So you think it’s about time you stop freezing to death when you work on projects in your garage? You’re in luck! There’s an efficient solution to your issue and you might have even heard about it. Follow our guide to the best electric garage heaters below and get educated about the matter in just a few minutes.
We have compiled this article to assist people in their garage heating needs. We will focus on some of the best garage heaters you can find on the market today. Here are some concise but on-point garage heater reviews especially for you.
You will also find some comparisons done along with the pros & cons of electric garage heaters. Read till the end and get familiar with what exactly makes a garage heater a good choice.
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Features to Look For in a Garage Heater
We try to give you the fullest and most useful information when it comes to all sorts of heating and cooling systems. This is why our guide wouldn’t be complete if we skipped the part where we advise you what to look for in a garage heater. Check out the most important characteristics according to our experts.
Even though we are talking about relatively large premises such as garages and workshops, nobody wants the bulkiest heater. Size doesn’t always correlate with power output but you can make the argument that the two are connected.
Bear in mind that the larger your forced-air heater, the larger the fan. This means more noise and more blowing power. A large infrared heater, on the other hand, is quiet but if you get close to it, you will overheat in no time.
You need to think about the size in advance depending on how much room you have for a heater. If your garage is packed then maybe opt for a smaller one. Physics shows us that the messier a room is, the higher the temperature.
You get both benefits and drawbacks here so be careful when picking. A powerful heater will, of course, provide you with more heat quicker. It will be able to cover the room easily and its effectiveness is undeniable.
On the other hand, you will have to be ready to pay more on a monthly basis. The initial price is also higher for larger units. All in all, the more heat you want, the more money you need to be ready to spend.
We will also mention a few words about BTU here. A typical 2-car garage can be fully heated with 45 000 BTU. If you have a larger place, then you need 50 000+. This goes on to tell you that an infrared garage heater might be more suitable for such needs.
We have already mentioned the two main types of best electrical garage heaters and this doesn’t change now either. Infrared heaters will heat you up instead of the air. Forced-air heaters’ effect is felt quicker but it also dissipates very fast.
The functions here are pretty typical but not having some of them will be a huge drawback. So look for some of the following:
- Thermostat – it is plain unsafe and dangerous to operate any heating unit without a thermostat. Some of them are installed on the actual unit in case it is portable. The others can be put on a wall and they are called remote thermostats.
- Remote control – portable heaters do not usually have it but the larger ones do. Units that you have to install on the ceiling are typically remote controlled because you can’t reach them with your hand.
- Overheat protection – this is not the same as a thermostat. This sort of protection activates when the unit gets too heated in any way possible. If another object or unit heats it, it will still turn off. This is an essential safety feature.
- Timer – This is not so much about safety as much as it is about convenience and energy efficiency. You can definitely live without a timer. If it raises the price too much – skip it.
Ease of installation
Mounting the actual heater isn’t such a big deal but wiring it can be tricky. They all come with a wall/ceiling stand and it is a matter of a couple of screws to hold them tightly in one place.
Hardwiring a garage heater isn’t for everyone and it is best if you contact a certified electrician. You can try and install the garage heater yourself, of course, but knowledge of electrical systems is strongly recommended. Portable heaters do not require installation at all. They can be plugged right into the socket. You only need to watch the amps as these devices are quite powerful. 30 amps are your minimum. You may also want to see our portable car heater reviews.
Best Garage Heaters Comparison Chart
Comfort Zone Electric Heater
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NewAir G73 Hardwired Garage Heater
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Fahrenheat FUH54 Garage Heater
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Stanley High-Velocity Blower Fan
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NewAir G56 Garage Heater
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Dr Infrared Heater DR-988
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Cadet Portable Garage Heater
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Best Electric Garage Heater Reviews (Top List 2021)
1. Comfort Zone Electric Heater
This garage heater comes with a built-in fan which will distribute the heat nicely around your premises. Unfortunately, you cannot stop the fan. Even though it works quietly, it might bother some people. The thermostat can be lowered to reduce the fan noise but this will also result in an unfavorable temperature. The maximum power output you can get is 7500W and this will also come with about 25 600 BTU. The lower setting at 6250W gives off 21000 BTU. It is convenient that the Comfort Zone Electric heater comes with the mounting bracket.
