How should I heat that tent? Is heating It with a heater okay? Are there any safe devices designed for electric heating?

Is it safe to heat a tent 24 hours? Do you recommend heating while sleep, or should I turn off before sleep. Are there any safe devices provides 24 hours heat?

Can I heat with this types of stuff or not.

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  • 2
    Why to heat a tent? You have sleeling bags to stay warm. Electricity may only be suitable for car camping...
    – Wills
    Commented Feb 18, 2017 at 6:36
  • 2
    Don't use fire in a tent..... Commented Feb 18, 2017 at 13:04
  • 3
    A small enclosed tent is not really designed for a heater. How big is the tent?
    – paparazzo
    Commented Feb 18, 2017 at 14:09
  • 1
    @ab2 well snowy here. but i guess ill go with wearing some thick winter cloth. i decided not to use a heated tent.
    – hfc
    Commented Feb 18, 2017 at 15:02
  • 2
    @Paparazzi 100 cm height, 150 cm x 200 cm floor. but i discarded heating idea. im going to buy thicker clothes instead.
    – hfc
    Commented Feb 18, 2017 at 15:04

4 Answers 4


I do not believe space heaters would be a good idea in a tent. There is not a large volume of air mass to heat in a tent and if you are asleep in a tent, how can you maintain that your feet (for example) would not get too close to the heater for safety reasons and start a fire.

Besides sleeping bags do quite well to keep people warm, while camping in a tent.

Never have a fire inside your tent as that is simply asking for something to go terribly wrong.


If you have electric. I would advise a chicken coup heater. If knocked over they are made to not start fires. Made for more rugged outdoor use. Found in farm supplies.


Frame challenge:

You should probably not be heating your tent at all.

Instead I suggest getting a better sleeping bag / thermal mat / clothes to sleep in.

--> In combination with a decent tent they will provide you all the warmth you need to sleep comfy in most any circumstances, especially the ones where you have a power outlet nearby.

Side remark: directly heating with electricity is a fairly expensive and very very inefficient/un-ecological idea to begin with. That holds doubly so in a tent which provides virtually no insulation.


TLDR: Use an electric blanket instead. Make sure it is on an AFCI and GFCI breaker or outlet.

I take it you don't pay the electric bill.

Tents just can't hold heat, and so you'll be wasting heat energy at an unbelievable rate. A 1500W heater costs about 20 cents an hour to run. And it isn't that much heat, especially if it's cold enough to be snowy. You will be disappointed.

Fire in a tent is suicide. At least it's possible to choose an electric heater which is safe, though the one you pictured isn't it. Inevitably in the confined space of a tent, a heater will get kicked, covered with fabric. etc. Those cheapie heater-fans are death traps in that situation, because they run very hot internal temperatures - if cloth is draped over them and their flow blocked, they can raise to fire-starting temperatures. They supposedly have safety systems, but these things are notoriously cheap, and usually fail when that safety system fails "safe"... so you're betting your life that it won't fail in the other direction.

They make heaters with a great deal of surface area that run at a much lower temperature. Electric blankets are the first thing that comes to mind. Don't heat the room, heat you. However an electric blanket needs AFCI protection, which is a type of circuit breaker or sometimes receptacle (not to be confused with GFCI/RCD). AFCIs are designed to catch short circuits in electric blankets that start fires. If you want a heater, safer heater choices are oil-filled "radiator" heaters, or chicken coop heaters as observed in another answer.

AFCI is also really good at protecting wiring in the walls (e.g. an unreliable American wiring style called the "backstab"), so most AFCI implementations are at the circuit breaker.

Any mains electric (100-240V) going to a tent needs to be GFCI-protected (Europe: RCD) since you will be mixing electricity and water in close quarters. The European "whole house" 30 milliamp RCDs are inadequate for life safety, and you want another RCD that has a 6-8 milliamp trip. GFCI/RCD can either be at the breaker, at the receptacle, or anywhere in between, including other receptacles.

  • New related question What percentage of campground outlets are GFCI or RCD protected? Commented Aug 5, 2019 at 17:01
  • Carrying the generator is really going to limit the range of this answer... Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 10:23
  • @TobySpeight It is a precondition of the question that mains electricity is available, since he's already using cheap 1500W heater-fans. I write answers in the context of questions. If I'm doing that wrong, maybe, but pointing that out in each answer feels like putting disclaimers on things, and I roil at the cultural need to put disclaimers on everything. Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 16:29
  • Saying oil filled radiators are safer is very controversial. I don't think they are because the same electricity and heat is flowing through them as an electric fan/convection heater, and they can also catch fire for very similar reasons - eg being covered, damp, etc. In addition to that, they're filled with oil, which is flammable. At least a small electrically-started fire can be relatively easy to smother whereas once that oil catches it'd be very difficult to put out. Commented Sep 23, 2022 at 22:21

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