7 Best Portable Shop Heaters [Buyers Guide 2020]

Last Updated on November 2020

When winter arrives it’s only logical that you buy one of the best electric garage heaters if you have to stay warm inside. If you are new to this, then maybe you don’t know that there are heaters designed specifically for use in the garage. However, if you are accustomed to these heaters you might still find this review worth your reading because it gives you insights on the best portable shop heaters.

We start by going straight to what our experts have found to be the best portable garage heaters on the market today. After that, we’ll talk briefly about the things to consider when buying these devices. Hopefully, by the end of this review, you will find a portable shop heater that meets your unique requirements and budget.

This article will talk about this equipment in detail to ensure you can easily make your pick. Many brands manufacture the electric heater for the garage that is enough for puzzling the mind if you are shopping for the first time. For eliminating such confusion, our team has created a list of top 7 best electric garage heaters in 2020. Let’s begin the process of checking all of them and choose one that attracts you the most.

7 Best Portable Shop Heaters

Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy

Specifications

  • Steel, Plastic, Nickel
  • 4,000- to 9,000-BTU radiant heater
  • Fold-down handle; swivel-out regulator

The Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy Indoor-Safe Portable Radiant Heater is the ideal solution for anyone looking to stay warm in the colder winter weather. Keeping the cold away from rooms in your home doesn’t need to be difficult and you can save money by applying supplemental heat in a room instead of using your full central heating system.

This portable heater is safe to use indoors and it is completely portable. You don’t need to worry about buying an extra heater for every room, as you can simply move from one room to another with this one.

The Mr. Heater F232000 heater is an indoor radiant heater, which provides heat quickly and efficiently to your room so that you will be feeling warmer in no time. It is possibly the best garage heater for smaller sized garages and can also be used in the home.

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Small size won’t take up unnecessary space in your home
  • Auto shut off switch protects against low oxygen levels, tipping over and the pilot light going out
  • 4,000 – 9,000 BTU heat output, which can be controlled using a temperature control dial
  • Can heat a room of up to 200 square feet
  • 100% efficiency
  • The highly durable ceramic burner tile

Cons

  • This is a fairly small heater so you should take this into account when buying

Lasko Pro Performance Blower Fan 4900

Specifications

  • 3 High Velocity Speeds
  • Twin 120-Volt Accessory Outlets
  • Fully Assembled

This is another excellent Lasko blower fan and an excellent choice when you need to cool at any job. It is a compact and lightweight model that you can tag along wherever you go.  The fan features a high-speed motor that allows for powerful air circulation. It also features a 120V outlet accessory, a 10-foot power cord, and a safety circuit breaker. The blower head features a pivot that allows for easy adjustment of the airflow angle. Overall, this is a must-buy blower fan coming with a one-year limited warranty.

Pros

  • Great all-round quality
  • Pivotable
  • 1 year warranty
  • Great-value price tag

Cons

  • Made in China

Fahrenheat FUH54 240-volt Garage Heater

Specifications

  • Heavy duty
  • Easy to use
  • High level output

The Fahrenheat FUH54 is a heavy-duty industrial heater that is ideal for workshops, garages and even basements. This rugged heater comes with built-in mounting brackets for ceilings that make horizontal and vertical mounting of the heater very easy. Another great quality of this portable garage heater is the multiple adjustable louvers it possesses that are beneficial in directing heat to specific areas. Weighing 24 pounds, this heater is considerably heavier than many. However, it runs like a machine bellowing hot air with ease. Installation is also quick and the energy consumption rate is low.

Pros

  • Multi-purpose – Suitable for outside buildings, garages, basements and workshops.
  • Highly durable – Model was originally designed for industrial use hence its rugged nature.
  • Adjustable louvers – These channel heat to targeted areas.
  • Mounting brackets – Enable the heater to be mounted on walls or ceilings for ease of use.
  • Energy efficient – In some regions users have reported a $1 an hour electricity usage rate by this heater!

Cons

  • Heavy – Weighs 24 pounds on average – almost thrice the weight of some heaters.
  • Some units may be poorly assembled e.g. may lack a few screws or louvers may be bent hence a thorough inspection is required before purchasing.

Cadet RCP502S Portable Garage Heater

Specifications

  • 5000-watt
  • Includes bracket for wall mount
  • 20-gauge steel construction

Thanks to its smaller frame and serious heating power, this product is an ideal candidate to be the part of this list. It is a 5000-watt garage heater that equips with a built-in bracket for ensuring one can use them on both floor and wall.

One amazing feature of this heater is a selector switch that let the users select anywhere between 3333 and 5000-watt heat output. Additionally, it comes with a pretty 6-foot long power cord for easier access.

Pros

  • High-quality 20 gauge steel design
  • Capable of working as an air circulation fan in the hotter months
  • Equip with a pretty longer cord

Cons

  • Very poor reset switch

Modine HD45AS0111 Hot Dawg 45,000 BTU

Specifications

  • Certified for residential, commercial and industrial use
  • Low profile design
  • Installs quickly and easily with field wiring connections

The best way to heat a garage with a large volume space is with a natural gas heater like this one. It puts out 45,000 BTU per hour which is plenty for even a large 3 car garage.

