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10 Best Portable Heaters For Garage

The Best Portable Heaters To Warm Up Your Garage Or Workshop!

If you’re looking to find the Best Portable Heaters For Garage or any other freezing cold space – you’ve come to the right place! If you do any work in your garage and live where winter temperatures can stay below freezing – for days or weeks on end – you know it’s practical, almost essential to own the best garage heater for your budget and get the inside temperature up to a comfortable level.

Table of Contents show

In today’s garage heater reviews, we’ll show you the 10 best garage heaters on the market.  Let’s get started by explaining a few of the different “types” of garage heaters you can buy:

Types of Garage Heaters

(And the garage heating systems we recommend most for bringing temperatures up in cold weather)

“Forced Air” Propane Heater

Many consider this type to be the best gas garage heater you can buy.  Forced-air garage heaters use an electric fan to forcefully blow and distribute air – which has been heated by combustion of propane gas.

The favorite type of forced air propane heater – is called a “Torpedo heater” design- which can be used outdoors or indoors with minimal ventilation required.

Besides being a highly energy-efficient heater for the garage, a torpedo propane garage heater does not require garage heater installation – like a Natural Gas or 240 Volt wired garage heater would. The Torpedo design heater is a 100% portable garage heater.

You simply plug the garage heater into a 115V outlet, connect to a 20 lb. LP propane tank – and you’re ready!

Another type of “forced air” heater we heartily recommend to warm up any garage – is the Mr. Heater Big MaxxNatural Gas Heater

Note: The Big Maxx model is a permanent wall installation model, which requires a Natural Gas and 115V electrical hardwire connection. Please see our review for the Big Maxx below.

“Radiant” Propane heater

Another variety of portable heaters for the garage is the Radiant Electric Heater. This efficient, but not quite as powerful type of electric garage heater, relies on infrared heating elements – to “radiate” and distribute heat to your garage— with clean-burning effectiveness – rated at nearly 100% efficiency.  Most radiant electric heaters test at zero-carbon monoxide levels – but it’s good to be safe and use some fresh air ventilation.

Editor’s Note – All Propane Heaters we review require a 20 lb. Lp Gas tank with a Hose and regulator.  Some models include or offer a gas hose and regulator at purchase (Amazon). The actual 20 lb. LP gas tanks are not available online – you can easily buy or exchange yours at any Home Depot, Lowes, or Walmart, Etc. )

“Kerosene” heaters*

Kerosene heaters work on a similar principle to forced air and radiant propane heaters but operate with kerosene or diesel fuel as the source of combustion.

*Note – Kerosene or Diesel Fuel can emit harmful fumes from combustion. Kerosene heaters are to be used only in “Open – well-ventilated spaces.”

Natural Gas garage heater and 240-volt Electric heaters

Two great options for heating a garage are 240-volt electric and natural gas heaters. However, these aren’t ordinarily practical for most people, since the majority of homes do not have the necessary hookups for them in the garage.  Neither of these Garage Heater types is Portable.

Because of this fact, this review will mostly focus on portable propane, 110-volt electric, and kerosene heaters*.

Don’t miss our 240-volt electric heater and natural gas garage heater options, at the end of this article.

And If it’s cold enough outside for a new garage heater, you may want to check out a “cordless” snowblower as well!

The Best Garage Heaters

 

Editor’s ChoiceRunner UpBest Value
Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater60,000 BTU Variable Propane Forced Air HeaterSTANLEY ST-60HB2-GFA Gas Forced Air Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black, Silver
Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater60,000 BTU Variable Propane Forced Air HeaterSTANLEY ST-60HB2-GFA Gas Forced Air Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black, Silver
$132.72Price not available$129.00
SEE ON AMAZONSEE ON AMAZONSEE ON AMAZON

Best Forced Air Propane Heaters

 

Editors Choice: Mr. Heater Forced Air 60,000 BTU Heater

Mr. Heater MH60QFAV 60,000 BTU Portable Propane Forced Air Heater

Why we like it

Manufactured by one of the top manufacturers in the world for space heaters, and this torpedo heater model from Mr. Heater is no exception. In fact, it is our top choice as the best portable garage heater to buy.

Mr. Heater’s features include heat settings of 30,000-60,000 BTU’s, QBT (50% quieter operation), 14 hours of operation on the 30,000 BTU setting, upwards directional heat flow design, comes with a built-in garage heater thermostat, and oh yeah, it’s made by Mr. Heater.

