Last updated on July 23rd, 2018 at 12:12 pm
It’s first thing in the morning on a typical January Tuesday. Despite the predicted snow and below-freezing temperatures, you still have a job to do.
You rush to the garage to warm up your car, bracing for the cold air about to penetrate you bones.
To your surprise, you are greeted with a swoosh of warm air as you enter your garage. You’d forgotten that you’d recently installed a garage heater, and now your daily routine had changed for the better.
OK, so maybe this isn’t your typical January Tuesday – but it could be!
The best garage heaters can keep both your garage and your car comfortable, buffering stark temperature transitions from indoors to outdoors as you venture out for the day. It can be a little daunting to decide on your own which heater to go with for your home. We have collected the top electric garage heaters you should consider this winter, as well as a buying guide to help you navigate your first purchase.
11 Best Electric Garage Heaters: Our Top Picks
|Rank||The Heater||Best For||Our Vote|
|1||Cadet Portable||Adaptable & Portable||9.9|
|2||Fahrenheat FUH54||Warming Larger Spaces||9.9|
|3||Dr. Heater DR966||Value and Simplicity||9.7|
|4||Dimplex Garage/Workshop Heater||Energy Conservation||9.6|
|5||King Electric 240V||High Heat Output||9.4|
|6||NewAir G73||Stainless Steel Construction||9.3|
|7||NewAir G56||Quick Heat||9.2|
|8||PROWARM Electric Fan Heater||Quality & Remote Control||9.0|
|9||Comfort Zone Industrial||User Options||8.9|
|10||Dr. Infrared Heater DR988||Budget||8.7|
|11||Comfort Zone Quartz Heater||Ease of Use||8.3|
Garage Heater Buying Guide – How To Choose The Right Fit For Your Home
Buying a garage heater is not as simple as just waltzing into a store and buying the first one you see that fits your budget. With size, wattage, safety and many more variables to be considered the decision may seem cumbersome – Worry not! We have consolidated an easy to follow buyers guide:
Optimal sizing for your garage heater
It is imperative that when purchasing a garage heater for your home, that you select one that is sized properly for your garage. The reasoning for this is clear. If the garage heater is not large enough it will not heat your garage to your satisfaction. On the contrary, if you purchase one that is larger than necessary and you will never be using the heater to it’s fullest potential. The sizing of your heater also plays a key role in the efficiency of your central-heating costs. Be sure to take measurements of your garage prior to any purchases.
While sizing your garage heater is necessary, it is not the only thing to be considered while browsing for your first heater. Safety is of the utmost importance and it’s up to you to make sure that your garage heater qualifies as a safe purchase for your home. When purchasing a garage heater you want to make sure that it has an automatic shut-off built in, in the event that the heater is tipped over. A temperature limiter is also key, to prevent overheating and loss of equipment.
Certifications and Standards
Just as with anything, there are certain certifications and standards that you can keep an eye out for that can be used to measure the safety of the different heaters on the market.
ETL – The ETL Badge (Edison Testing Laboratories,) is a verification that an electrical device is in line with the standards determined safe for usage in American homes. This badge is provided by the ETL, a nationally recognized electronics laboratory and member of OSHA.
UL – The UL certification states that the garage heater is deemed safe by the Underwriter Laboratories, and the Occupational Safety and Hazards Administration (OSHA).
Ease of operation
Once you have determined your heater size, found the proper wattage and checked the certifications confirming safety, the next move is to see how easy it is to actually use the heater. The following are 3 features that any good heater will include-
- Thermostat: This may seem obvious, however, please do make certain that you have an adjustable thermostat on your garage heater. This simple tool will make holding your choice of temperature as simple as the turn of a knob, and some fancier heaters even come with remote access!
- Fan: Having a fan allows a heater to warm up space more quickly by dispersing the air over a larger vicinity. This will shorten the amount of time you have to spend waiting for your garage to warm up, and if anything you can turn the fan on without the heater to enjoy some airflow during the summer!
- Mounting Bracket: This really does depend on what you choose to do with your heater. Allowing you to mount the heater on your ceiling, you will save floor space and takes the heater out of sight. This is perfect if you are not planning on moving your heater.
You’ve settled on the fact that you need some heat, but are you sure a garage heater is the way to go? In some situations you may be better off with a kerosene heater or an electric baseboard heater – if you’re interested in learning more our buying guides should be very helpful. Just make sure you’re looking for the best type of product to suit your needs.
Now that you know what to look for in a garage heater, we have put together the top garage heaters for you to consider when solving your warming concerns.
Garage Heater Reviews
Portability is an under-rated quality when it comes to heaters. While having something solid and imposing is nice, the truth is that you often just need to be able to lug your heat source around without throwing out your back. Portability means you can use the heater in multiple places and that you never have to worry about being too far from the source of heat. If you want to make sure that you’ve got access to a heater that you can move around easily, you may want to look at Cadet’s Electric Portable Garage Heater.
