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Extending the outdoor season with indirect fired heaters

6 min read
Insights Content outdoor dining

As the need for outdoor spaces becomes more pressing for the hospitality and event industry, having a reliable way to keep these warm and comfortable at all times is top of many’s wishlist. Here, we explain why it is important to prioritise an indirect fired heater, and what makes the Master BV range the standout in this area.

Outdoor spaces have scarcely been in as high demand as they are right now. Best practices around social mixing during the COVID-19 pandemic and government restrictions have encouraged many in the hospitality sector to move traditionally indoor activities outside, ensuring their customers have plenty of fresh air at their disposal.

Numerous pubs, bars and restaurants have created outdoor areas where friends and families can enjoy their meals. An increasing number of weddings, parties and gatherings are taking place outdoors. The pandemic has encouraged many to visit green spaces and participate in more outdoor activities.

Overall, the number of outdoor events has skyrocketed since the arrival of COVID-19, and we believe this will remain the case for some time. However, what happens when winter sets in and temperatures plummet? Do companies put outdoor events on ice until the weather warms up again, and negatively impact revenue?

Not necessarily, as more and more organisations are benefiting from the use of portable heaters to ensure these outdoor zones can be relied upon year-round.

Below, we will examine this rise in the popularity of portable heaters through the eyes of one of our key customers, National Heater Shops, and why an indirect-fired heater is necessary to heat temporary structures such as marquees and gazebos safely and effectively.

The growing demand for portable heating solutions

Over the past 12 months, demand for temporary heating solutions has accelerated rapidly. In order to combat temperature drops – be it in the evenings or during the colder winter months – these heaters are increasingly relied upon in the hospitality and events sector to ensure attendees stay warm and comfortable, while they benefit from fresh air around them.

This ensures:

Benefits of portable heaters for outdoor venues

This burst in popularity is demonstrated by our friends at National Heater Shops, a key supplier of mobile space heaters to the UK hospitality industry. They have offered the Master range of portable heaters for the best part of half a decade, and we have maintained a strong working relationship with their team.

Despite the significantly challenging landscape the global pandemic has presented to many worldwide, National Heater Shops has seen their supply of Master heaters almost triple within the hospitality industry – a testament to the incredible demand these products are experiencing.

“During the COVID pandemic, the demand from our customers in the hospitality sector for outdoor heating solutions has grown exponentially,” said Tom Byrne, Commercial Manager at National Heater Shops.

“Many people are now much more comfortable eating and drinking outdoors, where there is a flow of fresh air, to minimise the risks whilst socialising with friends and family.”

“The restrictions introduced earlier in the year where hospitality businesses could only open in outdoor areas, meant that large numbers of businesses were investing in marquees, gazebos, patio areas and temporary structures, to ensure that they were able to serve paying customers. Heating these outdoor spaces is essential to ensuring consistent footfall during colder weather.”

As Byrne states, the need for outdoor heating is more pressing than ever for a multitude of venues. But, to guarantee a safe, healthy atmosphere in these settings, it is important that those on the lookout for an outdoor heater prioritise an indirect fired solution.

Why indirect-fired heating?

Indirect-fired heaters work by using a flame inside a combustion chamber, which then warms a heat exchanger. Cold air is drawn into the system and warmed up by circulating around the heat exchanger. The system then flows warm air back into the area.

Indirect fired heating vs direct fired heating

What’s important to note is that in this entire process, the air never comes into direct contact with a flame. The heater is situated outside the space you wish to heat, so clean warm air is vented into the space using ducting, whilst exhaust fumes are expelled outside via the flue.

This makes indirect-fired heaters ideal marquee heaters, as there is zero risk of dangerous fumes, odours or contaminants flowing into the atmosphere – something that wouldn’t be possible with an equivalent direct-fired heater.

In addition, unlike electrical heaters that tend to ‘spot heat’ areas, while leaving other areas cold, an indirect-fired heater will deliver a consistent flow of warm air capable of reaching every pocket of space. This prevents the possibility of certain guests feeling a chill during outdoor events when others are kept toasty warm.

What makes the Master BV range ideal outdoor heaters?

With indirect-fired heaters the ideal way to keep outdoor spaces warm all year round, the Master BV range is a leading name for this increasingly popular technology. Backed by decades of technical expertise, our BV units are optimised to deliver maximum heating performance at reduced running costs.

Master BV heaters advantages

High-power heating

The BV range provides a significant amount of heat output at a relatively low cost. The BV 290 for example can deliver up to 85kW of heat power, ideal for large marquees and outdoor events.

Robust and resilient

Master portable heaters are designed to withstand the test of time in harsh environments, such as construction sites. This ensures they will provide reliable and effective heating at all times, even in poor weather conditions and in remote locations.


Energy efficiency is at the heart of Master’s product range, enabling organisations to create comfortable outdoor spaces for their guests with minimal energy consumption.

Easy to operate and maintain

Our indirect fired heaters are straightforward to use and maintain, making them great for anybody from pub or restaurant owners using portable heaters for the first time, to marquee and events companies looking to rejuvenate their current fleet of heaters.

Exceptional versatility

The BV 110 is a versatile unit, offering substantial heat output across a range of popular marquee sizes. Plus, its high airflow and air pressure allow warm air to be split between two flexible hoses, so multiple spaces can be heated at once.

Safe and secure

Remote monitoring, control and tracking technology is being introduced to the BV range, enabling customers to manage performance, check fuel levels, and lock units in the event of theft – all possible from any location.

Strong support network

All Master BV heaters come with a 3-year warranty, giving reassurance to buyers in the unlikely event something goes wrong. Plus, with the full backup and support of the Dantherm Group available, spare parts and repairs can be delivered quickly and efficiently.

Future-proofed products

In 2022, Master will release a range of biofuel-powered indirect heaters, using fuels derived from vegetables. This will greatly reduce the carbon footprint of this type of heating technology, so users can confidently meet their environmental standards.

National Heater Shops has already noted the growing popularity of our BV range in their own data, consistently hitting sales forecasts and more than doubling business on Master products year on year, even during the pandemic.

The Master BV range

Explore the Master heating range today

As outdoor events become increasingly sought-after in today’s landscape, the onus will be on hospitality and events companies to ensure these can be available to customers at all times, with no impact on their comfort or enjoyment.

We hope this article has emphasised the importance that indirect fired heaters will have in achieving this goal, and why the Master BV range stands out as the choice for those looking to create the most welcoming outdoor venues possible.

If you’d like to know more about our selection of BV units or our wider heating solutions, get in touch using the contact form below. You can also visit National Heater Shops and explore their range on their marquee heaters page.

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