Specs

  • Continuous Ignition
  • Adjustable Temperature settings
  • QBT quiet technology
  • Heats up to 1,500 Square feet quickly
  • Includes:10 ft. gas hose and regulator (LP tank not included)

Our Takeaway:

If you’re looking for a dependable, space-efficient, easily adjustable space heater and your budget allow it – we think this is the one to buy.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 

 


Runner Up: Pro-Temp 60,000 BTU Propane Heater

60,000 BTU Variable Propane Forced Air Heater

Why We Like It

With its high heat output and variable heat settings, the Pro-Temp torpedo is one of the best heaters for garage and workshop we’ve researched. Unlike older models, this is a safe choice for indoor use – with sufficient ventilation, making it easy to heat any medium-sized garage even with frigid temperatures outside.

Specs

  • 60,000 BTU output
  • Heats up to 1,500 square feet
  • Up to 11 hours per tank

Our Takeaway

The Pro-Temp heater is well built and per reviews appear to be extremely reliable. Its heat output is more than enough for any standard sized garage, even under the coldest conditions.

Like most forced air heaters, it is fairly loud, but the noise is simply a part of using this type of heater.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 

 


Best Value: Stanley 60,000 BTU Forced Air Heater

STANLEY ST-60HB2-GFA Gas Forced Air Heater, 60,000 BTU, Black, Silver

Why We Like It

As one would expect with a Stanley product, the Stanley Forced Air propane forced air heater is of excellent quality and provides plenty of heat for most applications. The construction standards of this heater are solid, and we believe it to be one of the best garage heating options out there.

Specs

  • 60,000 BTU heat output
  • 300 cubic feet of air movement per minute
  • Push-button ignition

Our Takeaway

In our evaluation of this garage heater, we found that Stanley propane heater provides plenty of heat to make a garage comfortable during cold weather – for spaces up to 1,500 sq. Ft.

If you’re looking for an economical heater that will allow you to work on your car or tinker with projects on your workbench during the coldest months of the year – this heater is a great economical option.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 

 


More Garage Heating Options

 

Best “Cordless” Propane Heater – DeWalt DXH70CFAV 68,000 BTU

DeWALT DXH70CFAV 68,000 BTU Cordless Forced Air Propane Heater

Why We Like It

While all of our Top Place forced air propane heaters are awesome – They All require an extension cord to power the built-in blower.  The DeWalt propane heater fixed that problem by creating a “battery-powered” propane heater. Simply plug in a 20V DeWalt lithium-ion battery – connect it to your 20lb. propane tank and you’re done.

Specs

  • Up to 68,000 BTU
  • Stainless steel – Powder coated finish
  • Variable adjusted heat control
  • High-temperature limit switch
  • QBT Technology (Quiet Burner Technology) built-in

Our Takeaway

If you find yourself using a portable heater often in places that don’t have AC power – like job sites – Then the DeWalt portable propane heater is likely your best choice.  In addition, if you already use DeWalt power max 20-Volt battery system, you already own the battery and charger to power this impressive space heater!

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


 

Best “Hybrid” Portable Heater – Ryobi: 18V – 120V – or Propane

Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+ 15K BTU Hybrid Forced Air Propane Heater (Tool Only)(Bulk Packaged)

Why we Like It

The Ryobi Garage Heater could be considered as “Revolutionary”.  And while it does offer some limitations – if your intended use is, well, limited – this could be a great one to consider 🙂

The Ryobi 18V Hybrid offers the unique option of using either a 1 lb. propane tank (up to 1.5 hours), the 18V Ryobi Battery (up to 5 hours – battery sold separately) or Using an extension cord for unlimited 120 volt AC power.

The versatile power options, and the lightweight design of the Ryobi Heater – make this one of the most Portable Garage Heater designs on the market.

Specs

  • Up to 15,000 BTU capability
  • Up to 5 Hour Run Time using 4.0 Ah Ryobi Battery (sold separately)
  • Propane Tank Option
  • Compact Design – Great Portability

Check out this video for the Ryobi propane heater:


Our Takeaway

Suffice it to say, the Ryobi Portable Heater is a one-off – extremely versatile design. And while it offers super convenient options, we only recommend using it to heat small to medium-sized spaces effectively.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


 

Too early to buy one the best garage heaters? Check out the Best Fire Pit tables you can buy here

Best Radiant Heaters

 

Best Radiant Heater – Space Under 450 Square Feet: Mr. Heater MH18B

Mr. Heater MH18B, Portable Propane Heater

Why We Like It

Moving along to the best garage heaters in the radiant propane category, we start with the Mr. Heater MH18B, arguably the best space heater for smaller garage areas.

