If you’ve ever tried working in your garage during the winter, then you’re aware of the many benefits that come with a heated garage. Whether you enjoy working on your car, a woodworking project, or you use your garage as a rehearsal space for you and your band, a garage that’s unheated can be incredibly uncomfortable. While your garage doesn’t have to be as warm as the inside of your house, it should be comfortably warm, allowing you to spend as much time working on your projects as you need.
The best garage heater should be easy to use, powerful, safe, and built to last. Many of the models we have reviewed simply didn’t fit this bill. They may have been built solid, but they tended to overheat if they were turned on for more than an hour. Others didn’t have enough power to heat a larger garage, or they didn’t allow you to control the temperature.
Aside from the top tankless water heater on today’s market, we were also able to find the top five models on the market that really stood out. Each model is reasonably priced, solidly built, comes equipped with important safety features and they’re easy to use and mount. Whether you’re looking for an electric or gas-powered model, we’ve got you covered.
We’ve also included a buying guide that offers information on the types of features you’ll need if you’re looking for a model that can handle heating bigger spaces, you need a model that’s highly portable, or you’re searching for a heater that allows you to control the temperatures in your workshop.
Now, let’s start off by getting a closer look at the top of the line garage heaters currently on the market.
Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy 4,000-9,000-BTU Indoor-Safe Portable Radiant Heater:
Compact, highly portable, and reasonably priced, this powerful little heater comes with excellent safety features, easy operation, and works well when it comes to warming up smaller workspaces.
Dyna-Glo GBF30DTDG-2 Blue Flame Vent Free Garage Heater:
This model can use natural gas or propane and comes with a five-setting thermostat for ultimate room temperature control. It’s easy to install, energy efficient and it’s a great buy if you’re looking for a heater that’s powerful enough to keep your garage warm in the winter.
TPI Corporation 198TMC Fan Forced Portable Heater:
Compact, lightweight, simple to use, and it comes equipped with important safety features, this budget-friendly garage heater can be the perfect choice if you’re looking for a portable model you can use for your small garage or on the job.
Fahrenheat FUH724 240-volt Garage Heater:
Perfect for heating up large garages and workspaces, this powerful portable and mountable heater will heat up large spaces quickly and efficiently. The built-in thermostat also allows users to easily control room temperature.
Optimus H-9010 Garage/Shop Ceiling:
A garage heater that will struggle to heat up even smaller workspaces, this lower-priced model is a total bust. With a tendency to overheat and equipped with components that can easily break, you’re better off roughing it during the winter than wasting your money on a heater that doesn’t provide heat.
This model by Fahrenheat is perfect for heating large garages, workshops, or even your basement.
It features a rugged, heavy-duty design and comes with a built-in mount for easy installation.
The heater’s louvers are adjustable, allowing you to direct the heat flow.
For added safety, the heater also comes with a high-level cut off switch, which powers the heater down if it detects overheating. The feature then switches the heater back on once it has cooled down.
This model is designed to quickly and efficiently heat spaces up to seven hundred square feet.
The thermostat can be controlled via a large knob. Users can choose from five different heat settings which begin at fifty degrees and max out at one hundred and five degrees.
We found that the heater’s internal fan was not quite as powerful as it should be and struggled to disperse the hot air efficiently in larger spaces.
This garage heater is both versatile and powerful, with reports from homeowners who claim it can heat up a room that’s nine hundred square feet in just fifteen minutes. A great buy if you’re looking for a tough heater that can handle daily use, we recommend this model for anyone who’s searching for a powerful heater to warm up larger spaces.
This garage heater by Dyna-Glo is packing some serious power with a BTU rating of thirty thousand. Venting is not required, making installation a breeze. It’s designed for heavy, daily use, so it can work great in a home garage or business.
Users also have precise control over the temperature, thanks to the built-in thermostat. The heater will adjust automatically to the preset temp.
The heater comes equipped with a great safety feature; the oxygen depletion sensor, or ODS. This feature will shut the heater down if it detects a lack of oxygen or high levels of monoxide.
It also comes with high-quality mounting hardware, offering more versatility in terms of where you can mount or install this beast.
The thermostat knob features five settings. The first setting will heat the room up to fifty-five degrees, while the fifth setting offers the maximum temperature of one-hundred and eighteen degrees.
This innovative heater will push heat out and up for improved heat circulation. The heater is designed to heat the air first, with the second step focusing on heating all surrounding objects.
This model runs on natural gas or propane, which makes it more cost-effective.
A great, efficient heater, it’s also the perfect choice for emergency back-up heat in the event of a power outage.
There were some reports that the heater wasn’t powerful enough to disperse heat quickly, stating that it takes approximately an hour to heat up rooms that are three-hundred square feet. We recommend using a ceiling or box fan when the heater is on to reduce warm-up time.
