Winters can be daunting if you don’t have central heating, and that is why you need to know the most affordable ways to heat your house. This post will walk you through 11+ different ways to heat your small apartment without a central heating system.
11+ Ways to Heat Small Apartments Without Central Heating
1. Set Up Ethanol Fireplaces
First and foremost, ethanol fireplaces run on ethanol, but you can always find some that can run on bio-ethanol fuel or even gel.
Ethanol fireplaces are excellent choices because they offer a clean-burning fire. That means that you will not worry about any ventilation.
However, these heaters also have some limitations. First, these heaters are usually overpriced or underpowered, meaning that you will risk getting overcharged, or you may not get value for your money.
For example, the smaller heaters will not provide you with your desired amount of heat, while the larger ones will provide adequate heat, but the operating costs will be high.
The worst of all is that this heater works on a live flame, which means you can never use it while sleeping. In other words, you will need to get another heater that you can use while you are asleep.
2. Leverage Mini-Split Units
Mini-splits and air conditioning units are some of the most popular HVAC systems people use these days.
Heat ducts usually lose approximately twenty-five percent via the duct. But because the mini-splits can offer direct heat without involving the duct, you will realize that you use less fuel, which should save you money.
Because you have a small apartment, you will not want a heater that consumes a larger space. These heaters don’t take up much space, so you won’t worry about creating more space to store these heaters.
Mini-splits also come with modern elements, such as a remote control, a timer, or even a dehumidifier. These will make it conveniencing – for example, you can set your time and avoid checking the heater regularly.
Again, these heaters are quite affordable, considering what they can do. You can get these heaters for $1,000 or less, and they can heat up to 800 square feet, which should be a considerable amount of space. The best of all is that you will get tax relief when buying the equipment.
The one downside of this heater is that it is complex to install, so you will have to hire a professional to help you with the installation. This is mandatory because these heaters must be fitted correctly for them to function correctly.
Mini-split heaters are relatively cheap to run and maintain. It is also important to note that gas and wood would always cost less than electricity. This is why most people prefer to use gas and wood fireplaces because they are relatively cheap.
3. Use Kerosene Heaters
Kerosene heaters fall third on this list, and they provide a considerable amount of heat. They are also portable, and they offer flexibility because you can sit them close to your wall.
However, these heaters can be dangerous if much precaution is not taken. For example, you will be required to attend to the kerosene heaters regularly.
Like the ethanol fireplaces, this type of heater also burns in a live flame, depriving your small apartment of oxygen. Because of this, you will need to have some ventilation within your house.
Another limitation is that some apartment owners will not allow you to have a kerosene heater in their apartment. Even if they do, finding cheap kerosene for your heater may be challenging.
Finally, kerosene heaters will need regular maintenance. For example, their wicks will have to be replaced once in a while because they always get dirty. To get this kind of heater, you will need to set aside between $100 and $200.
4. Purchase Panel Heaters
Electric panel heaters are mostly used to heat small apartments.
You can find these heaters at one of your local stores, and you don’t need any techie skills to operate the machine or even install it.
Additionally, you won’t need a lot of maintenance because these heaters come in low wattage, which means that they will always consume less electricity.
The one limitation about this heater is that some areas of your apartment might not heat up because it does not feature large fans that will distribute heat to all your house sections.
Additionally, you will need to set up the heater close to an electrical outlet because it comes with very short cords that may not reach the electric sockets if too far.
5. Try Underfloor Heaters
An electric underfloor heater is a little bit unique because it can go beneath the laminate floors or even your house’s carpeting. And because these heaters heat from the bottom, rest assured that your entire home will heat quite fast.
One of the advantages of underfloor heaters is that they don’t need too much power. For instance, a 6 by 3-foot house will just require 180 watts.
Another advantage is that the heater heats from underground, making it easy for the heat to go around the house, thus even distribution.
However, these heaters will not be a perfect match for people who are already comfortable with the floors they already have – in other words; they are not willing to destroy the flooring just to install the heater.
If you need these heaters, you will have to pull up your floor or reinstall it once the heater has been installed. Most people would not want to go this extra mile.
Additionally, these heaters may not be perfect for those people living in extremely cold areas because you will still need a different heater, especially during very cold times, such as winter.
