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Keep your house warm without central heating: Best small portable heater for winter

This nifty heater may be small, but it's mighty. (Russell Hobbs)
This nifty heater may be small, but it's mighty. (Russell Hobbs)

Until last year, many of us had never heard of a 'plug heater'.

But these clever little gadgets have really come into their own recently, as so many of us are trying to find increasingly creative and cost-saving ways to heat our homes.

Not only are plug heaters space-saving, but they're also a cost-effective way to warm up a room without having to crank up all the radiators – something we're all trying to cut back on doing.

Think something this small couldn't possibly have any oomph? Well, spoiler alert: this Russell Hobbs Compact Black Ceramic Plug Heater, £23.99, can reach up to 30°C – most likely why it keeps selling out and has topped the Amazon's best heating category numerous times.

Why we rate it

There are so many things to love about this small-but-mighty 700W essential. It's the perfect portable solution to warm anywhere up to 10m² – like your home office, bedroom, bathroom, kitchen – even a caravan.

It's small enough to pop in your bag so you can take it with you when travelling, or to the office, if you need a little bit of extra warmth on the days you go in.

An ideal gadget for those WFH days when you don't want to turn the heating on. (Russell Hobbs)
An ideal gadget for those WFH days when you don't want to turn the heating on. (Russell Hobbs)
It's suitable for all sorts of smaller spaces and can reach temperatures up to 30°C. (Russell Hobbs)
It's suitable for all sorts of smaller spaces and can reach temperatures up to 30°C. (Russell Hobbs)

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Utilising ceramic PTC tech (which basically means it allows electrical current to flow better at low temperatures than at high temperatures), it has a super-quiet fan and offers heating temperatures ranging from 15-30°C. Plus it has three modes – fan only, low power, high power – so you can see what works best for your needs and the room you're in.

With an LED display and 12-hour timer, you can programme it to work for your daily routine.

And with Amazon shoppers saying that when the plug is in use their smart meter is still in the green range, it's clear that its energy efficiency is not fake news.

What the reviews say

As over 50% of people who've purchased the Russell Hobbs Compact Black Ceramic Plug Heater have given it the thumbs up by rating it four or five stars, it deserves its good rep.

Shoppers say it's "bigger" and "punchier" than they thought and that they'd "definitely recommend it".

One customer was so impressed at how it boosted the heat in his living room by two degrees within 15 minutes that he purchased a second one.

"Cheap to run"; "quality is excellent"; "works well"; "good value"; "great little heater" are just some more of the praise-heavy comments left by happy users.

In fact, one shopper worked out it cost them about 50p per an hour to run. For an initial outlay of just under £24, that's a top investment in our opinion.

Shop now: Russell Hobbs Compact Black Ceramic Plug Heater | £23.99 (Was £24.99) from Amazon

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The Compact Black Ceramic Plug Heater is the latest edition in Russell Hobbs portable heater collection.

The brand also sells a slightly smaller ceramic heater that works in a similar way, but has a little less power at a 500W maximum heat output, with two fan speeds, a 12-hour timer and night mode.

It's also a bestseller on Amazon and can be purchased for £22.99 – it has over 2,000 reviews with customers saying they were surprised by how "quickly" and "efficiently" it worked.

Shop now: Russell Hobbs 500W Ceramic Plug Heater | £22.99 (Was £24.99) from Amazon

This is the original iteration of Russell Hobbs plug heater, which also has rave reviews. (Russell Hobbs)
This is the original iteration of Russell Hobbs plug heater, which also has rave reviews. (Russell Hobbs)

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The very popular heater now also comes in black, for a more aesthetically-pleasing look.

Shop now: Russell Hobbs 500W Ceramic Plug Heater | £22.99 (Was £24.99) from Amazon

The popular heater also now comes in black. (Russell Hobbs)
The popular heater also now comes in black. (Russell Hobbs)

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