There’s nothing more versatile than a garage space. The typical purpose is securing the car and other large equipment. But aside from that, just a few garage door repair and a bit of planning here and there, and you can turn your garage into absolutely anything you want!
It can be an indoor garden area to keep the plants thriving during winter, or it could be a crafts area if your indoor home space isn’t enough. Right now, there’s a trend of transforming it into an office space where you can focus on calls and other projects.
Why Heat Your Garage?
If you haven’t spent a lot of time in your garage, you might be thinking this exact question. Why bother when you just go in and out to get the car anyway!
But one crucial thing homeowners miss out on: if your garage is the main entry point in your home, you’re probably using the area twice or more each day. That means you’re letting the cold, outside air into your home each day.
This may not sound much, but it can gradually deteriorate some aspects of the home.
For example, if you have water pipes built through the garage, they might need that extra protection against freezing.
Your garage heat system will also work extra hard to regulate the temperature inside the house. Even if it takes just a minute or two for the garage door to open and then shut close again, that’s a lot of outside air entering the home and affecting the temperature.
And again, if you want to enjoy the garage space, you may not be able to during the colder months.
Whatever function you’re planning your garage door to have, and whether it is a detached garage or one that’s attached to the main house, the important thing is to have a sound garage heat system so that you can use it at any time of the year.
Easiest Ways to Heat Your Garage
Here are several valuable ways on how you can heat your garage, including their pros and cons:
- Add insulation
If your area has mild winters, adding good-quality insulation layers will be enough to make the garage warmer. Simply insulate your garage door and windows and weather-stripping exterior doors.
Pros: It’s one of the cheapest and simplest ways to heat your garage. Most homeowners will find it pretty easy to add insulation to windows and doors. Aside from that, insulation will not give you ongoing costs after they are installed.
Cons: While insulation is the easiest way to heat your garage space, it will not be enough for areas where the temperature drops below freezing point.
Also, insulation doesn’t control the exact temperature you’ll have in the space. It may feel too warm or not warm enough, depending on the temperature outside.
- Get a Portable Electric Space Heater
Electric space heaters are portable systems more commonly used for the inside of the home. But you can also use a more extensive version for garage heat. There are different options regarding voltages and how you want them placed in the space (e.g., wall-mounted or movable).
Pros: Electric heating systems right now are very energy-efficient – they won’t raise your power bill that much. And it’s portable enough to use on any other part of the house should you need to! Lastly, some models have thermostat controls on them, so you can regulate the temperature. You’re saving on your power bill if you use just the right amount of electricity that you need for the garage.
Cons: The main disadvantage is that electric space heaters might take longer to heat your garage. It’s made for smaller spaces, after all, so putting it in a bigger area could lengthen the heating time. And if you only have a few outlets in your garage, you could find it hard to find a good position for this portable heating system. And of course, if your garage is not insulated, it’ll work doubly hard!
- Use a Combustion Space Heater
This uses a fuel source, like kerosene or propane, to produce garage heat. Depending on the model you have, it will indicate what fuel type it needs, whether just one fuel or multiple types.
Pros: This will heat an average-sized garage quicker than an electric space heater. And even if you experience power outages, the fuel-run heater will continue to operate. And more importantly, it’s more affordable than an electric space heater – so, fewer upfront costs for your family.
Cons: It makes a lot of noise! If you are converting your garage into a home office of some sort, this may not be conducive to that. Plus, the combustion will introduce moisture into the air. This could contribute to your tools or car parts rusting faster, especially if the heater is on for long periods.
- Extend the HVAC System
The direct vent system is one of the most effective ways to heat your garage. Especially if your area is prone to harsh and frigid climates, this is the best option as it produces more heat than the other ones we’ve mentioned.
If you already have a central furnace in the home and it could handle the extra power, you can go ahead and incorporate this into your existing HVAC system.
Pros: It will heat the entire garage area evenly and more powerfully. Aside from that, it’s more cost-effective because you’re essentially extending what your central furnace can handle. It will save on upfront costs and your long-term energy costs.
Cons: If your HVAC system is already several years old, you may want to replace the entire system. Adding another room may overwork your old unit – make sure it can handle the added heating requirement. And look for Energy Star models, which are more efficient than standard models.
What About my Garage Door?
The garage door is one of the most critical aspects of your garage heating. Because it’s massive, insulating it properly can make a big difference in regulating the garage temperature. Ensure that the door has a good weather seal and is adequately insulated. These will help withstand both hot and cold climates.
While homeowners can handle insulation of windows and weather-stripping doors, a garage door would need a professional technician who can do a better job than a DIY-er. Your unit and garage door opener will last long with regular garage door maintenance.
If you have any questions or concerns on how to heat your garage effectively, talk to our team today! We are the leading garage door repair providers in the area, and we can assist you in improving the insulation and temperature regulation of your garage door.