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Not everyone has the need for a full smart home heating system with a space-age smart thermostat and the funky cooling solutions. However, most people have the odd room that needs warming, and there has to be a better way than the old fashioned oil, fan or electric heaters.
So, for a cold bathroom, or if you just have a corner of a room that the central heating can’t quite reach, there should be an ideal, low-cost and portable solution.
Enter the Holmes Eco Smart Heater, a low cost fan heater with energy-saving smartness built in. Sure, there’s no link to a smartphone app to run it remotely, or some stylish Dyson-like design to magically produce more heat.
But it does have everything needed to keep a smaller room warm while not burning through your electricity bill.
Contents (Jump to)
Key Compelling Features of the Eco Smart Heater
- Portability: The Holmes Heater Fan comes in a modest 7.5 x 12 x 14 inch unit, and weighs just over 3 pounds, so is highly portable and easy to locate in any room, as long as it is within reach of a powerpoint.
- Attractive Price Point The Holmes has a recommended price of $70 but can be found for almost half that on some retail sites (see here for example). It is only available in white.
- Safe and Efficient (Unlike Traditional Space Heaters): The outer plastic doesn’t get hot so there’s no risk of burning and the device has two settings, up to 1,500 watts for a warming breeze or a hot stream to help heat up a cold room as quickly as possible, with the maximum setting running up to 85 degrees. Inside is smart technology that the company claims makes the unit 33% more efficient than traditional space heaters.
- Auto Shut Off: To protect users and the home, there is a shut off mode if it gets too hot, or if the unit gets tipped over. For normal use, all you have to do is set the temperature and let it run. It should keep the room at a near constant temperature (allowing for open doors, windows, breezes and other issues outside the unit’s control).
- Intuitive Controls: All the controls are on the top at the front, with the display showing the actual or desired temperature as you set it. There’s no backlight, so you can’t see that in a very dark room, but the up and down buttons are pretty obvious, so you can count the presses if you knew the previous setting.
- Eco Mode: Otherwise, there’s an on/off and a mode button to change the heat settings, including enabling that Eco mode.
- Practical Appeal: Stylistically, the unit looks pretty smart, but is hardly stunning in design terms with curved sides and a sculpted yet firm base for it to rest on.
Pros of the Holmes Eco Smart Heater
- Strong Warranty: The unit seems pretty robust and comes with a three-year warranty should something go wrong with it. Usually, as long as you give the vents a regular dust, and keep the fan blade edges clean with a Q-Tip, then you should get years of long service from your Holmes heater.
- Saves on Power: It comes with an Eco-Smart Energy Saving badge, so is proven to save power, but just how much will depend on your usage and the room it is used in. To use it in Eco mode, tap the Mode button and it will maintain the desired temperature in the most efficient manner it can.
- Relatively Quiet: Aside from the clicking sound when it kicks in, the unit is pretty quiet in operation, but naturally, there’s a bit of fan noise depending on the ambient noise around it.
Cons of the Holmes Eco Smart Heater
- Loud(ish) Clicking on Start Up: As mentioned, and as with a lot of these products, there is a loud clicking sound when they switch on and off. That can be highly annoying if you are using it to warm up a bedroom at night or early in the morning, or plan to use it in a baby’s room.
- Not Meant to Serve as a Fan-Only: Another issue is that it lacks the multifunction feature of a fan-only setting so you can’t use it on warm days just to help get some breeze around a room. Quite a few other models have this feature, which makes them useful in summer, so you might want to consider looking elsewhere, if you don’t have the room for a regular fan.
- Some Key Customer Complaints: While our unit performed fine, many reviews online have reported units failing after relatively short periods of use. Others report that the thermostat is not that accurate or can stop working, leaving the unit useless or running all the time. So, make sure you keep the warranty details to hand, in case this happens to you. You should also note, this unit can’t be wall-mounted, so it will need some surface or clear floor space to install it on.
Final Recommendation – Is the Eco Smart Heater Worth the Money?
There is a massive variety of solutions when it comes to portable heating, and most of us will have used one at one point, from student dorms to that first cold apartment to a chilly washroom.
From ceramic plates to oil-filled heaters, they all perform to some degree, but there is little that can beat a warm stream of air first thing in the morning.
The Holmes Eco Smart Heater delivers that heat in a smart and direct manner, and should help keep your electricity bill down.
It might not be the most bullet-proof solution but with a long warranty and low price point, there are plenty of reasons to pick one up and see how it can improve your domestic or office warmth.
Bottom Line: For those looking for a relatively affordable supplemental heat source, this is a significant upgrade over traditional space heaters.
Patrick Sinclair is a geek; make no mistake about that. He runs All Home Robotics in his spare time so he doesn’t have to think about his depressing cubicle and it gives him an excuse to buy expensive gadgets to review!