If you are an adventurous person who enjoys spending time outdoors, a safe tent heater for camping might be the best addition to your camping gear. It can make a tremendous difference between a cold overnight experience and an inviting sleeping area. The best tent heaters will give you the advantage of a pleasant night without becoming too overbearing.

For obvious reasons, you want to look for a safe tent heater. Furthermore, you must consider your chances of accessing a power supply at your campsite. To help you navigate the best camping heaters, let’s see the different types you should consider.

Pro tip: You might want to consider getting heated gear that serves the same purpose of efficiently heating your body. It is safer than some of the available heaters and weighs less.

Which type of tent heater to choose?

Tent heaters come in various styles, price points, and power capabilities. However, all camping heaters can be classified into three categories – electric, gas, and battery-powered tent heaters.

Gas tent heater

Gas tent heaters are a more popular choice among many wilderness campers. Portable gas heaters for camping don’t need a power supply to generate heat. Therefore, you can stay anywhere you like without having to worry about the power supply. Moreover, they generate more heat than an average electric camping heater. This makes it a great option for cold winter days.

It should be noted that there are drawbacks. First, you need to have fuel at all times. Following the fuel consumption, it’s also not environmentally friendly. More importantly, they can only be used in well-ventilated areas as they emit carbon monoxide. These emissions can lead to poisoning if a build-up is allowed. Most modern heaters have a safety system in place. It will protect you from gas leakages and emission build-up. Overall, this is a great choice if you are willing to pay attention to the way you use the heater.

Electric tent heater

This type of camping heater is powered by electricity. Therefore, you should choose it only if you are planning to camp at a place with access to a power supply. This means that electric camping heaters are not the best camping heater for minimalistic campers who plan on staying in wild places.

Regardless, this type of heaters has some serious advantages over others. First, they don’t generate any unwanted emissions. Therefore, they are safe tent heaters for camping. Second, they are energy and cost-efficient. If you camp in places that have access to a power supply, then it’s very easy to set them up.

Battery-powered tent heater

Battery-powered tent heaters have the advantage of being small and very portable. However, they don’t generate the same levels of heat as other types of tent heaters. Therefore, they are suitable for less chilly days and light backpacks. If you are looking for a heater that will support you on winter days, this is not the choice for you. Moreover, there are not as many options for this type of heater available. That being said, they are both environmentally friendly and very safe.

Best Tent Heaters 2020

Now that you know the types of tent heaters, let’s see the best tent heaters on the market for each type. If you wish to learn about the main factors to consider prior to buying a tent heater, read the consideration section below this list of best tent heaters.

Best Gas Camping Heaters

#1 Mr. Heater Portable 4k/9k BTU Radiant Heater – Propane Camping Heater

Best propane tent heater

This propane tent heater has a very attractive price for its features. Providing a 4k/9k BTU heat output, it will heat enclosed spaces such as tents up to 225 square feet. Furthermore, it has very appealing safety features such as auto-shut off when tipped over and when oxygen levels are too low. It is worth mentioning that the heater might shut off when operating at 7000 ft above sea level. This is a result of the thinned air in higher altitudes.

Overall, this is a great gas camping heater that ensures safety and sufficient heating. If you get a hose and a filter, you can easily adapt usage to a remote gas supply.


Brand: Mr. Heater

Model: F232017

Weight: 9 pounds

  • Dual sensors (oxygen level and tip-over control);
  • Automatic shut-off at 7000 ft above sea level;
  • Powerful heat radiation.

#2 Mr. Heater Little Buddy Safe Propane Tent Heater – Best For Small Tents

Propane camping heater for small tents

This portable camping heater is very lightweight and you don’t need to have a power source to run it. It is very compact and it comes at a low price point. The portability aspect of this camping heater is one of the main reasons why it’s a great choice for camping.

You can control the gas output with a knob on the heater. It allows you to switch between low, medium, and high temperatures. The shape of this heater allows good stability as its base is quite wide. Furthermore, a metal grid is protecting the heating elements from touching any other surface. Other integrated safety features of this heater are a low oxygen level sensor and a tip-over switch. When any of these safety features are engaged, the heater will automatically turn off. For its price, this camping heater has very appealing features. It is a very safe and portable gas heater for camping.


