Difference Between Salamander and Infrared Heaters – How They Work

Electric Heaters

18 Feb
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When it comes to portable heating, the heater you choose can make a world of difference. Whether you’re on a construction site, your building’s heat system went down, or you just want a quick and easy way to warm up, you need to know what will work best.

At Preferred Climate Solutions, two of our top options are salamander and infrared heaters. Today we want to illustrate the difference between the two so that you can understand which one is ideal for your particular situation.

Salamander Heater – How it Works

First of all, don’t let the name fool you – this kind of heater is standard. The name comes from the Spanish word for a wood-fired stove, which is Salamandra. According to legend, salamanders were thought of as fireproof, since they would often emerge from logs that were tossed onto a fresh fire. While that claim may be a bit dubious, the name stuck.

So, how does this model work? Well, you can either have a fuel-operated or electric model. At Preferred Climate Solutions, we offer electric salamander heaters because they are safer and easier to manage. However, either option works similarly.

Salamander heaters use a heating element, such as an electric coil or an open flame. A fan blows cold air over the component, heating it. Another name for this model is a “torpedo furnace,” since it shoots hot air out like a torpedo.

Advantages of a Salamander Heater

Since we only rent electric versions of this heater, we won’t discuss the pros and cons of using a fuel-operated model. Here are the top reasons why you would want a salamander heater at your worksite or building.

  • Fast and Efficient Heating – you don’t need to wait around to feel the heat from this machine. Once the coil is hot, you can get warm air immediately. Also, because it blows that hot air throughout the area, the ambient temperature will rise quickly as well.

  • Easy Setup and Maintenance – our heaters are just “plug and play.” As long as you have a reliable power source, you don’t have to worry about any kind of complicated setup. Also, the elements included in a salamander heater are less likely to malfunction or break down.

  • Wide Variety of Sizes – whether you need to heat a small space or a warehouse, our heaters are up to the challenge. We can either place multiple units strategically to maximize warmth, or we can bring a larger model to suit your needs.

Drawbacks of a Salamander Heater

Although this heater is ideal for many situations, it isn’t right for all purposes. Here are some considerations you need to make before ordering one from us.

  • Ventilation – The air can get hot really fast. If you don’t have a way of ventilating your space, it can get uncomfortable quickly. Fortunately, since our models are electric, you don’t have to worry about carbon monoxide or other fumes making the air toxic.

  • Fire Hazard – another downside of having such a hot surface is that it can burn things easily. You need to keep people and animals away from the heater at all times, as well as any flammable materials. Also, you have to wait for the heater to cool down before moving it or touching it.

When to Use a Salamander Heater

Fortunately, these heaters can work in virtually any situation. Some examples may include:

  • Office Space – if your building doesn’t have central heating, a salamander heater can work wonders, provided that it’s in a safe place.

  • Outdoor Events – putting a larger heater in a tent can keep it toasty, even if the weather is chilly.

  • Drying – flooding and other water damage can be minimized with a salamander heater.

Infrared Heater – How it Works

Salamander heaters use something called convection heating to bring up the ambient temperature of a room. An element gets hot, and a fan blows that heat around the space. Infrared heaters, however, work similarly to the sun. This means that they are much more precise and don’t have the same problems as a salamander heater.

Instead of a hot coil or open flame, infrared models use ceramic plates that focus on infrared waves. Usually, they use natural gas or propane to heat the plates, although electric models are available.

Because the heat is much more targeted, you don’t get the same ambient effect as a salamander heater. You have to be standing in front of the machine to feel warm. Other objects in front of the heater can also absorb the heat, so you have to be careful about what you place in its path.

Advantages of Infrared Heaters

Realistically, you don’t want to use one of these units to heat a large area since they don’t work that way. However, there are some tangible benefits to having an infrared heater in your office or worksite.

  • Energy Efficient Output – compared to other heaters, you can save a lot of money with an infrared model. They are 99-percent efficient, mainly because they don’t use a fan to blow the air around.

  • Precise Heating Control – if you want a particular space to stay warm without heating the rest of the area, this is the best option. For example, by an entryway so that people coming in and out of the cold can warm-up before moving on.

  • Quiet Operation – since there is no fan running, you can operate an infrared heater without disrupting your work.

Drawbacks of Infrared Heaters

Yes, there are benefits, but you want to consider these possible downsides before renting a heater from us. 

  • Not Suitable for Large Spaces – although they are energy efficient, the heat is too targeted to work for any big areas.

  • Ventilation Required – since these heaters use natural gas or propane, you need to run a vent outside. Not all spaces are capable of this, so be sure to check beforehand.

  • Fast Cool Down – this feature can be a benefit and a drawback. The advantage is that the plates aren’t a fire hazard when the heater shuts off. The disadvantage is that the heat will dissipate almost immediately.

Call Preferred Climate Solutions Today

No matter what your particular needs are, we have the heater for you. Contact us to see size and price options. We also provide emergency delivery if you need heat immediately.

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