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Friday, October 7, 2022
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Can You Put a Heater in a Tent?

Photo by Little Crush Film Co.via iStock

Winter camping sounds intriguing, and most people love to go fishing when the mercury starts to drop. But it’s all fun until the cold gets inside, and instead of enjoying it, you keep shivering out there.

Campers use different techniques and equipment when Overlanding or boondocking to keep the cold at bay. One of the most popular and effective ways of keeping warm on a cold rainy night inside a tent is to use a heater. No matter how many blankets you use or hot beverages you consume, the pinching cold in the woods is going to wake you up at night.

Although easy and effective, there are certain hazards associated with using a heater in a tent that could potentially turn fatal. One could use different types of heaters to keep warm, and a few of these options are relatively safer.

Which heater type is best for you, and can you put a heater in a tent for the night? Let’s answer these questions in detail to have you better prepared for the next winter outing.

Table of Contents

Benefits of Having a Camping Heater in a Tent

Three happy friends camping

Photo by StefaNikolic via iStock

There are a few upsides to having a reliable heating source inside your tent when it’s freezing cold outside, and for obvious reasons, you need to have a heater in a tent. Below, I’ve listed some of the benefits of having a camping heater in a tent.

Staying Warm and Cozy

What’s the point of going on a camping trip when you’re gonna spend all your night shivering and looking for a quilt? No matter how big or small your tent is, you ought to have a nice time with your friends, and that’s not possible without a reliable heating source. It is crucial that you go for the safest option and set it up in a way that doesn’t endanger your health. The portable diesel heater by Planar Heaters shown below is one of the best and safest options that you should consider.

diesel heaters for overlanding

Preventing Hypothermia

If the temperature drops too much, it could even become fatal if you’re not properly covered. Hypothermia is a condition where your body fails to cope with the low temperatures and is potentially fatal. To prevent this from happening to you, get all the heat you can from a safe heater inside your tent.

Keeping Your Drinks from Freezing

Imagine waking up to frozen water bottles and having nothing to consume, prepare your coffee or cook your meals. With the heater in a tent, your drinks will remain warm and consumable in the morning.

Keeping Your Pets Warm

If you’re planning to take your furry friends along on the winter trip, you must also take care of them. Taking your dogs along has become a common trend among campers; if it’s winter, that good boy will struggle for warmth. To prevent them from freezing, it is important that you have a heater in your tent.

Preserving Batteries

Batteries are known to deplete quickly in very low or very high temperatures. If you’ve spent all your day recharging your batteries via solar panels, they won’t last until morning if the storage temperature isn’t maintained. So, to keep your power backup intact and running, set up a heater in a tent and keep the batteries with you for the night.

Are Gas Heaters Dangerous?

Snowy Winter camping with trailer

Photo by TT via iStock

Gas heaters use gasoline and can run nonstop for hours. This makes them a popular choice among campers, but there are a few downsides to it. Being heavy and requiring huge fuel cans aside, these heaters can be dangerous or even potentially fatal.

If you’re wondering if gas heaters are dangerous, then your concern is totally justified. These heaters generate toxic fumes, especially carbon monoxide and other gasses, which are unsafe for human consumption and, if inhaled in large amounts, can even cause death. 

These are even more dangerous in a tent where there is no ventilation system and a small enclosed chamber. It is important that gas heaters are turned off before taking a nap or sleeping at night.

Are Electric Heaters Dangerous?

Unlike gas heaters, electric heaters do not produce carbon monoxide or other toxic gasses, but you should be concerned since they can still easily kill you. You can rightly be worried.

Electric heaters can generate too much heat and cause a fire. This is of particular concern in a small space like a tent, because there are so many combustible materials close by. If you’re planning to put an electric heater in a tent, be mindful about running it all night as it can be very dangerous.

What Makes a Portable Diesel Air Heater Safer Than Other Options?

Diesel Heater next to an SUV in the snow

Modern portable diesel heaters (like the one I have by Planar Heaters), are a safe alternative to conventional gas and electric heaters. Here’s how;

  • These heaters are placed outside and away from the tent (shown above), so there’s no risk of fire as you find with electric heaters.
  • Since the heater is placed away from the tent and the heat is supplied to the tent via a hose, the possibility of toxic gas buildup is far less.
  • The noise and pollution are also kept at bay, as this heater comes with a silencer and an exhaust.
  • You can fully control the power settings via remote, so you don’t even need to exit your tent to adjust the settings.

wired remote for portable heater

I’ve used my Planar Heaters portable diesel heater in all sorts of locations and weather conditions, and it’s performed like a champ. The instant, dry heat is a Godsend on a cold winter day. Even during summer camping trips when the temperature isn’t cold, but cool at night, this heater is a huge bonus to keep the chill at bay.

planar diesel heater review

And since this heater is so portable, it’s easy to set up. You can have that nice, dry heat in your tent in a matter of a few minutes!

Nothing makes a camping trip more miserable than the cold. But with a portable diesel heater from Planar Heaters, you don’t have to worry about chilly weather. Instead, you can focus on being toasty warm in your tent!

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