6. Get Fan Heaters
These heaters are way more powerful than the standard wall heaters; they can distribute the heat evenly around the house.
And because these fan heaters can operate even at 1500 watts, rest assured that they can heat even larger rooms (up to 300 square feet) in colder areas.
Another advantage is that these heaters are quite affordable, and you can find them in fireplace models. Electric fireplaces come in excellent design, and the best of all is that they can be controlled through remote control.
However, there is one limitation about this heater – it is quite expensive to maintain because it cannot run two or more on one breaker.
Finally, the electric fan heaters can get quite hot, so you need to keep them out of reach of children or pets.
7. Set Up Wood Fireplaces
Wood fireplaces are very economical and can heat a small space fast. Wood is always readily available, so you won’t have to worry about scarcity.
However, wood fireplaces come with some disadvantages; for example, it can be illegal in some states or countries to use wood. Additionally, it can be quite expensive to set up a wood fireplace.
8. Give Radiant Oil Heaters a Shot
The electric radiant oil heaters almost resemble the traditional heaters, except that the electric panels and the gas lines are connected to an electric outlet. In them, they come with oil that heats up to release radiant heat.
One of the advantages of using the electric radiant oil heater is that it’s more efficient than a fan heater. Additionally, this heater has no fans, so you won’t get disturbed by any noise while sleeping or catching your favorite show on Tv.
Because these heaters remain cool for some time, they are not as dangerous as the electric fan heaters, so you may not need to take many precautions with your pets. However, it will still be necessary to keep children away because they can damage your only most precious machine.
The electric radiant oil heater’s limitation is that it takes so much time before it can heat up. Besides, this heater takes up more space, which means that you might need some ample space to store it. And finally, you will need to set aside between $50 and $150 to get this heater.
9. Install Gas Space Heaters
Unlike kerosene heaters, the gas space heaters act as perfect substitutes because they offer clean-burning and run without electricity.
While gas space heaters use natural gas, you can also use propane gas, which is usually common and not hard to find. And because the fuel doesn’t rely on an electric grid, rest assured that the heater will operate even when there is a power outage.
The advantage of these heaters is that they are quite affordable, and you can find one for just $150 or even less. Additionally, they burn much cleaner, and you will not worry about changing the filters regularly.
This heater distributes heat around the house fast, and the best of all is that you will get the view of the live fire as it warms your apartment.
However, some drawbacks come with this heater. The first one is that it burns with a live fire, which can be dangerous. In other words, you will have to take many precautions so that the fire cannot burn anybody – your children and your pets.
Apart from that, the gas could leak out, and because a gas leaking out cannot be seen, detecting it can be challenging, especially to those people who don’t have a strong sense of smell. Worst of all, the issue of carbon monoxide is also an issue.
And that marks the end of the portable solutions. So what about the permanent solutions? For those people with their apartments? Let’s find out to see what they can do to heat their small apartments.
10. Use a Hot Water Bottle
This is not a permanent way to heat your small apartment, but it is one way you can heat your small apartment without spending a lot. I included it on this list because it doesn’t require much experience.
So how do you use a hot water bottle? You will need to pour some hot water into a bottle. Once that is done, you will need to tighten the bottle’s lid and put it in your bed for about fifteen minutes.
11. Use the Plug Drafts
As the hot water bottles, this is not a permanent way to heat your small apartment, but it can save you significantly. Instead of using a hot water bottle, you need to block the gaps between your door and window frames.
You will need weatherstripping tape to do this. Once you have your tape, go around your house and identify any gaps. Insulate those gaps. You need to note that weatherstripping tapes come in different sizes, so you may need to check the sizes before purchasing.
12. Thermal Curtains Work Great
We have to agree that most heat is lost through the windows or doors – so it doesn’t matter whether you have single or double-pane windows.
When purchasing windows, ensure that you are selecting windows that satisfy your aesthetic preferences and serve the purpose it is bought for – preventing the loss of heat.
To minimize heat loss through the windows even better, you can hang your curtains close to your windows, and this has been proven to reduce heat loss by up to 25 percent.
And that is it – a list of 11 ways you can heat your small apartment without central heating. The majority of these ways will cost some money, but you can choose not to spend on some techniques, especially some of the last.