Mr. Heater provides a good amount of supplemental heat for spaces up to 450 square feet and can be run on a low, medium, or high heat setting, depending on the ambient temperatures.

Thanks to its high-efficiency rating, this heater is approved for both indoor and outdoor use.

Specs

  • 18,000 BTU max heat output
  • Heats up to 400-450 square feet (20 x 20 Sq. Ft. Garage)
  • Tip over and low oxygen safety switches
  • Three heat settings

Our Takeaway

If you’re heating a smaller garage, we think that the Mr. Heater MH18B is one of the best and most safe garage heaters you’ll find. Not only will it provide plenty of heat, but the radiant nature of its heating mechanism helps quickly distribute the heat throughout the space.

Overall, this is a high-quality heater that will serve you extremely well in smaller spaces.

Too early to buy one of these best garage heaters? Check out the Best Fire Pit tables you can buy here

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


Best Radiant Heater – Space Under 250 Square Feet: Mr. Heater MH9BX

Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy 4,000-9,000-BTU Indoor-Safe Portable Propane Radiant Heater

Why We Like It

Like the larger MH18B, this smaller unit from Mr. Heater provides a high-quality solution for smaller garages and sheds. Thanks to its small size, it is also perhaps the best portable garage heater on the market today, as it can be picked up and carried easily. It also offers many of the same great features that you’d find on the larger Mr. Heater models.

Specs

  • 9,000 BTU maximum heat output
  • Heats up to 225 square feet (20 x 12 Sq. Ft)
  • Tipover and low oxygen safety switches
  • High efficiency

Our Takeaway

Overall, this is the best portable garage heater we’ve researched for mid-size garages (single stall).

While it is small and lightweight, it’s also more than capable of warming up small spaces quickly and efficiently.

As with the previous model in our reviews, the Mr. Heater MH9BX uses radiant heating to distribute heat quickly, and prevent you from having to wait too long for your space to warm up.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


Best Radiant Heater for Workbench or Camping: Mr. Heater MH4B

Mr. Heater F215100 MH4B Little Buddy 3800-BTU Indoor Safe Propane Heater, Medium

Why We Like It

If you’re looking for a small heater that will warm up small spaces, this is it.

The MH4B Little buddy space heater, is a small, portable heater that provides just enough warmth to keep your immediate area comfortably.

This Mr. Heater heater is excellent for use on camping or hunting trips and is easy to carry for mobile applications.

Specs

  • 3,800 BTU maximum heat output
  • Heats up to 95 square feet (10 x 10 Sq. Ft.)
  • Lasts up to 5.6 hours on a 1-pound LP tank)
  • Tipover and low oxygen safety switches

Our Takeaway

Due to its small size and low fuel requirements, we find Mr. Heater MH4B to be the best shop heater on the market for smaller workshops and colder workbench spaces. With this Mr. Heater model, you’ll be able to comfortably work on your projects during the winter months without having to burn up insane amounts of propane in the process.

Like other Mr. Heater products, this mini heater is fast-acting and will warm up your small space in very little time.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


Kerosene Garage Heaters:

 

Best “Forced Air” Kerosene Heater: Pro-Temp 80,000 BTU Torpedo Heater

Pro-Temp 80,000 BTU Kerosene/Diesel Forced Air Torpedo Heater

Why We Like It

At 80,000 BTUs, this unit puts out some serious heat. For larger areas, this is perhaps the best garage heater you’ll find available today.

Thanks to its all-steel construction, this heater is also a durable machine that will stand up to practically anything you put it through.

Specs

  • 80,000 BTU heat output
  • Heats up to 2,000 square feet
  • 5-point safety
  • Adjustable thermostat
  • Can run on kerosene or diesel

Our Takeaway

The Pro-Temp Kerosene forced air heater does a great job of heating large spaces, even when the temperatures outside get extremely cold.

Pro Temp’s heat output is more than enough to warm even the largest garages. We’re very impressed with the user reviews, and quality of this unit, and it appears to be built exceptionally well.

*Note – For Kerosene or Diesel Fuel can emit harmful fumes from combustion. Kerosene heaters should only be operated in “Open – well-ventilated spaces”, such as Open – Barns, Garages, and New Construction sites.

