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ARCHIE ADAMSEditor-in-Chief of the Handy Home Master
There’s nothing worse than having to wake up early in the chilly morning of the cold season, getting in the car, and freezing while trying to start it. Sitting there like that and praying for the car to warm up faster so that it can finally pump some hot air, might be the first hint that you need to learn how to heat a garage properly. Naturally, the first things that might spring your mind would be proper insulation, installing a heat source, and of course, maintenance. But adding up all of these might lead to surprisingly high investments, so another thing that you really need to consider is how to heat a garage cheaply and, at the same time, efficiently.
As such, we have taken the time to go over all of the best options available, considering all possible reasons for which you might want to learn how to keep the garage warm, just to bring you a compact and comprehensive 101 guide on this topic. From simple questions like how many BTUs to heat a garage to more complicated matters like how to keep a garage warm during winter, we will walk you through everything in order to ultimately determine what is the best way to heat a garage. Keep on rearing and we will take you there!
How to Insulate a Finished Garage
If you are planning to heat up the garage space, choosing to insulate it makes a whole lot of sense. But there are also a lot of things to consider when planning how to heat an uninsulated garage, such as choosing the materials, or whether or not to use the same insulation as for the rest of your house. And let’s not forget about the garage door, which will require completely different insulation than the ceiling or the walls. How to insulate a garage floor is yet another important part of the job. Also, garages should be kept warm both on the inside and the outside. One of the main things to consider when it comes to the garage’s exterior insulation is the human health factor. This is because many insulations contain chemical impurities and can breathe harmful substances, so they should only be used on the exterior. Therefore, if you are planning exterior insulation of your garage, then the environmental friendliness of the materials you will use does not play such an important role. But in this case, you will have to pay attention to the materials’ resilience to high humidity, and other natural factors.
Now, there are several ways to insulate the brick wall garage, but the following are the two most popular ones, each of them beating by far a wood burning stove in garage. The first method consists of using a fiberglass mesh and applying a plaster layer over it. For this one, it is also recommended to install an additional thermal layer. To do this, you can use the side panels. The main disadvantage of this method would be the large investment of time required for its implementation. Then there’s the second option, that of doubling and upgrading the garage’s bricklayer. The great advantage of this method is the long-term preservation of heat in the room, plus it’s also the milestone for how to heat a garage safely.
How to Heat a Garage in Winter
But to make sure your car is well maintained throughout the winter, insulating the garage will not nearly be enough! Additional measures must be taken, in order to master how to keep garage warm during winter. Firstly, you will need to provide extra ventilation, which will eliminate excessive humidity and gas. For this, you must equip the room with an appropriate heating system, and there’s a large debate regarding the best heater for garage, but we’ll go over that further down the line. The main thing to consider here is that you will need to maintain the air temperature inside above 5 degrees Celsius.
Depending on the positioning of your garage in relation to your house, you can choose one of two options for heating it during the winter:
The first one would be sharing the heating system with the one inside your house. This method of heating the shelter for a car can prove quite beneficial if the garage is close to the house (up to 20 meters). In this case, the garage will be heated alongside your house, which will ensure very high temperatures during the cold season. This can also eliminate the need to figure out how to heat garage floor.
Then there’s the option of going for an autonomous heating system. There are a lot of options available at your disposal, but that you should keep in mind is that this type of solution is most useful when the garage is situated far away from the house and you cannot connect it to an already existing heating system. Now, there are quite a lot of propane heating systems pros and cons, as well as infrared heating panels pros and cons. The choice is yours to make in the end, and you should decide depending on the location of your garage, its design, and the number of cars you own. But let’s take a closer look at the options you have ahead of you.
Electric Heaters for Garage
The most common method of heating a garage nowadays is electricity. In the beginning, car owners tried to figure out how to keep a garage warm without electricity. But nothing better was ever thought of, so they had to resort to household appliances. These cases are easily DIY, all you really need is a nichrome spiral wound on an asbestos pipe. Granted, this will not be the best electric wall heater, but it will only consume a very small amount of energy, of up to 10 kW tops! So, if you’re worried about how many BTUs to heat a garage, this old school solution would be quite affordable. But let’s flash forward to present tense, where stationary and portable electric heaters are extremely popular.
When using any electrical method, what you should be looking out for would be maximum heat savings while at the same time, performing complete work on the insulation of the room itself. This would pretty much make for the best space heater for large room, and, to get an optimal effect, you could also install a fan near the heating, which will increase the circulation of heated air, and also reduce the heating time of the structure. The only disadvantage is the high energy consumption. In addition, devices dependent on electricity may malfunction or go out of order at any time.
Portable Heaters for Garage
As already established, portable space heaters are probably the most convenient and popular solution to how to safely heat a garage. Most of the pertinent options available on the market are rather inexpensive and quite energy-efficient. Depending on your needs, you might also get away with only one small single space heater. That is if you’re only active in one portion of the garage. However, if you are trying to figure out how to heat a garage uniformly, then you might want to consider purchasing several such devices and spread them across the entire room in a manner that covers all areas where you will carry your work out.
Radiant Heater for Garage
This would be the best heater for garage if you don’t have a lot of energy supply. Radiant ceiling heat pros and cons are very diverse. It’s perfectly safe for indoor use, and it can generate a considerable amount of heat for the whole time you will be spending working in the garage. Some of the better models available on the market can cover areas of 220 square feet, and in terms of cost-efficiency, they can provide between 5000 and 8000 BTUs.
Infrared Heater for Garage
The best infrared heaters available today can constitute the perfect solution to your problem. They work best for detached out-building garages, and on top of this, they will also warm up the room situated right about the garage. These are direct sources of heat for both humans and objects, and they pose no major threat to one’s health.
How to Heat a Garage without Electricity
If you’re trying to figure out how to heat a garage cheaply, there are a couple of options that will eliminate the need for electricity consumption. Even if your garage is not frost-proof, any model of kerosene or diesel operating device can quickly heat the air in the room. There are models that work without electricity and that are far more complex that one might imagine. They can’t really stand up to the best electric wall heater, but, with their low level of consumption, they are worthy competitors.
Gas heaters are another electricity-free alternative that’s not only viable but also quite effective.
However, there are many propane heating systems pros and cons. On one hand, the use of this type of heating device is possible only by connecting the cylinders with liquefied gas. As for the cylinders, they can be either ceramic screens or convectors. On the plus side, these garage gas heaters can be installed even if the garage is not connected to the main source.
And this would pretty much conclude our guide on how to heat a garage efficiently, and at the same time, cheaply. All of us here at HandyHomeMaster hope that you will find this article useful and that it will help you determine what’s the best heater for a garage option that will suit your particular needs, and keep you warm during those frosty winter days and nights. It’s time to say goodbye to those chilling mornings waiting for your car to start up, and ensure an optimal heat for your garage at all times. Good luck!