.
Several reminders that come when installing this product are:
- Install it 8 meters from the floor
- Make sure that your heater is connected to a dedicated circuit with a minimum of 20 amp.
- Runs at 1400 W.
- Construction size is perfect for a 2×8 room size.
The wall mounted electric fan heater doesn’t seem much, but this small guy packs a lot of hotness in it. To start with, this is a product made in Germany which means quality control of this product is quite high. The product comes with a 3-year warranty from the company. The CK heater is a great supplement heater if you want to get another one outside your bathroom.
It can be easily turned on and off through a convenient on and off switch. The off switch will completely shut the unit down, an easy way that does not rely on the pull of a string. It also comes with a built-in thermostat that can be easily adjusted. The thermostat on CK heaters can be set to frost protection setting, which keeps the room above freezing temperature within a reasonable space width.
The thermostat is also packed with a timer that allows you to change the temperature after a certain amount of time. Setting this timer on with allow you to go on booster mode until it reaches zero and continues on the current thermostat setting. This is amazing if you are taking a bath for 10 minutes and want to get the room quickly warmed up.
The CK heater works by using the even-heating down-draft design that sucks in cold draft from above and blows hot air from below. This helps in regulating the room temperature as quickly as possible and maintain it during its operation.
Several things to note:
- CK and CKT heaters run on various energy input from 1500-2000 W. Make sure to check yours before getting one.
- Booster mode sucks a lot of energy from the circuit, ensure it is plugged to a dedicated circuit of the correct power flow.
- Thermostat range is41–86°F (5–30°C).
- CK bathroom heater installation guide recommends it to be installed vertically at the least 4” high from the floor with 6”-8” is the most recommended height. There should at least be 4” clearance from each side of the unit.
Compact, powerful and affordable describe Lasko bathroom heater very well. This portable heater can be operated anywhere outside the bathroom as well. But we want to focus on how best this thing function in the coldest space of the house.
First of all, this heater is small and easy to snug into the far corner away from the shower. Small but powerful as it does not preheat and immediately starts radiating warmth into the room. That said, the exterior of the heater is designed to remain cool to the touch, so you don’t have to worry about you or your kids burning yourself from touching it.
Designed mainly to be a bathroom heater, it is packed with an inner timer that shuts off after 1 hour. Even if you forgot to turn it off, this heater won’t run for the next 4 hours until you need to go back to the toilet. It also has an overheat protection that automatically shut the whole unit down once it reaches beyond the allowed threshold.
The heater is a ceramic heater type that typically makes use of electricity that warms up the ceramic inside it which will then radiates warmth.
What you might want to note:
- Lasko CD08200 Ceramic Bathroom Heater runs at 1500 W. With ceramic heaters, it is important to note that cold ceramic can take a while to get warm.
- Heats up space up to 225 square feet.
- Should not be placed close to the shower or bath; optimally outside the wet zone.
- It has several modes: 1 hour, high and low mode which can be configured from the buttons available on it.
This 3-in-1-bathroom heater keeps your room warm with multiple means while keeping the steam out. Delta BreezRadiance is packed with an exhaust fan, CFL lamps as well as a heater. It is powered with EnergyStar qualified DC Brushless motor technology. Delta Breeze Ventilation Fan has also been tested and is claimed to run under minimum noise for 70,000 hours of continuous operation.
The heater is also packed with a built-in thermostat that lets user regulate how warm the heater should operate at. It also has an overheat protection called thermal cut off. This automatically cuts off the power to the heater when it’s detected to have surpassed a certain temperature. Metal guard exterior is also cool to touch.
The unit is constructed of galvanized steel construction that is corrosion-proof. Delta has definitely constructed this thing to be something that lasts long with durable motor technology and overheat protection. Energy efficiency also runs at 7.6 CFM/W. The heater also runs at a considerably low noise level which is about 22.5 dB.
Finally, things to note on this particular heater:
- The heater runs at 1300 W energy, add that up with 26 W light bulb and 5 W exhaust fan as well. Make sure to use a 20-amp dedicated circuit for the unit.
- Comes with 3 switches for the fan, lamp, and
- Installation can prove to be quite a challenge for some people as some instructions are not clear. An overhead installation will make things easy if it’s possible, but if it’s not, you will need to make a bigger clearing.
- The heater comes with a 3-year warranty from Delta.
- The unit comes with a detachable 4-inch wide exhaust plastic duct adapter.
The clear difference between this particular unit from others is that it has a nicer design in comparison. The heater comes with a space for a light bulb, exhaust fan and a heater fan, all of which can operate independently from each other.
Light bulb capacity is up to 100 W, which means you can install an incandescent light bulb in addition to it. The unit comes with white polymeric grille and anti-vibration mounts for its ventilator. The motor has been lubricated to smoothen performance and reduce noise pollution while you take your bath.
