Best Portable Garage Heater



The temperature of your work environment doesn't matter until it does. Cool garage temperatures can help workers focus on their tasks without environmental distractions or discomfort. But bitterly cold temperatures are a different story. Cold temperatures can affect fine motor control and the manipulation of tools and precision equipment. It can also reduce employee focus, comfort, and wellness. Long, cold shifts are bad for morale, and they can also be bad for your business's bottom line.

In fact, in an analysis done by Software Advice, "A majority of respondents (60 percent) say that having more control over their office's temperature would increase their productivity." That's just in insulated offices — uninsulated garages with wide-open doors have even less temperature control. In this article, you'll learn more about why garages are so difficult to heat in the winters and the difference the right heater can make for your employees and your workspace. 

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Why Garages Are Difficult to Heat

Commercial garages are notoriously cold in the winters, and trying to heat them up usually results in high heating bills and not a lot of success. See which of these common problems apply to your specific garage:

No Central Heating

Detached commercial garage structures are often constructed without a furnace or central heating. This means the garage's ambient temperature quickly falls to match the temperature outdoors. There's also no automatic thermostat that can sense low temperatures and ramp up the heat. Even garages attached to main offices often aren't outfitted with air ducts to gain access to central heating, and heat coming in through the connecting door won't go very far.

Cold Floors

Most garages feature bare concrete floors or concrete with a protective epoxy coating. This coating just protects the underlying concrete from the effects of cold weather without mitigating the cold itself. These floors aren't just cold — they can leach warmth out of the air and act as a heat sink; because the concrete foundation is lying on the ground, the heat is absorbed and wasted.

Drafty Spaces

Commercial garages are also big empty spaces. The long walls of the space are usually built from metal sheeting and have large garage doors that are left open most of the day. This allows cold wind into the garage, where it can wick away ambient heat and make the inside feel just as cold as the outdoors. Even when the garage doors are closed, there can be plenty of air leaks and cold spots, and differently-sized garages need differently-sized space heaters.

No Insulation

Where garages aren't constructed from metal sheeting, they're built from concrete or brick. None of these materials are ideal for retaining heat and keeping a space nice and warm. Because commercial garages don't have a building envelope with enclosed insulation like offices and homes, all of the walls have a relatively poor R-value. And even though brick and concrete can hold onto some heat, the lack of central heating means the walls can't replenish their heat until the next warm day.

High Ceilings

Hot air rises. Traditional space heaters can furnaces can try to fill a work area with hot air, but it will quickly move to the ceiling as cold air sinks and pushes it out of the way. High ceilings are another reason why trying to heat a garage can seem fruitless and expensive.

Commercial garages are difficult to heat, but that doesn't mean you have to deal with the cold all winter long. It just means you need to find the right portable garage heater for the job.

The Best Portable Garage Heaters

Different heaters work best in different spaces. Some heaters are designed to keep small, enclosed spaces at a consistent temperature. Other heaters can quickly pump hot air into a large space. Some even use different types of heat mechanisms to combat different environmental factors, like wind, air circulation, poor insulation. We recommend focusing on two different types of heaters when looking for the perfect fit for your garage: radiant heaters and clean burn waste oil heaters.

Radiant Heater

A radiant heater generates heat within the body of the heater and then radiates that heat to the surrounding environment. The heat is directional and very controlled. This is a different approach than traditional convection heaters, which heat up air and then blow that hot air out into the surrounding space. Think of it as the difference between standing near a central air vent and holding your hands a safe distance above a stovetop.

Some of the key features and benefits of radiant heaters are:

  • Speed: Radiant heaters don't try to pump the entire space with hot air. Instead, they consistently provide heat within a smaller space directly in use. As a result, the heater takes very little time to power on and start delivering warmth.
  • Heats Objects, Not Air: Convection heaters struggle to heat drafty commercial garages because they try to fill the entire space with heated air. But radiant heaters skip the middle man by directly radiating heat to workstations.
  • Built for Large Spaces: Because they direct heat to objects instead of air, all of the heat is useful. It won't spend time heating up air that will simply rise to the rafters, far away from your employees.
  • Quiet: Radiant heaters don't noisily blow air. This makes the units perfect for environments where employees need to concentrate or communicate.
  • Clean: Radiant heaters don't off-put smelly or dangerous fumes. So they're safe to use for long periods, even when the garage doors are closed.

Clean Burn Waste Oil Heaters

Clean burn waste oil heaters can also provide efficient heat to workspaces in your commercial garages. They're also efficient in a uniquely valuable way for commercial garages: if you have leftover oil from your business operations, that "waste oil" can be used to provide heat. Not only does that help your business safely dispose of that oil and get more use out of it, but you can also heat up your commercial garage for a fraction of the cost.

Choose the Best Portable Heater From NorTex Sales and Service

At NorTex Sales & Service, we pride ourselves on having the right tools for your business's success. Browse our inventory of radiant heaters, clean burn waste oil heaters, and more, or contact us today to find the perfect fit for your garage or warehouse. We have warehouses across Central and North Texas for fast delivery you can rely on.

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