Can I Shorten My Patio Heater? [ANSWERED]

The best way to shorten a patio heater is by using a metal saw to cut it around the upper pole. Then, it is important to drill new holes to secure the heating unit with screws. After completing these tasks, the patio heater will look like new. 

Sometimes, do you feel that your patio heater is not fitting too well in the exterior space in your home? This is one of the biggest reasons why you, as a patio heater owner, might opt for the smaller variety that is much easier to move around from place to place. Not only are they quite heavy, but they have a bit of an odd shape that makes them hard to handle. However, if you start out with a tall one, will you, later on, be able to shorten your patio heater?

It is a hard job but not impossible to accomplish. However, you don’t want your patio heater to look out of place. You should consider the things mentioned in this blog post first so that you end up on the right track and avoid any regrettable mistakes that could be prevented.

patio heater close up

Related Reading: Can Patio Heaters Be Used Under a Covered Patio?

How To Shorten Your Patio Heater

When it comes down to it, if you’re the kind of person who’s naturally handy, then this shouldn’t be too big of a task, especially when you have the know-how and the right tools. Take your time, take precautions, and keep things orderly if you want to achieve the very best results. Keep in mind that you will need to start cutting the pole little by little and taking your time to be able to perform a truly clean cut. You want your patio to look as though it were new.

You want to shorten it around the upper pole which is where you should find the heating unit mounted. After cutting the pole to the desired length, all you have to do is re-drill four holes so that the new height for the heating unit is securely supported with screws. You should, of course, make sure to remove the gas hose before doing any of this.

Types of cutting tools that you should use

You might think that cutting metal is an impossible task. However, there are some tools that are available to you:

  • You can use a steel cutting blade on a power saw.
  • You can also use a steel cutting blade on a reciprocating saw such as a Sawzall. One that works very well is the Diablo blade. 
  • If you don’t have access to these powerful tools, you can use a hacksaw that features a metal cutting blade. It is an alternative that is both cheap and easy to handle. You just need to make sure that the teeth per inch, or TPI, is right for the type of metal that you’re working with.

For the holes, it is strongly recommended that you use a titanium drill bit. You should take your time and drill the holes slowly.

Height Considerations

You may have been asking yourself how short you should cut your patio heater. The size that you ultimately land on for your patio heater should reflect your purposes and lifestyle. However, the reality is that most patio heaters are sold at heights between 2.2 and 2.5. This is for a reason: people like to feel warm but not too warm when sitting on their patios with family and or friends. 

Keep in mind that no matter that, it shouldn’t be shortened any lower than a meter above the ground. Any lower and it can easily turn into a real burn hazard.

A good thing to remember is that, even though you do shorten your heater, this doesn’t mean that you can’t later put it on a stand for when you would like it to heat higher up. There are plenty of stands on the market to choose from. Many people like the versatility that they offer, especially when they have a lot of patio space to consider as well as different seasons and weather possibilities.

Precautions To Take When Shortening Your Patio Heater

You should keep in mind that it is fundamental for the center post to remain in its original size. You can think of this as the backbone of the heater and this is where most of the weight will be concentrated.

You can cut out other parts to shorten it, but you have to be very careful that they won’t affect the functional components of the heater.

While you may be inclined to think that taking a patio heater apart shouldn’t be too complicated, the truth is that it can get quite complicated. It is quite common for it to stop working when people who don’t know exactly what they’re doing, attempt it.

A good idea is to take notes of what goes where so that you can put everything back to where it was when you got started. 

However, if you still want to cut your patio heater´s upper post, you should take into account these series of risks:

  • It could fall over on top of you. This has led to many incidents of injury and even death due to the very heavy nature. For this reason, it’s a good idea to wear a hard hat the entire time you’re working on it.
  • Harm to your eyes or hands. It’s advisable that you wear eye protection as well as thick gloves that can handle this kind of work.

If you decide to cut down your patio heater then make sure that someone is around to help you in case the patio heater falls over or to maneuver it into positions that enable you to cut properly. 

You should also wear thick gloves, which you can find at any hardware store, and eye protection that covers the areas around your eyes so that nothing that comes from the heater falls into them.

Last but not least, remember to wear a mask if you don’t want to breathe in metal dust.

Keep in mind that your best choice is to buy a shorter heater that fits your space outdoors. Spending some extra bucks to enjoy the benefits of a heater for your patio is worth the cost if you want to keep on the safe side of the road, especially if there are kids in your household.

Continue Reading: Lighting A Patio Heater Manually [SAFELY]


There are many factors that go into choosing the right height heater for the patio that you’re working with. For instance, if you’re going to be sitting or using it for a standing party. If you would like to shorten yours, it will be a hard job that requires a lot of precautions and you should take the matter very seriously so that it goes well.

You just need to be smart about it. When in doubt, do it with the guidance of, or hire, a professional who has experience in doing it, or similar work.

If you do decide to shorten it, you need to understand that it is a commitment to be taken seriously. You need to take the shortening process seriously at every step of the way because even the smallest mistake can cause damage and compromise the integrity of the heater, rendering it broken beyond repair.