NOTE: The state of California prohibits the use of this product in any dwelling, house or unit. In the state of California, use should be limited to non-airtight outbuildings such as barns, garages, etc. The sale of this product is prohibited in the state of Massachusetts. Please check your state and local codes prior to purchase.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


Best “Radiant” Kerosene Heater: Dura Heat 23,800 BTU Indoor Kerosene Heater

Dura Heat DH2304S 23,800 BTU Indoor Kerosene Heater

Why We Like It

Although it has less power than the 80,000 BTU heater mentioned above, this Dura Heat Radiant heat model is still an excellent choice for medium-sized spaces.

It is also somewhat unique in that it disperses heat in a 360-degree pattern, making for even distribution. As such, it very much deserves a mention on this list of the best portable heaters for garage spaces.

Specs

  • 23,800 BTU heat output
  • 360-degree distribution
  • Runs up to 12 hours on one tank of fuel
  • Protective grille

Our Takeaway

Our evaluation found that the Pro-Temp Kerosene Radiant heater does a great job of quickly warming up medium to large spaces thanks to its radiant heating capabilities. Its long runtime on a single tank of fuel is also a major advantage since it can be used over a prolonged period without refueling.

*Note – For Kerosene or Diesel Fuel can emit harmful fumes from combustion. Kerosene heaters should only be operated in “Open – well-ventilated spaces,” such as Open – Barns, Garages, and New Construction sites.

NOTE: The state of California prohibits the use of this product in any dwelling, house or unit. In the state of California, use should be limited to non-airtight outbuildings such as barns, garages, etc. The sale of this product is prohibited in the state of Massachusetts. Please check your state and local codes prior to purchase.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


240V Electric Garage Heaters

 

Best 240-volt Garage Heater: Dr. Infrared DR988

Dr. Infrared Heater DR-988 Garage Shop 208/240V, 4800/5600W Heater with 6-30R Plug

Why We Like It

This heater is perfect for 240 voltage equipped garages or construction sites and will do a great job of providing heat in spaces of up to 600 square feet. With that said, most home garages are not set up for 240-volt power, so not everyone will be able to use this great heater. If you’re fortunate enough to have a 240-volt hookup, though, this is a great option to look at.

Specs

  • Up to 5,600W power
  • Heats up to 600 square feet
  • Thermostat control
  • No fumes

Our Takeaway

This 240-volt option is overwhelmingly more powerful than the best 120-volt garage heater options on the market. And actually much more efficient.

As such, it provides a great way to leverage the convenience and safety of 240-volt electricity to heat your garage.

That is, assuming you have a 240-volt service.

We’ve found that the Dr. Infrared Heater does a great job of keeping garages warm and comfortable, all while producing no fumes of any kind.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


Natural Gas Garage Heaters

 

Best Natural Gas Garage Heater: Mr. Heater Big Maxx

Mr. Heater F260550 Big Maxx MHU50NG Natural Gas Unit Heater

Why We Like It

If you’re looking for a gas heater for a garage – and already have a natural gas hookup in place, the Big Maxx is an excellent option as a natural gas garage space heater.

Mr. Heater’s Big Maxx is exceptionally efficient and produces up to 50,000 BTUs of heat output.

Coming from a very reputable, well-known brand like Mr. Heater – is also a major plus.

Specs

  • 50,000 BTU maximum heat output
  • Heats up to 1,250 square feet
  • Thermostat control

Our Takeaway

For larger garages that have a natural gas space heater connection available, the Mr. Heater Big Maxx is an excellent option that will heat garages quickly and reliably.

This model requires venting exhaust fumes.

This natural gas heater can also be converted to an LP Gas source. This makes this model more versatile for homes that use liquid propane to heat their homes.

CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON >

 


 

Now that you have your Portable Garage Heater figured out – What about a Portable Generator?

 

Frequently Asked Questions

If you haven’t purchased a garage heater before, you may have a few basic questions about what you need.

This FAQ section answers a few of the most common questions buyers have – so you can make a more informed buying decision – and get the best garage heater for your needs.

What is the Best Garage Heater for an Uninsulated Garage?

If you have an uninsulated garage with exposed studs (no drywall) and intend to heat your garage – we highly recommend at a minimum, you install “Rolled Batt Insulation” between the wall studs – and if possible, the exposed roof rafters.

Roll Insulation is cheap and very easy to install; all you need is a utility knife, staple gun, and a ladder. So, while you may be able to raise the garage temperature without insulation, the cost to do so over time – will far outweigh the one-time cost to Install Batt Insulation.

