A small electric heater can be a good way to stay warm without heating the whole of your house. But, you may be wondering how much it costs to run your 1500-watt heater.
In this guide, I’ll explain exactly how much you can expect to spend on electricity to run a 1500-watt heater. Then, you can decide whether it’s cheaper and greener to use the heater or to use the main heating for your home instead.
How much electricity does a 1500W heater use?
The watt rating of your appliance shows how much electricity it uses per hour.
A 1500-watt heater uses 1500 watts for each hour that it’s running on the highest heat setting. This equates to 1.5 kilowatts of electricity per hour, or 1.5 kWh.
Some electric heaters have multiple settings. By using a lower setting, it will use less electricity per hour.
The most common electric heater settings are:
- Low (750W) and High (1500W)
- Low (1000W) and High (1500W)
- Low (500W), Medium (1000W) and High (1500W)
For the rest of this guide, when working out how much a 1500W heater costs to run, we’ll assume that you have it on the high setting.
How much does a 1500W heater cost to run?
The cost of running a 1500W electric heater depends on how much time you have it running for and the rate you pay for electricity.
The average residential electricity rate in the US in 2022 is $0.14 per kilowatt-hour (kWh).
However, the average cost of electricity varies by state from 10 cents in Washington to 34 cents in Hawaii. You can look up the average price for your state here.
In the United Kingdom, the average electricity cost in 2022 is £0.18 per kWh, which is considerably more than in the United States.
How much does it cost to run a 1500W heater per hour?
Assuming an average electricity rate of 14 cents per kWh in the United States, a 1500-watt heater would cost 21 cents per hour to run on full power.
If you pay more than $0.14 per kWh for electricity, then running the heater would cost more than this. If you turn your heater down to a lower setting, it will cost less.
To work out how much an appliance costs per hour, you can use this formula:
Kilowatts X Cost of Energy
1.5 x $0.14 = $0.21 per hour
How much does it cost to run a 1500W heater for 8 hours?
If you run a 1500W electric heater on full power for 8 hours per day, this would cost $1.68 per day, based on the average cost of electricity in the United States.
How much does it cost to run a 1500W heater for 24 hours?
If you run a 1500W electric heater on full power continuously for 24 hours, this would cost around $5, based on the average cost of electricity in the United States.
What you need to know about 1500-watt heaters
Now that you know how much it costs in electricity to run a 1500-watt heater, here’s some more info that you’ll need to make up your mind about which heater is best, and whether you should be using one at all.
Is 1500 watts a lot for a heater?
Electric space heaters range from 200 watts to around 20,000 watts in power. But, the majority of space heaters for home use are 1500 watts. 1500 watts is the average for a home space heater as it offers the best balance of heat output and energy consumption.
What size room will a 1500-watt heater heat?
A 1500-watt space heater is suitable for heating a room that’s between 150 and 200 square feet in size. This is roughly the size of the average bedroom in the United States.
However, the exact volume of space that the heater can warm also depends on factors such as the ceiling height, the room layout, how insulated the room is and the type of heater that’s used.
Are all 1500-watt heaters the same?
Not all 1500-watt heaters are the same. While every 1500-watt heater will use 1.5kHw of electricity to produce the same amount of heat, some feel warmer than others. This is largely due to the direction in which the heat is dispersed – some send the heart in all directions, whereas others have a fan to blow the heat towards you.
If you remain in one place for most of the day such as working at a desk, then a fan heater that directs the heat straight towards you may be a better option than a radiant heater that disperses the heat all around the room.
Some electric heaters glow red when switched on. As the red color is associated with feelings of warmth, these can trick your mind by making you feel like the heater is more effective than it actually is.
What about an older heater?
All electric heaters are 100% efficient at converting electricity to heat, regardless of age. So replacing an old electric heater with a newer model won’t save you any money on your electricity bill.
That said, if the newer model has some bonus features such as a timer or a digital thermostat, then this can reduce your overall energy usage as you’ll be less likely to keep it running when the room is already warm enough.
What about a fan-forced heater?
Fan-forced heaters are a good choice for an electric heater. They are cheap to buy and have a simple design that blows the heat outwards. This makes them more efficient and therefore more affordable than other heaters as the warm air can be directed right towards where you need it.
What about a ceramic heater?