It’s not the prettiest heater but it’ll heat your garage up really fast with a 30 degree increase in around 20 minutes or so. It runs on natural gas but there’s an option to use propane if you prefer.

The installation will take you a few hours and it’s probably worth getting a professional to do it for you if you haven’t done this kind of thing before. It’ll probably take you around 2 to 4 hours to install and, weighing 60 pounds, you’ll need some extra hands.

Once you’ve got it in it will seriously impress. It’s one of the fastest heaters we’ve seen and is ideal for heating larger garages. It’s a little pricey but this natural gas garage heater is going to be far more economical than using an electric heater in the long run.

Pros

  • Heats a large garage fast
  • Very efficient

Cons

  • Takes a few hours to install
  • Pricey upfront purchase cost

Lasko 675919 Stanley Pro-Ceramic Utility Heater

Specifications

  • Power Source Type: Corded Electric
  • Adjustable thermostat
  • 1500-Watt

The Lasko 675919 Stanley Pro-Ceramic Utility Heater is one of the ideal heaters on the go. This device was created to be your go-to heater when a portable heating device is needed. Offering a durable carrying handle, the unit can provide heat wherever you need it.

With an adjustable thermostat, the Lasko 675919 Stanley Pro-Ceramic Utility Heater can be set to an absolute temperature with ease. With three programmable settings, the device can be used on high, low, and fan-only for those hot months. No special assembly is required with this device, and it comes with a three-year limited warranty.

A built-in safety switch ensures you can use this device without having to worry about overheating or tipping.

Pros

  • Tall space-saving design
  • 5000 BTU’s/1500 watt heat production
  • Extremely portable
  • Remote control operation
  • Wide oscillation range
  • 7-hour timer/Programmable thermostat

Cons

  • Can tip over easy when placed on rugs
  • The built-in carry handle is awkwardly positioned

Patton PUH680-N-U Milk-House Utility Heater

Specifications

  • Low and high settings
  • 1000 & 1500 Watt heat settings

The Patton milk house utility heater is ideal for use in workshops, garages and works sites as it features a full metal housing and it also comes with high and low heat settings as well as comfort control thermostat which allows you select the desired heat level.

It also comes with an automatic shut off technology that shuts down this heater when not in use. Using this heater also allows you to maintain a suitable comfort level thanks to its adjust manual controls.

It also boasts of front guards which provide protection against tip over thereby helping you stay relaxed during use.

Pros

  • Ideal for heating up small spaces
  • Can be left for an extended heating time
  • Also ideal for small rooms
  • Gets the job done

Cons

  • Little bit noisy

How to choose the best electric garage heaters?

If you are one of those people who spend lots of money in the garage, then it is important that you check out all the important things before making a choice. You will spend a great amount of money in the best electric garage heater, so it is ideal that you buy an amazing product. Check out things mentioned below while buying an electric garage heater:

Garage area:

It is important you stay aware of how much is the area in the garage so that you know how much time heater take for making the environment cozy. The power of a heater varies from one to another, and that’s why we suggest you decide according to the garage area.

Portability:

Never miss the portability feature of this product as one has to often move the heater from one place to another. The majority of electric heaters are portable, but it is best that you still stay cautious while making a choice.

Add-on features:

The modern garage heaters come with plenty of add-ons like overheat protection, cool-touch, tip over switch, and many more. The more features electric heater has, the better it is to buy.

Power cord length:

It is ideal to buy an electric heater that has a long power cord. It will ensure that you can easily power the heater without worrying about the plug.

Budget:

The electric garage heaters are available in a great price range. Their price generally varies according to power. So, identify the power requirements and then set a budget according to that. You can smartly find an electric heater within the price range, so it is better to don’t surpass that.

Safety

Make sure your propane heaters come with safety features like low-oxygen and tip-over shutoff. For electric and natural gas, they should always have automatic overheating shutoff that will prevent the heating from turning on until it’s cooled down to a safe temperature.

Warranty

Heaters can break. A good heater should have at least a one year warranty on it, so that if it breaks for reasons other than user error you’re covered.

Good Reviews

If a heater is consistently receiving good reviews on sites like Amazon, it’s probably a quality heater. Just be sure to actually read a lot of the reviews, including the bad ones. You can usually tell pretty quickly if the bad reviews are written by someone whose bad experience was their own fault, or if there’s a recurring problem with the unit itself. Just as telling are the reasons that people give for a five star review. It may be that it’s a great heater for them, but it won’t meet your needs.

What’s included in the box?

If the heater is designed to be mounted, the mounting gear should be in the box with it. Not every heater comes with a thermostat included, either. Some of them have a default heat setting that you can only change if you buy a thermostat separately. Some of them come with a remote so you can turn the heater on and adjust the temperature from wherever you’re working. Little details like that matter, and should be factored in to your final decision.