If you don’t plan on insulating your garage for a while, just pick the highest rated BTU garage heater you can afford for that space.  We recommend selecting a top-rated propane heater like the 60,000 BTU forced air propane heater from Mr. Heater at Amazon.

What size Propane LP Gas tank do I need for a  Garage Heater?

All of the 60,000 BTU forced air – torpedo style garage heaters we feature above – require a 20 lb. Propane tank (same size as needed for your grill).

If you bump up to one of the larger models (80,000 BTU or higher), you will need to use 40 lb. Propane tanks, which are trickier to find already filled.

BTU Calculator – How many BTUs To Heat My Garage?

This one is a bit complicated to answer since it depends on several variables – outside temps, insulation, etc.

Here is the general rule of thumb, however, on how big a heater is needed for garages:

Forced Air Propane or Kerosene Garage Heaters

45,000 BTU’s to heat a 2 /12 car garage.

60,000 BTU’s to heat a 3-car garage

With that said, you may require more or less, depending on your average outside temperature, the size of your space, and the level of warmth you’re looking to achieve.

Like whether your standing still at a workbench vs. training to be the next champion Ninja warrior 🙂

If you live in a more moderate climate (Not Alaska) you may be more than comfortable buying the 18,000 BTU  Electric radiant heater from  Dynaglo  – It’s available at Amazon and is highly rated, and can be floor or wall-mounted.


Worth noting, a Forced Air propane heater will heat cold spaces much quicker than a Radiant type heater. Check with your local heating contractor to get a recommendation for your region.

Is Propane Better Than Kerosene?

While not necessarily better, propane is more widely available than kerosene. Propane heaters we feature operate at nearly 100% efficiency so they are safer to use indoors, and with less concern that Kerosene heaters require.

Propane heaters tend to be less expensive, however, many Kerosene heaters can provide greater fuel capacity and BTU output – For Barns, Unheated Construction sites, etc.

How Important Is Ventilation?

Even the most efficient heaters will produce some fumes. It’s always a good idea to place your heater in a well-ventilated space where fresh air is continually introduced, and any fumes the heater produces can disperse harmlessly.

While propane heaters we feature are considered safe to use indoors, we still recommend allowing fresh air for ventilation. Many propane users crack their service door or garage door a couple of inches to allow some fresh air – and in a lot of cases – to cool the garage down!

Kerosene heaters which operate on Kerosene or Diesel Fuel, require fully open ventilated spaces to be operated safely.

Are Garage Heaters Expensive to Run?

In most cases, no. Since a portable garage heater is used just while you are there to monitor it, you’ll only use it for a few hours at a time.

Given the efficiency of today’s modern heaters, auto heat settings, etc. the cost of using them is relatively low.

How Much of a Role Does Garage Insulation Play?

When selecting a heater, you should keep in mind the insulation status of your garage. The more insulated your garage is, the easier it will be for your heater to bring it up to temperature.

If you have a garage with little to no insulation, you’ll likely be best off overshooting the usual BTU recommendations to compensate for the heat loss.

Conclusion

While all the garage heaters we’ve reviewed offer great heating options, we suggest being very selective on “which garage heater” makes sense for your space.

Make sure you select a garage heater that is “appropriate” for your air quality. For instance, you wouldn’t want to order a kerosene heater for use in a closed garage or workshop space.

We recommend the “Mr. Heater forced air propane garage heater” as the best choice for spaces up to 1500 sq. ft. We also suggest many other fine heaters as well – all dependent on the size of space you plan to heat.

Thanks for visiting BestHomeGear.Com – & don’t miss our other Review and How-To Guides

Additional Reading & Resources:

Buyer’s Guide; The 8 Best Smoker Grill Combo You Can Buy In 2019

The Proper Way to “Store a Propane tank” from “WikiHow”

Top Product Reviews: 10 Best Gas Fire Pits for Heating your Patio

Need To Clear Branches Away From Deck or Home – Make it Way Easier With a “Cordless” Pole Saw!

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Kevin

As a Homeowner, Builder, and Property Developer/Manager for 30+ years, I’ve worn a lot of “different hats”, and In that capacity, owned or used about every tool or piece of home equipment one can think of. Managing property in Michigan, Arizona, and Florida, also allows us to test many of the products we review firsthand, and in vastly different climates and conditions. Our goal at BestHomeGear.Com is to share the first-hand experience by providing exceptional Home & Garden Techniques, Product Reviews, and useful DIY Guides for our faithful readers - Homeowners like you. We trust you will find BestHomeGear.Com very informative - and extremely helpful.

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