Natural Gas Heaters – It’s Getting Hot in Here

by Linden on October 31, 2007

Calcana Infrared Heater…Generally, when heating a garage Natural Gas is the most economical choice.

Most large shops are heated via natural gas (or propane where running gas is not feasible).

There are two types of natural gas heaters to consider – forced air and infrared.

A forced-air heater is very similar to a conventional furnace – it has a blower which circulates warm air. An infrared heater radiates heat.

A forced air heater will make some noise (the blower will humming noise) and can cause dust from word working and automotive body work to circulate in the air. An infrared heater does not have blower but will need to be spaced 4-6 feet from any objects (check specific heater specifications) as it can throw some intense heat.

A forced air heater will heat the air before objects making you feel warmer. The air near the ceiling will be warmer than air on the ground – this can cause the cold feet syndrome. An infrared heater works by heating objects first – your body, the work bench, the floor, etc. will become warm.

Opening a garage door will cause a lot of cool air to rush in making which means it may take longer for a forced air heater to warm up your garage.

Infrared Heater Pros:

  1. Lower operating cost
  2. Generally very quiet
  3. Allows dust to settle
  4. Uniform heat

Infrared Heat Cons:

  1. Expensive to purchase
  2. Requires precise location of installation (to ensure object, floor, ceiling are not burned)

Forced Air Heater Pros:

  1. More affordable to purchase

Forced Air Heater Cons:

  1. Can be noisy
  2. May blow dust around
  3. Temperature variations between floor level and ceiling

Of course a natural gas forced air unit or infrared makes a great unit compared to electric, propane, or wood stoves. Here is why:

Pros of Natural Gas units over
Electrical and Propane, and Wood stoves:

  1. Affordable to run
  2. No need to refill tanks
  3. No wood chopping, storing wood, or cleaning stoves
  4. Will warm garage quickly

Cons of Natural Gas units

  1. High potential cost of installation (especially for a detached garage)
  2. Potential fire hazard if working with fumes

Be sure to ask your gas company if they will run your natural gas line for free!

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Andrew Kunc January 23, 2008 at 3:47 am

Thanks For Including The Benefits Of Inrared Heat. They Are Also Safer For Indoor Use Than Gas Options. Offers A Mounting Rail That Will Address The Install Location Problem Allowing For Multiple Install Points With Ease. Other Than That I Would Say It Is A Very Fair And Informative Comparison.

torpedo heater October 17, 2013 at 12:16 pm

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you with a quick heads up! Other than that, fantastic website! May 14, 2014 at 5:46 pm

Wow, a great article about heat. I didn’t know about that infrared heat was such a good option. I will have to think about how to heat my garage in the winter in AZ. I was thinking about doing something with solar since we get so much sun. Now for more research!

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