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Power Source: Propane, Natural Gas or Electricity

When choosing a heater to use in your garage you will have to choose a heater that is powered by one of these three fuels. In order to determine the best heater for you a close examination of all three options is required.

Propane

There are many advantages associated with choosing a propane powered heater for your garage. Here are just a few.

  • Energy efficiency – Compared to electric heaters, propane heaters cost about a third less when set to produce the same amount of heat.
  • Safety– Propane gas is very safe to use. It is regarded as one of the safest gases to store and use in homes and garages with no serious safety issues.
  • Highly combustible – No time is wasted waiting for the gas to ignite. The gas is highly flammable and ignites super fast.

It is important to note that this gas will not ignite when combined with oxygen unless the ignition source attains at least 940 degrees Fahrenheit. This works as a safety measure in case of leaks.

  • Clean– Propane is a very clean fuel that produces negligible waste when burnt. With propane there is no sooty residue whatsoever.
  • Affordable – The price of propane is relatively low. Also, there are many propane gas combinations in the market. This means that users operating on a budget can be able to afford propane gas.

Disadvantages

  • Compared to air, propane is denser. This means that in the event of a leak, instead of the gas drifting across the room like most gases, it will instead sink to a particular area where it is likely to become a safety hazard i.e. can result in a fire or explosion.
  • Ensure you do a thorough scrutiny of your heater to detect potential propane leakage spots for extra protection.

Electricity

Electric powered garage heaters have some excellent benefits associated with them.

  • Quiet operation – Electricity is the most quiet fuel of them all. The movement of electrons which results in a current produces no noise at all. The use of electricity by garage heaters is also similarly quiet. Heaters that use electricity usually contain a coil/ electric heating element that heats up with no noise whatsoever. The heater comes with a propeller fan which is situated behind the coil whose main job is to push air over the warm coil and into a shop or garage space. Depending on the fan installed, users are guaranteed to work without any interruptions.
  • Installation – Garage space heaters of electric nature are much easier to install than other heater types mainly because there is no gas line involved. In some homes, it is unaffordable and sometimes impractical to wind a gas line all the way to the garage. Even if it was possible it is certainly not a do-it-yourself task. Homeowners will be forced to hire licensed electricians and plumbers to get the job done well. In such instances choosing an electric garage heater is the most convenient way to go.

Disadvantages

Cost – Compared to propane and other natural gases, electricity is relatively expensive. It is estimated that the electrical energy consumed by garage heaters is 33% more than what is required by propane heaters. High minimum voltage also plays a role in the high costs. Most heaters require at least 240 volts. This voltage is equivalent to that of a clothes dryer or an oven!

Natural Gas

Natural gas is flammable gas that occurs naturally in the ground and is used as a fuel. It is composed of many gases all of which have highly flammable properties. It should be noted that although propane is a distinct gas on its own it is a part of the combination of gases such as Butane, Methane, Ethane etc. than make up natural gas.

So, is there a difference to choosing natural gas over propane and electricity?

Advantages

  • Lower energy consumption – Compared to electricity, heaters that use natural gas consumes much lower energy.
  • Outages – Natural gas is in abundance in the earth and hence there are no outages. The same cannot be said for electricity which is heavily influenced by weather. With natural gas garage heaters users can enjoy warmth throughout without any disruptions.
  • Efficiency – There is an approximated 90%+ energy efficiency when you use natural gas heaters. This is because the pipeline that delivers the gas is well insulated ensuring optimum gas transportation and gas conversion to heat energy. Only about 10% of the energy created is lost – a very small percentage when you compare it with electricity whose efficiency rate cannot be pin pointed accurately due to the many variables present.
  • Environmentally friendly – The by-products generated during combustion are very little and do not impact the environment in a negative way. There are also no odors, soot or ash left behind after combustion.
  • Safer to store – Concerned about safety in your garage? Consider getting a garage heater that is powered by natural gas. Natural gas is much lighter than Propane. The relative density of natural gas compared to Propane is 1.56. This also means that Propane is much denser than air. Natural gas, however, is not. In the event of a leak, natural gas will simply rise, mix with the air and dissipate posing a very minimal safety hazard.

Disadvantages

Not as hot as propane. – Propane can achieve much higher temperatures than natural gas over the same period of time. This is because Propane, unlike natural gas, is not a collection but a single gas. It is easier to refine a single gas to a much greater degree than to refine multiple gases all at once together. For this reason propane is able to burn much brighter than natural gas due to the much lower level of impurities present.

As shown, each option has its pros and cons. If you’d like to spend less on your heating expenses it is advisable to choose a Propane heater since it burns much brighter and consumes very little energy. However, if you are very concerned about safety it is advisable to stick with natural gas heaters.

Amazon

There are several places to buy portable shop heaters online. However for a worry-free return policies, transparency in terms of product quality and customer service, and fast shipping, head over to Amazon.

When you browse on Amazon, you can see what previous buyer reviews on the product they bought, and find out everything spec wise on the items quality, protective features, and comfort. You don’t need to go out to compare prices or features.

If you have problems with purchasing from Amazon there cstomer service is excellent, you can also quickly and easily return them.

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