Broan has claimed that the unit runs at low noise, however, it is definitely not the quietest exhaust fan to date. Noise is normal as far as exhaust fan goes as long as you have installed it correctly. But if you find your unit running ridiculously loud, it is time for you to call the manufacturer to complain about it.
This unit has a simpler installation method and the instructions are easier to follow compared to some we have reviewed before. The steel housing has electrically bonded epoxy painting finish for a long-lasting look.
About this product:
- The heater runs at 1300 W, excluding the light bulb that can run up to 100 W depending on what you install in it and the exhaust fan. Requires a dedicated 20-amp circuit for safe operation.
- The unit doesn’t come with a light bulb.
- 3-way switches can be bought separately with the heater unit. All of which can be operated independently or together.
- Comes with a 4-in duct to exhaust the steam out of the bathroom.
- Necessary cutout for this product is 25” x 14.25”.
Broan Model 157 Low-Profile Ceiling fan heater gives radiant warm by blowing hot air into the room. This small unit packs quite a bunch as the heat is concentrated to only one spot where the fan is blowing. The element is metal sheathed and delivers warmth right when you want it.
The Broan model is low profile in that the case conceals it well when installed on your ceiling. With only 2.75” protruding out of the ceiling, it won’t be in the way of your home’s aesthetic look. Housing is satin finished aluminum grille.
This heater has a built-in thermostat which can be manually set or be installed with a wall mount controller that allows you to control with from a distance.
The unit comes with an automatic shut off inner timer as well as overheat protection that keeps the unit from heating up too much. So, don’t worry about leaving it on for a while after finishing your bath as it’ll shut off later. It is also UL listed that ensures its safety features as well as standard operating procedure. The product comes with a 1-year limited warranty.
Note these things about the heater:
- Ceiling fan heater works at 1250 W on 120 V. Requires a dedicated 15-amp circuit to ensure a warm and safe experience with your new heater.
- Wall controls can be purchased separately for easier operation of the unit.
- Requires a 3.5” – 4” round space or a 4” octagonal space in the ceiling.
- The housing can be easily removed for cleaning.
Let’s start with the preheat timer that doesn’t come with the other models here. Preheat timer allows you to warm up space before you use it. This makes it possible to enter a bathroom that is not freezing cold!
Holmes Digital Bathroom Heater is also designed to have a cool-to-touch exterior for being a portable unit. You can manually turn it on and off and use the dials to configure it to your needs. It has a thermostat that allows you to have it run at the right heat as well as a couple of modes to run it on. It has a fan only mode and 1 heat setting.
Holmes previous models had a heating wire that easily wears off and burns. Newer units are constructed with better safety features on the wire which are now protected with heat shields. And can we add that the digital clock display that is really convenient when you are in the bathroom and you can’t hold your phone nor do people normally install a clock in there? Comes with ALCI plug that is safe for usage in the bathroom.
What you need to note from Holmes’ Bathroom Heater:
- The heater runs at max 1500 W power setting and pulls 12 amp. Requires at least 15-amp dedicated circuit to ensure a safe experience of using it.
- Can be portable or mounted on the wall.
- Preheat timer will run the heater for 30 minutes.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Bathroom Heater
Staying warm right after getting a bath takes a little bit more than just using the same portable heater you use in your bedroom. Since the bathroom is a wet place, you want to minimize risks associated with it. You also need to keep in mind that it’s not a room you will be spending much time in, yet, you want it to be warm the moment you get it.
- How much are you willing to spare for a good bathroom heater? Some people are okay with a very narrow space where they step out of the bathroom to be heated. Others are willing to spend more to get a heater that warms the whole room. The more complicated is the installation, the higher the cost you definitely have to pay.
- Some heaters work best under certain conditions, like under flooring heaters that work better on tiles and wooden floors. It’s important to consult with an expert and do your research to make sure you know if it’s going to be effective when installed at your home.
- For homes with curious pets and young children, you might want to consider not installing the heater within their reach. Some heaters are gas-fired while most are available on electricity. However, the thought of running an electric heater inside the bathroom can be pretty risky. So, make sure you place the heater within a safe range from the water source.
- Between electricity and gas, one has to calculate not just current but a future change of gas prices. It is expected that gas prices will rise within a couple of years to come.
- Instantaneous heat. This is a very important thing because if your heater is not instant, then it wouldn’t mean a thing for people who stay in their bathroom for only 10 minutes.
- Obviously, you cannot install big heaters in a small bathroom. Buy something that heats up only the necessary space to save your energy expenses.
