Best Ice Fishing Heaters Reviewed & Rated for Quality
While there’s no one right way to ice fish, many find the sport far more enjoyable when they’ve erected tiny fishing huts on the ice to lock in some warmth and comfort during the frigid winter months.
And nothing quite completes an ice fishing shelter more than ice fishing shelter heaters. These ice fishing propane heaters are guaranteed to keep you from freezing your mitts off while you spend long hours out on the ice waiting for the tiniest of tugs on your line.
So if you’re looking for ice fishing heaters to keep the frostbite away for your next trip, we’ve got a list full of the best options on the market.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
When considering capacity, we look at the square footage each product can accommodate and the range of BTUs of each product. This is also something you'll need to consider when you're deciding which option to buy. How much heat do you need in your ice shack? Who are you providing heat for - just yourself or others as well?
When looking at portability, we see how light and compact a product is, and whether or not it comes with a handle or carrying case. You should consider how portable you need your heater to be. Are you toting it in by yourself with bags and bags of other equipment and gear? You'll want something that scored a bit higher on the portability scale, then.
We value special features like rotating heads, the ability to accept different tank sizes, and how adjustable each product is.
We value products with built-in safety mechanisms to shut of the flow of propane or butane is the unit is kicked over, if oxygen runs low, or if the pilot light is extinguished.
As for value, we lay out the BTUs and square footage of each product so that you don’t end up buying more product than you actually need for your space.
10 Best Ice Fishing Heaters
1. Mr. Heater Little Buddy
The Mr. Heater Little Budd is the best compact option on the market today. It is loaded with safety features, super portable, and great for 1-2 people ice huts, with a capacity to heat up to 95 square feet of space. This is the best bang for your buck if you have a smaller space to heat as you won’t be overloaded with power and you won’t sacrifice needed space in your hut.
Nice and Compact Unit
The Mr. Heater Little Buddy is similar to the Mr. Heater Buddy that we feature below at number 2, but this product is more compact and is ideal for smaller huts that are designed for 1-2 people.
It weighs in at just 6 pounds and is 11 inches, by 11 inches, by 11 inches. This is one of the most compact units out there and will still deliver tons of heating power without taking up tons of space. So we give all of the Portability points possible here.
We love that this unit runs on a small 1 pound propane tank that can last between 5 and 6 hours. It can heat up to 95 square feet (keeping in mind your average ice hut for 1-2 people is around 35 square feet) at 3800 BTUs. We give tons of points for capacity here as well.
This is one of the safest products on the market as well. It produces toasty heat with no odor and will shut off if it detects that the levels of oxygen in the room are getting low.
It will also shut off if the pilot light is extinguished to prevent propane from filling the room without being burned off, and it will shut off if the unit is accidentally tipped over. We give all of the Safety points possible for these features.
We love how easy the device is to carry and we also love that the tank sits inside of the device so it doesn’t take up any excess room, and we give points for Features here.
Cost and Value
The Mr. Heater Little Buddy rings up in the middle of our price range and we love its value because it is the best bang for your buck out there. It is incredibly safe, super lightweight and portable, and designed to last so you can the most use out of it without being saddled with a ton of power that you don’t need.
2. Mr. Heater Buddy
The Mr. Heater Buddy is by all accounts one of the best portable ice fishing heaters that money can buy. You won’t want to be caught without this little buddy in your ice fishing arsenal. This unit offers up between 4,000 and 9,000 BTUs and can handle a square footage of 225 feet.
Excellent for Larger Huts
The Mr. Heater Buddy is a great option for larger spaces out on the ice. It can be adjusted to put out between 4,000 and 9,000 BTUs which can accommodate a space up to 225 square feet. We give major Capacity points here.
This unit is made from steel, nickel, and plastic, and users rave of its durability. It weighs in at 9 pounds and measures 7.7 inches, by 13.4 inches, by 15 inches. It is definitely not the most compact unit on our list, but it is relatively easy to carry so we don’t take away tons of points for Portability here.
With a standard 1 pound propane tank, you can get about 3 hours worth of solid run time at the max output of 9,000 BTUs. Of course, if you are in a smaller hut, you will not need to use the max so you will be able to enjoy a longer runtime.
Automatic Shutoff Features
This option is loaded with safety features that make choosing the Mr. Heater Buddy a no-brainer. It can be used both indoors and outdoors, and it automatically shuts off if it accidentally tips over which is a super fire safety saving feature.
We also love that it can detect low levels of oxygen and when the pilot light gets extinguished and shuts off then as well. We award major Features and Safety points for this.
We also like that the handle pops up and down for ease in carrying and that the propane hookup swivels out for ease and safety in connection. We also like the easy-ignite feature which makes this product safer as well.
