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

November 24, 2020

Your garage can be more than just a place to park your vehicles in Branchville. It can be a work space, give additional storage and more. But when you’re spending more time out there, it needs to be a cozy temperature.

Garages don’t typically have the ductwork required for standard heating and cooling systems. While you can add ductwork, it’s not the most cost-effective remedy. The wisest way to heat your garage is by installing a ductless comfort system, like a mini-split system or a garage heater.

Let’s go over the difference between the two to help you discover the right solution for your needs.

What is a Mini-Split?

A mini-split is similar to a heat pump because it moves heat as opposed to generating it. This makes it a very energy-efficient heating and cooling system for spaces without ductwork. These electric systems are usually placed on a wall and connected to the outdoor unit through a tiny hole in the wall.

Even though a ductless mini-split is higher priced, most have earned ENERGY STAR® certification for their energy efficiency. They’re also extremely quiet and offer zoned comfort, which provides accurate control over your garage’s temperature.

Many mini-splits allow you to join multiple indoor units to one outdoor unit. If your garage is part of your house, you could be able to use added indoor units in rooms that are difficult to heat and cool.

What is a Garage Heater?

A garage heater is better than a space heater. This all-encompassing heating solution is installed on the ceiling or the higher corner of a wall. Depending on the model, these heaters can use electricity, gas or propane. They’re a good option if you live in a cold climate and complete a lot of dusty dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and created to last through added grime.

Comparing Top Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

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


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

Operating Costs

Garage heaters are much like a furnace, using fuel to generate warmth. A mini-split air conditioner is more similar to a heat pump, which moves warmth. This makes a mini-split more efficient to use. You’ll enjoy reduced heating and cooling expenses if you get an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you could have access to extra rebates due to that energy efficiency.

Fuel Source

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

Heating and Cooling

As its designation indicates, a garage heater is limited to only offering heat. A ductless mini-split provides both heating and cooling.

Precise Temperature Control

When you are seeking the most accurate temperature control, a mini-split heat pump is the wisest option because it provides zoned heating and cooling. That way, your garage will be the right temperature you want it to be.

Space Considerations

As garage heaters are typically placed on the ceiling, they can consume valued overhead storage area. On the other hand, low-profile mini-split systems are often installed higher up on a wall and don’t need a lot of real estate.

If you’re still debating between a garage heater and mini-split, the specialists Willco Air Conditioning, Refrigeration & Heating Inc. can help. Reach us at 862-345-6896 today to get a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll go over your needs, recommend a solution and get it put in fast, so you can begin enjoying your garage workspace much quicker.