Frozen fingers during the winters keep a lot of people away from their garages. If you are an avid DIY person then more often than not your Garage is your workshop, lounge, car maintenance zone and favorite hangout spot. Sadly, most garages are not insulated making it very difficult, in fact almost impossible to work when the temperatures get really low, therefore you need to carefully choose the best heater for your garage.
If you are serious about maintaining an insulated temperature in your garage, read our detailed review of best garage heater available in 2018. While conducting experiments at Best Home Gears lab we considered various factors like the size of the garage, source of power, movable garage heater or mounted and of course budget.
Best Garage Heaters 2018 – Detailed Review
Here is our pick on top garage heaters in the market after months of testing in rigorous conditions. Let’s take a look at 8 of the best garage heaters money can buy.
#1 Dr. Heater DR966 Commercial Garage Heater
Dr. Heater DR966 Commercial Garage Heater is an electric heater that needs to be hardwired into your main electric supply. This is why it is a permanent solution; the direct connection ensures it gets enough power. The heater comes with a bracket that allows you to either mount it on a wall or a ceiling easily. The adjustable thermostat helps you set the output of the heat from high to low between the power of 3000 watts or 6000 watts.
The heater has 5 louvers in the front that put you in complete control of the air flow. Although it uses a fan to distribute the air around your garage, it is relatively quieter than a lot of its contemporaries. The heavy duty and permanently lubricated ball bearings significantly reduce the cost of maintenance and increase the life of the machine.
Dr. Heater DR966 Commercial Garage Heater comes with a 1-year warranty on parts and labor. Overall, the machine is an ideal buy for space under 600 square feet like a cellar, garage, basement, warehouse, storage, and factory.
#2 Fahrenheat FUH54 240-volt Garage Heater: Best Electric Garage Heater
Fahrenheat FUH54 240-volt Garage Heater is a good option for space up to 500 square feet. The heater comes with a bracket that allows you to either mount it on a wall or a ceiling easily.
The heater needs to be hardwired into your main electric supply and cannot be simply plugged into the socket. This is why it is a permanent solution; the direct connection ensures it gets enough power. The heater has louvers in the front that put you in complete control of the air flow. The machine’s plate finned design helps produce uniform heat output. It uses a fan to distribute the air around your garage but isn’t too noisy.
One of the drawbacks of this machine is that there are no settings to control the heat output, so you will need an external thermostat to take control of the heat output since it can sometimes get very hot for a relatively smaller space.
Although the common perception amongst most buyers is that you need a propane heater with high BTU’s to heat larger spaces, more often than not they find themselves reaching out for the window to let the heat produced go out, accompanied with unpleasant gases and fumes from the gas.
Although the machine measure around 14 inches, it has an ability to produce between 2500 – 5000 watts, enough to keep you warm even in harsh environment. Therefore it is both a compact as well as a powerful machine. No doubt this is one of the most popular and best electric garage heater in the market currently.
#3 Dyna-Glo RMC-FA60DGD BTU Liquid Propane Forced Air Heater
Dyna-Glo RMC-FA60DGD BTU Liquid Propane Forced Air Heater is primarily used for heating industrial units like warehouses and factories, as it can produce from 30,000-60,000 BTU, which can comfortably heat up to 1,350 square feet of area. You can take complete control of the heat output with the use of its variable heat control system.
The device is very well constructed; its motor is mounted to a solidly built bracket which is fitted to the lower part of the garage heater. This is more complicated and expensive way of fitting the motor but makes the heater better.
You can adjust the angle i.e lower or raise the angle of the heat output with the help of the adjustable leg. The heaters brass nozzle is almost indestructible and has a long life due to use of brass instead of steel unlike a lot of its contemporaries in the market.
The device comes with a 10 feet hose and a regulator which can be connected to a 20, 40 or 100 LB propane cylinder. The device’s 0.5 PSI system gives maximum BTU outputs even in harshest of climates
The device is very safe to use due to its integrated safety sensor which turns off the heater if it overheats or flames out. It uses split capacitor motor, one of the most reliable motors in the market. Additionally, the heater is CSA certified for safety and the motor used is UL listed. To conclude this powerhouse is affordable at the same time, it can produce more than sufficient amount of heat needed to keep you warm in the chilliest of days.
#4 Modine HD45AS0111 Natural Gas Hot Dawg Garage Heater –
Best Heater for Garage
Modine HD45AS0111 Natural Gas Hot Dawg Garage Heater can heat up a room up to 1000 square feet comfortably. The heater can be used for both commercial and residential purpose. You can attach a thermostat to the device to control the heat output.
It is a very versatile heater, you can either use it an electric heater or natural gas heater by attaching a natural gas or a propane tank. It has a very compact design and can be easily mounted to a wall or a ceiling. The machine weighs about 60 pounds so you will have to put it on a sturdy platform that can comfortably hold its weight.
