How Long Does a Propane Tank Last On a Patio Heater?

propane patio heaters

Everyone likes to spend time outside and being able to extend your patio, deck, and garden time seems like a no brainer.  The deck becomes an uncomfortable space to spend time due to falling temperatures.  Therefore, to get the most out of your outdoor space, you think…”let’s get a patio heater.

So, just how long does a propane tank last on a patio heater?

The average outdoor heater is about 41,000 BTUs. The common 20lb propane tank holds on average 432,000 BTUs. 41,000 goes into 432,000 10.53 times, which means you will get approximately 10.5 hours of heat time on a 20lb propane tank.

There are various propane tank sizes and how long the propane tank lasts depends on the size of the tank, and how many BTUs your heater is.  Also, you lose a little bit of propane when lighting and at the end of the tanks life when there may not be enough pressure left to flow and stay lit.

Check out this Awesome Propane Patio Heater Calculator we found at…We think you’ll like it like we did!

So, based on that what are some other advantages to having a propane patio, deck or garden heater that are heated with propane?

Benefits of Using Propane Tanks to Fuel Your Patio Heater

how long do propane patio heater last

Using propane to power the patio heater is easy to use, requires less maintenance, and burns more environmentally friendly. The following are some of the benefits of using a propane-powered patio heater.

It is environmentally friendly.

Burning liquid propane is clean. The emission from burning propane does not cause air pollution or any harm to the environment. This feature makes the propane-powered heater the best option for use in your outdoor spaces.

It is convenient

Propane-powered patio heaters are convenient. A standard 20-lb propane tank can continuously run up to 10 hours. Therefore you do not have to worry about ending your evening relaxing time outside early. If it runs out, propane is available in nearly every grocery store, so there is most likely an exchange outlet near you.

Variety of design

There are a variety of propane heater design options to fit the needs of your patio. The propane heater varies in size and model. Some are portable while others are mounted. Some are big and others small in size. Buy the model that best suits the need of your outdoor space.

Effective heating

Propane patio heaters never fail to provide adequate warmth. It offers a steady and constant stream of heat. It heats the surrounding air that eventually circulates evenly. With these units, you can easily control the amount of heat on the heater control panel. Patio heater powered by propane heats faster than electric ones.

Low maintenance

Propane heaters are low to maintain. Once you connect the patio heater to the propane source, it will continuously deliver heat on your space. Unlike using fire that will need frequent additional wood and causes messes of soot and ashes that will need to clean up, propane heater runs without need of attention.


The propane patio heater is flexible, as you can quickly move them from one place to another without any difficulties.

Recommended Propane Patio Heaters on the Market

Factor to Consider When Buying a Propane Patio Heater

Patio heaters powered by propane are excellent outdoor accessories that add warmth and comfort in your outdoor spaces. Because there are many outdoor propane heaters available, it is essential to know what to look out for and consider when selecting the propane patio heater that will best suit your needs. The following are the factors to consider.

propane patio heaters

Size power and heating diameter

These are the three vital features to consider when choosing the ideal propane patio heater. It is crucial to consider the patio heater physical size, the power measurable in BTUs, and the unit’s heat. Different varieties have varying heating diameters depending on the style of the heater and its brand. Make sure you choose a heater ideal in size and power to cover the area you require to heat.

>>Propane Fueled Patio Heater with Large Power

Mounting type

These patio heaters are available in varying mounting types. They can be wall-mounted, freestanding, or tabletop. Wall-mounted is less portable while freestanding and tabletop are portable. The tabletop stands approximately four feet high while freestanding ranges 7-9 feet tall. Choose the propane patio heater with the mounting type that will best suit your heating needs.

>>Wall Mounted Propane Patio Heater

Safety features

Safety features in a propane patio heater is a must look. Many patio heaters have inbuilt safety features. The anti-tip element is the most popular. This feature makes the heater shut off if it tips exceeding a certain angle automatically. Choose a unit with such features as it will guarantee you and your loved ones’ safety when enjoying the evening outdoors.

>>Patio Heater with Propane Tank with Safety System

Fuel efficiency

When choosing the ideal propane patio heater, you should check the heater’s annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) rating. Choose a unit with a higher AFUE rating as it will be an indication that the heater is more energy-efficient and will lower your bills.

>>High Efficient Propane Powered Patio Heater For Outdoor Use

Safety Tips to Observe When Using a Propane Patio Heater

Below are some of the safety tips you can follow when using a propane patio heater:

  • Before moving a patio heater, ensure you turn it off.
  • Never use a propane heater indoors. These heaters are meant for outdoor use only as they emit carbon monoxide that can cause suffocation.
  • Before turning on your heater, always double-check the propane tank connection to ensure the gas isn’t leaking.
  • Always keep the propane patio heaters away from flammable materials.
  • Always maintain a safe distance between the heater and the wall.
  • Add adequate weight at the base of the heater to ensure it stay firm.

How Long Does a Propane Tank Last on a Patio Heater?

There are various propane tank sizes, and the duration the propane tank lasts on a patio heater depends on the gas tank sizes. Small tanks last for fewer hours and need frequent replacement compared to large tanks. Generally, a standard 20lb propane tank lasts for at least 10 hours. The patio heater’s design, the BTUs, and the outdoor temperature influence the duration’s propane tank last.


Propane patio heaters are excellent outdoor accessories that provide warm ambiance and add a unique decorative element in your outdoor area. There are many benefits to using patio heaters powered by propane, including convenience and flexibility. Many factors determine how long the propane tank lasts on a patio heater. The tank’s size, the BTU, and the design of the heater and the outdoor temperatures are some of the factors that determine how long the tank lasts.


David: Penn State-educated Mechanical Engineer and Business-savvy Fluid Dynamics Specialist. Balances family plumbing business support with a thriving engineering career at a top, undisclosed company. (they want it that way) I help Will with plumbing and HVAC needs on his Real Estate.

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