This heater is very adaptable. It comes equipped with a floor stand and a wall bracket, so it’s easy enough to move from point to point in your garage that you’ll often forget that it can serve as a stationary heater. It has very easy controls to use and an automatic shut-off for when the heat gets too high, so you can stop worrying about fire hazards and concentrate on your own projects. There’s also a feature that allows you to just use the fan on the unit, which is perfect for when you need a bit of circulation without having to turn on the air conditioning.
The good news is that this unit doesn’t make a trade-off between heat and portability. The bad news, though, is that it’s fairly loud. The fan does tend to rattle a bit, so you’re looking at a noise level that’s somewhere just below an air conditioning unit. It’s not deafening, but it can get a bit annoying in a very small space. Still, the utility of the unit itself more than makes up for the noise that it makes.
The Fahrenheit FUH54 garage heater comes built in with an easy to install wall mount that can mount both horizontally and vertically. Once you have the heater mounted all you need to do is plug it into a 240V socket and power it on. If you want to adjust where the warm air is being transferred, you can make use of the adjustable louvers and point the air wherever you please. The FUH54 has a water-resistant coat that will ensure you will be rust free for years to come. As far as safety is concerned the unit does have a built-in shut-off feature which prevents overheating and protects the heating elements from a burn-out. This unit also has an adjustable thermostat, and although it does not have an exact temperature, you can adjust the thermostat to keep it at the same level you set it to. The only unavoidable downside to choosing this heater is that it does not come with a remote control. If flexibility in mounting, durability, and accessibility is what you are looking for than the FUH54 may be your fit for your heating needs!
When it comes to trustworthy quality, few are more reputable for outperforming competition than the Dr. Heater. The DR966 is an electric heater that runs at 3000/6000 watts with a compact design, making is perfect for the common garage spaces. Don’t let the small size fool you though as it is extremely powerful and can heat even large spaces given time. Similar to the NewAir, the DR966 is hardwired into the wall to ensure longevity and can be mounted to the ceiling or wall. However, a fair disadvantage is that the heater does not come with the power cord, so you will have to do some additional set-up. However this should not stray you away, the set-up is simple and with a steady stream of great user reviews, you can trust this will be a worthwhile choice. Being competitive in price powerful and simple to setup, Dr. Heater will and always been a constant in the home-heating market.
Sometimes it feels like no one has tried to make workshop heaters any better since they were originally designed. It isn’t that there aren’t plenty of novelty control options, but rather that most electric heaters tend to use the same kind of inefficient heating elements that they have always used. While this doesn’t hurt the heating process, it does hurt one’s energy usage. Fortunately, Dimplex’s 4000 Watt heater goes a long way to making the heating process more efficient.
Saving energy is the big selling point of this unit. It’s not huge, but it puts out a lot of heat for a relatively low energy cost. Dimplex has clearly done a lot of research to improve the guts of its units, and it shows here. While the interior might be all-new, the exterior is still the same old solid construction that consumers have come to love. It’s very hard to damage this unit, which means that it will stand up to most shop use with ease.
This is, however, a very noisy machine. It shakes and rattles, which can get to be problematic if you are in a small, enclosed space. If you are willing to put up with the noise, though, you’ll get a great heating experience that won’t require you to break the bank.
If you need a garage heater, your main concern is probably the generation of heat. Other features are nice, but you need to be sure that your heater will actually warm up your garage. King’s Electric Garage Heater does just that, providing you with extra warmth in a very dependable package. It’s got a few extra bells and whistles, but the real selling point is that it will keep your garage warm through the winter.
This unit puts out a lot of heat – enough that you may have to turn it down after it runs for awhile. It has all the usual safety features, of course, but it tends to build up heat quickly and maintains its output even when it’s cold. One of the few nods this unit has towards modernity is the fact that it’s set up to use a remote control – something that can end up being quite helpful if you don’t want to keep messing with the heater as you’re working in your garage.
The only real downside to this unit is that it doesn’t have great customer support. While the vast majority of units work without a problem, those that do fail can cause their owners headaches. Customer service is hard to reach at the best of times and many customers have walked away from their encounters unsatisfied. Most units do work fine, though, so working with customer service may not be a problem for most.
Being one of the more durable heaters on the market, the NewAir G73 is very popular. The G73 is more tailored towards the small shop space, and it will heat up to 750 square feet. The unit does need to be hard-wired rather than being a simple plug-and-play heater, and thus it is recommended that you have a professional installation done. The added benefit of hardwiring the unit to the wall as opposed to the traditional outlet is that it eliminates a variety of maintenance problems you would normally have. Although moving past the hardwire setback, it does have a built-in thermostat with automatic shutoff. The automatic shutoff helps you not have to worry about turning it off or wasting your precious dollars on unnecessary energy expenditure. Ceiling mounting can allow you to optimize the positioning to get your garage heated in no time. The NewAir is top of the line with its durable powder-coated stainless steel construction, ensuring that this will be the last heater you will have to buy for many winters to come!
When you’re trying to heat up a garage, what you probably want is quick heat. It’s nice if there are customizable settings on your heater, but what you probably care the most about is driving away the cold. One garage heater that’s particularly good for that is this model from NewAir. The G56 is certainly very good at bringing heat to cold areas, with enough other selling points to make it worth picking over many of the other garage heaters currently on the market.