The device is not hard to install onto a girder. It also needs to be hardwired so it is best if it is installed during a renovation or the building process. It doesn’t have a wall plug. The only voltage the heater works at is 240V. A converter is needed if you want to use it at 120V.
2. NewAir G73 Hardwired Garage Heater
The NewAir G73 is a middle of the pack garage heater which actually can give you a pretty good value for your money. It will heat up to about 750 square feet of space. It is best installed in shops or garages. The 4 louvers are used to direct the heat waves which makes it a very decent spot heater. The body of the unit is made out of stainless steel but still weighs only 15 lb. It has to be hardwired but on the other hand, this eliminates all issues you can have when using a plug. It is recommended that the heater is installed by a certified electrician.
Overheating is never a concern as the built-in thermostat also has the auto shut-off function. This is a 240V device and it also requires 30 amp circuits in order to be set up. The maximum output can reach 5000W. The unit is mounted either on a wall or a ceiling.
3. Fahrenheat FUH54 Garage Heater
This is by far the “hottest” garage heater on our list. Its maximum temperature can reach 135 degrees and this wins in a landslide. On the other hand, it can also go pretty low as you can set it to only 45 degrees. This heavy-duty unit is pretty heavy as it stands at 25 lb. This means that it needs to be carefully installed on a wall or a ceiling. It has two settings when it comes to power output – 5000W and 2500W.
The wiring is pretty straightforward but it should be done by someone who knows what they’re doing. It will also heat up any room of 1000 square feet or less. The manufacturer recommends that premises have insulation, though. The remote control can be used to both operate the thermostat and the directional louvers. There are 4 louvers for maximum control.
4. Stanley High-Velocity Blower Fan
One of the best value for money garage heaters you will see all day is the Stanley High-Velocity Blower Fan. With a relatively small initial investment, you will get plenty of effective heat. The best part is that this is one of the quietest fans and even at the highest setting, it will not distract you or interfere in your activities at all.
In fact, for what it’s worth, it is really tough to find any cons of this unit except for the fact that it doesn’t have a ton of fancy functions. If you need a warm fan, then this is your product. There are no rattling sounds, it is easy to carry thanks to the rugged handle, and it produces a strong warm draft. Since it is made out of plastic, it is also pretty lightweight. Can also be used in fan-only mode.
5. NewAir G56 Garage Heater
Portability is not absent even when we talk about garage heaters and the NewAir G56 is the proof. This budget option of a garage heater will also give you some portability. This makes it perfect for small workshops or domestic garage use. It will heat up a room of up to 560 square feet and the fan is a nice addition. There is overheat protection which is always on and works independently from the thermostat.
The thermostat is pretty straightforward to use. It is a dial with a “high and “low” setting. There is a handle on top to ensure easy carrying and relocating. The 6-foot cord adds to the accessibility of this unit. All of the above makes this garage heater a great option for temporary use such as building processes or small backyard projects. The steel body is coated with black powder for more style.
6. Dr. Infrared Heater DR-988
It is time we reviewed a garage heater with infrared properties. It serves perfectly as a spot heater for any sort of workshop. The mechanism allows it to raise the temperature by 10 each hour. The maximum temperature you will be able to enjoy is 95 degrees. This happens in the higher setting and power output of 5600W. If you want to maintain your garage’s temperature of just above freezing, then no problem.
The Dr. Infrared Heater DR-988 can go as low as 45 degrees. The installation is best performed by a professional. You will need a 240V system. It is possible that you use a plug instead of hardwiring the unit. On the downside, the warranty is only 100 days. The thermostat is also interchangeable. Don’t expect any rattles from the fan – it will be pretty quiet. There’s also overheat protection but no remote control.