Brand: Mr. Heater

Model: F215100

Weight: 5 pounds

  • High/Medium/Low heat setting;
  • Low-oxygen sensor;
  • Tip-over protection;
  • Metal grid heat element protection;
  • 3800 BTUs of heat.;
  • Up to 6 hours of heat.

#3 Mr. Heater Tank MH18B Outdoor Propane Heater – Best Camping Heater For Large Tents

Gas camping heater for large tents

Another heater by Mr. Heater in a well-deserved 3rd place. This model displays a true power when it comes to heating larger areas. It will do a great job of heating enclosed areas of up to 400 square feet. Therefore, it is also very suitable for large outdoor tents. If you are camping with your family in a large tent or you have an outdoor event in an enormous tent, this is the pick for you. You can also use it in a cabin for heating it to comfortable levels. It should be noted that the heater is quite heavy – 16.3 pounds.

Regarding safety, this gas camping heater has the necessary features to provide secure heating. It has a tip-over sensor and low-oxygen levels detector.


Brand: Mr. Heater

Model: MH18B

Weight: 16.3 pounds

  • High/Medium/Low heat setting;
  • Low-oxygen sensor;
  • Tip-over protection;
  • Up to 18000 BTUs per hour;
  • Metal grid heat element protection.

#4 APG Butane Camping Heater + Stove

Butane camping heater

The simplicity and multi-use design of this heater is what makes it stand out. It comes without a butane tank, so you will have to provide it on your own. You can use it both as a heater and as a camping stove. When the heating hood is removed, it is a stove, and when you put it on – it’s a heater. Its multi-use is great for essentialists that don’t like bringing anything extra.

This heater weights only 2 pounds. Butane burns cleaner than propane. Therefore, this might be a smarter option. However, this butane camping heater doesn’t have any other safety features besides a metal grid protecting the surroundings from heat. Overall, we recommend this heater if you don’t need an overnight heater.


Brand: APG

Model: APG Heater

Weight: 2 pounds

  • Metal grid for protection;
  • Heater and gas stove option;
  • Very lightweight and compact.

Best Electric Camping Heaters

#5 Lasko Designer Oscillating Camping Heater

Best electric tent heater

The reason we like this tent heater is that it’s lightweight, portable, and electric. Furthermore, it has a great heat output for its size. Producing 1500 watts of heat for around 7 hours, this should be more than enough for an average size tent.

Lasko’s heater has 2 heat settings to choose from. Moreover, it will start heating immediately after you turn it on. This enables you to have a nice and warm tent within minutes. Regarding safety features, it has an auto shut-off upon overheating. You can toggle the heat settings through the electronic touch control on the heater. The elegant design ensures great portability.


Brand: Lasko

Model: 6405

Weight: 3 pounds

  • High/Low heat setting;
  • 7-hour timer;
  • 1500 watts of heat;
  • Overheat protection.

#6 Honeywell HHF360V Portable Electric Camping Heater

Battery powered tent heater

Honeywell 360 degrees heater is not designed for minimalistic campers. While you won’t be able to wander deep into woods and use this heater, it will perform well with access to a power supply. Therefore, this heater is perfect if you prefer staying at commercial campsites or if you have an RV you will use it in.

It has 2 different heat settings to choose from and it radiates heat 360 degrees around it. A carry handle is quite useful to carry the heater around. Furthermore, it has a tip-over protection sensor and a programmable thermostat. Overall, this is a suitable choice for those with access to electricity. You can also connect it to remote batteries making it a great battery-powered tent heater.


Brand: Honeywell

Model: HHF370B

Weight: 3 pounds

  • High/Low heat setting;
  • Tip-over protection;
  • 1500 watts of heat;
  • Auto-off timer;
  • 360 degree heat distribution.

#7 Opolar 1500W Electric Heater For Camping

Opolar heater for tents

This electric heater provides an abundance of heat. Its ceramic plate is a more recent technology that allows fast, safe, and energy-efficient heating. It is designed for maximum stability. However, if it does get tipped over, it will shut off due to its tip-over protection.

