5 Best Garage and Shop Heaters When it comes to garage and shop heaters, each brand and model rate highly in their respective categories and provide excellent service and comfort for near decades. They quietly and effectively do their job, fading into the background so that you can do whatever you need to do without worrying about heat.
Here is our best-of list by category:
Best Overall Heater
For the best garage and shop heater over all categories, we feature a small but powerful dynamo in the Modine Hot Dawg HD30. Made with the same quality and attention as its higher industrial counterparts, the propane fueled HD30 represents one of the best values on the market for the home or workshop. Checking in at a mere 12+ inches in height, this unit nonetheless generates an impressive 30,000 BTUs, capable of making a small area toasty warm regardless of the weather outside. It can be fitted in the corner of a shop with only one inch clearance from the ceiling. Modine’s award-worthy heat exchanger utilizes an aluminized steel heat exchanger, which distributes heat smoothly and quietly throughout the shop. You’ll have to remind yourself that it’s even there – which is important, because it’s going to be up there for many years to come. Heavy duty steel exterior fights corrosion and powder coat paint will help it keep its stylish look for as long as the unit lasts. The Hot Dawg HD30 carries Modine’s outstanding warranty of two years on parts and 10 years on the heat exchanger and other major components.
Best Electric Heater
Reznor has established a solid platform in the marketplace for electric garage and shop heaters, taking on more well-known brands with confidence. After all, it was Reznor that came out with the first truly energy efficient heater, years ahead of the competition. The company is now getting the recognition it deserves, represented by the EGW-5 electric unit heater, just one of a host of great products produced by Reznor. The EGW-5 generates 17,000 BTUs out of a 5kW heating system, more than enough for a small, well-insulated shop. Even in a less-than-ideal setup, the EGW-5 makes its presence known in superb fashion. The unit warms up quickly, and the built-in thermostat maintains a steady heat outflow for as long as it’s needed. Built for the extremes of a garage environment, the EGW-5 is built with heavy gauge steel and finished with an epoxy/polyester powder paint that resists corrosion. Adjustable louvers allow the user to direct the heat where it’s needed. The unit ships with brackets for ceiling mount. A dedicated 240 volt circuit is recommended, and should you need it, a one-year warranty covers defective parts.
Best Propane Heater
The Modine Hot Dawg HD100 is a 100,000 BTU beast that lives up to its name in more ways than one. Modine as a brand is an industry leader in garage and shop heaters as well as other applications. The Hot Dawg HD100 heater is skillfully made with heavy gauge steel cabinetry on the outside and features an innovative aluminized steel heat exchanger that fights corrosion better than steel or aluminum singularly. Despite this unit being small in stature, a mere 20.5 inches, it has many more features then what meets the eye. With its size, you can tuck it well away from the working area of your shop, needing only one inch of clearance from the ceiling. Venting for its powered exhaust system is also quite easy and accessible. Louvers help direct the heat where it’s needed the most. At 100,000 BTUs, this unit can heat a big area on the coldest of days. Aside from burner maintenance you can forget climbing a ladder or assembling scaffolding to service the Hot Dawg heater. Periodic maintenance on the blower and motor is virtually unnecessary, thanks to its self-lubricating heavy duty motor. Not only does this help extend the life of the motor, it keeps the operation amazingly quiet. The Modine Hot Dawg HD100 comes with an industry-leading warranty: two years on parts and 10 years on the heat exchanger.
Best Natural Gas Heater
If natural gas is available in your location and competes well with rival energy sources, the Reznor UDX-75 is the heater for you. The Reznor UDX line is known for its powerful output, energy efficiency and unassuming design that allows you to work in comfort without even noticing the heater toiling away overhead. the unit’s TCORE2® titanium stabilized aluminum steel heat exchanger provides ideal transfer of heat and has the durability and flexibility to endure for many years. Powered ventilation means that exhaust is controlled, keeping wasted energy to a minimum. This unit has an AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) of 83 percent, considered excellent for this type of heater. Shock mounts on both the ventilation motor and the main fan motor keep the heater vibration-free and quiet. At 75,000 BTUs, the UDX-75 can heat a midsize shop or area, and you will be able to feel the heat from as far as 57 feet away. While you will rarely, if ever, need to do any troubleshooting, an LED display board breaks down the most likely problem areas so you can spend more time addressing the issue rather than looking for it. Installation is relatively easy and flexible, with a choice between two- and four-point suspension techniques. All Reznor’s products carry a great warranty. The UDX-75 comes with a four-year warranty on electrical and mechanical components and a nine-year warranty on the heat exchanger, burner and flue collection box assembly.
Best Wood Stove
Buck Stove is arguably the best manufacturer of wood burning stoves in the world, taking a centuries-old practice and expanding it into a modern marvel of efficiency with the FS21 wood stove. If wood is available and reasonably priced in your location, you can’t miss with this handsome stove. You can fully heat an area of up to 1800 square feet and at least take some of the chill off a much larger area. The BTU rating is 41,000, an amazing show of force for a unit that takes up less than nine square feet in your garage or shop. This can be explained by the FS21’s generous firebox that measures 1.6 cubic feet and is designed to accommodate 18-inch logs. Heat is reflected naturally toward the working area, and with the optional blower you can heat with even more precision and gain more coverage. While comparing energy efficiency of a wood stove with that of gas, propane and electric heaters is like comparing apples to oranges in a large sense, it’s comforting to know that this unit rates at 76.9% efficiency, meaning that less than 24 percent of the heat generated in the firebox is lost up the flue. For a wood-burner, this is outstanding and earns the FS21 approval in the decidedly “green” states of Washington and Oregon. Few brands can match that achievement. The unit is approved for mobile home use when installation requirements are strictly followed. (It is not approved for pre-fab housing, however. The FS21comes with five-year warranty on parts and general workmanship.)
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