7. Cadet Portable Garage Heater
Versatility is a key feature of this next product we got on our list today. The Cadet Portable Garage Heater is generally a wall-mounted unit but you can also use it on a floor stand. Prior to the purchase you simply have to specify which one you want. The product also has a 6-foot power cord so that it can be easily placed at the location of your liking. The thermostat is built-in and it is adjusted through the front panel.
Additional options include “on” and “off” settings as well as a special “restart” button. There is also a switch alternating between “hi” and “low”. The maximum power output is 5000W. The fan can be used along with a heating function or on its own just for the sake of blowing. Made in the USA, this 20-gauge steel garage heater gives users an excellent value for money option.
8. Dr. Heater Heavy-Duty Hardwired Garage Heater
This next garage heater is one of the larger units on our list. It is in fact considered to be a heavy-duty one. Its peak power output can reach 10000W and it works at 240V. These characteristics make it ideal for garages, workshops, and even factories. The thermostat is controlled by a remote. While the thermostat comes with the unit, the user has the option of purchasing a separate thermostat. It will also need to be installed, though.
The heater must be mounted on a ceiling, a wall or a pillar. The maximum temperature which it can give off is 90 degrees F. The minimum one is 50 degrees. Airflow can easily be directed using the 5 adjustable louvers. The product is fully UI and CUL listed and certified. It comes with a warranty of 1 year.
9. Patton Milk-House Utility Heater
Who says portability doesn’t have a chance at a workshop or a garage? This bag-like unit will provide you with quiet convection heat and will do so in a very energy-efficient way. The manufacturer obviously recognizes the importance of safety around men at work. This is why the front grill will prevent any interaction with the fan. Theirs is also an automatic tip-over switch-off mechanism. The unit itself is easy to operate. Simply rotate the dial for the setting you want to have – 1000W or 1500W. The other button is simply the on/off function. The handles upfront as well as the one on top really make the unit easy to carry and relocate.
The unit weighs less than a pound and this is a truly important feature. Since it is a forced-air heater, it will not be able to give you any heat without the fan blowing. You shouldn’t rely on it as a main source of heat in larger garages or rooms – just about 300 square feet.
10. Profusion Heat Ceiling-Mounted Garage Heater
The name of this unit shows us immediately that it is designed to be mounted somewhere above your head. The quartz technology makes this product perfect for the role of a spot heater. This characteristic is further enhanced by the presence of the 90-degree tilting arm. This construction allows for easy adjusting of the unit and directing the ray of heat to the desired point.
As the metal body gets heated, it will then give off some residual heat after the unit is turned off. Works at 120V and 12 amps. These low requirements are understandable due to the maximum output of only 1500W. It will be good for a room of about 300 square feet. The quarts element is not replaceable but this isn’t necessarily a drawback as all infrared heaters are like that. It is important to note that this unit is not suitable for outdoor use.
Types of Garage Heaters
In all fairness, there are more than just two types of heaters for garages. However, electric garage heaters with thermostats have two main types and that to an extent also determines the costs surrounding them:
- Forced-air heaters
- Infrared heaters
Here we will outline their main properties and it will become clear that these two are somewhat different. In fact, there will be discrepancies in almost every aspect from installation to effectiveness. It all comes down to the particular needs of everyone.
Mentioning the similarities is way easier and for the sake of having a productive guide, we will say a couple of words about them as well. Both heaters require access to the electrical network. It is best if you put them in areas with good venting. Both can also be powered by natural gas but in this article, we are discussing only garage heating solutions related to electricity.
Also, ensure some thorough insulation of your garage or workshop. Otherwise, you risk losing all the heat. You should be aiming at 4-inch layers on the walls and 6-inch ones on the ceiling regardless of what type of garage heater you want to install.
These are your typical “blowers” with the exception that when it comes to garage heating, they aren’t so typical. Warm air is blown in the room or in the area and this is how heating is achieved. Only the size and the power sets these units apart from your typical domestic space heaters.
A forced-air blower will not need a lot of time to make your premises warmer. The fan really helps a person to feel the warmth quickly. What’s not so good about these mechanics is that reheating the place is harder with such a device. Since the air is the one that gets heated first, the warmer temperatures are felt near the ceiling. The floor area is always cooler. Once the doors are open, you will need to wait longer for the heater to do its job.