You can choose three different output methods – 1500 watt output for a fast heating, 1000 watt output for an energy-efficient heating, or simply use a fan without heat. Furthermore, it has an adjustable thermostat.

Brand: Opolar

Model: HE03

Weight: 3.5 pounds

  • Fan/Heater in one;
  • High/Low heat setting;
  • Tip-over protection;
  • Up to 1500 watts of heat;
  • Built in thermostat.

What to consider before getting a tent heater?

There are several things you should consider before buying a heater that is best suitable for your needs. With a decent understanding of these features, you will be able to choose a heater that will serve you well. Make sure to evaluate your tent to understand what type of heater will work best for you. Also, it might be a good idea to consider other ways to keep your tent warm.

Heat output

Since you are looking to get warm during cold nights, the heat output of a given heater is one of the most important things to consider. Unfortunately, we found that some heater listings don’t specify heat output. However, some do.

If you are looking at a combustion heater, check for BTUs. Propane camping heaters and natural gas heaters usually have a BTU output of around 2500 to 20000. If you intend to use it in a smaller tent, you don’t need to get the most powerful heater.

In case you prefer electric heaters, look for the indicated wattage. It indicates how much electricity the heater uses and it can give you a general idea of the heat output you can expect. More watts usually means more heat.

Camping heater safety

It is advisable that you inspect the safety features of the heater that you are going to buy. An important safety feature to look for when buying a gas tent heater is the oxygen sensor. It monitors the surrounding air for low oxygen levels. When the levels are too low, it will turn off the heater.

Another feature to look for is tip-over protection. A tipped over heater can release propane in the air or even cause a fire. This type of protection turns the heater off if it is tipped over. Some heaters have a large base that protects them from falling in the first place.


An experienced camper knows that the weight and size of any packed item are important. Any excess weight can wear you out if you are going for a longer hiking trip. Therefore, it is a great idea to consider getting a compact and efficient heater. Remember that a smaller tet heater usually produces less heat. Therefore, check out the specifications for the heater you are considering. The size of your tent is a good baseline for understanding the capacity of the tent heater you will need.


A tent heater that generates an intolerable amount of noise is no good for decent sleep. Usually, electric camping heaters are the loudest ones. To make sure that you are not getting a very loud heater, check out the decibels indicated in the sellers listing.

Best camping heater FAQ

In case there are any questions unanswered, you might find answers here.

How to use a tent heater safely?

Before you turn on your tent heater, make sure that you have placed it in the right place. That means away from any other things, such as your camping mat, backpack, and others. This is a precautionary measure to ensure that the produced heat doesn’t come in direct contact with heat-intolerant materials. Otherwise, you risk damaging your things.

Although the first instinct might be to seal every ventilation of your tent to 

How to set up a tent heater?

A proper heater setup is important every time you are going to use it. As mentioned before, set it in a safe place away from any things that might get damaged. Also, make sure that your tent has ventilation. Proper ventilation is crucial if you are using a propane or gas tent heater.

How much heat in BTU should I look for?

BTU (British Thermal Units) help you to determine how much heat does a heater emits. You can calculate the approximate amount you will need fairly easily. Define the actual size of your tent by measuring in all three dimensions. This should give you an idea of the area size your heater will work in. Then, consider the insulation of your tent. A thin tent with no insulation will need a more powerful heater.

If you have a tent that has approximately 100 cubic feet and you will be camping in winter, you might want to get a heater with at least 800 BTUs


Hopefully, now you have a better idea of choosing the right tent heater. The reviewed models are the best tent heaters in our opinion. They are also highly rated by their buyers. When choosing your own camping heater, make sure to consider all of the unique factors of your camping preferences and gear. In case you have any other questions, leave a comment below.

Categories: Camping Accessories

Veronika Prilucka

Hi there, my name is Veronika and I am the creator and editor of this site. My hobbies include hiking, skiing, camping, backpacking, and challenging myself. With this blog, I'm sharing my knowledge to encourage other people to get outdoors more often.