Keeping your house warm is a constant battle, especially if your crawl space is the source of the problem. Homeowners everywhere are constantly looking for solutions to keeping their crawl spaces warm so that, in turn, their houses will be much warmer as well.
When it comes to heating your crawl space, utilizing a space heater is not the safest solution for you to choose. Not only can it be dangerous, but attempting to heat your house or crawl space this way will be extremely expensive. Talk to a contractor if you’re considering doing this.
Discovering how to keep your crawl space warmer depends on why it is running colder in the first place. Let’s look at more information about heating your space safely and how to do so cost-effectively.
Can You Put a Space Heater in a Crawl Space?
In most cases, experts agree that you should not use a space heater in a crawl space to warm it up for many reasons. However, the most common reason for not doing so is that the expense can put a huge dent in your household budget.
While the space heater seems to be the most obvious solution to use to heat your crawl space, you need to take into consideration it may not work as effectively as it would in an open room.
Additionally, putting a regular space heater in a crawl space can be a recipe for disaster if you are not careful, as some crawl spaces are lined with carpet or other insulation and are not ventilated well.
Most manufacturers also recommend not leaving a space heater unattended for long periods, and unless you are spending time in your crawl space, it is probably unattended.
Are There Heaters Specifically for Crawl Spaces?
Many manufacturers have created a space heater specifically designed for your crawl spaces. These heaters come with certain safety features that other space heaters do not and can be used for heating the crawl space area. However, they’re not really for consumers or for DIYers.
Even this model of crawlspace air mover (on Amazon) is designed just to manage humidity, and even it would benefit from a professional installer who knows what they’re doing.
There are different types of crawl space heaters, depending on your personal preference and needs for your home. However, it is important to note that there are certain risks associated with each type that you should consider.
The standard electric crawl space heater runs its fire risk since you are not in the same room as the heater. In addition, as most people know, a space heater is known for driving your electricity bill higher.
There are also crawl space heaters that are more energy efficient by using gas instead of electricity. However, there are more significant fire risks since gas usually means an open flame, even if it is somewhat protected.
The last type of crawl space heater is the convection crawl space heater. This type of heater tends to be considered better but comes with risks and precautions.
Overall, some heaters are specifically designed for crawl spaces, but you must consider your options carefully. Your family needs to be warm, but without risking their lives in the process.
Is a Crawl Space Heater an Efficient Way to Heat a Room?
When it comes to heating a room, a crawl space heater is typically not the best option since it is explicitly designed for a crawl space. Since the crawl space is more confined, the heater works to heat well only in smaller areas.
As you are considering heating an actual room that is more open than a crawl space, a regular space heater will do more good than the crawl space type. This is because certain space heaters push the air around the room in a way that warms up the entire space.
Crawl space heaters, like regular space heaters, are not very energy efficient since they need more power to run. This is especially true if you need to run the heater for a more extended time.
Using a crawl space heater to heat a room may provide a small amount of heat. However, it will use more energy and drive your electricity bill higher. Using a regular-size space heater for your non-crawl space room is better.
What is the Best Type of Space Heater for Your Home?
The best type of space heater for your home depends on the space you need to heat and the budget you have to spend. The reasons behind using a space heater are also essential to consider as well.
If you want to add a space heater to your home to lower the use of your thermostat and regular heat source, you should consider where you need the additional heat. This will make the biggest difference in being more comfortable and energy-efficient.
In addition, the best type of space heater for your home should be user-friendly and not make a lot of noise at its fullest capacity. This means you should not see much of a change in your environment when choosing the right space heater.
What to Consider When Buying a Space Heater
Here are some things to consider when choosing the best type of space heater for your home:
The size of the space heater will let you know how big of a room you will be able to heat. If you are trying to add heat to a small room, you may only need a smaller space heater. However, if the room you want to heat is larger, you will want a larger space heater that is more on the larger side, so it will heat the room entirely.
This refers to the time you plan to use your space heater at any given time. While it is not suggested to use it overnight, you may intend to use it for extended periods. Therefore, you will want to choose a heater that works best for your situation and can be used for long periods.
