6 Best Crawl Space Heaters For Cold Winters

Josh Mitchell

Written By

Josh Mitchell

Expert Reviewed By

Holly Curell

Last Updated On

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Is your crawl space cold and damp?

I’ve helped hundreds of homeowners find and install the right crawl space heater to protect their foundations and pipes and prevent energy loss from their homes.

The trick is finding the right heater for the job - and that can be challenging.

In this guide, I’ll share my top picks for the best heater for crawl space that will make a big difference in your home.

Quick Glance - My Recommendations

Dr Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater,...

Dr Infrared DR-968

Editor's Choice

Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX-WIFI Infrared Heater,...

Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX

Crawl Space Heater With Thermostat

Dr. Infrared Heater DR-975 7500-Watt 240-Volt...

Dr. Infrared DR-975

For Heating Large Crawl Spaces

6 Heaters to Keep Your Crawl Space Warm

1. Dr Infrared DR-968

4.8

Overall Score


Energy Efficiency

5.0

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Heating Ability

4.8

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Value for Money

4.8

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Who is the Dr Infrared Heater best for?

The Dr. Infrared crawl space heater is best for homeowners with very cold crawl spaces who want a simple and low-maintenance solution.

Pros
  • Effecting dual heating system
  • Energy-efficient and low cost
  • Lightweight and easy to move
  • Simple to install and use
  • Quiet
CONS
  • Less accurate thermostat
  • Slightly pricey

The Dr. Infrared freestanding crawl space heater is my top pick because it is versatile, simple, and effective.

It doesn't have the raw power of the Dr. Infrared DR-975 or gas models, but it's more than enough for a medium-sized crawl space.

It brought the temperature in my crawl space up to 85 degrees in under an hour during testing, but what impressed me most was how well it consistently maintained the temperature.

This performance is down to the dual heating method. The mix of infrared and convection provides fast and consistent heating across the entire space.

The Dr. Infrared heater is high-performing but simple. It has a long, 72-inch cord for easy placement, a programmable thermostat, and a remote control.

It needs very little regular maintenance and has built-in safety features, so you can leave it running with confidence.

Dr. Infrared DR-968 dimensions

The only downside is that this is a slightly more expensive unit and does cost noticeably more than the Dura Heat or Fahrenheat models.

However, it offers a lot of value, and I recommend it to homeowners who want an effortless way to heat their crawl space.

Feature

Details

Coverage

1000-1500 square feet

Heat output

5200 BTUs

Heating method

Dual - Infrared and convection

Watts

1500

Weight

24 pounds


2. Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX

4.8

Overall Score


Energy Efficiency

5.0

Current Progress
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Heating Ability

4.8

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Value for Money

4.5

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Who is the Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX best for?

The Heat Storm crawl space heater is best for homeowners with small crawl spaces who want targeted, cost-effective heating.

Pros
  • Efficient infrared heating
  • Fully programmable with Wi-Fi controls
  • Sleek design and easy installation
  • Low maintenance and safe
  • Available as wall-mounted or freestanding unit
CONS
  • Only suitable for small spaces
  • Comparatively expensive for a small unit

Not everyone has a huge crawl space or ice-cold winters; that's why I included the Heat Storm.

It's compact, simple, and has low running costs, so you can warm a small area without breaking the bank.

This sleeky-designed unit uses efficient infrared heating to provide direct heat.

In spaces up to 200 feet, it can increase the temperature in minutes, and it takes very little power to run.

It doesn’t have the power of the Dr. Infrared DR-975 or Fahrenheat, but it is incredibly efficient in small spaces.

It's low maintenance, too, with dual wall technology that reduces the fire risk in your home, tip-over auto-shutoff, and a programmable thermostat.

Important Note

Tip-over auto-shutoff allows the heater to turn off it get knocked over accidentally. This is of particular importance if you have kids or pets around.

The stand-out feature for me was the Wi-Fi controls.

It has a well-designed app that gives me full control over the heating, and over three days of testing, I did everything from my phone!

It certainly isn't designed for large spaces, but this smart, efficient, and low-maintenance heater is the one I recommend for small crawl spaces.

Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX wifi

Feature

Details

Coverage

150-200 square feet

Heat output

4500 BTUs

Heating method

Infrared

Watts

1500

Weight

9 pounds


3. Dr. Infrared DR-975

4.6

Overall Score


Energy Efficiency

4.3

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Heating Ability

5.0

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Value for Money

4.5

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Who is the Dr. Infrared Heater DR-966 best for?

