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Why you Should use a Portable Construction Heater

It’s simple, when it’s cold on a job site, you need heat…

Working in the cold is not only displeasing, it can be a major safety issue for you and your team.

That’s where a construction heater comes in. Also known as salamanders and torpedo heaters, the main purpose of construction heaters is to allow laborers and crew to continue working in areas that don’t currently have a viable heat source.

Even in frigid temperatures, construction heaters are an excellent way to provide that much needed warmth. But their functionality goes beyond that.

Here are other practical uses you can reap from renting a construction heater:

Paint Drying

Paint will not dry properly in the cold.

Under 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius), fresh paint will end up drying super slow, slightly change color, and begin to crack.

And if you’re painting in the winter, waiting for warmer temperatures is not an option. Even shooting for a ‘warmer day’ isn’t the best idea either.

Renting a construction heater can change and transform the way you work and dry paint completely!

Paint dries best between 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit (21-27 degrees Celsius), so if you’re portable heater has adjustable heat settings, make sure the area rests between the two temperatures.

Extra Tip: Do not apply the heater directly to the paint! You don’t want to cook the paint off or ruin the layering/texture! Paint that dries in temperatures that are too hot are equally as bad.

Concrete Curing

Just like paint, concrete does not set nor cure well in the super cold.

If you’re curing concrete in cold temperatures it’s best to heat up the job site to prevent the concrete from freezing and cracking. Heating up the concrete can also help speed up the curing process.

Fresh concrete that freezes in the first 24 hours can lose up to 50% of it’s strength! That can be a liability, especially if you’re using concrete for foundation.

At the same time, concrete does not cure well in prolonged hot temperatures and will actually weaken the durability and strength of the concrete.

It’s actually best to cure concrete around 55 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit for the best long term results. 

Use a heater and give yourself the proper temperature to give you the best results for concrete curing!

What Models and Rental Prices do We Offer?

Kerosene 165BTU

  • Daily: $70

  • Weekly: $210

  • Monthly: $420

Propane 160BTU

  • Daily: $60

  • Weekly: $240

  • Monthly: $740

Indirect Fire CP1000

  • Daily: $195

  • Weekly: $600

  • Monthly: $1,800

The Different Types of Portable Heaters

There are three main types of portable heaters that individuals use for heating spaces/areas.

The first is a direct fired heater. These heaters create an actual flame in order to generate heat. Powered by kerosene or propane, these heat sources are cheap and easy to transport. One negative is the direct flame which can cause fires if not kept under attention. Another issue is carbon monoxide buildup. Even with proper ventilation, these heater are still dangerous. Use these kinds of heaters outdoors!

Indirect fired heaters are similar to direct fire heaters except the flame is contained and the heat is exchanged into an air stream. Essentially, these indirect fire heaters have a chimney, which helps prevent carbon monoxide buildup and allows indoor usability. Indirect fire heaters are more expensive to operate but have less overall risks.

There are also electric heaters. You often see these heaters in small stores and bedrooms. They’re best used for heating up small areas, rather than an entire buildings. Plug the heater into any electrical source and you’re ready to go! The only issue is if you don’t have an electrical outlet or power source, you’re out of luck.

Portable Heater Safety Tips


Portable heaters and heating equipment are the second leading cause of fires in the United States, right behind cooking

Whenever you have heat, you have potential for fire. Here are the top safety tips you should follow when setting up and using a portable construction heater:

Do Not Use Direct Fire Heaters Indoors

Using any equipment that emits gas indoors will quickly create a carbon monoxide buildup. Carbon monoxide is odorless, tasteless, and you can’t see it.

Carbon monoxide will endanger everyone in the immediate area and can kill within minutes. Even with proper ventilation, it is not recommended to use a direct fire heater indoors.

If you do need to use a heater indoors, make sure it’s an electric one.

Follow and Comply With Regulations

Each town, city, and state will have different laws and regulations regarding using heaters.

Do your research and read up on the regulations you must follow. OSHA will also have their own set of rules to help protect both employees and employers.

Do Not Walk Directly in Front of Heater

Heaters are meant to produce heat for large areas.

Walking or standing directly in front of a powerful heater can lead to serious and painful burns.

Keep your distance and mark off the area with warning signs if need be.

Avoid Combustible Materials

When placing the heater down for operation, avoid placing it near any combustible materials or objects.

That means avoiding rugs, wood, clothing, and flammable liquids.

Not following these directions can lead to building fires and risk the lives of nearby residents.

Extra Tip: DO NOT dry wet clothes on or near a portable heater. Wet clothes You’re just asking to start a fire.

Use a Stable Surface

A direct flame heater that tips over is a disaster and can easily set fire to nearby objects.

Avoid this completely and place your heater on a flat and stable surface.

Also be sure to never place a heater on a table or elevated surface to avoid falls and spills.

Shut Off/ Unplug if Not in Use

Avoid leaving your heater supervised. An unsupervised heater is an accident waiting to happen.

If you’re not using your heater, it’s your best bet to just shut it off.

Remember, 100% of accidents are preventable.

Make Sure the Heater Stays Dry

A wet heater is dangerous due to the risk of electric shock.

Also be sure to stay away if you are wet. Even if the heater is dry, you risk electrocuting yourself by touching it and becoming a conductor of electricity.

Do Not Cover the Cord

Never cover the heaters electrical cord with a rug, carpet, or other material.

You risk damaging the cord and causing any material over it to burn.

Find a Safe Space

This goes for any heater, whether it’s industrial or an at-home heater.

Placing the heater in the safest possible space will ensure the safety of your home and property around you.

Avoid placing the heater in an area with heavy foot traffic or where children/pets play.

Most safety experts recommend a 3 foot perimeter of no objects/individuals around the heater to ensure the safest possible operation.

Smoke Detectors

Apart from the heater itself, making sure you have working smoke detectors on the jobsite or in your home is essential for your safety.

If your heater does start a fire or carbon monoxide build up, having a backup smoke detector to alert you, workers, and family is the difference between life and death.