When we hear about gas or catalytic heaters, we often think they are the same thing. It is true that catalytic heaters use gas as fuel to heat a room. However, it is also true that this is just one type of heater and that other heaters that also use gas but have different systems can be found on the market. Let’s see what the differences and advantages of each system are, assuming that all of them can be used easily.
This type of gas heater incorporates a burner and a panel that collects all the heat produced by the flame, and then radiates it into the room. The most common ones have this panel made of ceramic, which turns a deep red color as the heat accumulates in it.
The most advantageous thing about these models is that they have a very long lifespan. They can be used for a long time and will work like the first day.
As we already mentioned in the differences between gas and electric heaters, they must be in well-ventilated places for safety. It is also important that they are not near flammable elements, as the heat they emit is very intense and could cause a fire.
Catalytic heaters emit less radiant heat, as instead of concentrating on a panel, this type of model distributes combustion throughout the surface of the heater, reducing the risk of burns when someone approaches.
In this case, heat is emitted through convection. One of the main advantages over radiant gas heaters is that they have reduced gas consumption. They can use up to half the fuel of previous models, making them more energy efficient. Additionally, some incorporate a thermostat, which allows for even better temperature and consumption optimization.
Blue flame ceramic gas heaters
Although the consumption of these is similar to conventional gas heaters, their heating capacity is superior because the gas burns at a higher temperature. It is common for them to have a heat outlet on the top and another on the front, so the room heats up more quickly.
Basically, blue flame ceramic gas heaters represent greater savings and less consumption than other models, because with the same amount of gas they can heat almost twice the surface area.
Consumption of blue flame ceramic, catalytic, and radiant gas heaters
- Ceramic blue flame gas heaters: They generate heat through the combustion of gas, resulting in a blue flame. The flame heats the ceramic plates that radiate heat into the room. This type of heater has an efficiency of approximately 70-75% and can provide quick and direct heat. Gas consumption depends on the size and power of the heater, but can vary between 100 and 250 grams of gas per hour.
- Catalytic heaters: They work through a combustion process that takes place on a catalytic panel, allowing for more complete combustion with fewer emissions. They are more efficient than blue flame heaters, with an efficiency of around 80-90%. Gas consumption in these heaters also varies depending on the power and size, but usually ranges between 100 and 200 grams of gas per hour. As they do not have a visible flame, catalytic heaters are safer and have a lower risk of fire.
- Radiant heaters: They can be gas or electric and work by emitting heat through a radiant element. These heaters are less efficient than catalytic and blue flame heaters, with an efficiency of around 50-60%. In the case of gas radiant heaters, gas consumption can vary between 150 and 300 grams of gas per hour.
Which one to choose? Which one is the best?
When deciding, the important thing is the place where the heater will be placed. A radiant heater may be sufficient if it is going to be used occasionally. On the other hand, just as we need to take into account safety measures in electric heaters, we need to take extreme precautions when using gas heaters, such as never using them in enclosed spaces. Therefore, it is not recommended to turn them on in a bedroom when we are going to sleep, for example.
In summary, we always recommend catalytic heaters whenever possible for energy savings and safety, followed by gas heaters and finally radiant heaters.