The Dr. Infrared DR 966 crawl space heater is best for large crawl spaces that need powerful heating.

Pros
  • Extremely powerful
  • Low maintenance
  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Easy to use (though limited options)
  • List Element
CONS
  • Heavy and more complicated to install
  • Requires 240 Volt connection

This Dr. Infrared crawl space heater is a cut above the rest in terms of performance, and it impressed me during testing.

It has a powerful radiant heating mechanism that can protect large crawl spaces effortlessly, and it's a big step up from other crawl space heaters.

However, despite providing commercial-grade heating, it's surprisingly efficient.

The quartz tubing and blower help spread the heat, giving you the benefits of forced air and radiant heat in one.

You will have higher heating costs than with the Heat Storm or Dyna-Glo, but it won’t impact your energy bills too much.

This industrial-grade heater was more basic than other models but still had all the essentials.

It has a programmable thermostat, a remote control, five adjustable settings, and built-in safety features.

These features make it easy for anyone to get the most from this machine, but what impressed me most was the build quality.

The heating mechanism and outer casing are sturdy, and the heater should last at least 10 years.

The only downside is that it is more complicated to install, and less experienced homeowners may need to contact a professional.

If you have a large crawl space, this is the heater I recommend.

Just keep it away from flammable materials because the powerful heating can make it a fire hazard.

Feature

Details

Coverage

2000-2500 square feet

Heat output

20,000 BTUs

Heating method

Infrared

Watts

7500

Weight

26 pounds


4. Fahrenheat FBE15002

4.5

Overall Score


Energy Efficiency

4.5

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Heating Ability

4.3

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Value for Money

4.8

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Who is the Fahrenheat FBE15002 best for?

The Fahrenheat crawl space heater is best for homeowners who want a quiet and portable heater.

Pros
  • Compact, lightweight, and very portable
  • High-quality and long-lasting
  • Quiet operation
  • Safest space heater for crawl space use
  • Automatic temperature control
CONS
  • Not suitable for large spaces
  • Slower acting with no fan

A noisy heater can be a real issue in smaller homes, even in a crawl space.

The Fahrenheat crawl space heater offers warming without disruption, making it perfect for any part of your home.

The convection heater works without a fan and runs virtually silently (I had to double-check it was running during testing).

Fahrenheat FBE15002 dimensions

With no fan, it doesn't blow dirt or dust up either, keeping your home warm and clean and preventing mold from spreading.

What surprised me most about this quiet heater was the power. It can't cover the same area as the Dr. Infrared DR-975.

Still, in small-to-medium-sized crawl spaces, it will maintain an ambient temperature.

The Fahrenheat has programmable settings and remote control, but the best feature is the intuitive automatic temperature control.

This is perfect for homeowners who want to set and forget their heater.

However, what really sets Fahrenheat apart is the build quality.

It's designed with no moving parts and is made really well, so it can last a lifetime if it's properly maintained.

The only downside is that it takes longer to heat your crawl space than other models, so expect to keep it running longer.

However, if you have a smaller home and want a quiet, unobtrusive way to keep your crawl space warm this winter, I recommend the Fahrenheat.

Feature

Details

Coverage

250 square feet

Heat output

5100 BTUs

Heating method

Convection

Watts

1500

Weight

9.4 pounds


5. Dyna-Glo IRSS12LPT-2P

Safest Propane Heater Option

4.5

Overall Score


Energy Efficiency

5.0

Current Progress
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Heating Ability

4.5

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Value for Money

4.0

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Who is the Dyna-Glo IRSS12LPT-2P best for?

The Dyna-Glo crawl space heater is best for homeowners who have no electrical outlet and need powerful heating in their crawlspace.

Pros
  • Compact and portable
  • Easy installation
  • No vents or electricity needed
  • Adjustable thermostat
  • Very safe and fully certified
CONS
  • Not suitable for large spaces
  • Basic controls

I’m a big fan of propane heaters, and the Dyna-Glo is one of the best.

It generates more power than the Fahrenheat or Heat Storm, giving intense heating that can keep pipes from freezing and maintain a steady temperature in the coldest crawl space.

This space heater doesn’t need any electricity or wiring, and the infrared heat doesn’t require any venting.

All you have to do is hook up the propane, and you’re good to go.

Propane isn’t for every homeowner and can be intimidating, but this heater is one of the easiest and safest I’ve used.