Blowers are also not very convenient if your work is related to something in small parts or particles. Take for example woodwork. You will have all that sawdust blown around and this is not ideal. People working with clay or cutting metal shouldn’t have any problem using a forced-air garage heater.
Most garage heating solutions also differ in the way they are installed. If you are to put a forced-air heater in a garage you want to do so in the back. You will need to refer to individual instructions about certain models. They often have specific requirements for spacing.
And we cannot give you the full picture unless we also talk about money. The initial investment in a forced-air heater is almost two times smaller than what you will have to pay for an infrared heater. However, the energy consumption and therefore the monthly bill might end up being higher.
Pros of Forced-Air Heaters
- Cheaper to buy – a regular garage heater with the forced-air technology will not set you back a lot of money when you buy it.
- Location is up to you – distance from other objects isn’t as crucial here and you can have the heater anywhere you see fit.
Cons of Forced-Air Heaters
- Not so heat efficient – air will get warmer quickly but this is easy to lose. Objects keep the heat for longer but a forced-air heater doesn’t heat objects.
- It is warm where people aren’t – since hot air is lighter, it goes to the ceiling. People working and walking on the floor interact mainly with cooler air.
- Blowing isn’t pleasant – nor is it useful. Sawdust will be everywhere if you work with wood.
- Makes noises – the most powerful hanging garage heater installations will always have huge fans and this will make the environment quite loud.
Infrared Garage Heaters
We need to clarify that the infrared heaters for a garage are the low-intensity tube heaters. We are not going to dabble in the specifics when it comes to how infrared heaters function. However, we need to highlight the main differences from the forced-air heaters.
The infrared technology doesn’t blow the heat around but it radiates it. This means that rays of heat fly directly forward and heat up objects and people. The air gets heated last and this is actually not a bad thing. If you open the doors, the room will still retain some of the heat. The downside is that you will feel warm only after a while after turning the heater back on.
Distance from the heater is crucial when we are talking about infrared technology. You shouldn’t have anything near it as objects will overheat and this bears a lot of dangers. Hazards include even possible fire situations. On the bright side, you can place the heater in such a way that it faces exactly your workstation. It only comes down to garage heater sizing.
Don’t expect to hear any noises from your infrared garage heater. It won’t have a fan and you won’t be able to hear the combustion which takes place inside the tubes. This is, of course, an advantage of these devices as silent heat is always the more preferred option. Additionally, no fan means that the device won’t blow your accessories and tools around. You can freely leave pencils and rulers on your station expecting to find them there again.
We come down to the price topic again. Expect your infrared garage heater to sound like an expensive gadget. In all fairness, it will end up costing you more than a forced-air heater but it will surely give you a lower monthly bill.
Pros of Infrared Garage Heaters
- Easy to work around – the air doesn’t move and it doesn’t make it hard for people to arrange their stations
- Cheap energy – a 120V garage heater with a quartz mechanism will be quite efficient and will allow you to pay less for electricity on a monthly basis
- Directional heat rays – the infrared technology is all about radiating heat in a straight line. Objects and people get heated first.
- Not noisy – there’s no fan to make any noises and it won’t blow stuff around.
Cons of Infrared Garage Heaters
- Placement is important – you can’t have this heater anywhere you wish. Keep a safe distance from it and make sure no objects interact with it.
- Costs more to buy – the retail price is higher than some other garage heating options. If you are trying to find how to heat a garage for free, then that’s not it.
To learn more about infrared heaters, you may want to check out our infrared heater reviews.
It is here that we will recap our guide to the best garage heaters. We hope to have helped you get sufficient info on those devices. Our experts made sure to outline the most important characteristics and to give you some insight into the differences between the two main electric types of heaters.
We will be happy if you gave us your feedback regarding the article above. Leave us a comment and share the piece if you’ve found it useful. Let us know if you want to have something added and as always – stay put!
In case you enjoyed our reviews, read our reviews on other products like the quietest portable air conditioners and the most efficient electric fireplaces.
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