Mini-Splits vs. Garage Heaters: What’s Right for My Woodworking Space?

Comfy isn’t often a word used to describe a garage. But many homeowners take full advantage of this location as a workshop for home improvement projects or tinkering including woodworking. Considering transforming your garage into a home woodshop? By having heating and cooling, you’ll have the ability to use the garage year-round.

Traditional systems, including a furnace, heat pump or air conditioner, are typically expensive due to the ductwork that’s needed. Plus, garages are sometimes detached.

The two most popular options are garage heaters or mini-split systems, because they don’t need ductwork. But which type should you choose? It’s critical to know the benefits of each to select the most energy-efficient solution for your needs. Sawdust demands special thought as these particles can fill up filters and lower your system’s efficiency.

We break down the differences to help you choose the best system for your budget.

Mini-Splits: Ideal for Heating and Cooling

Ductless mini-splits are like a heat pump, as they transfer heat rather than generating it. This makes them highly energy efficient. They’re installed on your wall and connect to an outdoor unit by a small hole in the wall.

A mini-split air conditioner is loved for its energy efficiency and nearly silent operation. This makes it great for craftsmen searching for a tranquil, cozy location to work. Because they deliver both heating and cooling, mini-splits can be run throughout the year.

Because wood contracts with shifts in temperature, complete control over heating and cooling is extremely advantageous. Most carpenters and woodworkers recommend finishing woodworking in temperatures very close to where the finished creation will live.

Changing your filter consistently is a crucial piece of maintenance. Sanding generates a lot of sawdust. If you don’t change your mini-split’s filter, you might lower your system’s efficiency and life span.

A mini-split also needs frequent upkeep from a experienced HVAC tech, like one from Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Keeping its internal pieces clean and lubricated will help reduce the chance of breakdowns and could even help it last longer.

Garage Heaters: Best for Northern Climates

Garage heaters run slightly differently. They create hot air, so it’s best to compare one to a small furnace. They’re fixed on the ceiling, often in a corner. If you turn to your garage for extra storage, know that these heaters will eat up a part the overhead room.

The main difference between garage heaters and mini-split systems is the kind of fuel they use, as mini-splits are electric. Propane or natural gas garage heaters are both standard models, but there are electric garage heaters also if you don’t want to add fuel connections.

Garage heaters include a plus that gives them a leg up on a mini-split system. They don’t require a filter and some models have sealed combustion chambers, which halts sawdust from getting into those internal pieces.

Key Differences Between Mini-Splits and Garage Heaters

Ultimately there are many things to consider, like the temperatures in the U.S.. These encompass:

    • Whether you want both heating and cooling, or only heating.
    • Your budget.
    • How much ceiling space you have in your shop.
    • How much time and money you want to dedicate to maintenance.

Ductless mini-split systems are more expensive at the start than garage heaters. If you won’t use your shop all the time, this may not be the smartest option. But woodshops in climates with wide changes in temperature may benefit from better control.

Garage heaters are a simpler, more affordable solution. Different models use different fuel sources to generate heat only, making them not a good choice for hotter weather. Gas or propane garage heaters are best if fuel costs are low. They’re not as energy efficient, so regular use may result in more expensive utility bills. But the great heat generation is recommended in northern climates.

For skilled advice and installation, trust the HVAC Experts at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. We’ll help you make the best choice. And with quality repair and maintenance services, your woodshop will be a productive space for many years to come. Contact us at 866-397-3787 to request a free home comfort assessment or appointment today.

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