It's simple to hook up yourself and has an oxygen depletion sensor (ODS) that automatically shuts off if the oxygen levels become low.

It may even be the safest heater for a crawl space, and it's even ANSI-certified and meets all modern safety standards.[1]

The only slight issue I have with this heater is that it has no programmable timer or remote control.

It's definitely less convenient than the Wi-Fi-controlled Heat Storm, but it does have an adjustable thermostat that automatically regulates the temperature.

Important Tip

Provide ample ventilation when using propane heaters as they carry risk of carbon monoxide poisonings.

The Dyna-Glo propane crawl space heater is compact, powerful, and low-cost.

If you have a small or medium-sized crawl space without electricity, I recommend purchasing the Dyna-Glo.

Feature

Details

Coverage

200-300 square feet

Heat output

12000 BTUs

Heating method

Infrared

Watts

-

Weight

14.1 pounds


6. Dura Heat EUH1465

4.3

Overall Score


Energy Efficiency

4.0

Current Progress
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Heating Ability

4.0

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Value for Money

5.0

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Who is the Dura Heat EUH1465 best for?

The Dura Heat crawl space heater is best for homeowners with a small crawl space and a limited budget.

Pros
  • Really affordable
  • Compact and portable
  • Powerful fan
  • Safe and easy to use
CONS
  • Limited coverage
  • Lower quality
  • Slightly noisy

If you want to protect your walls and pipes without spending a fortune, I recommend the Dura Heat.

Dura Heat EUH1465 fan

This heater uses a forced air method and a powerful fan to circulate warm air quickly around your crawl space.

It doesn’t have the power or coverage of the Dr. Infrared DR-975, but it's far more portable.

You can set it up exactly where you need it, and the pivoting base lets you direct the heat to the coldest spots in the room.

It can't handle a large basement or crawl space in winter, but I found it performed well in spaces under 150 square feet.

The Dura Heat doesn't have all the bells and whistles of premium models, and there's no programmable timer or smart technology.

However, it does have an adjustable thermostat and safety features that make it easy to use safely.

The only downside is that it lacks the quality of some other models.

It doesn't have the sturdy frame of the Dr. Infrared DR-975 and won't last as long as the Farenheat heater.

However, you get what you pay for, and while it may cost more in the long run, it offers a cost-effective way to limit heat loss from your home in the short term.

It isn't a permanent or long-term solution. Still, if you need heating in specific places or at specific times of year, I recommend the Dura Heat.

Feature

Details

Coverage

100-150 square feet

Heat output

5100BTUs

Heating method

Forced air

Watts

1500

Weight

4 pounds


Heaters For Crawl Space Compared

Preview

Name

Rating

Heat output

Heating Method

Price

Dr Infrared Heater Portable Space Heater,...

Dr Infrared DR-968

4.8

5200 BTUs

Dual - Infrared and convection

Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX-WIFI Infrared Heater,...

Heat Storm HS-1500-PHX

4.8

4500 BTUs

Infrared

Dr. Infrared Heater DR-975 7500-Watt 240-Volt...

Dr. Infrared DR-975

4.6

20,000 BTUs

Infrared

Fahrenheat FBE15002 Portable Electric...

Fahrenheat FBE15002

4.5

5100 BTUs

Convection

Dyna-Glo IRSS12LPT-2P 12,000 BTU Liquid...

Dyna-Glo IRSS12LPT-2P

4.5

12000 BTUs

Infrared

Dura Heat EUH1465 Electric Forced Air Heater...

Dura Heat EUH1465

4.3

5100BTUs

Forced air


How To Choose The Right Heater For Your Crawl Space

Your Preferred Choice Of Heating Method

There are several different ways to heat your crawl space.

I usually recommend a forced air crawl space heater because it works fastest, but other methods can also be effective.

  • Forced air:
    These crawl space heaters use natural gas or electricity to heat air and blow it out into the space. The benefit of this method is that it heats quickly and uniformly. The downside is that it’s less efficient, especially if your crawl space isn’t properly insulated.

Heaters like the Dr. Infrared DR-968 use the forced air method and are effective against extreme cold and wet conditions.

  • Radiant:
    A radiant floor heating system works by emitting heat directly onto surfaces[2]. It’s slower than forced air crawl space heaters but uses less energy. Radiant crawl space heaters are also cheaper to buy.

If you only have a small crawl space and the conditions aren’t too extreme, I recommend a radiant crawl space heater like the Heat Storm.

