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Greenhouse heater advice sought

Bill_and_BenBill_and_Ben Posts: 161
I've recently bought a few plants that need to be kept frost free (1C-5C being their minimum). They're in tubs so I plan to put them in my octagonal 6ft 6in by 6ft 6 in greenhouse (pictured). I have electricity in the greenhouse and am seeking advice on what sort of heater to buy for it. I'm not keen on a paraffin one as I don't think I'll like the smell and am also concerned it's a fire risk as the greenhouse is cedar wood and only feet from our house and next door's house.


My location: Histon, near Cambridge, UK


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  • GemmaJFGemmaJF Posts: 2,286
    edited July 2020
    I bought a strip heater for the potting shed. I didn't entirely trust the built in thermostat, so used one that fits in the plug, which the heater is then plugged into. Monitored the temperature all last winter, never went below 4 C

    My shed has less glass of course but if you buy one of the correct rating it should work. Mine was mounted under the bench the plants sat on, using the theory heat rises and the thermometer I used to monitor was above them.

    A search for tubular heaters should give a good range of products.


    Just be aware in the greenhouse, they usually say they cannot have water splashed on to them.


  • Bill_and_BenBill_and_Ben Posts: 161
    Thanks GemmaJF - I was looking at these tubular heaters but wasn't sure how many watts I'd need for my greenhouse as there's a lot of glass compared to a potting shed. Does your go on and off or is it on all the time? I'd also have to mount it about the staging or there's a chance it would get wet if I did water the plants ever. Although I think most plants don't want watering during this time.
    My location: Histon, near Cambridge, UK


  • GemmaJFGemmaJF Posts: 2,286
    Thanks GemmaJF - I was looking at these tubular heaters but wasn't sure how many watts I'd need for my greenhouse as there's a lot of glass compared to a potting shed. Does your go on and off or is it on all the time? I'd also have to mount it about the staging or there's a chance it would get wet if I did water the plants ever. Although I think most plants don't want watering during this time.
    I bought a plug in thermometer thingy. So it is set to turn on the heater if the temperature drops below a set precise temperature. 

    Probably easier to give a link to the products than try to describe:

    Plug in thermostat

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00IRCKH1A/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o08_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    Tube heater

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01N22APGM/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1


    I bought them through Amazon, later found Elixir have their own website, prices are often a little less buying direct.

  • HeliosHelios Posts: 220
    A lot of greenhouse heaters nowadays have an IXP4 rating which means that they will survive and be safe with a certain amount of water splashing.

  • Bill_and_BenBill_and_Ben Posts: 161
    Thank you Helios and GemmaJF. I didn't know you could get thermostat plugs - that is really handy to know.

    My location: Histon, near Cambridge, UK


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,592
    I use an electric fan heater in my greenhouse, also on a thermostatic plug. The air movement is beneficial in winter. I would never use a paraffin heater again, they cause too much condensation and rot on plants.
  • YviestevieYviestevie Posts: 7,063
    I use an electric fan heater too.  It has a frost free setting so only switches on if the temp falls below 5 degrees.  I've been using it for 5 years now and it's kept my plants in great condition over the winter.
    Hi from Kingswinford in the West Midlands
  • HeliosHelios Posts: 220
    My fan heater is only set to come on in winter, in the same way YvieStevie’s does. I have to say I’m very tempted by a thermostatic plug though. Didn’t know they existed till now!
  • Chris_NChris_N Posts: 29
    Are the fan heater types expensive to run?
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 11,321
    I agree that a fan type heater is probably the best option.

    If you're considering tubular heating I've bought from this co. before and pleased with the price/quality
    I use one in the spring in my g/house to help keep temps up a bit
    https://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Main_Index/Heating_Index/Tubular_Heaters/index.html

    I have 2 of these that I used to use in my little greenhouse.
    They often got splashed with water without any problems
    https://www.tlc-direct.co.uk/Products/DXMPH500.html

    They both have the correct IP rating for use in greenhouse 


    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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