Best Torpedo Heater (2021) Propane, Kerosene, Multifuel, Diesel

Best Torpedo Heater (2020) propane, Kerosene, Multifuel, Diesel

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If you are looking for the best torpedo heater there are a number of things you may want to consider before you think about purchasing.

Why?

Because you want to end up with the unit that’s most convenient and appropriate for your needs.

The type of fuel, the power of the unit and its features are some of the important factors when purchasing a torpedo heater.

Below we have put all the information together in one place in our comprehensive guide where we run through the types of fuels, the pros and cons, how much power you might need in your unit, (BTU’s) and more.

Below are our picks for the Best Torpedo Heater.

Editors top SMALL MULTI-FUEL choice 
✓ 50,000 BTU
✓ Heats up to 1,200 sqft.
✓ This is a great unit for smaller spaces. It carries important safety features along with a very useful runtime gauge.

Sale
Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
  • Multi-fuel capable - tested with K-1...
  • One-touch electronic start
  • "Runtime" fuel gauges
  • Fuse protected electrical system
  • High capacity sealed fan motor; Heavy duty...

Editors top SMALL PROPANE choice 
✓ 60,000 BTU
✓ Heats up to 1,500 sqft.
✓ We like the fact this highly rated heater comes with variable output, giving you more control over heat output than other heaters. It can last up to 14 hours on a 20lb tank and comes with important safety features.

Sale
Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater
  • QBT Technology - 50% Quieter than a standard...
  • 60,000 BTU Propane Forced-air Heater"
  • Variable 30,000-60,000 BTU Output (Runs Up To...
  • Heats Up To 1,500 Sq.Ft.
  • Continuous ignition

Editors top LARGE KEROSENE choice 
✓ 175,000 BTU
✓ Heats up to 4250 sqft.
✓ It has an adjustable thermostat for temperature control and and important safety features. It is easily portable with oversized tires and has no flame.

Sale
Mr. Heater 175,000-BTU Forced-Air Kerosene Heater, F270370 MH175KTR
  • 175,000-BTU forced-air kerosene heater up to...
  • 14-gallon fuel tank provides up to 10 hours...
  • High-output fan; no-flame and over-heat...
  • Power indicator light; cord storage;...
  • Measures approximately 18 by 40-1/5 by 22...

Editors top LARGE PROPANE choice 
✓ 300,000 BTU
✓ Heats up to 7000 sqft.
✓ This is one of the largest output torpedos around heating up to 7,000 sq ft. It has all important safety features an an adjustable thermostat.

4 Best Torpedo Heater (2021) Comparison

Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
Pro-Temp PT-215T-KFA 215, 000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat, Red/Black
Mr. Heater 175,000-BTU Forced-Air Kerosene Heater, F270370 MH175KTR
Avenger FBDFA60V Portable Forced Air Propane Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black
Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
Pro-Temp PT-215T-KFA 215, 000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat, Red/Black
Mr. Heater 175,000-BTU Forced-Air Kerosene Heater, F270370 MH175KTR
Avenger FBDFA60V Portable Forced Air Propane Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black
Dimensions
13.3 x 31.9 x 16.7 inches
42 x 18 x 19 inches
40.2 x 18.2 x 22.1 inches
17 x 10 x 15.5 inches
BTU
50,000
215,000
175,000
60,000
Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
Dimensions
13.3 x 31.9 x 16.7 inches
BTU
50,000
Pro-Temp PT-215T-KFA 215, 000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat, Red/Black
Pro-Temp PT-215T-KFA 215, 000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat, Red/Black
Dimensions
42 x 18 x 19 inches
BTU
215,000
Mr. Heater 175,000-BTU Forced-Air Kerosene Heater, F270370 MH175KTR
Mr. Heater 175,000-BTU Forced-Air Kerosene Heater, F270370 MH175KTR
Dimensions
40.2 x 18.2 x 22.1 inches
BTU
175,000
Avenger FBDFA60V Portable Forced Air Propane Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black
Avenger FBDFA60V Portable Forced Air Propane Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black
Dimensions
17 x 10 x 15.5 inches
BTU
60,000

Table of Contents:

Best Torpedo Heater – Reviews

Kerosene Torpedo Heaters

Below we have researched and detailed what we think are the best kerosene torpedo heaters.

Note that many of these brands have the same torpedo heaters but in smaller or larger models so if you don’t see the size you are after here be sure to browse further as most likely there will be a model to cater for your requirements.

Best Small Kerosene Torpedo Heater
Sale
Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
  • Multi-fuel capable - tested with K-1...
  • One-touch electronic start
  • "Runtime" fuel gauges
  • Fuse protected electrical system
  • High capacity sealed fan motor; Heavy duty...
 
