Save Money By Using A Low Amp Space Heater - Here's How

Many homeowners search for low-power space heaters to keep their rooms warm. Smaller models use less electricity but still keep you warm without causing strain.

To stay warm without paying too much, choose a low amp heater that suits your space.

What Are Amps on a Space Heater?

The amp rating of a space heater is the amount of electrical current it uses. Amps measure the rate of electrical flow. So a heater with more amps requires more electricity to run.

Most standard household circuits are 15 or 20 amps. They can only handle so much load safely before tripping a breaker. Using high amp space heaters (12 amps or more) with other appliances can overload a circuit, causing the breaker to trip and cut off power.

Low amp heaters (9 amps or less) are less likely to overload circuits, making them safer to run on 15 or 20 amp breakers.

Benefits of Choosing Low Amp Space Heaters

Opting for space heaters with lower amperage draws offers several benefits:

Less electrical load that won't overload circuits or trip breakers. Energy-efficient operation that uses less electricity. Safer with less risk of overheating or fire from overloaded wires. Lower operating costs that save money compared to high amp models. More versatility to use on more household circuits without issues. Peace of mind from operating safely within designed electrical capacity.

How Many Amps Do You Need?

The amp rating needed depends on the size of the room you want to heat:

Smaller rooms of 100-250 sq ft usually only need a 5-7 amp space heater.

Medium rooms 250-400 sq ft require space heaters with 6-10 amps.

Large open rooms 400+ sq ft may need 10+ amps for adequate heating capacity.

In general, the more area you need to warm, the higher the amperage required. Choosing too low of an amp rating can lead to insufficient heat output.

Low Amp Space Heater Options

There are several effective low amp space heaters ideal for energy-efficient home heating:

Ceramic Space Heaters use ceramic plates or coils as the heating element. They are typically 3-8 amps and best for spot heating small rooms.

Oil-Filled Radiator Heaters have oil warmed by internal heating elements. They are usually 8-10 amps, maintain consistent temps longer, and can heat medium to large rooms.

Micathermic Heaters feature heating mica panels sandwiched between the metal. They are around ten amps with a thin profile, heat up fast, and are good for small to medium rooms.

Panel Heaters are flat with an internal heating element. They are under ten amps, can be mounted on walls, oscillate, and quickly heat bathrooms or small offices.

What to Look for in a Low Amp Space Heater

When choosing a low amp heater, look for:

  • Amp rating of 9 amps or less for standard circuits
  • Higher wattage for better heating capacity
  • Safety features like overheat protection and tip-over switch
  • ETL/UL certification to ensure electrical safety standards
  • Thermostat to help maintain stable temps
  • Portability like a lightweight body and carry handle for easy moving

Operating Low Amp Heaters Safely

Even though low amp heaters use less electricity, it's still crucial to use them safely.

Don't overload circuits by avoiding the use of other high-drain devices on the same circuit. Use a dedicated outlet, and don't piggyback on other devices. Maintain clearance from combustibles like furniture, curtains, and bedding. Don't leave operating unattended - always shut off when away. Check the condition of cords and don't use them if damaged. Follow all manufacturer guidelines for recommended amperage and voltage.

Getting the Most Efficient Use from Low Amp Space Heaters

Here are some tips to maximize efficiency from your low amp space heater:

Set the thermostat to keep the lower when away or sleeping. Use an automatic timer to have the heater only run when needed. Close doors and windows and don't heat unused rooms. Use insulating curtains to help trap heat. Clean filters regularly to remove dust buildup. Supplement with blankets for additional warmth.

Choosing a properly sized low amp space heater and using it effectively can provide warmth without high energy costs. Focus on electrical safety and the unit's heating capacity for the space.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What size space heater do I need for a large room?

A: For rooms over 400 sq ft, look for a space heater with at least ten or more amps for sufficient heating capacity. Oil-filled or ceramic tower heaters in the 10-12 amp range are good options.

Q: Are all space heaters high amp appliances?

A: No, there are many low-amp space heater models available that operate at nine amps or less. Small portable ceramic and mica heaters can be as low as 5-6 amps.

Q: What happens if I use a 15 amp heater on a 20 amp circuit?

A: The heater is safe because it doesn't use too much electricity for the circuit to handle. A 15 amp heater on a 15 amp circuit is also fine. You just want to avoid undersizing the circuit.

Q: Can I use a power strip for my space heater?

A: No, you should avoid plugging a space heater into a power strip. The high amperage can overload the power strip. Devices should be directly plugged into wall outlets.

Q: Do higher-watt heaters also use more amps?

A: Yes, wattage and amperage are directly related. So a 1,500 watt heater will draw more amps than a 750 watt model. Higher wattage equals higher electrical demand.

Q: Is it safe to run two 5 amp heaters on one 15 amp circuit?

Yes, the total amount of electricity used should be safe for a 15 amp circuit. As long as there are no other devices using a lot of electricity on the same circuit.

Low amp space heaters provide an energy efficient way to add warmth to your home when used properly. Focus on electrical safety and heating capacity for your space.

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