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Top 5 Most Efficient Garage Heaters

Heating is universal. Everyone needs it, wants it, and benefits from it. It's a household standard, and in today's economy, it's more important than ever to keep energy costs down and stay warm at the same time. So, how do you stay warm in a cost effective way?

How to Calculate Heater Efficiency

The way to calculate the cost of an electric heater is as follows:

1. Find out how much you pay per unit of electricity. This information is on your electric bill.

2. Find out how much input power the heater uses in kW. This is usually marked on the packaging or the side of the heater.

3. To estimate hourly running cost, multiply the input power in kW by the price of your electricity per kW hour.

shop-all-garage-300For example, if you pay 7.53 cents per kWh and you run a 5,000 watt or 5kW heater you would multiply 7.53 cents/kWh x 5kW x 1 hour = 37.65 cents per hour to run the heater.

4. To estimate daily running cost, multiply the cost per hour by the number of hours you use the heater.

5. To estimate your yearly running cost, multiply the daily cost by the typical number of days you plan to use the heater.

Our experts tested some of our best selling garage heaters for efficiency and ranked them 1-5. Because efficiency means different things to different people, we recommend them based on not only cost efficiency but also specialized features that separate one style of heating from another. We're looking at efficiency in terms of coverage, effectiveness, ease of use, and wattage.

newair-g56-300NewAir is a home appliance provider. This includes wine coolers, air conditioners, ice makers, ice cream makers and more. This is a newer company who uses the most advanced technology to provide stylish, easy to use, efficient merchandise. Knowing this, how does the NewAir G56 rate?

Online reviews indicate that this heater is a great option for large spaces. Slated to warm more than 500 sq. ft. many reviews indicate it performs as advertised. Even in areas where temperatures drop to an uncomfortable degree, this heater raises temperatures to a comfortable level. So what exactly makes this unit efficient?

1. It heats up to 560 sq. ft. as it claims to

2. It's easy to setup and use with no permanent installation required, needing a 240V outlet only

3. It's made from steel and extremely durable

4. Thermostat control that shuts the heater on and off as temperatures rise and fall

5. Uses only 5600 watts of heating power

So what are the negatives? For one, there isn't an off switch. It's a single pole thermostat, so that should be expected. However, some consider this an inconvenience. Here's a hint: Plug this heater into a power strip and turn it off when not in use.

newair-g73-300Maintaining product integrity and efficiency, the NewAir company presents another success! Customers give this heater a five star rating and for good reason. It tested well, and outperforms other brands within the same category.

Customer reviews suggest the  NewAir G73  is a bargain. Even in northern regions, this heater warms the man cave so you can work on cars and more in the dead of winter. What else makes it so appealing?

1. It's reasonably priced

2. Heater effectively warms up to 500 sq. ft. and raises temperatures more than 40 degrees

3. Ceiling and wall mountable so it's out of the way and includes a hanging bracket for quick setup

shop-all-garage-3004. Can be used for commercial and residential applications

5. Only 5,000 watts of energy drawn to warm a large area

What are the negatives? Customers complain it requires hardwiring rather than simple plug in operation like the G56. That's why this heater ranks 2nd on our list of the best. It takes a little planning and knowledge to get this heater installed. That being said, consumers boast that it's great for winters in which the temperature drops below zero.

QMark makes heating products for residential, commercial, and industrial settings. Marley engineers products utilize leading thermal technology to produce a brand that can be found in North America and around the world.

q-mark-muh0521-300When it comes to reliability, the  QMark MUH0521  is a great choice! One review indicates that a purchase made in 1997 is still operating well. What more is there to say? This is an effective and efficient option. What are the best efficient features?

1. Copper clad heating element heats quickly and evenly

2. Versatile installation allows for horizontal or vertical setup

3. Made from heavy gauge die-cast steel housing to withstand rugged environments

4. Thermal cut out for safe operation

5. 5,000 watts of energy warms a 500 sq. ft. garage or work area effectively

Why does this unit rank third on our list of efficient heaters? Like the NewAir G73, this unit requires hardwired installation, which means it's not portable. In addition, it's wall mountable but does not include a bracket, which means it must be purchased separately. Aside from these two requirements, this heater is an easy to use and efficient choice.

Dayton heaters are produced by Grainger Industrial Supply. All of their heaters are commercial in nature and designed to keep work areas warm. Weighing only 22 lbs., this heater is easy to setup and move from place to place. Reviews indicate this unit is a winner!

The Dayton 4E169   meets NEC and OSHA requirements for safe use and includes a built in thermostat for custom comfort control.

dayton-4e169-mWhat are the pluses? This unit heats in the winter and cools in the summer, and it swivels for multi-directional heating. Common uses include garage heating for completing outdoor projects during colder months, keeping animals warm, and heating a workstation.

1. Plug-in or hardwire installation for versatile use

2. Dual heat settings for personalized heating

3. Ceiling or wall bracket for optional off the floor installation

4. Compact design heats well and includes a floor stand for even more convenience

5. Uses 5,000 watts of energy to warm up to 500 sq. ft. of space and warms as advertised


What's the downfall? This heater does not have adjustable louvers like the G73 and MUH0521. Moreover, it does not include a plug, which means it must be purchased separately.

Since QMark specializes in heating products, they offer a large variety of options to meet most needs. This compact garage heater is designed to provide supplemental heating to a variety of personal spaces.

Although some reviews argue this heater is overpriced, it's safe to say it's a great bargain. Most reviews indicate it's an effective source of supplemental warmth.

q-mark-mmhd1502t-300Used in a motor home, in the garage, or an enclosed patio the QMark MMHD1502Tspreads enough warmth to transform an area. What are the benefits of this heater?

1. Dual heat settings for custom warmth

2. Automatic shut off to help prevent any overheating

3. Plugs into a standard 120V 3 prong outlet

4. Adjustable thermostat and fan-forced heating

5. Heats as it's supposed to using 1500 watts of energy to warm up to 150 sq. ft. of space

Why this unit ranks 5th on our list of garage heaters? This heater only warms about 150 sq. ft. of space. It's cost effective as it uses only 1500 watts of power, so it won't increase energy costs overly much; however, it's ideal for personal spaces rather than an entire garage.

A tip on electrical use: When it comes to cost efficiency, it doesn't matter if the heater is a 120V or a 240V. Your utility company charges you based on how many kWh you use not by voltage. If the heater uses the same amount of watts, you'll be charged the same price for using it regardless of how many volts it has. A heater that runs on 240V draws half as many amps as a similar wattage device that runs on 120V.

When it comes to garage heaters, there are many similarities and differences. Below is an overview of the attributes each unit offers.


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