Hampton Bay 38,200 BTU Propane Patio Heater

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Editor’s Conclusion
If you are looking for a patio heater that will keep you warm for backyard entertaining and looks like a lamp, the Hampton Bay 38,200 BTU Heat-Focusing Propane Gas Patio Heater may be just right for you. The heater is finished in powder-coated bronze; the heater has large cone-shaped burners to churn enough heat to heat up to 120 sq. ft.

The unit has adjustable reflectors to direct the heat where you need it the most. Being able to tilt the head and the reflectors are two of the best selling points for selecting this model.
Editor's Pros & Cons

No pilot light but quick heating with electronic ignition

38,200 BTU heats up to 120 sq. ft.

Adjustable heat-focusing reflectors

Wheels make it convenient to move.


Complaints that the unit rusts

Bolts are short and tend to loosen

Complaints of missing parts

Key Features

  • Size: 86" tall

  • Weight: 81.8 pounds

  • 38,200 BTUs heats up to 120 sq. ft.

  • Propane-fueled, propane tank not included

  • Heat-focusing reflectors adjust to offer excellent heat distribution

  • Anti-tilt design and flame failure cut-off switch for safety

  • Fitted with wheels for portability
  • Weighted base offers stability

  • Hinged cylinder chamber door provides easy access

  • No pilot light - fast ignition and no potential pilot blockage

  • Heater has an electronic ignition system


The Hampton Bay 378,200 BTU is built like a torchiere floor lamp, with the heat channeled through a torch-like top and a base that hides a 20-pound propane cylinder. With wheels on the bottom, it can be conveniently moved to warm up the table area where people eat or conversing.

Assembly may take up to an hour with a Phillips screwdriver and a socket set, but the process is easy and is well-explained in the instructions.

Powder-coated in bronze, the heater never looks tarnished from the weather. However, some customers have complained that the bolts used in the assembly may rust.

The heater comes with a vinyl cover for the head.

Fuel, Efficiency, And Range

The heater broadcasts heat to a large circle, which is great if a group is sitting around the heater talking.

It has reflectors that can be adjusted with a handle to focus on the part of the circle where guests are congregating to make them more comfortable and save energy. The reflectors effectively do what they are intended to do – focus the heat where you want it.

The Hampton Bay 378,200 BTU has a range of 120 feet.

Heat Output

The gas can be turned off and on with a switch near the top of the unit. Just turn the unit on, depress the battery-operated igniter button, hold the on/off switch in place for 10 seconds to make sure it stays lit. The gas can be turned down to a lower flame position for comfort and energy savings.

Safety Features

The propane tank fits in a compartment at the base of the heater. Once the heater is attached to the tank with a hose, the tank is secured in the chamber with a light chain, and the whole compartment closes with a latch. If the unit were to fall over, the tank is unlikely to fly out.

Though the heater has a weighted base (due to the weight of the propane cylinder), it has an anti-tilt design and flame failure cut-off switch for safety in case the winds are too strong. The heater is hard to knock over accidentally, but it is easy to roll to a sheltered area if there are tornado or hurricane warnings in the area.

When the unit is not in use, you can open the chamber to turn off the gas. Removing the propane cylinder or disconnecting it from the heater is the safest way to go when the heater will not be used for a while or when moving it to storage for the winter. If you are not using the heater for a while, you should remove the battery from the ignition switch.

The heater should be used outdoors but can be used in a well-ventilated porch or garage with a minimum of 30% of its surface area open. If it is used on a screened-in porch, it should be 40" from the screens. This unit is not recommended for use under awnings or fabric sun shade, pergola covers, or canopies. The heater should not be left unattended.

Value / Cost

The Hampton Bay brand is Home Depot's own, so the $199 price is at least $100 better there than elsewhere.

How It Stacks Up To The Rest

The Hampton Bay 38,200 BTU heater is highly rated at Amazon and Home Depot, which owns the Hampton Bay brand. Aside from complaints about the product performance, many buyers had issues with the packaging or found that parts were missing.

Though this is a Home Depot product, the company does not stock replacement parts, so the buyer has to contact customer service and wait.

The Verdict

The heater is attractive for patios; as long as you do not overpay, the heater with its reflectors is a good buy.