Best Safe Space Heater For Toddler Playroom 2020

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If you asked your toddler what is their favorite room in the house, they will probably tell you it is the playroom. It is the room where they can spend the whole afternoon having fun and going wild. As parents, this is also the room where you can build beautiful memories and fun experiences with your child. During winter time when it can be too chilly to play outdoors, the playroom takes on an even more important role, keeping your kids entertained and engaged.

Since we are spending so much time inside the playroom during winter, it makes sense to prepare it well so that it is comfortable for us and our kids. Managing the temperature well, especially during the colder month, is key to a comfortable playroom.

In order to maintain an optimum temperature can be challenging especially during the colder months and many parents (including us) have to turn to space heaters. When placing a space heater in a toddler’s room, safety should be the foremost consideration for our young ones. However, there are also a few other factors to consider when purchasing your heater. Since we were at it anyway, we went ahead and did the homework for all the parents out there and these are our findings.

Below you will find a list of five best space heaters from reputable international brands, all geared towards heating up a toddler’s playroom with their pros and cons clearly listed.

HeaterHeating
Method
Safety
Rating
PowerRemarks
VornadobabyFan-forced4.5/5900W (High)
450W (Low)
Child Lock
Honeywell HeatGeniusFan-forced4/51500W6 Heat Settings
DeLonghi MicathermicMicathermic3.75/51500W (High)
&50W (Low)
Wall mountable
Pelonis Tower HeaterFan-forced4.25/51500W (High)
900W (Low)
Can be used
horizontally
Dyson Pure Hot + Cold HP04Fan-forced4.25/51500WAir purifier
Comparison of the Best Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom

You’ll also find a buyers’ guide where you can read our rationale when deciding how to rate these products, and hopefully you can use it yourself when making future purchases.

In a Hurry? This Is Our Winner!

Vornadobaby Tempa Nursery Heater

Best Overall Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom

The Vornadobaby Tempa Nursery Heater measures 7.5 x 10.1 x 10.9” and weighs 5.4 lbs. It also comes with a 5 years warranty. This is a convection heater that uses a fan to blow warm air into the room. It runs on 900W and should be used in a room no bigger than 90 sq. ft. This should be sufficient for most baby rooms as they are usually not big. There is also a fan-only mode which gives you more flexibility during the warmer seasons.

On the safety aspect, this heater comes equipped with tip over protection which turns the heater off automatically when knocked over by pets or children. There is also an overheating protection which guards against fires that arises from overheating. The heat dissipation and exhaust design of this heater prevents the exterior from becoming too hot which may then cause accidental burns. Approved by ETL certification, you can be assured that this heater has met all the stringent safety requirements imposed by North American authorities. The cord can also be rolled up and concealed in the base. This is great for preventing trips and fall due to misplaced wires.

Another bonus that we appreciate was that the gaps at the grille were small enough such that children cannot place their fingers in and accidentally injure themselves by touching the fan. 

An additional feature that makes this heater stand out is the presence of a child lock which prevents the child from meddling with the On/Off button. 

However, it must be noted that the child lock only prevents the child from changing the ON/OFF button. The child will still have access to change the thermostat and this may potentially cause overheating or room freezing. Due to this, this heater was not able to get the full score for safety. However, parents please rest assured that this heater is already one of the safest heaters there is on the market now.

In terms of noise, this heater is not particularly noisy for a fan forced heater. What works in its favor is the constant droning of the fan which does resemble white noise after a while. We barely notice it once we got used to it. However, we would advise against turning off or turning on the heater while your child is asleep in the room as it does give a loud noise when it’s powering up or powering down.

All in all, this child friendly space heater is made especially for a nursery and you can tell the manufacturers put in a lot of thought into this heater. This is our favorite heater because it is also the safest space heater for nursery and baby room.

Pros

  • Child lock present
  • All rounded safety features
  • Compact and lightweight 
  • Fan is safe against children fingers
  • No exposed cord
  • Quiet fan

Cons

  • Child lock only cover the ON/OFF switch
  • Large noise when the heater element is turned on or off.