 
 
Worth Consideration
Pro-Temp 80,000 BTU Kerosene/Diesel Forced Air Torpedo Heater
  • VERSATILE—great for construction sites,...
  • TOUGH—steel construction
  • RELIABLE—thermostat-controlled heating for...
  • Unique air pressure gauge, easy-lift handles,...
  • 1-year limited warranty
 
 
 
Best Large Kerosene Torpedo Heater
Sale
Mr. Heater 175,000-BTU Forced-Air Kerosene Heater, F270370 MH175KTR
  • 175,000-BTU forced-air kerosene heater up to...
  • 14-gallon fuel tank provides up to 10 hours...
  • High-output fan; no-flame and over-heat...
  • Power indicator light; cord storage;...
  • Measures approximately 18 by 40-1/5 by 22...
 
 

Propane Torpedo Heaters

Below we have researched and detailed what we think are the best kerosene torpedo heaters.

Note that many of these brands have the same torpedo heaters but in smaller or larger models so if you don’t see the size you are after here be sure to browse further as most likely there will be a model to cater for your requirements.

Our choice for LARGE PROPANE torpedo heater
 
 
 
Our choice for the best SMALL PROPANE torpedo heater
 
Sale
Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater
  • QBT Technology - 50% Quieter than a standard...
  • 60,000 BTU Propane Forced-air Heater"
  • Variable 30,000-60,000 BTU Output (Runs Up To...
  • Heats Up To 1,500 Sq.Ft.
  • Continuous ignition
 

Multi Fuel Torpedo Heaters

Below we have researched and detailed what we think are the best multi-fuel / diesel torpedo heaters.

These multi fuel salamander heaters offer a bit more flexibility when it comes to fuel.

If it is hard to find one particular source of fuel at any given time you have the option to use another.

Our choice for the best SMALL MULTI-FUEL AND DIESEL torpedo heater
Sale
Dura Heat DFA50 50K BTU Kero Forced Air Heater with Carrying Handle
  • Multi-fuel capable - tested with K-1...
  • One-touch electronic start
  • "Runtime" fuel gauges
  • Fuse protected electrical system
  • High capacity sealed fan motor; Heavy duty...
 
 
 
Our choice for the best LARGE MULTI-FUEL AND DIESEL torpedo heater
Pro-Temp PT-215T-KFA 215, 000 BTU Kerosene Forced Air Heater with Thermostat, Red/Black
  • 215000 btu heat output
  • Heating Area 5375 sq. ft.
  • Operates 8-hour on full 13-gallon tank
  • Built-in thermostat
  • Digital temperature readout and led...
 
 

Torpedo Heater Basics

In this section we cover the basics of what a torpedo heater is and how they work for those that are not familiar with them.

Torpedo heaters are a great solution for heater outside areas such as sports events, worksites, and well-ventilated garages.

They are portable and have a large range of heat outputs to suit any size or heating requirements.

Along with that, there is a range of fuel sources for powering them.

What is a torpedo heater?

Best Torpedo Heater

A torpedo heater, also known as a Salamander heater, Salamander, Salamander Furnace, or Torpedo furnace is a forced-air or convection heater that generates heat from the combustion of fuel and then uses a fan to push the heated air out of the unit.1

The beauty with these fans is that they are portable.

There are a number of ways they are fueled including propane, kerosene, diesel, natural gas, multi-fuel or electric.

The torpedo heater is generally used in areas with good ventilation, often at construction sites, warehouses, workshops, and sporting events amongst others.

Though they have been around since the 1915’s they became more popular in the 1950s when Scheu Manufacturing Company developed the modern Salamander heater to provide warmth on construction sites, enabling workers to work in the cooler weather.

Lucky workers!

Inside the torpedo heater, there is a burner which, when the fan is turned on is ignited.

A Torpedo heater works much the same way as a forced air heater for your home in that warm air is created and pushed out via a fan.

There are a few different types of fuel used to ignite the burner, which each have their pros and cons.

The fuel is gravity fed into the burner which creates the heat inside the unit.

From there the heat is pushed out via an electric fan into the area the fan is facing.2

The following video gives some good insight into how a torpedo heater works.

About Kerosene Torpedo Heaters

One of the most common types of torpedo or salamander heaters is one that is fueled by Kerosene.

It is important to note that Kerosene comes in different grades and using the incorrect grade can void the warranty of some machines.3

So if you plan to purchase a kerosene heater, pay particular attention to that.

The benefits of using Kerosene as a fuel is that Kerosene releases more energy than propane and therefore creates more heat.