Cost and Value
The Mr. Heater Buddy rings up towards the top of our price range but we love its value because it is a long-lasting unit that is loaded with safety features to ensure that your hunting trip doesn’t end in tragedy.
Plus, there is a wide adjustment range so that you can get the right amount of heat for a variety of different spaces.
3. World Marketing TankTop
The World Marketing TankTop is another of the best heaters for ice fishing on the market and you’ll soon consider this as much an essential part of your fishing gear as one of your ice fishing rods. If you are one that likes to hit the ice with a large crew, then this is a must-have as it can emit from 9,000 to 15,000 BTUs.
Tops a 20 Pound Tank
The World Marketing TankTop is perhaps one of the most heavy-duty on our list. You will not want to use this unless you are actually outside on the ice (without an ice fishing hut) or if you are in a large hut for upwards of 6 people with some ventilation.
This product says it is for outdoor use only, but many fisherman reports using it in their ice fishing huts.
This unit is meant to top a 20-pound tank, and while we take points for Portability here, we definitely add points for Capacity as this can put off 9,000, 12,000, or 15,000 BTUs.
Super Long Lasting
This is certainly not the smallest on our list, but it is one of the longest-lasting. You will be able to get upwards of 10-15 hours of use out of this product on a single tank. We give points for Capacity here as well.
We also like that this product comes with an automatic shutoff feature in case the unit is tipped over. We give points for Safety here. We take a few points in Features as this product claims to have an auto-ignite feature, though it actually doesn’t and you’ll have to ignite with a grill lighter.
Cost and Value
The World Marketing TankTop rings up towards the bottom of our price range and we love its value because it is so powerful and long-lasting and because it is super adjustable for different square footage needs.
4. Dyna-Glo Tank Top
The Dyna-Glo Tank Topis another heavy-duty option if you’re fishing with a lot of buddies or if you have a big space to heat up. With up to 15,000 BTUs, this product will warm even the largest of ice fishing huts and it can be fully adjusted to fit smaller spaces as well.
15 Heating Radius
The Dyna-Glo Tank Top is another super-powered heater for the coldest months of the year. It can put out an adjustable BTU from 9,000-15,000. That equates, at max capacity, to about a 15-foot heating radius so we give major points for Capacity here.
You will need to pair this product with a 20-pound propane tank so we take some points for Portability here.
Resists the Elements
This option is built to last with tons of design features that make is durable. You’ll love the steel reflector that puts off more heat surrounding the device, and you’ll also enjoy the emitter guard with is comprised of chrome that is rustproof for longer and more sustained uses.
We give points for Safety as this product also features an automatic turn-off if the unit gets slipped over accidentally.
Cost and Value
The Dyna-Glo Tank Top rings up towards the bottom of our price range and we love its value because it has tons of adjustable power that is great for the largest of spaces. Plus, it is loaded with design features that make it a long-lasting investment.
5. Mr. Heater Hunting Buddy
The Mr. Heater Hunting Buddy is the last of the Mr. Heaters to make our list, but it is still an outstanding product. This 6,000-12,000 BTU unit can heat spaces up to 300 square feet so you can take this from the fishing hut to the cabin and get solid use out of it in both environments.
This is one of the more versatile options on our list. It weighs in at 9 pounds and measures 10.2 inches, by 15.5 inches, by 16.5 inches. It is certainly not the most lightweight product on our list so we do dock points for Portability, but it does have the ability to be useful in a wide range of spaces and scenarios.
We give points in the Features category and Safety category since it has an easy to use handle and controller. Plus, it will shut off automatically if tipped over, if oxygen gets low, or if the pilot light is extinguished.
Accepts Small and Large Tanks
The Hunting Buddy can actually take both a 1 pound tank and a 20 pound tank, which makes this product super versatile.
Depending on the BTUs you need for your square footage and depending on the space and how long you want to use this product, you can interchange the tanks. We give points for Capacity and Features here.
Cost and Value
The Mr. Heater Hunting Buddy rings up towards the top of our price range and we like its value because it is super safe and highly adjustable depending on your situational needs making it a more versatile hunting and fishing companion.
The Texsport is another great option for smaller areas like 1-2 person fishing huts. This product gives off up to 2,890 BTUs which is the smallest on our list so far. This is a great budget-friendly choice and it will also save a bunch of weight and space so you can move more freely on the ice.
The Texsport is one of the smallest on our list, but that doesn’t mean it’s not durable and built to last. The burner and handle are made from stainless steel and the reflector is made of aluminum for more heat distribution. We give Features points here.
