Mini Splits vs. Garage Heaters: Whats Right for My Garage?

November 24, 2020

Your garage can be more than just an area to store your vehicles in York. It can be a work space, give extra storage and more. But when you’re working out there more often, it needs to be a cozy temperature.

Garages don’t often have the ductwork necessary for standard heating and cooling systems. While you can add ductwork, it’s not the most advantageous option. The best approach to heat your garage is by having a ductless comfort system, like a mini-split system or a garage heater.

Let’s discuss the difference between the two to help you find the right style for your needs.

What is a Mini-Split?

A mini-split is similar to a heat pump because it transfers heat rather than making it. This makes it a very energy-efficient heating and cooling system for rooms that lack ductwork. These electric systems are typically put on a wall and joined to the outdoor unit through a little hole in the wall.

Although a ductless mini-split is higher priced, most have earned ENERGY STAR® designation for their energy efficiency. They’re also highly quiet and deliver zoned comfort, which offers accurate control over your garage’s climate.

The majority of mini-splits allow you to join more than one indoor unit to a single outdoor unit. If your garage is connected to your house, you could be able to use additional indoor units in rooms that are hard to heat and cool.

What is a Garage Heater?

A garage heater isn’t a space heater. This all-in-one heating solution is placed on the ceiling or the upper corner of a wall. Depending on the model, these heaters can consume electricity, gas or propane. They’re a good choice if you are situated in a chilly climate and complete a lot of dirty dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and created to last through added grime.

Evaluating Top Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

We’ve assembled a valuable guide to help you select the ideal system for your garage.


Garage heaters are the lowest-priced solution. The typical price is different based on fuel type, but they’re frequently about half the cost of a mini-split.

Operating Costs

Garage heaters are much like a furnace, consuming fuel to create warmth. A mini-split air conditioner is more similar to a heat pump, which shifts warmth. This makes a mini-split more efficient to run. You’ll get even lower utility expenses if you choose an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you could be eligible for added rebates because of that energy efficiency.

Fuel Source

Garage heaters have the widest options for fuel sources—electricity, gas or propane. Mini-splits are electric.

Heating and Cooling

As its name says, a garage heater is restricted to just providing heat. A ductless mini-split delivers both heating and cooling.

Precise Temperature Control

When you are looking for the most exact temp control, a mini-split heat pump is the smartest answer since it delivers zoned heating and cooling. That way, your garage will be the exact temperature you want it to be.

Space Considerations

Because garage heaters are typically placed on the ceiling, they can consume premium overhead storage space. In contrast, space-saving mini-split systems are often installed higher up on a wall and don’t need a lot of space.

If you’re still deciding between a garage heater and mini-split, the professionals Strine's Heating & Air Conditioning can help. Contact us at 717-383-4479 right away to request a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll discuss your needs, recommend a solution and get it working fast, so you can start enjoying your garage workspace much quicker.