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Winter Heater Guide

You shouldn’t need to wear your merino thermals and woolly beanie to keep warm inside your own house. Winter in New Zealand can be very brisk, to say the least. And given that winter lasts for a quarter of the year, it can be pretty demoralising if your home doesn’t have sufficient general heating or heaters for your rooms. Thankfully, Briscoes has you covered 24 hours of the day with everything you need to keep warm during the colder months. Choose from our selection of heaters, including oil heaters and panel heaters, electric blankets, thick blankets, and one of the best ranges of thermal curtains in NZ. But with so many options, it can be hard to know exactly what to choose!

We’ve put together our top heating picks for Winter, along with other helpful advice and tips to get the most out of what you buy. Along the way, you’ll learn the pros and cons of many different heaters, electric blankets and more. Plus, we’ll answer the commonly asked question ‘dehumidifier or heater’. Here’s what we’ll go over: 


How winter affects the home

How to choose the right heater for your home

Upgrade your heater with Briscoes

How to get the most out of your electric blanket

Upgrade your electric blanket with Briscoes

How to get the most out of your dehumidifier

Upgrade your dehumidifier with Briscoes

Other ways to keep your home warm during winter


Let’s get started!

How winter affects the home

As we’ve mentioned, winter in New Zealand can be harsh and cold. New Zealand is often broken up into three climate zones. Zones include:

  1. The Coromandel Peninsula, Auckland, Northland and the Franklin District
  2. All of the rest of the North Island, excluding the Central Plateau
  3. All of the South Island and the Central Plateau of the North Island



Each zone will have its varying climate, but it’s safe to assume that all three can get very cold over the winter months. The chilly climate can impact you and your home in many ways.


When the temperature is too cold indoors for too long a period of time, it can lead to a range of adverse health issues. Some issues can be particularly bad if you already have underlying health concerns. Common health issues that can be exacerbated by the cold include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Asthma
  • Sleep depreciation 
  • Stress


Potential health problems aside, when you don’t have sufficient general heating or enough heaters for the rooms in your home, it’s fair to say that it won’t be cosy. These days, many kiwis are choosing to work from home. It can be challenging to say motivated when it’s cold, and you have numb fingers. Not to mention it may also be hard to wind down and relax when you’re shivering. As well as that, your guests may feel uncomfortable when they come to visit. These are all reasons why heating is essential, whether through electric background heaters, panel heaters or even an electric throw in your home office.




The World Health Organisation recommends that the temperature inside your home should be at least 18 degrees, but it’s better to be around 21 degrees. In saying that, we think it’s often more comfortable to be even warmer than that. The healthy home standards were also brought into effect in 2019. If you’re renting out a property, you much ensure there is at least one fixed heater to heat your rental home's main living area directly. These heaters must also fit the healthy home standards set criteria.

How to choose the right heater for your home





A heater is a fantastic option to heat the many varying rooms in your home. At Briscoes, we’re proud to provide a vast selection of heaters, from panel heaters to portable heaters and everything in between. The type of heater you choose may depend on whether you are heating over a long period or want a small room to be heated rapidly. The trick is to match the benefits of these different heaters with your preferences and budget. Popular options include:

  • Oil column heaters

An oil column heater provides long-lasting heat, which often makes it one of the most efficient heating options. 

  • Panel heaters 

A panel heater is a fantastic option for heating small living areas as they are quiet and very safe. 

  • Convector heaters

Convector heaters are portable and lightweight in most cases. They work by heating the surrounding air. 

  • Ceramic fan heaters

Small and easy to use, a ceramic fan heater works by heating up the air in small spaces quickly. 

  • Fan heaters

A fan heater is the way to go if you're in a rush. Fan heaters provide nearly instant heat for small areas.

Upgrade your heater with Briscoes

Deciding which heater is best for you and your home can be tricky when there are commonly around seven different types and several leading brands. When you view our extensive range of heaters at Briscoes, at least you know you’ll only be purchasing from the world’s leading brands and models. We also categorise our heating options by room, to make it easy to find what you’re after. You can view our selection online or instore, from brands including: 

  • Goldair
  • DeLonghi
  • Sunbeam
  • ZIP 
  • Handy heater

Our expert team is available to chat to help you make an intelligent purchasing decision, whether that be an oil heater or any other heather that’s electric. Another great place to start is by reading our comprehensive heater buying guide.