Things to Consider When Installing a Bathroom Heater
Installing a bathroom heater can be as simple as bringing in your portable heater in and as complicated as redoing the tiling of your house. It really depends on how big of a scale do you want to work on your heater. Some people want to install electrical under flooring heating system which requires them to redo their flooring.
Others prefer to just use a bar heater that can easily be mounted on the wall facing in the right direction. Some find this difficult to do as their bathroom is pretty small to have anything else attached.
- Consider before purchasing. It’s important that you don’t just go buy something that looks good without considering the space that you need and the risks that come with it. Consider the necessary tool and don’t forget the closest power socket that supports the necessary amp power.
- Do not install it within the shower range. As much as you hate the cold draft when you shut your shower for 10 seconds to scrub some soap, do not install your heater inside the shower. Make sure it’s within a good distance where water won’t get anywhere close to it. Pro-tip: heat lamps or electric fan heater that is mounted on the ceiling are great choices for you who have limited space. You cannot place it close to the bathroom, but at least it can become your source of light as well as warm up the room!
- Complete refurbishment can be involved in installing an additional heater. There are some methods like using the central heating system to be extended to your bathroom. Or by installing under flooring heater that includes under your bathroom tiles.
- Energy cost of electricity is usually cheaper and preferred to gas-fired This is mainly because gas is a resource with a volatile price while electricity will remain the same for a very long time. Gas can also produce dangerous and toxic byproducts from burning for a long period of time.
- Creating a space for a heater to be installed, for example, inside the wall which has been drilled and designed to fit in a heater. It can also be done on the ceiling. It’s suggested to get the heater’s correct dimension before doing this and follow a precise guide on how much space should be left and how to seal it in place.
- Exhaust duct has to be redirected to the outside of your house, not just in your attic as the steam will create a conducive location for mold to form. It can go vented through the roof or outside through the side wall.
- Kids and pets. Will you let your children open the heater by themselves? It’s important to consider the risk of kids forgetting to turn them off or curious, cold dogs and cats from jumping on the heater. Keep it out of children reach and educate them on the risk. Helpful tip: Placing a reminder to turn it off when not in use can reduce the risk of human error.
How Much Does It Cost to Run a Bathroom Heater?
This really depends on the type of heater and how long do you generally spend inside a bathroom. Assuming you spend 45 minutes a day taking baths, washing your face and getting ready, you spend about 5 to 6 hours a week in the bathroom. Most run on electricity while some are still gas-fired.
Heat lamps are generally the cheapest, ranging between 200-250 watts per lamp. They also effectively provide warmth to the spot right below it which is instantaneous. Radiant heaters, on the other hand, are uncontrollable and will burn through your bill if you leave them on for too long. But this piece of the heater is quick in heating up a room, not just one spot.
Floor heating, on the other hand, are not always instant, but they spread evenly throughout the room. It is a type of heating that is efficient in the long run and the only one that keeps the floor warm for the whole day. You can also install it throughout the house.
Safety Tips for Bathroom Heaters
First and foremost, it is important to follow the manual that comes with the heater when installing a bathroom heater. Only then can you call the support team should anything go wrong with the heater as you have followed per instructions words. You can also ask for a replacement on faulty products, but not on something that you operated without following the manual.
It is also suggested to use parts that come with the heater. Some do not come with the necessary tools but have mentioned everything that is needed on the PDF file of the manual that is available online.
Ensure that it is plugged to the right power socket to avoid short-circuiting your power supply. Some operate at very low power, but some like bar heaters, operate above 1000 watts most of the time. You might have to extend the cable to a further socket. Make sure to use the right cable size that won’t overload with the heater’s input.
Don’t forget to turn it off when you don’t need it anymore. Some heaters do not have a thermostat to control the temperature and can overheat when left on for too long. On the other hand, they can really creep on your electricity bill quick if you forgot to shut them off when you are done.
The IPrating is important to make sure that your bathroom heater is waterproof. The minimum rating is IPX4 or IP44 on bathroom heaters that are placed within 0.6m from the shower. IPX5 is meant for an area with powered water jets, such as your bathtub. For any type of heaters or light bulb to be used within the shower has to be rated IP65 at the minimum with IP67 being immersion proof.
You don’t have to suffer in your bathroom just right after a warm shower anymore. Just make sure that your heater is designed and properly installed at the right place inside your bathroom. Be sure to also read the manual before operating the heater.
Now, you have plenty of choices to consider and know how each of them will fit into your bathroom depending on what you need. Remember, safety first by considering the necessary power source and using the right wires as well as following the manual that comes with it.
It doesn’t have to be $300 to say it’s a good bathroom heater, but it definitely is not a bad idea to invest more in an electrical device that is meant to last long.
Don’t know what to choose for your bathroom heater? Call us anytime and we are ready to assist you.