  • Convective heating:
    Convective heating is very similar to forced air heating because it heats the air in the crawl space. However, they don’t use fans to push that hot air around the space. This makes them more energy efficient, but they heat more slowly.

Convective heaters, like the Fahrenheat, work well in small spaces or areas with natural ventilation.

  • Ducted:
    Ducted crawl space heaters connect to your HVAC system, funneling warm air into the space. They’re effective but require you to have a fully ducted HVAC system in place already.
  • Hydronic:
    These are essentially water heaters. Heated water is run through several closed-loop systems (similar to radiators) and heats the crawl space. Hydronic crawl space heating is expensive but useful for homes that need heating year-round.
  • Hybrid systems:
    Hybrid systems combine multiple heating technologies, most commonly convective and radiant, giving you more adaptable heating that's useful in extreme conditions. 

If you have a very wet and cold crawl space, a hybrid system like the Dr Infrared DR-968 will manage it effectively.

TL;DR: The choice of your heater will largely depend upon what fuel type is readily available to you, the size of your crawl space, and how fast do you want to heat up the crawl space.

Where Do You Plan To Place Your Crawl Space Heater?

Ideally, crawl space heaters should be placed centrally for maximum efficiency, but it will depend on the model.

Important Tip

Always check your heater has 1-2 feet of clearance from any belongings stored there.

  • Freestanding: Best for a taller crawl space with plenty of room. Forced air and convective heaters are typically freestanding units.
  • Wall or ceiling-mounted: If you have a smaller crawl space or need zoned heating, I recommend a wall mounted or ceiling-mounted model (like the Dr Infrared DR 975).
  • Portable: Portable crawl space heaters are best for those who only need heating at certain times of the year. They are typically lightweight, freestanding models, like the Dura Heat, that can easily be moved or stored.

What Fuel Type Is Best For You?

Fuel Type

Pros

Cons

Best for?

Electricity

  • Cheaper to buy
  • Simple to install
  • Low maintenance
  • Expensive to run
  • Limited heating capacity
  • Requires an outlet

Those with less experience who want simple installation and heating

Propane/Gas

  • Highly efficient
  • Cheap to run
  • Powerful
  • Can be complicated to install
  • Requires more maintenance

Those with more experience who need powerful heating

TL;DR: Electric and propane are the two most popular fuel sources for heaters. They both have their pros and cons.

What Is The Size Of Your Crawl Space?

You should measure your crawl space and find a model that matches.

I recommend choosing a model with 10-20% greater coverage than your crawl space so it can adequately heat the space year-round.

For a larger crawl space, I recommend the Dr Infrared DR 975. For a smaller crawl space, I recommend the Heat Storm.

Heating Capacity And Wattage Of The Unit

The heating capacity of your crawl space heater is shown in BTUs (British Thermal Units).[3]

The higher the BTU, the more heating it can provide and the larger area it can cover.

The table below gives my recommendations for size and capacity:

Size of crawl space (square feet)

BTU requirements

Recommended

100-300

1500-2000

A single standable unit like the Dyna-Glo.

300-600

2500-5000

A large infrared or forced air heater, like the Dr Infrared DR-968.

600+

8000+

The Dr. Infrared DR-975 will work best, or you can install a ducted or hydronic system.

Choosing the right BTUs will improve the energy efficiency of your heater and keep the running costs down. 

Still, there are 3 other factors to consider:

  • Wattage - most residential units use 1500-2000 Watts, but heavy-duty units (like the Dr. Infrared DR-975) can use over 7000 Watts, increasing the running costs.
  • Energy Star rating[4] - models with this certification (like Dura Heat and Dr Infrared DR-968) are more energy efficient and cost less to run.
  • Fan settings - models that automatically adjust, like the Fahrenheat, will be more efficient and lower costs.

TL;DR: It is an absolute must that you match the heating output of your heating with the coverage area of your crawl space.

Look For Safety Mechanisms And Adjustable Thermostat

Always look for a crawl space heater with an accurate thermostat and safety features.

At a minimum, I recommend:

  • Automatic shut-off - this will prevent fires or explosions if the heater tips over.
  • Overheat protection - this switches the unit off if it gets dangerously hot.
  • Vent safety shut off - this switches gas heaters off if the vents become blocked.

Most modern heaters are safe, but units with safety certifications (like Dyna-Glo) are typically safest.

I also advise looking for models with a remote control (like the Heat Storm) that lets you control the temperature safely inside your home.