What their fans love: “The perfect heater for a baby’s nursery especially since you know it will not interfere with your baby’s sleep. Her room is on the small side and it warmed up the room fairly quickly. I’m not sure how this heater would do in a larger room but if your room is relatively small then this heater does a stellar job.”


Best Safe Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom Buyers’ Guide

Safety

More home fires occur during the colder winter months than at any other time of the year. Heating equipment caused an estimated 54,030 home fires and caused 480 deaths between 2011 and 2015 according to the National Fire Protection Association. Therefore, when choosing space heaters in baby rooms, safety must be utmost consideration before anything else.

Cool Touch Exterior

A heater equipped with cool-touch housing can prevent burn injuries from accidental contact with a heater. This is especially important in households with young toddlers and pets who may wander around and touch the heater unknowingly. This feature is present in almost all heaters but some heaters may still have small areas at the heat outlet where it can become quite hot to touch.

Tip Over Protection

The tip over protection usually comes in the form of a kill switch at the base of the heater. When the heater is placed upright on a hard surface, the hard surface will depress this switch and allow the heater to function properly and generate heat. If the heater is knocked over, the kill switch is no longer depressed by the hard surface and hence breaks the circuit. This shuts off the heater and prevents it from burning anything else.

The issue comes when the heater is being placed on a soft surface such as a carpet. Because the carpet is too soft to depress the tip over switch, the heater does not turn on. Some homeowners then decide to go around this by taping the tip over kill switch down. Therefore, the kill switch is perpetually depressed now and even if it tips over the circuit would not be broken. The heater would continue to run and a fire could start.

Hence, the heater must always be placed on a hard surface for the tip over kill switch to work. If you really need to place it on the carpeted ground, it would be wiser to place a metal tray below it to act as the hard surface. 

Overheating Protection

Space heaters with overheating protection have a temperature sensor installed internally. These sensors detect when the internal temperature reaches a dangerously high level and then proceed to shut down the heater automatically.

There are a couple of situations when space heaters may overheat. The first situation is when the space heater is covered up. This frequently happens when homeowners try to use the heaters to dry their laundry by placing it over the space heater. Using a space heater for any other purposes not specified is always a dangerous move. 

A second possible reason would be a faulty thermostat. In order for space heaters to function efficiently, an accurate functional thermostat is essential. If the thermostat is faulty then the heater may continue to provide heat even after the desired temperature is reached.  This causes overheating and overheating protection would kick in.

Nationally Recognized Safety Certification

Space heaters that have attained safety certification from nationally  recognized testing laboratories are determined to have met North American Safety standards and should be safe to use when directions for use are followed properly. Some common testing laboratory certifications to look for include:

  • UL (Underwriters Laboratories)
  • CSA (Canadian Standards Association)
  • ETL (Intertek Group)

Safety Grille

For the heaters that use a fan to blow air over a heating element, it should contain a grille that prevents wandering fingers from interfering with the fan. Therefore, the gaps on the grille should be small enough such that a young toddler’s fingers cannot go through it. In addition, the grille itself should be made of materials that remain cool to touch. The grille is constantly in contact with the hot air that is blown out so it tends to get hot quite easily and may cause accidental burns if it is touched. 

Wide Base  

The base of the heater should be broad and wide so that the heater is steady and does not fall over easily even if it is being pushed by a wandering child. This is where oil filled radiators do not perform as well. Oil filled radiators are usually bulky and tall with a narrow base. The centre of gravity is high and has a high chance to tip over when pushed.

Child Lock

Children are some of the most curious creatures ever. They will touch anything and everything that is new and shiny. The buttons or LED display on a heater totally fits that bill. Having a child lock on the heater would prevent most young children from meddling with the predetermined settings on the heater. Using the wrong settings may lead to overheating and home fires especially when no one is paying attention i.e. during bedtime.

