Are Infrared Heaters Harmful to Humans?


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    If you’re in the market for a patio heater, you’re probably curious about whether an infrared heater is safe to have in your home. Infrared heaters are entirely safe for you to use and don’t pose any risks to your health. Infrared heaters transmit electromagnetic waves to produce heat and are becoming increasingly popular for household use. We’re running you through everything you need to know about infrared heaters and how they’re safe for humans. 

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    Electric patio heater

    What Is Infrared Wave?

    An infrared heater works by converting electricity into heat, which is transferred to the object without heating the air around it. Infrared waves can travel a large distance to heat an object. Unlike conventional heaters, infrared waves don’t heat the air but instead heat the object.

    The heat produced with the infrared wave is similar to what is produced by the sun to heat the earth using light produced from electromagnetic radiation. Infrared heats do not have a visible light source and are absorbed into the skin or objects that the infrared wave heat up.

    It’s a popular choice of energy for a patio heater as it can heat your space effectively with a consistent level of warmth. You’ll even find an infrared heater in the incubators used for babies in NICU hospital units. Infrared waves are ideal for your patio heater as they produce a consistent heat that doesn’t fluctuate over-time, making it ideal for long-term use in the evenings. 

    Your patio heater will likely be a far-infrared heater, which is the most common and popular style on the market. It creates an ideal household temperature that is comfortable for your body. Infrared waves use bio-mimicry, which is where your body absorbs the heat as needed.

    Types of Infrared Heaters

    There are three types of infrared heaters on the market that you can choose from. A near-infrared heater produces an intense level of heat and is primarily used in hospital settings or for cooking. This type isn’t suitable for household use, so it wouldn’t be what your patio heater will use. A medium infrared heater will generate a temperature rate between 500 and 800 degrees, working between 1.4 to 3 microns. This level of an infrared wave is used in industrial settings.

    Is Infrared Waves Safe for Humans?

    The International Commission for Non-Ionising Radiation Production (ICNIRP) has found that infrared waves cause “no practical concern from a health hazard standpoint”. Infrared waves are safe for humans as it’s similar to what is produced by the sun, the planet’s natural heat source, so our bodies are designed to naturally absorb it.

    Choosing an infrared patio heater is ideal for people who suffer from respiratory issues as the consistency of the heat means there’s a smaller chance of mould developing due to dampness. Keeping the heat consistent also reduces dust in the air, which keeps the air circulated and healthy for those with allergies.

    Your infrared patio heater will be encased in a casing that keeps the exterior cool to disperse the heat to prevent any unwanted accidents that could occur if you touch the coils. The process of infrared waves means that there isn’t any carbon monoxide produced by your patio heater, which is safer for both you and the environment. Similarly, it doesn’t produce any odour or fumes that you can find from conventional heaters.

    Do Infrared Heaters Emit Ultraviolet Waves?

    An infrared heater does not emit ultraviolet waves. UV rays are on the higher end of the electromagnetic spectrum, and we’re all familiar with the dangers of UV rays from sunlight. By comparison, infrared heat is on the lower end of the spectrum and don’t share the harmful properties of ultraviolet rays.

    Can Infrared Heaters Cause Cancer?

    When people see the word ‘radiation’, they often assume that it comes with health risks. Infrared heating is 100% safe for humans as it utilises a safer form of electromagnetic radiation. The radiation you want to avoid is called ‘ionizing radiation’, while infrared heaters transmit non-ionizing radiation. 

    This type of heater is safer than those previously on the market as it doesn’t produce any carbon combustion or toxic by-products. An infrared heater won’t put any harmful particles into the air, making it more environmentally friendly than some of its conventional alternatives.

    What Can I Do to Make My Patio Heater Safer?

    If you’re still concerned about any health-related issues with your infrared heater, there are several steps you can take to make your patio heater even safer. 

    You want to limit your long-term exposure. The same way you wouldn’t sit in the sun for hours, the same is true for your infrared heater. If you’re planning to use your patio heater, you want to make sure you’re sitting a safe distance away from the heater. You can still enjoy the heat without being seated directly beside your patio heater. If you do happen to notice any issues with your patio heater over time, you want to stop using it and have an electrician check your heater.

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    Electric patio heater around your home

    What Are the Benefits of An Infrared Heater?

    Now that you know that infrared heat is safe for humans, you might be considering investing in an infrared patio heater. There are dozens of benefits that come with utilising this type of heat technology. Your infrared heater works by emitting a direct heat source to warm up the object in question, instead of the atmosphere. This process means the air is more comfortable to breathe.

    These heaters reach their optimum temperature quicker than conventional heaters. This option doesn’t produce a sound, making them perfect for using as a patio heater so that you don’t disturb your neighbours. For a patio heater, this style requires minimal maintenance as it doesn’t have any moving parts that need to be repaired or replaced.

    If you’re thinking of investing in a patio heater, you can do so by being confident that infrared waves are 100% safe for human use. They don’t produce ultraviolet rays, and they’re a modern, environmentally friendly alternative to conventional heating sources.




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