So, in essence, you are getting more bang for your buck with kerosene than propane.

It does, however, have a strong smell.

Along with that when burned it produces carbon monoxide so you have to be sure to use a kerosene heater where there is adequate ventilation (outside).

Obviously, it is not an environmentally friendly option.

Kerosene is a little bit more difficult to purchase than propane gas given propane is commonly used for gas and BBQ cookers, so is stored by many services, grocery, and convenience stores.

If you plan to stockpile your fuel Kerosene can be a good option.

With proper storage, Kerosene can keep for up to 2-5 years so it has a very good shelf life in the right storage conditions.4

About Propane Torpedo Heaters

Another form of fueling for torpedo or salamander heaters is propane.

Propane (also known as LP Gas or LPG) is a by-product of natural gas and is used most commonly for fueling gas BBQs.

The good thing about propane is that it is much more environmentally friendly than kerosene producing minimal emissions.

Funnily enough, propane is odorless and colorless and a chemical compound is added to it to help people recognize any leaks which may become a hazard.

Obviously, propane is highly combustible and is not safe for inhalation.

best propane torpedo heater

As far as energy goes propone is a bit more expensive with kerosene costing approx $2.25 per gallon and propane $3.00 per gallon.5

(This figure will likely vary but you get the idea)

Propane also has less energy than kerosene with roughly 91,333 BTU’s of energy potential per gallon while Kerosene has roughly 135,000 BTU’s of energy potential per gallon.6

Propane Torpedo Heater Pros & Cons 

PROS
• Is a cleaner burning fuel than kerosene
• Easy to source

CONS
• Doesn’t produce as much energy as kerosene

• If you are looking for propane forced air heater with a thermostat, a sought-after feature among salamander heaters, there are a couple also listed below…

About Diesel Torpedo heaters

A diesel torpedo heater is one of a few options if you are searching for a larger forced-air heater.

With a diesel heater, fuel is readily available and easy to access, the efficiency is high and the fuel source has fewer safety issues than some other torpedo heater fuel sources.

The beauty is you are able to purchase multi fuel torpedo heaters which include diesel as a fuel source.

These are great for versatility.

However, you will need to be aware of some of the cons that come with diesel fuel such as storage of fuel and the cost compared to other fuel sources.

Diesel-fueled torpedo heaters are commonly used for two good reasons.

As a fuel source, diesel is cheaper and more accessible than both kerosene and propane gases.

As with any other heater, when using a diesel-fueled unit you must be aware of the dangers of the gas.

These units should only be used in spaces with proper ventilation to prevent the gas from building up to the point of posing a threat to our health.

Diesel produces a fair amount of energy so you will be getting quite good results for the money you put in.

A diesel forced air heater is capable of heating up large spaces in general, while the specific number of square feet the unit can heat up depends on the type of the heater and the manufacturer.

As long as the space has proper ventilation, diesel is a great fuel choice for a torpedo heater.

There are dedicated diesel torpedo heaters available however these days new models of torpedo heaters actually have multi-fuel capability, which means you can use many various fuels to power the heater.

Many people ask whether you can use diesel in their kerosene heater and while this works on a technical level it is highly recommended you don’t for safety reasons.

Diesel burns a lot dirtier than Kerosene so there are a lot more fumes and odor.

These units burn the fuel efficiently and convert most of it into heat, meaning there is little to no loss of energy at all

best diesel torpedo heater

It is important to know that diesel fuel will go off in sunlight so make sure the unit is always protected and don’t let the sunlight get to it unless the unit is made of a material that’s meant to stop the sunlight from affecting the fuel.

ALWAYS have proper ventilation.

You should be aware that fumes from this gas are hazardous to human health.

Because the gas can build up and cause serious consequences, these units should not be used in enclosed spaces without good ventilation.

Last but not least, diesel propane heaters can often create an unpleasant odor so keep that in mind when making your purchase.

Multi Fuel Salamander Heaters

There are many salamander heaters now that are able to run on multiple fuel sources.

For example, this heater can run on Kerosene, 1 and 2 diesel fuel, 1 and 2 fuel oil and jp8/jet a fuel.

This certainly makes things more convenient in regards to the aforementioned prices and availability of fuel.

Things to Consider Before You Buy A Torpedo heater

After reading thousands of reviews there were a few things that we thought would be worth sharing about torpedo heaters that are worth knowing BEFORE you buy.

We run through these below along with what features you might expect to find on a torpedo heater. These are worth knowing as some of these features might be worth seeking out in some cases

Some of the common problems, issues, or misconceptions of people who had brought a torpedo heater, but not been happy stem from the points below.