Types Of Heater

Convection 

Convection heater works by heating up the air around it via a heating element. The hot air rises and creates a vacuum for cool air to be sucked in and warmed by the heating element. This continued flow creates a circulation of warm air that helps to heat up the room. As such, convection heaters work best in closed spaces. It is worth noting that all convection heaters come with an in-built thermostat for regulation of ambient temperature. In essence, convection heaters work within the framework of “Hot air rises and cold air sinks”.

Fan Forced

Convection heaters may come with a fan that helps to speed up the convection process. These are also commonly known as fan forced heaters. These heaters are good at heating a room evenly and can be a good fit for a toddler playroom. However, it is important to make sure that the fan blades are not exposed and the grille covering is narrow enough to prevent fingers from going in. Some models with bladeless fans are even safer for this purpose

Oil Filled Radiators

Some convection heaters do not come with a fan. Examples include the oil-filled radiators. These heaters contain oil that is sealed permanently in the heater and it gets heated up by electricity. The heated oil then heats up the exterior of the heater which goes on to heat up the air in contact with the heater. 

It is a common misconception that this heater is unsafe for baby rooms because the exterior gets very hot. However, this is untrue because the exterior actually has a very large surface area which dissipates the heat extremely well. It does get warm but never hot enough to burn anyone. In contrast, it is actually safer than a fan forced heater in which the grate may get very hot to touch.

However, something that parents will need to be wary of is the weight and bulkiness of these heaters. Depending on the power of these heaters, it can get quite large and heavy. It is also quite tall and there is a chance it may topple over if pushed. If it lands on a child, it can be pretty dangerous. Therefore, if you were to choose an oil filled space heater for your child playroom, make sure it has an extremely stable base that has a lesser chance of being tipped over.

The main advantage of this heater is that it is virtually silent as there is no fan. However, it takes a long time to heat up a room evenly.

Radiant Heaters

Radiant heaters work by infrared radiation which travels out in waves to heat up the object in front of it. It does not heat up the surrounding air at all. If you have ever sat in front of a campfire, you have experienced radiant heat. Because radiant heat does not require any medium, it can heat up the object in front of it very rapidly. 

In contrast to convection heaters, they are poor at heating up large spaces as their beams tend to be more concentrated on the object ahead and they do not heat up the surrounding air. They are very good at zonal heating and they excel in spaces where people remain still (like the bedroom).

It may not be so suitable for a playroom because there will likely be a lot of movement in the room and kids won’t stay long in a spot to enjoy the zonal heating. 

Combination Heaters

For combination heaters, they attempt to combine the features of radiant heaters and convection heaters together to get the best of both worlds. A good example of a combination heater would be the micathermic heaters. These heaters use a heating element known as mica which produces electromagnetic rays. Like infrared rays, these electromagnetic rays produce radiant heat. However, unlike infrared rays which will only heat up the object nearest to it, EM rays can heat up all the objects in an area as the rays are more widespread. As the objects heat up, the air warms up. Since each object in the room is being heated up at the same time, the ambient air warms up quicker.

Another type of combination heaters make use of infrared rays to heat up an element and then have a fan to warm the air above the heated element. Therefore, the heater can produce both radiant and convective heat.

A combination heater may fit a baby room because of its ability to heat up a room fast but as with infrared heaters, parents would be to be extra wary of the hot surfaces that is in front of the heating element.

Humidification and Air Purification Features

Good air quality is important to anyone but even more so for our children who may be prone to allergies or asthma. If the air quality is compromised by dust or allergens, our children would almost always be the first to experience any symptoms.  

Therefore, they may benefit from having air quality control appliances like humidifiers or air purifiers in their rooms.. Traditionally, these appliances would need to be purchased separately but now some heaters also include these applications as well. By combining these appliances into a single unit, users can save money, save space and save energy. 

Read our guide over here to find out why poor humidity levels in your home needs to be addressed immediately.

Safety Tips When Using Space Heaters At Home

Home fires can be prevented as long as we follow some easy fire prevention tips. We looked through the guidelines suggested by National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) and we have summarized them for your reference below.