In most cases, a space heater is used when the weather outside has turned much colder. This is when most people see an increase in the amount of energy they will use to heat their homes. In these situations, many people use a space heater, especially if they only occupy one house area.
How much money you have to dedicate to a space heater will determine which type is best for you. This is because space heaters can run from budget-friendly models to much more expensive ones. Therefore, before you purchase yours, you must consider how much you are willing to spend.
These are just some factors you should consider when choosing the best space heater for your home. Although a space heater can provide an additional heating source, you also need to consider the downsides.
What to Keep in Mind Before Buying a Crawl Space Heater
Since using a space heater is a great way to add more heat to your home, there are several things you should keep in mind before buying a crawl space heater. First, remember that a crawl space is quite different from heating an individual room of your home.
In the case of a crawl space that is well insulated, you would not need a space heater of any kind. However, that is rarely the case. Therefore, before adding a space heater to your crawl space, you should check a few things to ensure that the heater will do what it is supposed to do.
Here are a few things to keep in mind before you invest in a crawl space heater:
- Is your crawl space insulated properly?
- Are there gaps between the ground and the walls?
- Are there cracks in the walls?
- Is there a draft coming from somewhere?
Considering these things will help you know if a crawl space heater will work effectively in your home. Once you have checked these things, you can determine whether you even need a space heater.
How to Heat Your Crawl Space
There are some things, of course, that you can do that will help to heat your crawl space much more effectively than using a space heater. These ways also come with fewer dangers than a space heater supplies.
Check out these more efficient ways to heat your crawl space:
- Repair any gaps in between the wall and floor. Trying to heat an area with openings with cold air will have you spinning your wheels. Close up these gaps, and your crawl space will be warmer.
- Weather strips your doors and windows. If doors and windows are in your crawl space, you must ensure that you have correctly weather-stripped them to prevent drafts from coming in.
- Seal any cracks in the walls of your crawl space. Any draft that comes into your crawl space must be sealed before the heat can be maintained. Doing this will help to heat your crawl space efficiently.
You can do more things to make heating your crawl space more energy-efficient if you take the time to do some research. Doing this can prevent you from resorting to using a crawl space heater.
Alternatives to Crawl Space Heaters
There are several alternatives to using crawl space heaters that are more energy-efficient and less dangerous. While some of these methods may be more expensive in the long run, you will also be better off for years to come.
Here are some of the alternatives to using crawl space heaters:
- Encapsulate your crawl space. This method is the most efficient and expensive option for heating your crawl space. In addition, this method weatherproofs your area and provides excellent protection against air leaks.
- Insulate your crawl space. Insulating will help especially if you are trying to prevent frozen pipes. This method will also help if your crawl space tends to stay cold, especially during winter.
- Seal the crawl space. To successfully seal your crawl space, you must ensure that the doors, windows, vents, and ducts are closed. Once this is done, you should use caulk to seal any cracks you find in these areas.
- Install a vapor barrier or add a dehumidifier. A vapor barrier is a type of plastic sheet that you staple directly to the walls to prevent any vapor from entering through the walls. Additionally, some experts suggest using a dehumidifier to pull any condensation that is leaking in.
If you are looking for other ways to heat your crawl space without adding a space heater, then the above suggestions are your best options. However, remember that these methods are often more expensive initially than using the space heater.
When you look further down the road, however, the space heater may cost you much more than you think. This is because they use more energy, especially when the crawl space is not well insulated.
Since it depends on your budget, you must decide which is best for you and your situation. If you look long-term, investing in one of the above solutions may be better since it will take care of the problem for the foreseeable future.
The bottom line when it comes to keeping your space heater in a crawl space is that there are many factors that you need to consider. Keep in mind that the heater is often a short-term solution to what may be a more extended problem.
If you take the time to encapsulate or insulate your crawl space, you may be able to save yourself some time and money. In addition, doing this will eliminate the dangers of using a space heater.