Heating garage workshop


Hello, I know I have asked this before , sorry. I am going to be installing heat in my garage soon. I was going to going to go with electric but any heater I would get would draw most of my amps from my panel. So I am going to run a gas line as soon as the ground thaws. I will be insulating and drywalling the garage also. I was wondering if anyone had any suggestions on which heater to go with? I am doing a little research on infrared heaters right now. Anyone have any thoughts on those? Any other ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks Rich
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I installed a Modine brand heater a few years back. I love it. It was approximately $700 from McMaster-Carr. Mine is LP, but they make them for Natural Gas too. I installed it myself, which isn't too hard. I had the propane guy look over the installation when he installed the tank as a second check. The model I bought is 75,000 btu. It can heat my shop from 30 to 65 in 10-15 minutes. Once the shop is warm it only kicks on every 10 minutes or so for a few minutes.
Joe in Denver My Woodworking Website: www.the-wildings.com/shop/

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I also installed a Modine and it has been fantastic the last two winters. My shop is 24 x32 and I put the 100,000 btu unit in. By rights it called for the 75,000 btu model but I just figured bigger would be better. I'm in New Jersey and figure my LP use to be about 250 gallons a year maintaining a temp of 45 degrees when I'm not in there and keeping it between 55 and 62 degrees 24/7 when I working on something. Mine will work with natural gas or LP.
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100,000 BTU in a 24 x 32 shop??? Put some insulation in that sucker! My shop is 24 x 38 feet and I heat it with a 50,000 BTU furnace, which is still a bit large. North Dakota winters! Greg
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LOL I know :) I got a good deal on the heater. It is insulated but I lose most of my heat through the overhead door. Still I figure if I'm getting by with less then 300 gallons a season I am doing fine.
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========================================My shop is on the second floor of a 24x24 2 story garage and like I said in my other post it is heated by a 116,000 BTU furnace (less because some of the jets are plugged)... 6 single pane non insulated windows (one of which is a large opicture window) plus 2 uninsulated garage doors...
You bet I could throw in a lot more insulation...but my Propane usage also is under 300 gallons a year keeping the upstairs shop (that is where the thermostat is located) at 50 degrees 24/7...and only raise it to 68 when I am out there ..(alot since I am retired)
costs between 400 and 500 bucks to heat it...not worth replacing the windows, doors, and caulking the hell out of the building to save at best 200 bucks a year..
Bob G.
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I'm not sure about that. I've heard that most heat is lost through air leakage and silicone caulk is cheap. Blower door tests are not - which brings me to this subject change.
Any Normite and many Neanders are going to have a fairly large dust collector in their shop. My own is a two HP Delta unit and I also have a large Shopsmith dust collector waiting to be sold. I wonder if these units are large enough and could be re-arranged to test for home air leakage?
My thought is to make an adapter for a window rather than a door and to remove the bag on my big Delta dust collecter and use that as a blower. I have a 220 circuit in my bathroom on the first floor ( the washer and dryer are there) and a large window in there also. Wheel in the dust collector, do the blower test, calk, rinse-lather-repeat. By the end of the summer things should be pretty tight.
What do they use to find the leaks? Some kind of incense?
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Any fan with a known cfm output could be used as an alternative to a door blower unit. With a fan, measure the cfm output and take differential pressure readings at the boundaries of the space you are testing. This will give you the actual leakage area if you calculate it at cfm over (2610 times the square root of delta pressure). However, this only gives you a measurement of the actual area of leakage. If all you want to do is find the leakage, pressurize the space (positive or negative) and run a stick of incense or other colored tracer gas at the boudary walls and see where the air moves the gas. Keep in mind that all building materials will have some leakage not just at the joints. If you have a cinder block wall, it will leak a good amount. Only way to seal is to paint the wall.
Allyn
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wrote:

I wondered about that too. Seems to me a couple of hundred bucks toward sealing the shop up would go a long way to reduce his gas bill, but then we have not seen his shop either. It may need allot more than $200 to make a difference! Don't forget that if he even trims off $50 of his annual bill, he saves that EVERY year following. I would be some insulating, and caulking! Greg
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This does come up from time to time. I would suggest you look at a recycled forced air furnace. Sometimes you can buy them from building material salvage dealers, heating/cooling contractors, etc. They often come from homes that have been remodeled and added on to, requiring more capacity.
I bought one several years ago for $25. It was a downdraft unit and I had a welder make a simple frame to lift it off of the floor about 1 foot. I hooked it to gas, installed a vent, installed a thermostat and turned it on. Worked great.
In a garage you might want to check local codes. Also, you will want to install it about 2 feet above the floor to keep it away from gasoline fumes. Use of ductwork depends on your application but the small shop I installed mine in didn't need any.
RonB
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new construction... but do get sub contracted out for major remodeling jobs...
They installed a 116,000 BTU furnace for me 3 years ago (just finishing my 2 full winter with it) ...it was FREE..and so was the A/C unit... it was only about 2 years old when they "removed" it because it was too small for the remodel job they had...
I do not have natural gas but the cost for a conversion kit to convert it to Propane was less then going out to dinner at a cheap restraunt ...did have to "plug" some of the jets however to make it cycle on and off efficiently...
OLD furnaces are out there... AND SO ARE NEW ONES... .
Just the other day my one sone told me that "someone" installed the wrong furnace in one of the homes they are doing in a development... (too small etc...for that particular home) ..and it had to be hanked...never used at all...BUT no longer NEW ..and his company could not re-install it in another home... Think he said his company left it go for a hundred bucks to another employee...(hopefully not the one who screwed up the paperwork and had the wrong one installed in the wrong house originally...
Bob Griffiths
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On my last job site, they installed radiant heaters (infrared?) and I was nothing short of amazed at the job they do. Radiant beats the pants off of forced-air any day of the week.
There are a few caveats, though. These heaters had to be hanging way out in the middle of nowhere, otherwise they'd set something on fire. If you have height considerations in your shop, they may not work, but if you can use them, I'd say use them.
The preceding has been my own personal, limited experience, and YMMV.
-Phil Crow
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Infrared is nice in that it is feeling warm to the body in seconds compared to hot air. as long as you are in direct line, otherwise you have to wait until things get heated up anyway.
Size depends on your location and how much you anticipate heating it. I have a 30,000 Btu that gives me a 30 -35 degree temperature rise. Great much of the time, but not enough when it is single digits outside.
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One more thing. I was looking thorugh old wood magazines last night, looking for a project. The October 2002 issue of Wood has a great article on different types of shop heaters, the relative prices, and pros and cons of each.
By the way, isn't this the wrong time of year to be worrying about a shop heater? Another month and you won't have to worry about it anymore. Then you could use that budget to buy more tools, and worry about the heater next fall when your toes get cold again! Just my opinion.
Joe in Denver My Woodworking Website: www.the-wildings.com/shop/

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