Ceramic space heaters contain a ceramic plate that gets very hot and warms the air. They heat up instantly and are pretty energy efficient.
Some ceramic heaters also have a fan element to direct the warm airflow whereas others are radiant heaters that disperse the warm air all around.
What about an infrared heater?
Infrared heaters are generally more efficient than other types of heaters. A 1500-watt infrared heater will heat a space that’s at least 215 square feet, compared to 150 feet for a regular space heater.
Infrared heaters work not by heating the air, but by heating the objects and people in the room. They do this by converting electricity into invisible, infrared light, giving the same feeling as the warmth from the sun. For this reason, infrared heaters are good to use outdoors as well as indoors.
What about an oil-filled heater?
Oil-filled space heaters look like old-fashioned radiators, but they’re portable and run on electricity. They’re not the best as they can take a while to warm up, can get very hot to the touch, and can be dangerous if they are knocked over.
What type of electric heater is the cheapest to run?
Infrared heaters are the cheapest electric heaters to run. Because they heat you and not the air, you can choose a lower-power model. So, while you may need a 1500-watt fan heater for your room, a 1000-watt infrared space heater will do the same job, saving you money on your electricity bill.
That said, infrared heaters are generally more expensive to buy than other types of heaters, so you’ll want to balance the energy savings with the higher initial cost.
Suggested read: The Cost To Run An Electric Fireplace
The Best 1500 Watt Heaters
Here are my recommendations for the best 1500-watt space heaters…
1. Most Energy Efficient 1500W Heater
This stylish 1500W infrared heater is capable of heating a large room with ease. It has an energy-saving electronic thermostat that ranges from 50 to 85 degrees and it will automatically lower the output once the desired room temperature is reached.
This model comes complete with remote control and is super quiet despite the fan blower.
2. Best Cheap 1500W Heater
This cheap portable electric ceramic fan heater offers a very affordable way to heat up a room without spending too much on electricity. It has two heat settings and can also be used as a cool air fan in the summer.
This energy-saving model includes a thermostat so the heater will cycle on and off to keep the room at the desired temperature.
3. Most Stylish 1500W Heater
If you want the best of the best when it comes to heaters, then this energy-efficient infrared space heater is just the ticket.
The only appliance you’ll need for winter and summer, this fan and heater combo can effortlessly heat or cool up to 1,000 square feet thanks to its multi-directional air circulation. It’s safe for children and pets with no exposed heating elements.
Tips to Lower Your Heating Costs
As well as investing in an energy-efficient space heater so that you’re only heating the area of your home that you need to, here are some more tips for lowering your gas and electricity bills.
- Choose the right size of heater for the room – Avoid wasting energy with a heater that’s too powerful for what you need.
- Buy a heater with energy-efficient features – Timers, digital thermostats and economy modes are all valuable.
- Wear extra clothing – A base layer, warm slippers and a thick sweater can reduce the need for home heating.
- Put down rugs or carpets – These add extra insulation which is especially valuable in houses that are built on concrete foundations.
- Use draft excluders – Seal gaps under doors and around windows to prevent warm air from escaping.
- Put up insulated curtains – Thick drapes create a dead-air space that keeps cold air from entering a room via the windows and can reduce drafts.
Electric Heater FAQs
Modern space heaters can be left of continuously without risk as they will automatically shut off in case of overheating. However, older models shouldn’t be left on for more than 8 hours and should never be left unattended in case they catch fire.
With a modern space heater, it’s okay to leave it on 24 hours per day, including overnight. Many electric heaters have a thermostat and an energy-saving function that allows them to automatically cycle on and off to maintain the temperature throughout the night.
A space heater increases the temperature of the room without adding extra moisture, thereby reducing the humidity of the room. You can use a space heater to dehumidify a room. If the room gets too dry, you can fix this by placing a shallow baking tray of water in front of the heater to add moisture to the air.
If you only use one room of your house for most of the day, then it’s almost always cheaper to use a 1500W space heater in one room rather than turning on the central heating to heat the whole house. But, if you were to have an electric space heater in every room, this would undoubtedly cost you more.
You should take great care if you need to use an extension cord with a space heater. Ensure that the cord is heavy-duty and rated for the amperage of the heater. Run it only in the open air and not in a wall cavity, under a rug, or anywhere that you cannot see it.