I spend a lot of time in my garage. Whether it’s working on my car or on one of my many unfinished woodwork projects, taking time out to focus on a hobby over the weekend is always a pleasure. It’s great in the summer when I can open the doors and enjoy the heat. But the cold days of winter are a different matter: working with icy fingers and feet is no fun for anyone.
Here's a list of Best Portable Garage Heater
Portable Electric Garage Heater
In previous years, when the weather got colder, I added extra layers of clothing to keep warm until I was wearing so many clothes I could hardly move. And I still had cold feet and fingers. My summer projects had to be abandoned for the winter months and I retreated (rather grumpily) into the house to read.
The problem is that my garage is well insulated but does not have any heating. The answer, of course, is to add some. I could not afford to add permanent heating so the solution had to be portable and plug-in. Once I started looking I realized that there were more than a few small space heaters which would do the job and I began to research in earnest.
Eventually, I found a space heater which is portable, efficient and perfectly suited to my needs. I can potter in the garage all-year round and no longer need to add more than a sweatshirt, even on the coldest days of winter.
I also discovered that there is a huge range of garage heaters available, and what worked for me won’t work for everyone. Here are a few of my top tips for choosing the best garage heater for your needs.
What to Consider When Choosing a Garage Heater
The main thing I want to know before purchasing a garage heater is how much heat it produces. The level of heat you need will depend on your local area and the insulation (or lack of) in your garage. A 750 watt heater will produce far less heat that a 5000 watt heater so always check the power of the heater you are considering to see if it will suit your needs.
The best choice of heater also depends on the size of the space you need to heat; a small workroom within the house will need far less heat than a large workshop, or a three or four car garage. Working with a too-small heater which needs to be moved around to keep you warm is inconvenient and irritating and could result in you needing two or three separate heaters to adequately warm the space which one more powerful unit could have done alone.
For the purposes of this article I will be looking at portable plug-in heaters as they are inexpensive and convenient, and are not limited to the garage but can be used elsewhere if needed. Weight and ease of handling will be important factors.
A moveable heater needs to be light enough to easily carry but sturdy enough stand without falling over. This is especially important if you are likely to have pets or small children in the area of the heater; ideally they would be kept well away but certain safety features will help with peace of mind. An auto switch-off function will prevent the heater overheating and minimize the danger of fire or burns.
Fan heaters can be quite noisy and the level of noise varies a lot from heater to heater. Some poorly made heaters will also rattle or vibrate as they are working; the cheapest option is not always the best. If you play music while you work, or intend to use it in a an otherwise noisy space, the sound a heater makes might not matter to you as much as it would if you want to warm a quiet office space where you need to concentrate.
Top 5 Portable Garage Heaters
1. Patton Milk-House Utility Heater
This rugged looking heater is not pretty but it does have a few clever features which make it worth considering.
Extra Safety Features
The ‘guards’ on the sides of this heater prevent it from falling flat, reducing the risk of fire if it does get knocked over. In addition, there is an automatic shut-off function which switches the heat off it the heater does tip over.
- This little heater is lightweight and easy to handle, making it a great choice if you need a portable heater to use in different rooms.
- The tough exterior is good enough to withstand bumps and knocks without damaging it.
- Extra safety features give peace of mind
- The heater needs to be placed carefully on a flat surface to ensure that it doesn’t wobble.
- The top handle does not come attached and can be tricky to screw on.
This is a nice little heater for small spaces but will struggle to keep you warm in a larger garage or workshop. The auto shut-off if the heater falls is a handy feature for peace of mind, especially if you have pets that may knock it over.
Patton Milk House Utility Heater Video Review
2. Comfort Zone CZQTV5M Ceiling Mount Quartz Heater
The Comfort Zone heater is designed to be mounted on the ceiling. This keeps it well out of the way in smaller spaces and eliminates any danger of tripping on power cords or tipping it over while you work.
Adjustable Tilted Bracket
The tilting bracket means that you can aim the heat wherever you need it without having to move the heater.
The fact that this heater is ceiling mounted means that is should not need to withstand any knocks or movement but construction of the unit is still rather flimsy. It would not really be suitable for heating large areas but is ideal for using over a workbench or table.
Comfort Zone CZQTV5M Heater Video Review
Best suited to small spaces, the TPI Corporation 178TMC portable heater is a freestanding unit with a wide base stand and a carry handle on top.
Extra Wide Base Stand and Handle
The shape and size of the base stand and handle means that the heater is unlikely to tip over and is easy to carry around without touching the heater directly.
This is a nice little heater which warms a small space quickly. It is best used for short periods as the cost of running it can add up fast.
This heater comes with a lot more power than the previous ones but has a few minor drawbacks of its own.
Industrial Strength Heater
This little red heater can heat up to 600 square feet of space. The extra power, when compared to smaller heaters, means that it can move a lot of air. This makes it a great option for larger spaces but it might be overkill for a small garage or home workshop space.
NEMA 6-30p Power Connector
The heater comes with a NEMA 6-30p power cord and plug and needs a 220V outlet which would need to be fitted by a competent electrician if you don’t already have one.
This heater is great for larger spaces. It’s definitely worth the extra hassle of getting the outlet fitted if you have a three or four car garage space or a large workshop and need to heat it regularly.
Dr Infrared Heater DR-988 Video Review
Fan Only Option
The fan only option circulates air without heat for comfortable working conditions on warmer days.
Made in USA
The Cadet RCP502S Heater is made in the USA so contacting the company and buying parts is easy.
I would say this heater is good for larger spaces and keeps a 2/3 car garage or large basement nicely warm. The wall mount feature is convenient as it keeps the heater out of reach of children and pets and means that it can be placed to provide the best overall heat to the space.
Cadet Portable Heater Video Review
Shopping for a heater was more complicated then I originally thought it would be but once I understood the possibilities the process of selecting a heater became much, much easier. Now you also know the options and can be confident about researching and choosing a heater which fits your needs perfectly.