Comfortable isn’t usually a word used to describe a garage. But many homeowners make the most of this area as a workshop for home improvement projects or hobbies such as woodworking. Thinking about using your garage for a home woodshop? By having heating and cooling, you’ll have the option use the area year-round.
Traditional systems, including a furnace, heat pump or air conditioner, are usually expensive since there’s ductwork that’s required. Not to mention, garages are often not connected to your home.
The two most frequently used styles are garage heaters or mini-split systems, as they don’t require ductwork. But which type should you go with? It’s essential to be informed about each to choose the most energy-efficient solution for your situation. Sawdust demands additional planning since these particles can bog down filters and decrease your system’s efficiency.
We break down the differences to help you select the right system for your shop.
Mini-Splits: Best for Heating and Cooling
Ductless mini-splits are like a heat pump, as they transfer heat in place of generating it. This makes them highly energy efficient. They’re placed on your wall and link to an outdoor unit with a small hole in the wall.
A mini-split air conditioner is loved for its energy efficiency and nearly silent operation. This makes it good for craftsmen looking for a relaxing, cozy area to work. As they deliver 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 advantageous. A lot of carpenters and woodworkers advise finishing work in temperatures much like where the finished creation will end up.
Inspecting your filter consistently is an important piece of maintenance. Sanding creates a lot of sawdust. If you don’t change your mini-split’s filter, you may decrease your system’s efficiency and life span.
A mini-split also needs routine service from a certified HVAC technician, like one from Parker Pearce Service Experts. Keeping its internal pieces clean and lubricated will help lower the probability of breakdowns and may even help it run for an extended period of time.
Garage Heaters: Best for Northern Climates
Garage heaters work slightly differently. They create warmth, so it’s better to compare one to a miniature furnace. They’re mounted on the ceiling, typically in a corner. If you rely on your garage for extra storage, keep in mind that these heaters will take up some of the overhead room.
The biggest difference between garage heaters and mini-split systems is the type of fuel they run on, because mini-splits are electric. Propane or natural gas garage heaters are both common models, but there are electric garage heaters as well if you don’t want to bother with fuel sources.
Garage heaters include a perk 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 getting into those internal pieces.
Key Variations Between Mini-Splits and Garage Heaters
In the end there are many things to think over, such as the climate in Gaithersburg. These involve:
- Whether you want both heating and cooling, or merely heating.
- Your budget.
- How much overhead area you have in your shop.
- How much time and money you want to spend on upkeep.
Ductless mini-split systems are great if you value flexibility and prime energy efficiency. They deliver both heating and cooling, making them the smartest choice for zoned climate control. But this efficiency comes at a price. Mini-split heat pumps are more expensive up front than garage heaters. If you won’t need your garage often, this may not be the most cost-effective option. But woodshops in areas with wide adjustments in temps may benefit from more precise control.
Garage heaters are a simpler, more affordable solution. Different models utilize varying fuel sources to create heat only, making them bad for warm climates. Gas or propane garage heaters are best if fuel costs are more reasonable. They’re not as energy efficient, so frequent use may result in bigger utility bills. But the great heat generation is preferable in colder areas.
For skilled advice and installation, call the HVAC Experts at Parker Pearce Service Experts. We’ll help you make the right choice. And with quality repair and maintenance services, your shop will be a useful space for years. Give us a call at 301-476-4577 to book a free home comfort assessment or appointment today.