Should I Use a Mini-Split or Garage Heater in My Woodshop?

Cozy isn’t typically a word used to talk about a garage. But many homeowners take full advantage of this space as a workshop for home improvement projects or pastimes including woodworking. Mulling changing your garage into a home woodshop? By adding heating and cooling, you’ll have the option enjoy the garage year-round.

Traditional systems, like a furnace, heat pump or air conditioner, are usually pricey because of the ductwork that’s needed. Not to mention, garages are sometimes separate.

The two most frequently used styles are garage heaters or mini-split systems, as they don’t require ductwork. But which system should you select? It’s important to be informed about each to choose the most energy-efficient solution for your needs. Sawdust demands extra consideration since these particles can fill up filters and decrease your system’s efficiency.

We review the differences to help you choose the right solution for your needs.

Mini-Splits: Best for Heating and Cooling

Ductless mini-splits are similar to a heat pump, because they transfer heat rather than making it. This makes them extremely energy efficient. They’re installed on your wall and link to an outside unit through a small hole in the wall.

A mini-split air conditioner is loved for its energy efficiency and quiet operation. This makes it good for craftsmen looking for a calm, comfy area to work. As they provide both heating and cooling, mini-splits can be used all year round.

Because wood expands with changes in temperature, complete control over heating and cooling is highly useful. A lot of carpenters and woodworkers recommend completing projects in temperatures very close to where the finished item will live.

Checking your filter consistently is a crucial component of service. Cutting generates a lot of sawdust. If you don’t change your mini-split’s filter, you risk reducing your system’s efficiency and life span.

A mini-split also requires frequent service from a professional HVAC tech, like one from Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning. Keeping its internal parts clean and lubricated will help lower the likelihood of interruptions in comfort and might even help it run for a greater period of time.

Garage Heaters: Great for Northern Climates

Garage heaters run a bit differently. They generate hot air, so it’s best to compare one to a little furnace. They’re installed on the ceiling, usually in a corner. If you turn to your garage for additional storage, know that these heaters will eat up a part the overhead area.

A key difference between garage heaters and mini-split systems is the type of fuel they need, since mini-splits are electric. Propane or natural gas garage heaters are both common models, but there are electric garage heaters too if you don’t want to add fuel sources.

Garage heaters come with a bonus that makes them slightly better than a mini-split system. They don’t require a filter and some models have sealed combustion chambers, which stops sawdust from reaching those internal parts.

Key Variations Between Mini-Splits and Garage Heaters

In the end there are many things to think over, like the climate in Raleigh. These include:

  • Whether you want both heating and cooling, or only heating.
  • Your budget.
  • How much overhead space you have in your woodshop.
  • How much time and money you want to dedicate to upkeep.

Ductless mini-split systems run more up front than garage heaters. If you won’t need your garage frequently, this may not be the most budget-friendly option. But woodshops in areas with big adjustments in temperature may benefit from better control.

Garage heaters are a simpler, more affordable option. Different models consume differing fuel sources to make heat only, making them ill-suited for hotter areas. Gas or propane garage heaters are great if fuel costs are smaller. They’re not as energy efficient, so routine use may lead to higher utility expenses. But the superior heat generation is recommended in colder locations.

For experienced advice and installation, go with the HVAC Experts at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning. We’ll help you make the ideal choice. And with quality repair and maintenance services, your shop will be a useful space for many years to come. Contact us at 919-578-4329 to request a free home comfort assessment or appointment right away.

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