Planning for a Heated Garage
If you are building a new home or garage extension and intend to spend time working in the garage, it may be beneficial to look into options for a heated garage. Planning ahead can make your heating solution more integral to the design and allows you a wider variety of choices because you are not working around the restrictions caused by the existing structure. If you plan to heat your existing garage, there are a few options to consider:
If you will be working in the garage during cold weather, it may be cost effective to include the garage in the home's central heating system. Installation costs will vary depending on the design of your home and garage and the amount of additional piping that is required. However, using the central heating system rather than a separate heater will help to maintain energy efficiency and keep costs low. Using a radiator with an adjustable thermostat will allow you to turn the heating down if the garage is not in use while still preventing it from becoming chilled. It is more cost effective to keep the radiator on at a low temperature rather than trying to heat a very cold room.
There are a range of different types of space heaters available, offering different power sources and levels of portability. Space heaters can be effective if you will use the garage for short lengths of time or for infrequent periods in cold weather. These are also an excellent option when it is not possible to include the garage in the home's central heating system. If you are considering a space heater, think about how often you will use the area and for what length of time you intend to run the space heater for. Use that information to help find the best option for you.
Electric Space Heaters
There are a number of different subcategories of electric space heater: fan heaters, ceramic heaters, oil-filled heaters and radiant heaters all fall into this category. They all require access to a power socket which reduces your options for positioning them efficiently and it can sometimes mean that you are heating a much larger area than the one you are actually using. The other main drawback of electrical heaters is their high energy consumption. They can become quite expensive if used for prolonged periods of time and are not very energy efficient.
A propane heater offers a higher degree of portability than an electric one because it is powered using a refillable tank of propane gas. A propane heater can also be used for camping or RV trips. Replacement tanks are available at many locations throughout the country and propane heaters can be an efficient way to heat your garage although you should always be vigilant about checking for gas leaks.
One way to improve the efficiency of your heated garage is to install insulation. This is more important if you will use the garage for extended periods. Insulating the walls, ceiling and garage door can help reduce your heating costs significantly, offering an excellent return on an initial investment. Even if you don't want to invest in fully insulating your garage, it is advisable to check for any cracks or gaps that might allow wind and rain to enter the area.