How to get the most out of your electric blanket

There is nothing like tucking yourself into your bed that’s been heated by an electric blanket after a cold winter’s day. Yes, thick blankets are important to stay warm at night, but a heated throw or electric blanket adds another element to help improve your sleep. In saying that, not all electric blankets are created equal, and you need to know how to use an electric blanket properly to get the most out of it safely. Tips for doing this include:

  • Ensure your electric blanket is laid flat on your bed and tightly secured
  • Turn off your electric blanket when you get into bed
  • Don’t use an electric blanket for infants, small children or anyone who is immobile
  • Have your electric blankets tested annually by a qualified electrician 

Some electric blankets also have other helpful features for your comfort and safety, including special heated foot zones, wifi control and timers. 

Upgrade your electric blanket with Briscoes

Similar to our extensive range of heaters, we also stock a wide variety of electric blankets and heated throws and Briscoes. You can view our range online or at your nearest Briscoes store to enjoy fast delivery to your door and our famous price beat promise. We only supply the leading electric blanket brands, including: 

  • Sunbeam
    Sunbeam’s Sleep Perfect Technology means your electric blanket can sense changes to your room and body temperature. That way, it can automatically maintain or change it’s temperature.
  • Goldair
    Goldair Platinum Wifi Blankets mean you can turn on your electric blanket from the comfort of your couch before getting into bed later in the evening.
  • ZIP
    Like other brands, ZIP offers great, cost-effective heating. Many ZIP electric blankets also have automatic heat protection and temperature regulation. 

There are also six main different electric blanket types to consider, including:

  • Antibacterial
  • Quilted
  • Wool
  • Cotton fleece
  • Micro plush fleece
  • Faux fur fleece

As with our heaters, our staff are happy to chat and offer advice. Otherwise, it may be beneficial to read our comprehensive electric blanket guide for more information. 

How to get the most out of your dehumidifier

A dehumidifier is not only helpful in removing excess moisture from your room or drying washing, but it can also be useful when it comes to heating. The question shouldn’t be dehumidifier or heater? Instead, it should be, why should you have a dehumidifier and heater? Your heater is much more efficient and heats a space more quickly when the air is dry. Considering how little electricity a dehumidifier uses, it’s a no-brainer to bring these two appliances together. When using a dehumidifier in tandem with a heater, it’s best to have doors and windows shut. As well as that, the more centrally located your dehumidifier is, the better it will work. 

Upgrade your dehumidifier with Briscoes

You best believe we have a wide selection of dehumidifiers available at Briscoes. Our main brands are Goldair and DeLonghi, and each brand has options in different sizes and price points. Popular dehumidifier options available include:   

Other ways to keep your home warm during winter

As well as using appliances like an electric blanket or electric background heaters, there are many other ways to help keep you warm and toasty at home. At Briscoes, we provide many other cost-effective ways to keep in the heat so your family remains comfortable during winter. 


Insulation is a big part of keeping the heat in your home. One main consideration for improving insulation is curtains, or more specifically, blackout curtains or thermal curtains. A good, thick curtain creates a pocket of air between your window and room. This pocket keeps the warm air in and cold air out. At Briscoes, we have a great range of thermal lined curtains for NZ conditions. If you’re looking into thermal curtains in NZ, read our guides on measuring curtains and blinds or installing curtains at home for helpful advice. You may also be keen to check out our custom curtain service

Warm bedding

Yes, electric blankets and heated throws are helpful to ensure your bed is warm and toasty. Another way to stay at a comfortable temperature at night is specific winter bedding. At Brisoces, we have a wide variety of winter bedding options, including: 

A nice thick blanket and throw can be a great option in your lounge or living area. This way, you can pull it over your legs while spudding on the couch. For more advice on bedding, read our helpful blogs, including your guide to bed sheets and your guide to duvet inners

Want to consider your heating options?

There are so many options to consider when it comes to heating your home during winter. Whether you’re looking for a new heater, electric blanket, dehumidifier or even winter bedding, you can view our extensive range of winter heating options online or instore. Make the most of our price beat promise, which ensures you know you’re getting the best deal.