We love that this unit comes with 4 paddled feet to ensure that it stays upright without dangerously tipping over. We give points for Safety here. We also give Safety points for the built-in valve that shuts off automatically if the flame goes out so propane doesn’t fill up the hut that you’re in.
Compatible with Multiple Tank Sizes
This option has a nice capacity that won’t overload you with power that you don’t need. At 2,890 BTUs, it has more than enough power for a space with 35-40 square feet. We award points for Capacity here.
We give points for Portability as this product weighs less than 2 pounds and measures in at 17.7 inches, by 16.1 inches, by 11.2 inches.
Plus, we love that this unit works with both 1 pound tanks and 14 ounce tanks if you want to downsize even more. Plus, you’ll get to enjoy the heat for upwards of 4 hours on a single tank.
Cost and Value
The Texsport rings up at the bottom of our price range and we love its value because it is nice and compact with enough power for a small room that won’t weigh you down or get in your way.
7. Dura Heat 360 Degree
The Dura Heat 360 Degree is a cool little unit that puts a spin on the other tank top units on our list so far. This product actually disperses heat from a full round of 360 degrees. This is a great option for a larger tent with fishermen at each corner as this will disperse heat evenly in all directions.
360 Degree Heating
This is different from other tank top heaters on the market as it actually disperses heat at 360 degrees all around. While other heats have a plate that funnels heat mainly in one direction, all directions will get even heat from this device. We give points for Features here.
Up to 14 Hours of Use
The Dura Heat is approved for outdoor use, and you will need to ensure that your hut does have proper ventilation to use this inside. It offers up to 40,000 BTUs which is the largest on our list so far and is effective in spaces that are as large as 1,000 square feet. Plus, you’ll get around 14 hours of use out of a single 20-pound tank.
We give major points for Capacity here but dock points for Portability.
This unit will turn off if the pilot light is extinguished so we award some points for safety here.
Cost and Value
This product rings up in the middle of our price range and we like its value because it is ideal for the largest of spaces and because it is super long-lasting.
The Camplux is the first on our list so far that can be used both as a heater and as a cooking space. It is also the first to use Butane instead of Propane. This unit produces up to 4,400 BTUs and will work well in space up to 100 square feet.
Comes with Canister
The Camplux can be used for cooking and for heating, so we give points for the Features of this product. It comes with the canister that installs directly to the unit, though you will have to provide your own butane fuel which is easy to refill.
We like the Safety features this product incorporates and give points here as it works to eject the cannister and maintain safe pressure to ensure your safety.
Lasts up to 5 Hours
This option can operate at full capacity for up to 5 hours on a single full tank of butane. The canister can hold up to 8 ounces of butane and will work to warm an average 1-2 person hut with no issues, so we give Capacity points here.
Cost and Value
The Camplux rings up on the lower end of our price range and we like its value because it can be used as a heater and to catch those slow-moving walleyes in the chilly winter months.
APG brings us another great little butane heater to make our list. It is nice and portable and can run continuously for about 3 hours on a single medium-sized butane tank. It comes with a stand and is a good option if space in your ice fishing hut is limited.
Powered by Butane
This is just the second product on our list to be powered by butane. It will run for about 3 hours and is approved for 1-2 person huts. We dock some points for Capacity and Features here.
Comes in Carrying Pouch
The APG weighs in at just 320 grams making it one of the lightest and most compact options on our list. It comes with a handy stand and will fold up nicely into its own carrying case so we award points for Portability here.
It does have a safety valve but lacks some of the other safety features we have found on this list so we dock points for Safety here.
Cost and Value
The APG rings up at the very bottom of our price range and we like its value because it is super compact and easy to carry, plus you’ll find room for it in just about any sized space that you’re fishing in.
10. Dura Heat 360 Degree
The Dura Heat 360 Degreeis another on our list that can be powered by 1 pound propane tanks or a 20 pound propane tank. This means you have more control over the amount of heat emitted and the amount of square footage that can be heated. This unit can produce up to 25,000 BTUs.
Heat from All Angles
The Dura Heat 360-Degree is similar to the previous Dura Heat product on our list in that it does not directly heat in only one direction. Rather, it can expel heat at a full 360 degrees so that all areas of the hut are heated evenly which is great for larger groups. We award points for Features here.
Tanks Varieties Welcome
This Dura Heat option can be powered by 2 1-pound propane tanks or a 20-pound tank based on your needs. We award points for Capacity here, though we take points for Portability.
We give Safety points as this unit will shut off if oxygen runs low or if the unit tips over.
Cost and Value
The Dura Heat rings up in the middle of our price range and we like its value because it offers up versatile heating options for a variety of different spaces.