Noise and BTU’s.

Torpedo heaters are often quite noisy and by how much can vary a lot from model to model.

It is also worth noting the more powerful the unit, the more noise it will make which adds another reason to be aware of how many BTU’s your torpedo might need to work for you in your space.

Noise

Some torpedo heaters can be quite noisy.

This has been a common gripe and some brands have recognized this and market some of their units as being much quieter than regular units.

If the noise level is important to you, this is something to bear in mind.

torpedo heater safety

Torpedo Heater Safety

When purchasing a torpedo heater it is very important to understand the safety requirements – if neglected then there is a possibility of fatalities.

Here is a good guide to using a torpedo heater safely.

BTUs – What are BTU’s?

BTU stands for ‘British Thermal Unit’ and is a measurement of energy.

It is defined as being the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.

Obviously, the higher the BTU’s of the heating unit, the more heat will be output.

Features to look for on a torpedo heater

Torpedo Heater Thermostat

Some salamander heaters have a thermostat equipped so you are able to regulate the temperature of the area you are heating.

If you are using the heater outside it will obviously not be much use, but for interior locations such as well vented warehouse, a thermostat could be a feature worth considering.

Fuel Source

Above we ran through the different types of fuel sources that can be used with torpedo heaters.

The pros and cons of each will help you determine which kind of fuel is best for your situation.

Safety Features

Safety consideration is hugely important with torpedo heaters as there are a lot of variables that ripe for danger.

Manufacturers are required to meet certain levels of safety and below are some features manufacturers have built into their heaters.

• Agency approved safe for use on combustible flooring
• Tip-over shutoff and back pressure switch for safety
• CSA Certified for Safe Use Both Indoor and Outdoor
• UL Listed
• Overheat Auto-Shut-off Protection
• High limit switch and thermoelectric safety valve
• Fuse protected the electrical system.
At a minimum, you want to make sure the heater you are purchasing is CSA approved for the area you are using it (indoor or outdoor).

Fuel Gauge

A neat feature some heaters have is a runtime fuel gauge.

This will enable to see how much time you have before your fuel runs out.

This is great for planning ahead and ensuring you are always ready to refuel and avoid any cold stretches!

Adjustable Heat Angle

Some torpedo heaters have a built-in mechanism that will allow you to adjust the unit up and down which will give you slightly more control over where your heat is going.

Tank Size

Think about the size of the tank that you might want.
Will you need to lift/move it by yourself?
Do you need the biggest tank you can get?
These are a couple of questions you might want to ask yourself when you are looking at the various models.

Variable Heat Settings

This feature gives you more control over the temperate coming out of the heater.

This is useful if you are wanting more than just one ‘speed’.

Torpedo Heater Frequently Asked Questions

Below we run through some of the most common questions asked about torpedo heaters.

We also encourage any questions you might have so feel free to leave a question in the comment section.

Can torpedo heaters be used indoors?

It is recommended you don’t use a torpedo heater indoors.

There are a number of things to take into consideration before you think about using a torpedo heater indoors. Firstly you want to check if the heater is indoor rated or outdoor rated.

Using an outdoor heater indoors can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning.

It is important to read the packaging and operating instructions.

Wherever ever you use a torpedo heater, indoors or out, it must be used in an area with very good ventilation.

Generally, torpedo heaters are far more than you need in a household but are commonly used in garages.

If you are looking for a household heater perhaps look at an infrared heater or ceramic or radiant heater

What size torpedo heater do I need?

Heaters generally have an estimate square footage that they heat

I can still smell propane, is something wrong?

Yes, you shouldn’t be able to smell propane after the first few uses if the heater is working correctly. Check your connections and make sure everything is tight.

Can I use this torpedo heater to treat bed bugs?

You should NOT use a torpedo heater to eliminate bed bugs.
Torpedo heaters require proper ventilation or as a safety mechanism it will shut down.

Along with that, heating a room to the temperature necessary to kill bed bugs poses a serious fire hazard and should only be attempted by professionals.

Sources

1 https://www.paracogas.com/salamander-and-infrared-heaterswhat-they-are-and-how-they-work/

2 https://www.reference.com/home-garden/torpedo-heater-work-29c11edd9fc844d2#

3 https://www.reference.com/home-garden/gas-stations-sell-kerosene-suitable-heaters-80a4afc191deccd?qo=contentSimilarQuestions

4 https://www.reference.com/home-garden/long-kerosene-last-ab84c3cff628ed1a

5 https://www.livestrong.com/article/279210-the-best-energy-saver-portable-heaters/

6 https://www.skilledsurvival.com/kerosene-vs-propane-heaters/[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]


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