Mini Splits vs. Garage Heaters: What Should I Get for My Garage?

November 24, 2020

Your garage can be more than just an area to put your vehicles in Huffman. It can be an area to work, offer extra storage and more. But when you’re out there more often, it needs to be a comfortable temperature.

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

Let’s go through the difference between the two to help you find the best solution for your needs.

What is a Mini-Split?

A mini-split is close to a heat pump since it transfers heat as opposed to generating it. This makes it a highly energy-efficient heating and cooling system for areas that don’t have ductwork. These electric systems are often installed on a wall and linked to the outdoor unit through a tiny hole in the wall.

Although a ductless mini-split is more expensive, a lot have achieved ENERGY STAR® recognition for their energy efficiency. They’re also very quiet and offer zoned comfort, which gives accurate control over your garage’s temp.

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

What is a Garage Heater?

A garage heater is more than a space heater. This all-encompassing heating solution is installed on the ceiling or the high corner of a wall. Depending on the model, these heaters can consume electricity, gas or propane. They’re an excellent solution if you are situated in a cold climate and complete a lot of dusty dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and designed to withstand added grime.

Evaluating Notable Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

We’ve put together a handy guide to help you select the best system for your garage.


Garage heaters are the most economical option. The typical price is different because of fuel type, but they’re often about half the cost of a mini-split.

Operating Costs

Garage heaters are much like a furnace, needing fuel to create hot air. A mini-split air conditioner is more like a heat pump, which shifts heat. This makes a mini-split more efficient to use. You’ll have decreased utility costs if you get an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you might be eligible for additional rebates as a result of that energy efficiency.

Fuel Source

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

Heating and Cooling

As its title indicates, a garage heater is limited to only providing heat. A ductless mini-split delivers both heating and cooling.

Precise Temperature Control

When you are looking for the most precise temperature control, a mini-split heat pump is the wisest solution because it provides zoned heating and cooling. That way, your garage will be just the temperature you want it to be.

Space Considerations

As garage heaters are usually installed on the ceiling, they can take up premium overhead storage area. In comparison, low-profile mini-split systems are often installed higher up on a wall and don’t need a lot of space.

If you’re still waffling between a garage heater and mini-split, the specialists Air Houston Mechanical LLC can help. Contact us at 832-777-1521 now to get a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll go over your needs, suggest a solution and get it installed quickly, so you can get started enjoying your garage workspace much sooner.