The big selling point of this unit is the speed at which it puts out heat. It absolutely lives up to the claim of being able to heat up over five hundred square feet, and it does so with what feels like relatively little effort. The device is also quite rugged, so you’ll never have to worry about breaking it when you’re moving it from place to place. There’s even an easy-to-use temperature control knob that works to make sure that the area heated stays at a constant temperature. It’s one of the best portable garage heaters that you are likely to find.
The only downside to the unit is that it can’t perform miracles. If you’ve got a huge space that’s uninsulated, you really can’t expect more from the device than a temperature jump of a couple of degrees. If you’ve got a smaller space or if you have an insulated garage, though, you can depend upon this heater to keep your space warm.
The PROWARM 240V industrial space heater has all the features you would need in regards to longevity and convenience. The industrial space heater is equipped with a ceiling mount that allows for horizontal or vertical flow. What makes this so great is that it comes with a remote control that will allow easy control of airflow from anywhere in your garage, meaning no more getting out of your warm car into a cold garage. It has a special motor that allows for a stronger wind flow and comes with the standard auto-shutoff safety features to prevent failure. PROWARM is one of the leaders in the industry of industrial electric heaters, and are known for their good quality, design, and service. Being a more modern and stylish industrial space heater, the PROWARM warm up the larger scale garages with ease and are suitable for workshops, basements or even outside buildings. The PROWARM would be a perfect choice if you are looking for a simple, accessible heating arrangement with all the features you need, and the durability you desire!
When it comes to heaters, you often just want something solid. It doesn’t have to look nice or have fancy features – it just needs to warm up your garage. If you don’t mind ignoring aesthetics, you may want to take a look at Comfort Zone’s Industrial Steel Electric Ceiling Mount Heater.
This is a great garage heater for those who want options. The unit comes equipped with three different heat levels, which can make a huge difference for those who just want things warmed up slightly during the early stages of winter but need something a bit more substantial when the snow is falling outside. The heater is also incredibly solidly built – the phrase ‘like a tank’ is bandied about a lot in reviews, and it’s absolutely accurate. You’re not going to worry about exterior damage when it comes to this unit.
Like all heaters, there are a few flaws. This heater’s biggest detriment is being an energy hog. It certainly won’t be easy on your electricity bill, which is par for the course for something that puts out so much heat. If you really need to warm up a space, though, this will get the job done. It might not look great on your electric bill, but it will certainly keep away frostbite.
The industrial electric heater uses infrared heating and a fan to offer heat for indoor spaces. It can warm air up to 95 degrees Fahrenheit, and although not energy efficient, it is a powerhouse of the industry. The DR-988 utilizes a low-intensity infrared element to allow quick heating of smaller spaces up to 600 square feet. Dr. Infrareds heater has an adjustable thermostat that allows for you to choose between 45 degrees Fahrenheit and 95 degrees. It holds great standards for safety with a built-in discharge and overheating protection and of course an auto-shutoff feature. A great feature about this heater is that it has a carry handle that makes it portable and easy to move around. Unlike some of the other options discussed here, this one comes with a power cord that can be plugged in virtually anywhere with 240V power, including a portable generator making it viable for outdoor heating. Continuing the convenience of having an actual power cord, it also has a nifty little cord storage that allows you to only pull out as much cord as you need, preventing unnecessary cords lying about. Convenient, compact, and powerful the Dr. Infrared would be a good addition even if you already have a more solitary heater!
Ceiling-mounted heaters are perfect for those who realize the faults of floor and wall-mounted units. These heaters are always out of the way and never fall victim to clumsy guests or falling debris. They also do a great job of warming spaces, when they’re well-engineered. One great example of good ceiling-mounted heating is Comfort Zone’s Quartz heater. This unit is a great fit for users who want something that’s easy to control but that’s still safe enough to operate no matter who happens to be in the garage.
While it might be mounted on the ceiling, this heater is actually very simple to use. All the work is done with a simple pull-string, allowing you to quickly turn on your heat and switch between settings without having to get out a ladder. If you’re not happy with where it is pointed, it’s easy enough to reposition thanks to the tilting bracket. Once it’s on, you’ll never have to worry about the safety of your guests or the hazards that come from more typical garage heaters. You’ll simply be able to sit back and bask in the warmth provided by this heater.
If there’s an issue here, it’s one of space. This is a good heater for small shops, but it’s not going to heat up a large garage. Don’t expect miracles for big spaces and certainly don’t expect a huge jump in the mercury when your garage isn’t insulated. If you have a smaller space or just need to heat a smaller area within your garage, though, this heater does a great job.
Now you are all up to par and ready to make the venture into buying your first garage heater! If you are looking for a permanently mounted heater the PROWARM (View on Amazon) will be your best bet, with the remote control and durable design. However, if you are on a budget the Dr. Infrared Heater is a perfect fit, and can even be used for camping and other outdoor events! Whether you are trying to heat a large 3 car garage with the powerful Fahrenheat FUH54 (View on Amazon) or just trying to bring a little warmth to your workspace on a budget with the Dr. Infrared DR-988 (View on Amazon), a garage heater can keep you and your family comfortable throughout the winter.