If you're in the market for a space heater but don't want to empty your wallet to purchase one, the Amazon Basics 1500W Ceramic might be the way to go. While it isn't as effective as its high-performance rivals, it still does a decent job of raising the temperature to a comfortable level in a workspace, small room, or living space. It lacks some bells & whistles found on high-end appliances, but for many applications, added features are unnecessary.Editor's Note: We updated this review for Amazon Basics 1500W on June 7, 2022, with some additional testing data, an unbiased assessment of value, and recommendations for other directly comparable products.
Amazon Basics 1500W Review
Pros: Compact, affordable, doubles as a fan
Cons: Lacks features and settings, mediocre performance
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Amazon Basics 1500W
$29.63 at Amazon
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|Pros||Compact, affordable, doubles as a fan||Raises temperatures quickly, great remote, takes up very little floor space||Fantastic performance, convenient features, fall-over protection||Great heat output, tip over protection, remote control||Compact, low price, good at producing heat|
|Cons||Lacks features and settings, mediocre performance||No fan-only setting, keeps running when knocked over||No fan-only option||Loud fan, slow to warm up||Lacks oscillator, lacks remote, unimpressive performance|
|Bottom Line||If you need a small, barebones space heater on a budget, this is our recommendation||If you need a device that cranks up the heat and has a small footprint and a variety of convenient features, this is a fantastic choice||A solid option that offers exceptional overall performance at a great price||A simple, user-friendly model that performs well but has higher operational costs||This very basic space heater provides a basic amount of heat at a basic price|
|Rating Categories||Amazon Basics 1500W||Lasko Ceramic Digit...||Comfort Zone Oscill...||Comfort Zone Cerami...||Lasko Ceramic Adjus...|
|Personal Heat (40%)|
|Small Room Heating (20%)|
|Power Consumption (10%)|
|Specs||Amazon Basics 1500W||Lasko Ceramic Digit...||Comfort Zone Oscill...||Comfort Zone Cerami...||Lasko Ceramic Adjus...|
|Measured Temperature Increase at 60 Minutes||10.1||10.8||9.9||12.1||8.3|
|Thermostat User Interface||Dial||Digital||Digital||Digital||Dial|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Amazon Basics stands out for its simplicity. While it may lack certain features that some may find desirable, others may find that the bells and whistles are not proportionate to the added cost. This model also has an option to use it as a fan without the heating element being engaged, making it useful in warm months, whereas models that don't have this option will be useless unless it's cold.
The Amazon Basics is great for personal heat, so long as you are close to the device. One thing we love about it is that it heats up very rapidly. Once switched on, this model immediately cranks out hot air.
In combination with its compact design, the rapid warm-up makes the Amazon Basics a spectacular choice if you're looking for a model to fit under your desk. Other than the warmth and a quiet humming of the fan motor, we could hardly notice that the unit was there.
It has a setting to run the fan without the heating element, making it two products in one, as it has a purpose in the summer for personal cooling or air circulation. While other space heaters may have fancy digital controls, the Amazon Basics model keeps it simple with two simple dials — one for adjusting the thermostat and the other for selecting between low, high, or the fan-only option.
The 1500W Ceramic has a small button on the bottom of the unit that will cut the power to the device unless it is depressed; if the heater ever gets knocked over, it automatically turns off. This is great for households with pets and children who don't realize the safety implications of a 1500 watt heating element running in an improper position.
While the Amazon Basics performed decently well below a desk and in a small room, its performance was less than impressive when we tried it out in a living room. The design of this model only allows for the heat to be directed at one angle, so if you're far enough away, the heat simply rises to the top of the room before it you can feel it.
Small Room Heating
We wanted to test how well each model could heat up a small room over a given period. To test this, we used a laboratory-grade thermometer to track the temperature change every 20 minutes up to 60 minutes in a 161 square foot room.
We also made sure that temperatures outside and in adjacent rooms were almost the same when testing each model.
Starting with an ambient temperature of 63 degrees Fahrenheit, the Amazon Basics raised the room's temperature to 73.4 degrees for a total increase of 10.1 degrees over an hour.
While the 1500W Ceramic may be very simple to operate, simplicity doesn't necessarily translate to convenience. We found that it lacks several features that would make it easier to use in most cases.
The Amazon Basics doesn't include a remote, so you'll be standing up or bending over to make any adjustments to the thermostat or power settings. This device is also lacking a timer — if you want it to have a shutoff time, you're going to have to use an external timer plug or smart plug. Nearly all of the space heaters in our review have an electronic user interface with a digital temperature readout — the 1500W Ceramic lacks both. As far as setting this model to a specific temperature, it's just a guessing game.
When we used a wattmeter to measure the number of kilowatts this model uses in an hour, we were a bit disappointed.
After an hour, it used 1.39 kilowatts at its highest setting, so we can assume that it will use 13.9 kilowatts after 10 hours. Using the national average for the price of kilowatts per hour of 13 cents at the time of this review, we calculated that this model would cost $1.83 to run for 10 hours, which translates to $54.90 to run it 10 hours a day per month.
Should You Buy the Amazon Basics 1500W Ceramic?
All in all, this is your run-of-the-mill space heater. Besides doubling as a fan, this device is lacking in fancy features. But for some, that may be a selling point. Even though the Amazon Basics 1500W Ceramic fell far short of the performance of the top models in our review in several ways, we still think it's a tremendous value given its ridiculously low price.
What Other Space Heaters Should You Consider?
Although this wasn't our favorite heater during our assessment, we would still recommend it to those looking for an uncomplicated product at a fair price. But if you're looking for top-quality performance, consider either of our award-winners: the Lasko Ceramic Digital Tower or the Comfort Zone Oscillating Digital Tower
— Ross Patton and Austin Palmer
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