Easy to install, cost-effective, and simple to use, despite its smaller size this heater is pretty powerful. While it’s true that a more powerful internal fan would do wonders in terms of helping the heater to warm up a room faster, overall, this heater does an excellent job of maintaining desired room temperature and it’s a great choice for heating your workshop, garage, or home.
This portable garage heater by Mr. Heater is a nine thousand BTU unit that can heat up to two hundred and twenty-five feet. It’s also approved for both outdoor and indoor use and because it’s clean burning it means this heater is highly efficient.
It comes with a patented auto shut-off feature in the event the heater is accidentally tipped over, if the sensors detect the oxygen levels are too low, or if the pilot light goes out.
This is a propane powered garage heater and it’s a more affordable option than electric models of this size.
The heater’s fold-down handles also make this model highly portable so you can take it from your garage to your workshop or from job site to job site.
It’s also equipped with an easy-start four position control that allows you to adjust the temperature based on your heating needs.
Equipped with an essential shut-off safety function that kicks in when it detects the pilot light has gone out, when the heater has been knocked over, or when the oxygen levels are too low, this isn’t a feature you’d normally find on a garage heater in this price range, so it’s a huge selling point.
It’s highly portable, so you can easily transport it anywhere.
The four heating settings will allow you to adjust the temperature accordingly.
The fact that it can only heat up spaces that measure in at two hundred and twenty-five square feet means that you may need to purchase more than one model if you need to heat a large workshop or garage.
Since it’s propane-powered you’ll need to keep a close eye on the gas gauge and replace the tank once the levels are low.
Overall, despite the fact that it’s not able to heat up a large workspace, we felt that this well-built, compact heater is the perfect buy if you’re looking for a reasonably priced model that’s powerful and efficient. Purchasing two will work to heat up an average sized two-car garage and will still end up only costing you a fraction of the price when compared to larger electric powered models. We would highly recommend this garage heater by Mr. Heater to anyone who’s looking for a reliable propane powered heater to keep their workspace nice and warm during the colder months of the year.
4. TPI Corporation 198TMC Fan Forced Portable Heater Review-Top-Selling 120V Garage Heater-Best Buy for Small Spaces
This is an electric fan-forced heater that’s highly portable. It can work well to warm up a small garage, shed, or you can take it with you and easily transport it from job site to job site. This is a heater and fan combo. You can choose to use the fan-only mode or the heat and fan hybrid mode, which works to distribute heat more efficiently. Because you can use the fan or heat only modes, this model can be used year-round in the heat or intense cold.
The heater also comes with a thermostat, so you can adjust the temperature. The heater’s manual reset switch will shut the heater down if it begins to overheat or if the heater is tipped over.
This model comes equipped with a six-foot-long cord and it’s wired for one hundred and twenty volts, making it compatible with standard circuits.
The heater weighs in at just nine pounds, which makes it highly portable.
The manual reset switch is an important safety feature that will turn the heater off instantly if the heater gets knocked over or begins to run hot.
Its compact design makes this heater highly portable and perfect for use on the job or to heat up a small workspace or garage.
Because it runs on electricity, if you plan on using it often you can expect a big bump in the cost of your heating bill.
While this TPI Corporation heater isn’t quite powerful enough to heat up a large garage or workshop, it does a great job of quickly warming up small spaces. Compact, lightweight, and easy to use, this model is a great buy if you need a moderately powered heater that’s highly portable and able to heat up a smaller work area quickly.
This Optimus garage heater features quartz heating elements, a pull cord for quicker access, overheating protection, and a halogen light you can switch on while you work.
It’s a popular model due to its low pricing, but unfortunately, upon further inspection, we found a number of issues that make this garage heater a bad buy and a total waste of money.
To begin with, the halogen light goes out rather quickly and it’s impossible to find a replacement. As far as heat output goes, this heater struggles to adequately heat a small shed and will begin to overheat after just an hour of use.
The mounting bracket breaks easily due to poor design.
Other users claimed the heater completely stopped working in a matter of weeks.
Additionally, it’s just not an efficient or economic garage heater, with reports that daily use more than doubled some homeowner’s electric bills.
It’s possible to find a lower priced garage heater that’s powerful and reliable, but this just wasn’t one of them. Save your hard-earned cash and instead search for a model that features parts that are easily replaceable, a solid construction, and a heater that operates without constantly overheating.
Garage Heater Buying Guide
Are you tired of freezing in your garage during the winter? Are you ready to turn your cold garage into the workspace you’ve always dreamed of?
A garage heater is just what you need to turn that freezing garage into a comfortable workshop and one that you can use year-round.
A great solution, this type of heater can be used to heat up a shed or small workshop as well. If you have a three-car garage or larger than average workshop you may need to use multiple garage heaters in order to heat your workspace up more efficiently.
Garages can get very cold due to poor insulation, making it difficult to maintain a comfortable, constant temperature. Garage heaters are designed for these circumstances and work to produce a large amount of heat in a short amount of time. The heater that’s right for your garage will depend on a number of factors such as the size of your garage or workplace. Depending on the heat or fuel source you choose, you’ll also need to choose mounting or venting options.