  1. Keep your space heaters at least three feet away from anything that is flammable
  2. Use heaters only for their intended purposes i.e. they should not be used to dry wet laundry
  3. Get your heating system inspected by a qualified service personnel at least once a year
  4. Keep intake and output vents clean and clear of debris
  5. Install and maintain carbon monoxide alarms to avoid risk of carbon monoxide poisoning
  6. Purchase space heaters that have the certification label of a nationally recognized testing laboratory.
  7. Inspect heaters for cracked or broken plugs or loose connections before each use.  If frayed, worn or damaged, do not use the heater.
  8. Place space heaters on level, flat surfaces, but never place on cabinets, tables or other furniture.
  9. Keep space heaters out of high traffic areas and doorways where they may pose a tripping hazard.
  10. Plug portable space heaters directly into an outlet; do not use an extension cord.
  11. Do not use a space heater in wet or damp areas unless it is specifically designed for use in wet locations such as bathrooms.
  12. Never leave a space heater unattended.  Turn it off when you leave the room or go to sleep.
  13. Never use a space heater or any appliance with a damaged cord

Best Child Safe Heater for Toddler’s Playroom Product review

Honeywell HeatGenius Ceramic Heater

Best Versatile Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom

The Honeywell HeatGenius Ceramic Heater measures 10.2 x 5.9 x 17.15” and weighs 5.8 lbs. It runs on 1500W and comes with a 3 year limited warranty. This is a fan-forced ceramic heater that uses convection to heat up the room. It does this by having a fan blow air over the heated ceramic to warm the air which then goes into heating up the room.

For heating purposes, there are a total of six heat settings

  1. Floor Area (Low heat): To warm up the floor area in front of the heater
  2. Personal (Moderate Heat): To warm you up personally
  3. Room (Moderate-High Heat): To warm up a cool, drafty room
  4. Thermostat (Moderate-High Heat): Choose your desired temperature
  5. Heatpulse Timer: Auto off feature that gradually transits the room from warm to cool
  6. Quiet mode: Low heat and low fan speed to produce a gentle white noise

As you can see from the heat settings above, this heater covers all bases and aims to cater to everyone’s needs. In terms of noise control, the quiet mode allows for a lower fan speed that will only produce a gentle white noise that is quite conducive for sleep. However, it also means that there is less heating. Therefore, it may not be suitable for all situations. 

For those those value user-friendliness, this heater comes with a digital display and programmable thermostat so that users can adjust and read the thermostat easily without any guesswork.

For safety, this heater comes with the standard tip-over protection and overheating protection. The plastic housing and handle also ensures that the heater remains cool to touch even if your child goes too near to it. The gaps on the fan grille is also very narrow hence preventing wandering children from putting their fingers in. One limitation we find with regards to safety is that it can topple over when knocked due to it’s high center of gravity.

Pros

  • Multiple heating modes to suit different conditions
  • All rounded safety features
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Has a carrying handle
  • Digital display allows easy adjustments
  • HeatPhase timer allows gradual cooling of room

Cons

  • Quiet mode reduces heat output 
  • Can be tipped over

What their fans love: “When they say “Quiet Mode”, they aren’t kidding. It is quiet enough for our toddler to sleep with it running. And, safety… This is something that I was adamant about. The safety features on this heater are great, even for a 2-year-old.”


De’Longhi MicaThermic Panel Heater 1500 Watt

Best Wall Mounted Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom

The De’Longhi MicaThermic Panel Heater measures 27 x 10 x 22” and weighs 15 lbs. It runs on  1500W power and has a 1 year warranty. As the name suggests, it uses micathermic heating which is a combination of radiation and convection methods to deliver heat. Micathermic heating is extremely efficient. It can heat up a specific zone almost immediately much like an infrared heater but it can also heat up the whole room because of its convective effect. 

It is designed as a surface wall mounted heater but you can also attach legs to it to make it a portable heater. However, in a toddler’s room, we would definitely advise for it to be mounted on the wall. This ensures that it remains out of reach of any curious wandering child.

