The Vornado VH200 has been our top pick since 2018 because it has consistently surpassed nearly every other space heater we’ve tested in speed and overall effectiveness, delivering an immediate temperature increase that builds steadily and evenly across the room over time. The VH200 is also quieter than most other ceramic heaters we’ve tried, emitting only a soft, fanlike whir, and it’s compact enough to tuck away in a corner. It’s one of the safest heaters we’ve tested, featuring overheating and tip-over protection, as well as a plastic exterior that stays relatively cool to the touch—so you can warm yourself without having to worry. The VH200 does get mixed reviews from some owners who find it slow to heat a particularly cold space or have problems with the directional airflow, which relies on air circulation rather than an oscillating fan. Fortunately, Vornado tends to respond to such critical reviews more reliably than other manufacturers do.
The Vornado AVH10 is a lot like the VH200, with a few added features such as a digital display, a convenient cord-wrapping post for easy storage, and, for extra safety, a countdown clock when you turn it off. In our tests, the AVH10 was the absolute most effective room heater we tested, warming the room more quickly and to a higher temperature than the VH200 managed. However, the AVH10 didn’t distribute its hot air as evenly throughout the space as the VH200 did, and it also tends to cost $30 to $50 more. Still, it’s a great alternative to our top pick if you find it for a good price, or if you prefer its extra features.
We’ve recommended the Lasko 754200 Ceramic Heater since 2013, and it’s still one of the cheapest and most reliable space heaters you can find. It warms up faster than most fan heaters we tested, and it has a compact, lightweight body that’s about the size of a loaf of bread. The heat is a focused stream of hot air, which warms the area directly in front of the space heater, but it isn’t as comfortable as the broad, room-filling heat we prefer from the Vornado models. This Lasko heater struggles in larger spaces as a result, but it’s perfect for warming a home office or for quickly heating up a small bedroom. The 754200 has had consistently positive owner reviews for years, and many Wirecutter staff members have owned one for multiple winters with few complaints. It lacks an automatic tip-over kill switch, a safety feature included in our top pick, and it’s not the best-looking option, but it does have overheat protection.
Most space heaters can deliver quick heat to a single person, but oil-filled radiators are better for heating a whole room for a longer duration, and the De’Longhi TRD40615T is the best of its kind. Like most oil-filled radiators, the TRD40615T warms up much more slowly than a ceramic heater, but it also retains its heat for a longer period. This results in a cozier, more ambient warmth throughout the room than what you typically get from a directional space heater with a fan. With a burly, all-metal construction that’s more durable than the builds of our other, plastic-clad picks, this De’Longhi model is sturdier and more attractive than any other oil-filled radiator we’ve tested, and it’s also cooler to the touch.
The Dreo Solaris Slim H3 (DR-HSH003) stands out not only for its stylish appearance but also because it’s the rare oscillating heater that actually succeeds at spreading the warm air evenly around the room. It can’t warm you up quite as quickly as some of our other picks can, but its steady arc of motion creates comfortable and uniform heating throughout your space. It also just looks great, with a sleek design and simple controls that let you choose between basic heat settings or a specific, dialed-in temperature. Plus, it’s quiet and easy to clean, and it has all the safety features we usually look for, such as a tip-over switch and overheat protection.
The 3.5-foot-tall Lasko FH500 All Season Comfort Control Tower is easily the tallest space heater we’ve tested—but it doesn’t actually take up that much floor space for a room heater. In our tests, it warmed the room swiftly and consistently to the temperature we dialed in on its digital display, and then it steadily held that temperature until the end of the hour. The FH500 is full of thoughtful details, including an easy-to-navigate control panel and a matching remote control. It also has a medium heating option (in addition to the standard high and low settings found on most other space heaters), as well as a timer and an “auto eco” setting to help maximize your energy use. Although we’ve had concerns about the longevity of tower fans in the past, this Lasko tower heater has held up well after several years of continuous use. Speaking of fans: The FH500 also has a built-in cooling feature, which is a nice bonus.
The Vornado Vheat vintage-style heater heats well enough and looks good doing it. With a solid metal construction and wonderfully retro knobs, it’s simply the best-looking electric space heater we’ve found that doesn’t sacrifice (too much) functionality. Though the Vheat delivers a steady stream of air that quickly heats whatever is right in front of it, during our tests it wasn’t as good at spreading that heat around the room, producing a 10-degree difference in the temperature measurements we took in different parts of the room. The fact that it was able to heat part of the room enough to create a 10-degree difference was still pretty remarkable, however, as some other space heaters we tested couldn’t even warm the room by 5 degrees. Overall, the Vheat is a great choice for anyone interested in aesthetics as well as comfort.
The Lasko CD08200 Ceramic Bathroom Heater and the Dreo DR-HSH004A are the most effective and—more important—safe ways to bring some infrared warmth to your bathroom. Generally speaking, you should try to keep an electric appliance (especially something as powerful as a space heater) far, far away from any situation where it might get wet. Though you may be tempted to bring any of our other picks into the bathroom with you, these models are two of the few we’ve found that are equipped with the proper safety features to mitigate the risk of electrocution (though you should still try to keep either heater far away from the water). In our tests, the CD08200 and the DR-HSH004A warmed the room at about the same speed, providing the same even heating from 3 feet away and 6 feet away. We slightly preferred the controls on the CD08200, which has just one large button on the top that lets you cycle through the timer, high, and low settings; by contrast, the DR-HSH004A has six buttons that let you control more settings, and it was noticeably quieter than the CD08200 (although the sound of a running shower is likely to drown out either one). Either model is a fine choice. Most important, they both come with ALCI safety plugs, as well as overheat protection, in case anything goes awry.
Whichever space heater you choose, there are some common safety concerns that many people overlook: You can’t use any space heater with an extension cord, and you shouldn’t leave any heater unattended. And most heaters can’t be used in a bathroom, unless they’re specifically designed for it. We go over these and other considerations in detail in our section on space-heater care, maintenance, and safety.
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