Heat or Fuel Source Options
Natural gas: If you have an easily accessible gas line, choosing a garage heater that uses natural gas can be one of the more affordable ways to heat up your garage. If your furnace, dryer, and oven already use natural gas, then it’s likely that you can have someone easily extend your gas line to your garage.
Propane: If you don’t have easy access to natural gas, then liquid propane may be the best option. Propane is often sold by the gallon at gas stations and local hardware stores. However, one downside to this power source is the need to constantly monitor the fuel level.
Electricity: If other fuel sources aren’t an option, then you’ll have to go with an electric model. These models are direct wired. They’re typically mounted on the ceiling or wall so they won’t take up any floor space.
Gas Heaters Versus Electric Heaters
Both gas and electric heaters come with their own advantages and disadvantages.
Electric heaters don’t require ventilation, unlike gas-powered models. You’ll also avoid the hassle of having to refill the propane tank.
Gas-powered models can heat up garages and workspaces that are as big as five thousand square feet, unlike an electrically powered unit which typically has a max heat range of just four or five hundred square feet.
Using a gas heater is often cheaper than operating an electric model.
Most models of garage heaters will display the BTU rating right on their spec sheet so you’ll know how much power is required to operate a particular model. The higher the number of watts and the BTU rating, the more heat that’s generated and the bigger the space the heater can efficiently heat. Keep in mind that the rating that’s provided may not always be accurate. Instead, it’s based on ideal conditions. Because of this, we recommend that you choose a heater that features a little more power than you need. This helps to cover any issues that can cause heat to leak such as poor insulation.
Another important thing to consider is the size of your garage. As an example, if you have a small garage you might just need an infrared or radiant heater. These styles of garage heaters tend to work best in small spaces because they work to directly heat objects instead of heating the air. A large garage will need a heater that offers four to six thousand watts.
Most models will clearly display the heating range right on the package or on their online spec sheet. This is usually measured in feet. If you can’t find that particular information, then use the BTU rating. There’s a 10:1 ratio of watts to feet. As an example, a heater that’s five-thousand watts will cover five hundred square feet.
Keep in mind that there are several external factors that will determine how effective your new heater will be. This includes whether or not there are any drafts, how well insulated the garage is, and the size of the room combined with the height of the ceiling.
When you’re shopping online for a new heater, you should look for a model that’s equipped with important safety features.
Overheating protection: If you spend plenty of time in the garage, in extremely cold weather it’s totally possible for a garage heater to overheat, especially as it struggles to keep your garage heated to the desired temperature. Of course, this can be a potential hazard. With safety in mind, many manufacturers now design heaters that feature overheat protection. This feature will shut the heater off in order to protect itself against high temperatures that can damage the heater’s components or possibly result in a fire.
Tip switch: Even a large heater can get knocked over. If you choose a model that you don’t have to mount we recommend buying one that comes with a tip-over switch, which will shut off the heater if it gets knocked over.
Not many people want to spend a significant amount of time and money maintaining their heater. Every model will require a little routine maintenance or cleaning, while others will require more.
To avoid a high maintenance model, find a garage heater that’s equipped with the following features:
- Permanently lubricated fan motor
- Solid construction
- Air intake grille
Heaters with these features don’t require much maintenance.
Other Features to Look For
Other important features that can make your garage heater easier to use and more efficient include:
Mounting brackets: These are ideal for heaters that are going to be set up permanently. Mounting your heater can also help you save on valuable floor space.
Thermostat: This feature will help you to maintain the perfect temperature in your garage or workshop. Many models feature thermostats that are adjustable, which will allow you to warm your shed, job site, or garage based on size and the desired temperature.
Portability: If you want a heater that you can move from your garage to your shed or workshop, then look for a heater that features a lightweight design so it’s easier to move. Most models will come equipped with handles or wheels for added convenience.
Fan: Most models will also come with a built-in fan which helps to disperse the warm air, improving the heater’s ability to efficiently warm up a room. Some heaters with a built-in fan will allow you to use a fan-only mode, which means you can use the model year-round.
As with any product, the price will reflect the type of quality you can expect, not to mention extra features. Gas-powered models tend to be more expensive than electric heaters, but aside from the higher initial cost, you’ll learn that they’re actually much cheaper to operate. A heater with extra features such as a controllable thermostat can also equal a higher price tag, but the ability to precisely control the temperature is worth it to anyone that spends a significant amount of time in their garage. While the price of a garage heater will be an important factor, it definitely shouldn’t be the determining one.
Now that you know more about the special features to look for, the differences in power and abilities regarding electric versus gas, and which models received a higher user rating, you’re now ready to hit that buy now button and order the perfect garage heater for your workshop, garage, or workspace. We hope our reviews have shed a little light on what makes each model the best of the best, and what you can expect in terms of quality and performance. But most of all, we hope we’ve helped you to choose a high-quality model that will work the best for you and your workspace.