Mini-Splits vs. Garage Heaters: What’s Best for My Woodshop?

Cozy isn’t typically a word used to reference a garage. But many homeowners maximize this space as a workshop for home improvement projects or hobbies like woodworking. Considering changing your garage into a home woodshop? By adding heating and cooling, you’ll have the option enjoy the area throughout the year. 

Traditional systems, like a furnace, heat pump or air conditioner, are typically expensive because of the ductwork that’s necessary. Not to mention, garages are sometimes detached. 

The two most frequently used styles are garage heaters or mini-split systems, since they don’t have to have ductwork. But which type should you select? It’s critical to be aware of each to select the most energy-efficient solution for your needs. Sawdust requires additional planning because these particles can fill up filters and lower your system’s efficiency. 

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

Mini-Splits: Best for Heating and Cooling 

Ductless mini-splits much like a heat pump, because they transfer heat rather than creating it. This makes them very energy efficient. They’re installed on your wall and join to an exterior 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 looking for a tranquil, comfortable space to work. As they provide both heating and cooling, mini-splits can be run all year round. 

As wood shrinks with adjustments in temperature, complete control over heating and cooling is very advantageous. A lot of carpenters and woodworkers recommend doing projects in temperatures similar to where the completed product will live. 

Inspecting your filter often is an essential part of upkeep. Using a saw kicks up a lot of sawdust. If you don’t keep up with your mini-split’s filter, you risk reducing your system’s efficiency and lifetime. 

A mini-split also has to have frequent upkeep from a professional HVAC specialist, like one from Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. Keeping its internal parts clean and lubricated will help lower the chance of malfunctions and may even help it run longer. 

Garage Heaters: Ideal for Cold Climates 

Garage heaters operate a bit differently. They generate hot air, so it’s best to compare one to a mini furnace. They’re mounted on the ceiling, typically in a corner. If you rely on your garage for additional storage, know that these heaters will eat up some of the overhead room. 

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

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 closed combustion chambers, which stops sawdust from getting into those internal pieces. 

Key Differences Between Mini-Splits and Garage Heaters 

In the end there are a lot of things to think over, such as the climate in the U.S.. These involve: 

  • Whether you are looking for both heating and cooling, or just heating. 
  • Your budget. 
  • How much overhead space you have in your woodshop. 
  • How much time and money you want to dedicate to service. 

Ductless mini-split systems run more up front than garage heaters. If you don’t plan on using your woodshop often, this may not be the smartest solution. But woodshops in climates with big changes in temps may benefit from better control. 

Garage heaters are a simpler, more affordable option. Different models utilize varying 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 more reasonable. They’re not as energy efficient, so regular use may create higher utility bills. But the great heat generation is preferable in colder locations. 

For dependable advice and installation, call the HVAC Experts at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing. We’ll help you make the right choice. And with quality repair and maintenance services, your woodshop will be a relaxing location for years. Give us a call at 866-397-3787 to schedule a free home comfort assessment or appointment now. 

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