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How Are You Heating Your Garage?


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I have a king eco2s 220 volt heater that really wasn't cutting it and it ran constantly, I decided to build another heater using an electric dryer to supplement my garage heat.

Here's a link to my video of my build. 

 

Tell me what you guys think?

 

 

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I have a 50,000 BTU/hr Hot Dawg propane heater for my 24 x 36 insulated garage with loft.  It works great, heats fast, uses outside combustion air, and vents to the outside.  Downside:  propane now costs $4.99/gallon here in eastern Massachusetts when you don't have a huge tank.  It's like feeding $100 bills into the heater.  A couple of years ago, I finally added a 36,000 BTU/hr heat pump system to cool and heat the garage.  At the present ratio of propane/electricity costs, it's cheaper to use the heat pump in winter.  I normally set the thermostat at 40 °F, kick it up to 55 when I want to work.  Sometimes, I'll turn on the propane unit to bring the temperature up quicker, then turn it off.  Natural gas is not available in this area.  And, the air conditioning doesn't hurt in the summer.

 

Heat pumps have a multiplier of 3 or 4 to 1 in terms of heat delivered for electricity used.  Of course, we're paying about $0.25/kW-hr for electricity in New England.  Your mileage may vary!      

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Back in the early 1970’s an Italian bricklayer taught a young boy an important lesson. If you ever design and build your own house, run the chimney through the garage. It acts as a giant radiator and heats the garage for free. 25 years ago when I built our new house……I took the lesson and did what he recommended. Added 2x6 walls and high end windows and doors to improve the R rating of the garage. Even with a very efficient heat system, the garage stays comfortably warm even when it’s below zero outside. It works great as the snow and ice melt off the car every night when I come home. I put a fairly steep pitch on the garage floor to drain itself. It also lets me was the car inside when I want without issues. Since I rarely work on cars at the house, an electric 220 heater will bring the temperature up to 60 degrees in a short time if needed. Basically it’s a heated garage(oversized three cars) for free during your lifetime. So, here’s to Mario and his five brothers…………they were as hard as nails well into their 80’s from mixing mud and laying bricks for six decades. 

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I'm on my 3rd shop that last 2 are kind of boring, a used oil furnace and now in a better climate I have a basement drive in shop heated from lost heat from heat ducts and an an occasional infrared heater over my bench. Stays in the 60-75 degree range year around.

 

My first shop I started with 10KW 220v wall heater didn't do much when it was really cold in the North and you could almost hear the meter spinning. I added a used LP space heater with two 100 pound tanks outside, like I remember my grandparents used in the dinning room that they used to heat most of their house. That worked well but again cost of operation was high for back when we were pinching pennies. I then added a steel box wood stove. The fire box was just the right size that a paper shopping bag stuffed with burnable trash to fit. I put a stainless insulate chimney from the ceiling through the roof but the part exposed in the shop I built my own double wall stove pipe with a holes punched in the side pointing towards my work bench and a small fan mount in the side up hight pushing air down the pipe and across my bench. We separated out trash into burnable and garbage. Most weeks we generated 2 bags of burnables which would nicely heat that corner of my shop for a couple of hours on Saturday. I would throw in scrap wood and fire wood to extend the work time. Really worked well especially after I hung paint drop clothes from the ceiling closing off the area around my project car, bench and 3 heat sources. It really didn't keep the heat in much but it would stay notably warmer and got warmer faster. I still used the LP and electric heaters when I didn't want to fire up the wood stove or if I just wanted to maintain some heat in over night for things to dry.

 

I admit my current shop is my favorite but getting rid of burnable trash was nice. I would stock up over the Summer in a barrel till it was full to burn in the Winter.

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 In my toy box, I use an oil burner that was meant for a mobile home. I have it mounted 8' high so that it doesn't ignite any gas fumes. 

 It has the cold air intake on the bottom, so I have a duct going down to the floor to pick up the coldest air and it discharges at the top.

 The "fire box is 10' from the floor.  I never use it when handling gas or even it I smell gas.

 

 As far as gas goes, I never remove a gas tank inside of a building!    (The fireman like it when it is burning out in a field!)

 

                                                                                       See related image detail

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I use a Monitor Kerosene Heater.  It's set on a Thermostat and keeps the garage 50 degrees all the time.  I burn less than 250 gallons a year.  It's 28 by 50 with a 10 foot ceiling.  Super well insulated but it has alot of windows. I use probably between 200 and 220 gallons a winter.  That's in Upstate NY in the mountains.

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I have a drywall and insulated garage (just 2 bay residential so 20 x 20) and I'm putting in an extra 20 amp so I can put a small electric heater in it. My wife isn't crazy about gas so we're going electric. Hope it will be enough but I don't do much garage stuff in the winter and I have no mechanical skill so really no point.

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