The heater’s tube ventilation attachments provide you with extra ventilation if you need. The heater gives out a steady stream of heat instead of spurting it out, which evenly heats the entire space.
Overall, this whisper quiet, neutral color, the machine works with well above 80% efficiency in the background in the harshest of climates making it one of the best garage heaters in the market.
#5 NewAir G73 Hardwired Electric Garage Heater
NewAir G73 Hardwired Electric Garage Heater is a perfect solution for space up to 500 square feet. The device is made of durable stainless steel that allows it to bear the brunt of tough conditions. Users even in northern regions have reported that this device keeps them warm in the chilliest of days.
You have to simply hardwire the heater in your electric systems and bingo! You need no plugs to use it. It is a single pole thermostat heater which is easy to install. The heavy-duty fan-forced heating spreads the heat evenly and quickly throughout your garage or workshop. It has a very compact design and can be easily mounted to a wall or a ceiling.
The device’s safety system automatically turns off the heater once it’s met the desired temperature, additionally it has a built-in thermostat as well.
One of my favorite feature of this machine that it uses only 5,000 watts of energy to heat up a room of 500 square feet to up to 40 degrees. Although it takes a bit of an effort to install this device, it’s well worth the effort when the temperatures fall below 0 degrees.
#6 Dr. Infrared Heater DR-988 Garage Heater
Dr. Infrared Heater DR-988 is an industrial garage heater that can be used to heat up an area up to 600 square feet. It comes with a built-in thermostat that can be adjusted and a built-in cord that keeps your garage clean. Even though it weighs 12 pounds, it has a very compact design. The electric motor makes it suitable for use in areas without a built-in ventilation system.
One of our favorite features of this machine is its steel safety grille that protects your fingers from accidental burns. This is supplemented by an auto shut system that turns it off automatically in case of an emergency and its tip over protection prevents it from falling until it’s pushed.
The machine comes with a 1-year warranty and its filter can be cleaned with water or a simple vacuum. Its infrared heating system helps it to quickly heat the room. Although it can heat up to 95 degrees F, one of its drawbacks is that it’s not very energy efficient.
It is C-UL and UL listed, it also has auto energy saving features that allow you to switch between 5600 watts and 4800 watts. It comes with a built-in handle so you can carry it around easily.
#7 Dimplex DGWH4031 Garage Heater: For occasional heating
Dimplex DGWH4031 is an economical buy and best for occasional heating needs for rooms up to 700 square feet. Its automatic temperate control system lets you maintain a consistent temperature. It comes with a mounting bracket that you can use to attach to a suitable wall. We suggest you don’t hang it too high though because it will make it difficult for you to reach the thermostat control.
Its powder coated epoxy finish increases its durability as it provides the body resistance against abrasion and fading. It runs at 13640 BTUs and maintains the temperature about 80 degrees F.
The heater runs off a 240 volt 20 amp circuit, so you can set it up for use yourself and would not need an electrician to give you a helping hand. It produces no carbon emissions and you won’t be reaching for the window to let the heat produced go out, accompanied by unpleasant gases and fumes.
One of the drawbacks that have been reported time and again with this machine is that it makes too much noise while functioning.
One of the reasons we love this machine is because of its great energy efficiency. It beats many of its contemporaries in this price range on this feature hands down. But what is it that allows it to be so energy efficient? It is its one of a kind fan delay system, which allows the fan to kick in only after a particular temperature, is achieved, allowing it to use the residual heat to efficiently heat your space.
#8 Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy 4,000-9,000-BTU Portable Radiant Garage Heater
Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy 4,000-9,000-BTU garage heater is a great buy if your garage space is approximately 225 square feet. This is one of the most famous garage heaters in North America. The device is perfect for enclosed spaces like a large tent. The heater has an Oxygen Depletion Sensor (ODS) that automatically turns it off in case of low oxygen. This along with auto turn off in case the heater accidentally tips off makes it a safe heater to use.
The fold-down handle significantly reduces the footprint and storage space of the device. The high-temperature wire guard protects you from the heated surface. Even though propane based heaters are preferred to be used outdoor, the advanced technology used in this heater makes it safe even for indoor purposes.
The 1lb. Propane gas cylinder connects directly to the heater providing between 4000-9000 BTU of radiant heat. The swivel regulator makes it easy for hose installation and LP cylinder. The integrated Piezo sparkling mechanism with four position control and low and high heat settings make it easy to light the gas.
To feel the maximum heat from this heater, keep it close to yourself, either on a table or near your feet. The heater has a large porcelain coated heating surface which directs radiant heat over a wider surface area.
Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX comes with a 1-year warranty on parts and labor. Overall, if you are looking for a quick and an economical garage heater for a small space that will keep you warm and safe then this is your best buy.
Best Garage Heaters 2018 – Comparison Table!
|Dr. Heater DR966||14.5 x 14.5 x 13||45,000 BTU||4.2|
|Fahrenheat FUH54||11.2 x 14 x 12.5||17.000 BTU||4.4|
|Dyna-Glo RMC-FA60DGD||10.04 x 20.08 x 14.76||60,000 BTU||4.0|
|Modine HD45AS0111||26 x 12 x 16.5||45,000 BTU||4.9|
|NewAir G73||9 x 9.5 x 14||17,060 BTU||3.9|
|Dr. Infrared Heater DR-988||12 x 12 x 15||45,000 BTU||4.5|
|Dimplex DGWH4031||11 x 7.2 x 9||13,640 BTU||3.8|
|Mr. Heater F232000||14.17 x 8.97 x 14.37||4,000-9,000 BTU||4.6|
Different Types of Garage Heaters
#1 Electric Garage Heaters
Electric heaters are best for folks who are looking for an easy operational and low maintenance machine. Since it works on electricity you don’t have to worry about refueling. These machines are also way safer than gas heater because they don’t release harmful emissions and most models come with an auto turn off the system. They easily heat up smaller spaces within no time but for bigger spaces, you will have to go for a gas heater.
#2 Gas Garage Heaters
Although natural gas and propane gas heaters are way more expensive initially because of the installation cost of natural gas than electric machines, they provide much more heat as well and save more energy in the long run.
Since they do not need a fixed electric power, these heaters are more mobile. You will have to take care of maintaining your gas heater regularly and keep a check on fuel levels.
One of the important things to keep in mind while using a gas heater is your safety. Make sure you have a good ventilation system in place, as they release harmful emissions to produce the heat. Also, keep an eye out for any leaks or loose connections. Make sure you have all the permits and inspection in place to install this heater type as a faulty installation can even cost you your life.
Natural gas heaters can be further subdivided into two categories i.e. infrared heater and fan forced heater.
Fan forced heaters
They are without a doubt the most popular type of garage heaters in the market. Fan forced heaters to have a simple working model. They take in the cold air, heat it and then blow it out. They are the most powerful heaters and can keep large rooms heated for hours. Also, they are easy to install as well.
Although the higher end models give you the option to shut the heating and let the fan running, we suggest buying this for a bigger space, because it makes smaller space a tad bit stuffy if left to run continuously. The way around this is to use a thermostat and set a certain temperature.
Infrared Garage Heaters
Infrared heaters can be best used if you are placed close to them. They are perfect for smaller spaces, as the heat is concentrated. You can either them mount them up or place them near your work table. Since they do not have a fan, they are relatively quieter. Infrared heaters focus on heating objects instead of air.
What are the Features You Should Look Out For in Your Heater?
Auto shut / Overheat Protection
Safety is an important aspect that should influence your buying decision. The auto shut feature ensures that the machine shut off automatically when overheated.
Tip Over Switch
As the name suggests, a tip-over switch automatically turns off the heater in case it’s knocked down. This feature is especially important as most people tend to move around a lot, swiftly in their workspace.
Due to prolonged use, some heaters become too hot to touch. A cool touch surface helps prevent accidental burns in radiant heaters.
Power Cord Length
If you are buying an electric heater for a relatively bigger space you need a power cord which is long enough for you to comfortably place the heater in your preferred location.
Adjustable Louvres help you direct the heat in the direction you wish, instead of moving the whole machine time and again. Most modern designs have this feature in them.
Although this might not seem like an important factor, it really gets to you when you cannot hold the heater comfortably while using it daily. So make sure you go for a model that lets you move around the machine without a sweat.
How to Get the Best Out of your Garage heater
Let’s face it, garages are not designed to be warm so make sure you use good quality insulation on your ceiling and walls in order to prevent the heat from escaping.
Make sure you have permits in place before installing a gas heater. Some location needs permit and inspection for installing natural gas source. Place your heater in an area where you have not stored or cramped up too many things. Other than this, make sure you have a good ventilation system in place for gas heaters.
To conclude, garage heaters can be your best friend for winters if purchased after considering your needs and garage space well or your worst mistake. It’s important to determine your purpose first. If you are looking for a temporary arrangement you can go for a portable electric heater but if you are looking for a permanent arrangement we suggest a high-end natural gas heater.
Our in-house favorite is Modine HD45AS0111Natural Gas Hot Dawg Garage Heater as it is a very versatile heater, you can either use it an electric heater or natural gas heater by attaching a natural gas or a propane tank.
We hope by now you have made your purchase decision, if you still have more questions, simply shoot them in the comments section.
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