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How to Start a Kerosene Heater: Explained!

Kerosene heater is something essential when you want to feel warm. It’s an easier and more affordable way to warm yourself. As a kerosene heater doesn’t need electricity you might have confusion to start it. Is it actually easier to start? 

How to start a kerosene heater?

You can start a kerosene heater by using fuel. To do that you need to pour the fuel inside the heater. Or, you can use an automatic ignition system, or you can do it manually. You should take some safety precautions while doing this project.

Now, stop being puzzled and take the required steps to start your kerosene heater now.

Stick around this article till the end and know all about it!

Using Fuel to Start a Kerosene Heater

Lighting your kerosene with fuel might be the easiest of all. Let’s not waste any more time and just jump into the steps!

Step 1: Choosing the Fuel

Fuel is the source for your heater. Generally, these heaters take 1-k kerosene. This is the purest form of kerosene. It looks clear or slightly yellow. 

This fuel is provided without a smoke heating system. It also does not have any uncomfortable odor.

However, it is not mandatory for you to get this one. There is a wide market of kerosene fuel you can buy. But we firmly recommend you to read the manufacturer’s guidelines and the instruction manual.

Buy your desired kerosene fuel and proceed to the next step.

We have some kerosene fuel suggestions for you. Check them out!

Product 1
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Step 2: Putting the Fuel in Kerosene Heater

You will see a fuel cap under the kerosene heater. There should be a cord connected with the cap. The cord will help you place the cap correctly.

Be careful when you’re starting to transfer the kerosene. Make sure not to drop the kerosene on your clothes

After you find the cap, remove it. Now take the kerosene container and place it in front of the heater. 

Now you will notice two types of tubes of the tank. A flexible and another rigid tube. Put the flexible tube inside the fuel tank and the other one inside the kerosene container. 

Be careful not to drop any 

Now you need to press the pump and transfer the fuel into your kerosene heater.

Step 3: Start Your Heater

Be patient for one hour and let the fuel soak into the kerosene. Keep the ‘wick’ knob down. This will make sure the fuel is in all parts of the heater.

As we have advised you earlier you need to read the manual before lighting the heater.

Waited for one hour? Now, rotate the knob of the wick. Make sure it is at maximum height.  

Then simply use a lighter to start the heater

How to Start Kerosene Heater Using Automatic Ignition System?

Your Kerosene Heater has several switches or knobs. You will notice an automatic ignition lever under the heater. Press this lever.

The internal igniter will start getting close to the wick. Start rotating the wick knob and notice the height of the flame. If it’s getting higher than you are rotating in the right direction.

Do not keep the flame too high. Keep it at a neutral height to avoid smoke and smell. But if you want to remove the smell you can add a vent.

To turn the heater off you can rotate the knob in the opposite direction. Pushing the turn-off button will stop the heater. 

Can I Start a Kerosene Heater Manually?

Yes, you can. But keeping some safety measures in this process is mandatory. We suggest you go outside and do it.

Open the doors of the heater so that you have access to the wick. You will notice a chamber under the heater. 

Carefully take a match and light it up. Put it inside the chamber. Keep in mind not to overreach your hand towards the chamber.

Now rotate the wick knob and you will notice a flame will start rising. Do not put the flame to maximum height. 

Too much flame could produce a gassy smell. Make sure to remove this gassy smell

Some Safety Measures You Need to Take

Using a kerosene heater sometimes becomes risky. If you take it lightly any accident can occur. Let’s follow some rules to keep you safe.

Taking these steps will prevent the kerosene heater from making a mess:

  • When you choose your fuel check for certification and expiration date.
  • Pour the fuel into a kerosene heater outside the house.
  • Turn the heater off when you transfer it or do a refill.
  • Do not use gasoline for your heater.
  • When you start the kerosene manually, do not put too much of your hand inside.
  • Have a fire extinguisher to prevent any fire hazard or explosion.


Question: Do I need a venting system for a kerosene heater?

Answer: If you can have then it’d be great. For safe operation, a venting system is required. Because a kerosene heater will consume oxygen. It will also produce some gasses. Having a ventilation system will make sure your home is safe.

Question: How often should I dry burn the wick of my kerosene heater?

Answer: You can dry burn the wick once a week. Do it to use the maximum efficiency of the heater. Generally, you can do it after the heater consumes more than 3 tanks of kerosene. 

Question: Can you clean a kerosene heater wick?

Answer: To clean the wick, extend it as far as possible. After fully extending it the end of the wick will burn out naturally. The alcohol will make sure the wick is clean. It will also get rid of the water. After cleaning you can dry it off and then put it back inside. 


I hope now you are sure about how to start a kerosene heater. Let’s warm you up and get you through a comfortable winter.

In addition to that, always take safety precautions while handling the heater.

If you face any further problems let us know in the comment section.

That’s all!