For safety, this heater comes with the standard tip-over and overheating protection. There is no moving fan blades on this heater so parents do not have to worry about the fan blades cutting their children’s finger. Although the surface of the heater has a safe grate that makes it safe to touch, we did find that it is still quite unpleasant and hot to touch. Therefore, we do not recommend for it to be used as a portable heater on the floor. If you do intend to use it as a portable heater, they do come with caster wheels but it is somewhat flimsy and tips over easily.

What we love about this heater is that it is virtually silent as there is no fan attached to it at all. It also has an adjustable thermostat and multiple heat settings that allow you to customize this heater to your heating needs.

Pros

  • Silent operation as there is no fan
  • Can be wall mounted or portable
  • Inbuilt thermostat has multiple settings to customize heating needs
  • Looks sleek and neat
  • Standard safety features with tip over and overheat protection

Cons

  • Has a tendency to overheat 
  • Caster wheels are somewhat flimsy and needs to be treated with care 
  • Only 1 year warranty

What their fans love: “Last night the temperature dropped to 39 degrees, I had the unit turned on low and this morning it was still 68 degrees in my house. Which is just a perfect temperature for me. I highly recommend the purchase of this unit!


Pelonis Vertical and Horizontal Ceramic Tower Heater

Best Tower Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom

The Pelonis Vertical and Horizontal Ceramic Tower Heater measures 22.5 x 7.25 x 7.25” and weighs 7.1 lbs. It runs on 1500W and comes with a 1 year warranty. This is a ceramic heater that uses convection to heat up the room. It does this by having a fan blow air over the heated ceramic to warm the air which then goes into heating up the room. The noise of the fan goes up to 52 dB which may be considered fairly noisy for some who are more sensitive to noise.

For heating purposes, there are three heat settings; High, Low and ECO mode. These different temperature settings allow you to achieve your desired heating with maximized efficiency. The built-in thermostat is accurate and allows adjustments between 40 to 95°F but the increments come in intervals of 5°F so you might not be able to set it at the exact precise temperature that you like.

What sets this heater apart is that it can be used vertically or horizontally depending on your needs. This is a rare feature that is not commonly seen. When used horizontally, there is no risk at all of it toppling over and landing on your child. There is no tip over protection as it can be used when it is tipped over. There are, however, overheating protection and the grille is made of a material that can dissipate heat rapidly. This prevents accidental burn injuries from touching the grille. The grille also prevents wandering pets and children from sticking their hands/paws into the heating element. Approved by ETL certification, you can be assured that this heater has met all the stringent safety requirements imposed by North American authorities.

Weighing just a little over 7 lbs, this heater is light and easily portable between rooms and between levels. It is designed with a carry handle on the back of the heater so you can maneuver it with great ease.

For convenience, this heater comes with a remote control that allows parents to make adjustments from the comfort of their couch while supervising their toddler..There is an oscillation feature which allows for 70 deg rotation and this helps to spread the heat evenly throughout the room.

Pros

  • Multiple heating modes to suit different conditions
  • Eco-mode for energy savings
  • All rounded safety features
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Has a carrying handle
  • Can be controlled remotely
  • Can be used vertically or horizontally
  • Oscillation improves heat distribution

Cons

  • Fan can be noisy at 52 dB
  • Thermostat adjustments in intervals of 5°F

What their fans love: “Here in the high desert, the outside temperature dropped to below freezing but my bedroom was a delightful 72 degrees thanks to this heater. The rest of the house was set to a nighttime 65 degrees, which is just fine for the rest of the family. My Arthritis likes it just a little warmer. So I can be very comfortable without having the rest of the house feeling it’s too hot. ”


Dyson Pure Hot + Cold HP04

Best Space Heater With Air Purifier For Toddler’s Playroom

The Dyson HP04 measures 9.8 x 8.1 x 30” and weighs 19 lbs. It runs on 1500W power and comes with a 2 year warranty. This is a space heater, air purifier and fan all rolled into one single appliance. Using the fan, this heater is able to project long-range purified heat and hence it is able to heat up the whole room evenly. Coupled with the 350 deg oscillation which is a lot more than other heaters on the market, this heater is able to heat up your baby room faster as well.

