Top Facts about Oil Filled Radiators

Oil heater features

When the weather starts to get nippy, many people ask themselves what’s the most effective home heater on the market. An oil-filled radiator is certainly one of the best solutions out there, but, for how long does it last? Moreover, are oil heaters safe for your family, and are they affordable? We go over everything and more in the guide below.

What’s an Oil Heater?

An oil-filled heater or oil radiator is a convection heater commonly used in various households for heating one or multiple rooms at a time. Generally speaking, oil heaters are made of 3 key elements:

  • The metal columns with inside cavities that will transfer the heat
  • The heating element that heats the oil and then transfers the heat through convection.
  • And of course, the oil, that is going through the heating element and the metal columns to generate the heat.

It is important to note that the heating element is not warm enough to burn the oil. In other words, electricity is the main heating power here, as the oil is only used as a heat reservoir to help the convection process.

What are the Pros and Cons of an Oil-Filled Radiator?

Now that we know what’s an oil heater, what the reasons to buy one? Here’s a list of the Pros and Cons of buying an oil-filled heater for your home:


  • It’s silent! That’s right, as opposed to their electric heater counterpart, oil heaters are completely silent, making them a perfect fit for your bedroom at night.
  • Pretty energy efficient! Oil heaters use oil as a heat reservoir so once they are heated, they will keep recycling that same heat energy, which can save you a lot of money compared to an electric heater.
  • It’s safe! Oil-filled radiators are safe to use around the house and in the kids’ bedroom. As the metal plates are not hot to a point where it’s dangerous for your skin, these oil radiators are perfectly safe around kids and animals. On the other hand, electric heaters have a huge heat output on their surface, which is not suited for a family house.


  • It can be expensive! Actually, nowadays you can find many cheap models on Amazon and whatnot, but those rarely deliver good results in the long run. That is why we strongly suggest putting in the money in a better quality model for best results. An oil-filled radiator will last for many years to come, so it’s a good investment.
  • It takes some time to heat up! The oil heating process takes a few minutes before you can start feeling comfy in your room. That being said, it’s nothing dramatic, as it should take normally between 15 and 30 minutes for your room’s temperature to get significantly warmer.
  • It’s pretty bulky! And this is inevitable since oil heaters use metal plates for the convection process. On some models, these plates can look quite big in a small room, so make sure you have enough space for an oil heater before purchasing one.

What’s the price of a good Oil Heater?

If you were wondering how much an oil heater will cost you, know that there are many affordable options on the market that cost between $80 and $150. Those can be, however, poorly efficient and won’t heat your room properly.

Then, there are better models (which we recommend) that will generally cost between $150 and $300. That said, please note that the higher the heating capacity (in watts), the higher your electricity bill will be. So that’s also something you should take into consideration before purchasing an oil filled radiator.

Finally, from there the price can go pretty high, some top-quality models will cost well over $500. But you know what they say, you get what you pay for!

How much electricity does my Oil Heater take on average?

Most of your typical oil radiators consume around 1500w. Of course, the electricity usage will depend on how much you use your oil heating device on a daily or weekly basis, but in general, know that oil heaters are energy-efficient machines. However, there are some models that use 2000w or more, so just make sure to verify this kind of information before clicking the Buy button.

Are Oil Radiators safe to use?

That’s a common misconception that a lot of people may have, since there is oil involved in the heating process. But as we explained earlier in this guide, the oil is used indirectly to heat the metal plates that will dissipate the heat in the room. To put it simply, the oil is not warm enough to burn, and the metal plates can surprise you if you touch them, but they won’t burn your skin. So yes, oil-filled radiators are safe to use, and to add an extra layer of security, many models have an overheat protection feature that prevents any overheating problems.

For how long will my Oil Heater last?

For your standard oil heater, if we assume that you are using it normally through the years, the latter should last for 15-20 years, give or take. That is why an oil heater is a good investment. Yes, it might be costly on the purchase day, but once you have one, it will last you for many years to come.

What are the best oil heater models to buy?

If you need a few ideas to buy a new portable oil heater, here are a few suggestions that have very good reviews on Amazon:

  • DeLonghi Oil-Filled Radiator
    Has a Safety Feature, 3 heat settings, and is designed to be energy-saving.
  • Pelonis 1500w Portabe Oil Filled Radiator
    Has a 24-hour programmable timer, comes with remote control, and also offers a clear digital thermostat.
  • Honeywell HZ-789 EnergySmart Electric Oil Filled Radiator
    A respectable manufacturer, the Honeywell HZ-789 oil heater offers overheat protection and features the EnergySmart technology, which is good for saving money on the electricity bill.


All in all, oil-filled heaters are perfect if you want to safely warm your home without using too much electricity. Moreover, they last for a long time, so you won’t need to worry about replacing your machine in the coming years.

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