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portable garage heaters

Discussion in 'General' started by DBConz, Jan 24, 2020.

  1. DBConz

    DBConz Registered Idiot

    This is only to be used when working in the garage in the winter.

    Looking for a propane heater, as my garage only has a 20A breaker.

    I have a large 1 car detached garage with no insulation. The floor is paved if that matters.

    I'm looking at the Mr Heater units that have the fan that blows the hot air out.
    Anyone have any experience with them? not sure if i should get 38k BTU, 60K BTU, or larger.

    If there is something better out there, let me know. i'm only going by amazon reviews.
  2. Venom51

    Venom51 John Deere Equipment Expert - Not really

    Insulate first...it won't take long to heat a garage that small if it's insulated.
    Sabre699 and nd4spd like this.
  3. nd4spd

    nd4spd Well-Known Member

    K51000 likes this.
  4. DBConz

    DBConz Registered Idiot

    that would be expensive and way more time consuming. moving everything off the walls isnt bad, getting to the attic/roof would be a PITA.
    i'm only talking about heat for a few hours every other weekend at best.
  5. DBConz

    DBConz Registered Idiot

  6. Venom51

    Venom51 John Deere Equipment Expert - Not really

    If you don't insulate it will have to be just a few hours as you'll run a 20lbs cylinder dry in about 4 hours. What do you think refilling that tank is gonna cost every time you want to work on something for a few hours? That same 20lbs tank could last a few months if you insulate first. The money is going to get spent somewhere.
  7. R Acree

    R Acree Banned

    I have a small one (runs off 2 lb cylinder) that works in the house (we have one room that stays cold). I think the larger one because of lack of insulation. These are rated for indoor use.

    Insulation is relatively cheap.
  8. beechkingd

    beechkingd Well-Known Member

    If you don't have a ceiling, ie open rafters, it will never get warm. I tried heating a two car garage with open rafters in the winter a few times and it never got about 50-60 inside with a large propane heater going all day. It used the entire tank in about 6 hours.

    Currently, I use a kerosene torpedo heater in my garage, which is dry walled in and some what insulated. The 5 gallon tank lasts for a several weekends worth of heat.
    tony 340 likes this.
  9. Banditracer

    Banditracer Dogs - because people suck

    I've got one of those in 80,000 btu, works good , heats quick. It is a little loud, sounds like a small rocket when it fires up.
    Boman Forklift and jrsamples like this.
  10. CRA_Fizzer

    CRA_Fizzer Honking at putter!

    This is really the only way to go.
  11. eggfooyoung

    eggfooyoung You no eat more!

    If you insulate and seal, you'll be surprised at just how much the radiant heat from the ground will transfer up. You may not be barefoot in January necessarily, but it can conttribute a bit.
  12. Tristan

    Tristan Well-Known Member

    Do you really have enough unobstructed area to have one of those torpedo types on the floor of a 1 car garage? That would be my main concern. I have a 24x32 garage (main area 24x20 with open rafters) and it takes a couple hours running a 45K btu radiant heater on top of my 100lb tank to heat the place up when it's below freezing.
  13. Boman Forklift

    Boman Forklift Well-Known Member

    My dad used a kerosene torpedo in our 2 car garage, Illinois winters, and even though we had open rafters it would get warm enough we turned it on and off while working, because we would get warm. Probably 50-60 like mentioned above, but when you are working and have a sweatshirt that was enough. We might be crazy though, because I remember going out sometime in Feb or March when there was snow on the ground but everything was dry, and bundled up in winter suits, and went for a ride with me on back.

    Based on a looking at the sizes at home depot I would say ours was an 80K and it was sounded like a rocket for a bit, but sure worked very well.

    Sounds like he used one like we did. If I moved to a cold climate, I would probably do this again, as I remember kerosene lasting a very long time between fill ups.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2020
  14. xTomKx

    xTomKx Well-Known Member

    I occasionally use the Dyna Glow heater that sits on top of a 20lb cylinder and my garage smells horrible by the time is warm.

    How bad is the smell with the Propane Forced Air Torpedo Heater?
  15. tito

    tito Well-Known Member

    I know you said that you only have a 20 amp, but is running a 220 outlet an issue? I have a couple of 220 electric heaters that will warm my 2 car up to 80 when it is below freezing outside. its insulated but not real well.
    my old 2 car, the walls were insulated, but the open ceiling was not. if it dropped below 35 outside I could not get the garage above 45. but if it was above that I could get the garage to 70 +.
    I hate propane forced air heaters... all I smell is gas.
  16. DBConz

    DBConz Registered Idiot

    as far as the insulation comments go, i only have plans to stay at this property for maybe another 3-5 years. sinking several hundred dollars into insulating a garage (insulation plus plywood walls) is not worth staying warm for a few hours a month in the winter to do some prep work for the upcoming season.

    i definitely have sufficient space for one of these floor units.

    i dont think i can run a 220 or something larger. the underground copper is very thin from the basement's fuse box to the garage.

    i'm not sure about the gas, this unit was recommended from a coworker with a larger garage than me.
  17. Venom51

    Venom51 John Deere Equipment Expert - Not really

    Propane torpedos burn pretty clean. Much cleaner than the kerosene torpedos.
  18. xTomKx

    xTomKx Well-Known Member

    Back in the day we used kerosene torpedo heater in 2 car unininsulated garage. It worked fine but smells bad and I would think it's not healthy to breathe in.
  19. acorn27

    acorn27 4 out of 3 people in the world struggle with math

    I used to have a 30' x 30' detached garage, no insulation (not sure why) but it was drywalled. I'd fire up a small-ish propane heater in there, and it would get it bearable, probably into the 50's within 30 minutes. But since everything was freezing cold when I started, the heat and combustion from the propane seemed to just get everything full of condensation, cold wet tools were a real issue, some things started to even rust. The other thing was the air quality. Not only did it stink but I got a bit loopy at times, either there was carbon monoxide from the heater or a lack of oxygen, but I could definitely feel it after a couple of hours. So just be sure you are getting some fresh air in there, which unfortunately counters efforts to heat.

    Also, it's amazing what difference a little fan can make. Get the warmer air at the ceiling moving around and it gets warm a lot faster too.
    Senna likes this.
  20. Banditracer

    Banditracer Dogs - because people suck

    Yeah, that's why I bought propane, the kerosene ones stink. I also have a thermostat for mine so you can set it to what ever you want and not have to keep running over to turn it off / on.

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