With regards to its air purification properties, it comes with an inbuilt sensor that can automatically detect airborne particles and gases. It then diagnoses what the pollutant is and reports them in real life on its LCD screen. After it makes the diagnosis and identifies pollutants in the air, it automatically turns on and starts capturing these pollutants. 

The air purification unit contains activated carbon filters and sealed HEPA filters. Having these 2 layers allow the device to capture 99.97% of fine particles as well as remove odor from the room. I absolutely love this feature! Let’s face it. Playrooms go through a lot. I am not afraid to admit that our baby room floor has seen sweat, pee, poo, vomitus, milk and much more. Having the air purification features ensures our room is always fresh and welcoming.

For safety, this heater stands out for having no exposed heating element, no fan blades and a cool exterior that will not burn your hands. However, it is quite tall and has a high center of gravity. Therefore, it is prone to being tipped over if accidentally knocked against. Moreover, it’s appearance is so striking that it always arouses the curiosity of our son.

Convenience wise, it is the best out of the heaters discussed here today. It can be connected to your mobile phone via Wi-Fi and gives you real time reports on the indoor air quality. Your mobile phone can also act as the remote control once it is connected to the heater via Wi-Fi. It is also Alexa enabled so you can use your voice to switch on or switch off the heater. This is a great feature because the remote control is pretty small and frequently get lost.

Pros

  • Contains air purifier 
  • Contains an inbuilt air sensor
  • Oscillation fan allows rapid and even heating of the room
  • Fan is quite silent
  • All season – Can heat and cool
  • Can be controlled via Wi-Fi or Alexa

Cons

  • High center of gravity and can be tipped over when knocked against
  • Remote control is small and get lost easily

What their fans love: “One of the best things I’ve purchased. Your lungs will thank you!”


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Is it safe to have a heater on all night?

A: The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends that a heater should never be left unattended so it should be turned off when going to sleep. However, we know that totally defeats the purpose of the heater then! Therefore, we advise that homeowners apply some safety precautions if intending to leave it turned on overnight.

  • The heater should be kept 3 ft. clear of any flammable objects
  • Do not hang any cloth over the heater
  • Ensure heater comes with overheating and tip-over protection
  • Plug portable space heaters directly into an outlet; do not use an extension cord

Q: Are space heaters safe in a baby room and nursery?

A: We recommend only having electric space heaters in a baby room. These are safe as long as you follow the tips given above. We would avoid having space heaters that run on fuels like propane, kerosene or natural gas as they can produce toxic by-products such as carbon monoxide that is harmful to health.

Q: What is the best temperature for baby room and nursery?

A: The baby’s room temperature should be kept between 69 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit (20.5 – 24 Celcius). This temperature range will ensure that your baby room is kept cool but also comfortable for your child.


Recap Of The Best Safest Space Heaters For Toddler’s Playroom

HeaterHeating
Method
Safety
Rating
PowerRemarks
VornadobabyFan-forced4.5/5900W (High)
450W (Low)
Child Lock
Honeywell HeatGeniusFan-forced4/51500W6 Heat Settings
DeLonghi MicathermicMicathermic3.75/51500W (High)
&50W (Low)
Wall mountable
Pelonis Tower HeaterFan-forced4.25/51500W (High)
900W (Low)
Can be used
horizontally
Dyson Pure Hot + Cold HP04Fan-forced4.25/51500WAir purifier
Comparison of the Best Space Heater For Toddler’s Playroom

Wrapping it up

Of the 5 products we reviewed, Vornadobaby was our favorite because we found the safety features to be the most comprehensive out of the many heaters we reviewed. Dyson HP04 was a close second but it was edged out because it is a little bulky and tend to tip over easily when knocked. However, it should be your first choice if your child is suffering from allergies or asthma.

Having a good space heater in your baby room will ensure your child is comfortable and get a good night’s sleep. This translate to more rest for you as well. Therefore, it pays to invest in a good one and we hope our comprehensive guide will help you to make the correct decision.

Click here to get one now!

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