When the cold winter months arrive, you may want to heat your garage. At the same time, it can be difficult to know where to start.
With so many different kinds of heaters out there, you will want to make sure that your garage is set up to hold in the heat and that the heater you choose is safe.
Preparing the Garage for Heat
If you want to heat your garage, you should try to insulate as much of it as you can. One of the times when garage heaters can be dangerous is when people try to have them do more than they can. If your garage is insulated, the heater won’t have to work as hard.
You can add insulation to the garage doors and, if you need to, the walls and ceilings. You can also use plastic shrink film over the windows to help lock the heat inside.
This will help the garage to actually hold the heat that you bring in and it will help to keep your utility bills down.
How to Heat Your Garage
1 – Forced-Air Heater
A forced-air heater is basically a unit that blasts hot air into the garage. You can get a freestanding unit or you can have one installed by a professional and tie it into a gas or propane line.
These heaters are safe but they can make a mess if you have a lot of debris around the garage. They blow hot air so they will blow the debris around.
2 – Convection Heater
A convection heater is another safe option for a garage. They can use electricity, gas, or propane. The way they work is that air convection currents run through the heater, and when they heat the heating element, it heats the air around you.
It can work rather quickly if your garage is insulated and smaller but it can take some time if it is a big room.
3 – Ductless Heating System
A ductless heating system is great when you want to heat a single room such as a garage. This means that you can heat your garage when you are using it but you won’t waste money heating it when you aren’t.
This system is safe, is energy-efficient, and will work well to heat the garage in the winter.
4 – In-Floor Heat
In-floor heating can be installed in your garage and it will help keep the room toasty and warm. If you use it with a heater, it will work great. This is safe as long as the in-floor heating is installed correctly.
5 – Propane Heaters
Propane heaters are versatile and they come in different sizes. This is a great way to heat your garage but there are safety precautions that you will need to take.
- Keep the propane heater away from furniture and other combustible items.
- Never leave anything on top of the heater.
- Make sure that you have a carbon monoxide detector installed in the garage.
- Do not leave the propane heater on when you leave the garage.
- Keep area around propane heater free of dust and other debris.
- Do not spray aerosols near the propane heater.
- Make sure that you can get out of the garage safely if necessary.
Propane heaters are inexpensive to use and they do a great job of heating the garage. However, it is important that you follow the recommended safety precautions or they can be dangerous.
6 – Electric Ceiling Panels
A radiant electric ceiling panel can be mounted on your ceiling. They are energy-efficient and can do a good job of heating your garage. This is a safe method of heating your garage.
7 – Mounted Electric Heater
A mounted electric heater is normally larger than a space heater and it will heat the garage more easily. They are normally easier to install than a forced-air heater and you may be able to do it yourself.
This type of heat is also safe for your garage.
8 – Portable Space Heater
Garage space heaters come in a range of sizes and they are a great way to have supplemental heat on a really cold day. They are portable and they can be very useful.
They can be dangerous if you leave them on or leave them plugged in and you need to be careful not to leave anything too close to it or on its surface.
9 – Infrared Heater
An infrared tube heater is a good heating option for the garage. It is important to make sure that you purchase the low-intensity option as the higher-intensity heaters can be a fire hazard. The way it works is that it has a tube that radiates the heat out through your workspace.
This kind of heater does not blow out air and you will need to be sure not to leave anything on or near the tubes because that can be a fire hazard. This kind of heater does heat objects more quickly than it heats people so you will need to turn it on before you are ready to work in the garage.
10 – Wood-Burning Stove
As long as you install your wood-burning stove properly, this is one of the most inexpensive ways to heat your garage. You may need a permit to install this type of heating system so be sure to check your local rules and regulations.
You will need to take care of your stove properly to make sure that it is safe. Just as you would with a fireplace, you need to clean the chimney and flue.
Remember to never leave a fire unattended.
Precautions to Take in Heating Your Garage
Any of the heating methods listed above will do a decent job of heating your garage but you need to determine which is right for your needs. That being said, you need to take precautions with any heating system to stay safe.
Propane or gas heaters carry the highest risks as they can cause fires if you have items too near to them or if debris gets inside the source. In addition, you need to use carbon monoxide detectors to make sure that your levels are safe. If they aren’t, open the garage right away.
Portable heaters are convenient and they are best as additional heat sources. They are safe but you should never leave anything on their surfaces. If you install an electric heater on the wall or ceiling, it may do a better job of heating up a larger space.
If you use electric ceiling panels or in-floor heating, you will probably need to have another source of heat. These are both great ways to help your heater operate more efficiently but they will not heat up an entire room.
Make sure that no matter what heater you choose, you install it in a safe location away from debris and other items. Keep it clean and turn it off when you leave the room.
If you take the proper precautions, your heater should be safe.
Choosing the Right Heater
The factors that you will consider are the size of your garage and how much heat you need. If you insulate your garage, you have more options. If you need heat for longer durations of time, you will want to go with a bigger system.
If you want the safest heating system for your garage, you might consider an electric or forced-air heater that is hung from the ceiling. It is easier to keep them clear of debris and they do a decent job of heating the room.
I have a bachelor’s degree in construction engineering. When I’m not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies…I’m at home with my wife, two daughters and a dog. Outside of family, I love grilling and barbequing on my Big Green Egg and working on projects around the house.