TL;DR: Since crawl space is seldom visited, make sure the heater you buy has robust safety mechanisms.

Other Important Factors to Consider

How Long Is The Warranty Period?

Always look for at least 1 year of protection.

Does It Have a Remote Control?

You don’t want to go into your crawl space constantly, so choosing a model with a remote control, like the Fahrenheat, will make your life much easier.

Can You Carry It Around?

Portability is vital for homeowners who only need their crawl space heated at certain times of the year.

I recommend looking for a unit that weighs under 20 pounds, like the Dura Heat, if you plan on moving it between rooms.

How Long is the Power Cord?

Most crawl spaces don't have a power supply, so a long power cord makes installation easier.

If you buy an electric heater, I recommend one with a longer cord (like the Dr Infrared DR-968) that can stretch over your pipes and reach the nearest outlet.


How We Review & Rank Our Product List

At Air Conditioner Lab, our team follows a similar process when evaluating all products reviews before formulating our final lists for readers.

We begin by gathering data sources directly from brands, e-commerce platforms, online retailers and press releases.

These are then added to a master file we use to compare features specifications from all humidifier models. You can access this Humidifier Sheet Here.

Next, we narrow down all the products on the market by evaluating user reviews, ratings and feedback from a wide variety of online and in-person sources.

Our team then discusses and co-ordinates our first hand experiences using these products, as well as gather independent opinions and feedback through Youtube and customer reviews.

What More Can You Do To Keep Crawl Space Warm In Winter?

The most important thing you can do is to insulate your crawl space[5]. 

Important Note:

A crawl space that is not well-insulated will require more heating and thus add to the overall running cost. 

There are a few other steps to take that will have a noticeable impact:

  • Sealing air leaks using spray foam insulation or other foam sealant.
  • Installing a vapor barrier over the ground will help retain warmth.
  • Adding foam boards to the foundation walls and crawl space floor will insulate the foundations of your home.
  • Closing vents tightly will prevent cold drafts and air leaks in winter, keeping the temperature higher at ground level.
  • Using a dehumidifier will prevent moisture buildup and lead to improved indoor air quality.
  • Using pipe insulation or heat tape around any cold or hot water pipes running through your crawl space will stop them from freezing and keep the crawl space warmer.
  • Insulating the floors above your crawl space will keep your house and crawl space warm. You can also consider installing radiant floor heating to warm your living space and crawl space.

TL;DR: In addition to heaters, insulation is a very important factor in warming up your crawl space.


FAQs

Can I Put a Space Heater in My Crawl Space?

Yes, a space heater is just a forced air heater and should work well in crawl spaces or living spaces.

Where Should I Install a Crawl Space Heater?

For optimal performance, you should install a crawl space heater in the center of the space or along the floor joists. This will keep heat inside, prevent frozen pipes, and limit mold growth.

How Do I Stop Pipes From Freezing in Crawl Spaces?

You can prevent frozen pipes in your crawl space with proper insulation and heater installation. You can also use heat tape or heat cables so they don’t freeze in the colder months.

What Are Some Risks When It Comes To Crawl Space Heating?

If there is insufficient ventilation, crawl space heating can add to humidity levels, increasing mold and mildew growth in your home. The high humidity levels can also damage the foundations and walls of your house.

So, Which Is Best For You?

The Dr. Infrared DR-968 freestanding heater is the one I recommend for most homeowners.

It offers a great balance of simplicity and power, with dual heating methods that can easily manage the cold in a medium-sized crawl space.

It's an effortless solution and one for homeowners with limited experience.

However, every house is different and will have unique requirements.

Hopefully, you’ve found a crawl space heater that meets your needs and will help you manage the cold.

My #1 Recommendation
Dr Infrared DR-968

  • Effecting dual heating system
  • Energy-efficient and low cost
  • Lightweight and easy to move
  • Simple to install and use
  • Quiet

References: 

  1. https://ansi.org/
  2. https://energyeducation.ca/encyclopedia/Radiant_heat
  3. https://www.eia.gov/energyexplained/units-and-calculators/british-thermal-units.php
  4. https://www.energystar.gov/products/what_makes_product_energy_star
  5. https://www.energystar.gov/sites/default/files/asset/document/Technology
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Josh Mitchell

Founder

Josh Mitchell
My name is Josh and I am obsessed with home appliances. From portable AC units to heaters and air purifiers, I enjoy testing, learning and using these devices to improve the air quality inside my family home.

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