Electricity Saving Tips For Homes And Offices

Room Heater in India: heating as expensive as cooling

By on April 22, 2016

Most places in North India experience extreme climates during summers and winters. Summers are extremely hot and winters are extreme cold. This makes it important to have both air conditioners as well as room heaters. It’s a common knowledge that air conditioners consume a lot of electricity and cause increase in electricity bills. But in northern India electricity bills due to heating in winters can be as high as that for cooling and in fact can be more. A recent trip to New Delhi provided us some opportunities to measure room heaters for power consumption that gave us the idea to write this article.

Room Heaters and their wattage

An analysis of room heaters suggests that wattage of room heaters vary from 400 W to 2000 W (or 2 kW). If the wattage is less, it will emit less heat, if the wattage is more, it will emit more heat. It is important to note that if a 400 W heater runs for 1 hour it will consume 0.4 units whereas a 2000 W heater will consume 2 units if it runs for 1 hour. So more the heat, more the wattage and thus more the units consumed.

Impact of wattage

The heat moves in the room through thermal conduction, which in turn depends on the temperature gradient in the room. If a 400 W room heater is used, the heat from it will not spread wide and thus one has to be close to the heater to feel the warmth. It will be good for a smaller room. A 2 kW system instead will be far more effective in heating a bigger room, as it will emit more heat.

Benefits of a room heater with thermostat

As we have discussed in a previous article on ideal air conditioning temperature, ideal temperature for thermal comfort of humans is 25 degrees. But if we leave a heater on for longer duration, the temperature might increase beyond that. This not only makes the environment un-comfortable but also increases electricity consumption. A room heater with thermostat with temperature setting will cut off power consumption when the desired temperature is reached.

We measured a room heater without thermostat by keeping it on for 8 hours; it consumed 10 units and was consuming electricity at a constant rate of 1.3 kW (or 1300 W). 10 units at average rate of electricity in the country of Rs 5 are about Rs 50 per day or Rs 1500 per month. (You can check per unit rate applicable to you using our calculator: Online Electricity Bill Calculator – For all states in India). Had we used a room heater with thermostat, electricity consumption would have been lower because the room was quite hot after 8 hours.

A room heater with fan

A fan will help heat reach out to a larger space, as it will increase airflow and heat flow. If the room heater does not have thermostat but has a fan, then it is better to keep room heater at lower temperature. Fan will make sure that hot air reaches across the room and lower temperature will make sure that the power consumption is less.

A room heater with variable wattage knob

Many room heaters have a variable wattage knob using which wattage can be adjusted. As we discussed earlier, higher the wattage, more will be the heat from the heater and larger the reach of the same. So if knob is kept at higher number the room will heat faster and will heat more, but the electricity consumption will also be more as compared to lower knob setting. So to save electricity it is better to keep room heater at as low settings as possible. Keeping it close to the people sleeping can help reducing the wattage (just make sure that the distance is safe and no one gets burnt).

For room heaters it is always better to buy one with thermostat as it keeps temperature in control and reduces excess electricity consumption. It also makes sure that the environment is comfortable for humans to sleep. Also it is important to keep the right insulation in the room to keep the electricity bills for heating in control.



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I am living in Bangalore wanted to buy room heaters for 150 Sft room for my age-old parents .kindly suggest me best & durable ones, types available so that I can select from them

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

HI yatheesh,

Sorry, we currently do not have much research on brands and models of room heaters to make a recommendation.


I have to buy a room heater. Should I go for normal fan heater or oilfilled room heater.

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

Better to go for oil filled room heater.


Hello Abhishek,
I want to know over all Market size of Room heater, Which brand having how much market share in indian market.
Can You provide me this data

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

Hi Shubham,

We do not have this data yet.


Sir I want to check the voltage and current volts and power consumption of my 3 air conditioner 2 are split ac & one is windows ac please suggest any way to track I have searched the internet for clamp meter and multimeter but I don't know which one is the right buy for me please suggest

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

What are the tonnages of the ACs? Also if you can provide the BEE star ratings as well then that would also help.

You may not need a clamp meter and multimeter. You can just go in the market, buy a digital energy meter, something like this:

We at Bijli Bachao got this one fabricated just to measure ACs. The digital energy meter was not very expensive. And we asked an electrician to fit it with a socket and plug. The plug goes into the regular 15Amp socket and the AC plug goes in the socket of this meter. So basically this meter sits in between the AC and the main line and measures the voltage, current, power consumption, etc.


Hello Abhishek
I wish to buy a oil filled room heater for my bed room( 14 feet by 16 feet, 1st floor, has no story above,).
a) Which brand should i go for
b) 9fin / 11fin / 13 fin model
Thx in advance

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

Hi Punit,

Current we do not have data and we have not done any analysis on oil filled heaters to make a recommendation to you.


I had posted a query reg. lights, I have not recd. any answer reg. tubelights not working only after 7. p.m. How do I check for the answer


Hi Abhishek, can you please provide hot and cold AC best models with respect to low power consumption.


i want to buy a room heater that can run on inverter or ups.
my mother lives in a village in bihar where electricity is not regular.n she cnt bear much cold.
so plz suggest an inverter n heater both, in this situation.


Hi Abhishek....I wanna buy couple of room heaters...pls suggest which one to buy....among.oil filled ,quartz,convection,ptc,halogen...one of them I am planning to buy an oil filled...second one I coudnt decide..getting confused..which kind of heater is more reliable,durable and health friendly...pls suggest..I want 2 heaters...if u provide two model names of ur choice ...that would be great...thanks.

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

You can go for a convection heater with a fan. They can heat up the whole room and also do it fast.


any specific brand or model you could choose for me....thanks.

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

Hi Avinash,

We currently do not have much data on room heaters to give you a comparison of models.


Your article about water heater has very good information to decide on which is the best. Could you suggest the same to pick a good room heater. ?

Abhishek Jain (Mod)

Hi Pavan,

We currently do not have much data to analyze room heaters so I would not be able to suggest you one. However if you ever go for a new air conditioner then think about going for a hot and cold one because heating from a hot and cold AC is at least 3 times more efficient than heating from a room heater.


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