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Garage Heat

Some of us enjoy using our garages for hobbies throughout the warmer months but as winter’s cold takes its grip, these activities need to be put on hold as it becomes too uncomfortable to carry on in a frigid garage. But we do have options available to make our garage comfortable during the winter.

A garage heating system is special in that it has to be safe. Garages have the potential of having gasoline fumes present from leaking or open gas cans, solvents and paints. Typically these fumes are heavier than air so they remain near the floor. When we are heating, anything with an open flame that is near the floor could create an explosion so we must be sure there is no exposed flame within about 24” of the floor.

The safest way to heat is with some sort of an overhead mounted heater. There are a few types available. The most common heater that our customers inquire about is a ceiling or wall mounted high intensity infrared heater. These heaters heat objects much like the sun and glow red hot when they’re on. High intensity heaters are not on my favorite list because the exhaust products are not vented and create quite a bit of humidity in the garage. They have an open flame as well so nothing can be within several feet of the front of the heater. Install cost is pretty low but I really would recommend the following as options because of the above concerns. Overhead forced air heaters are mounted at the ceiling, are gas fired and vented to the outdoors. They incorporate a blower and are also controlled by a thermostat. These are much like a miniature furnace without the ductwork.

The most efficient and comfortable way to heat is with a low intensity radiant heater. These are mounted at the ceiling as well but no fan is necessary. The fire is contained in a 4” tube and the heat of the tube is reflected down to the floor. These are very comfortable as they heat objects instead of the air. All heat is directed downward so the floor remains warm, cars will thaw off quickly and when you are in the garage, it will feel to you as if the sun is shining down on you. If you spend a great amount of time in your garage, low intensity radiant systems are the best selection to keep you comfortable and they are by far the most efficient.