Mini Splits vs. Garage Heaters: What Should I Install in My Garage?

November 24, 2020

Your garage can be more than just a space to store your vehicles in Muldrow. It can be an area to work, offer additional storage and more. But when you’re spending more time out there, it needs to be a comfortable temperature.

Garages don’t often have the ductwork required for regular heating and cooling systems. While you can install ductwork, it’s not the most economical option. The best approach to heat your garage is by adding 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 creating it. This makes it a very energy-efficient heating and cooling system for spaces that lack ductwork. These electric systems are typically placed on a wall and connected to the outdoor unit through a little hole in the wall.

Though a ductless mini-split is more expensive, many have received ENERGY STAR® recognition for their energy efficiency. They’re also highly quiet and provide zoned comfort, which offers precise control over your garage’s temp.

Many mini-splits allow you to join multiple indoor units to a single outdoor unit. If your garage is connected to your residence, you might be able to install added indoor units in areas that are tricky to heat and cool.

What is a Garage Heater?

A garage heater is more than a space heater. This comprehensive heating solution is mounted on the ceiling or the higher corner of a wall. Depending on the model, these heaters can consume electricity, gas or propane. They’re a good choice if you reside in a northern climate and do a lot of grubby dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and made to keep working through added grime.

Reviewing Top Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

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


Garage heaters are the lowest-priced option. The typical price varies based on fuel type, but they’re usually about half the cost of a mini-split.

Operating Costs

Garage heaters work similarly to a furnace, needing fuel to create warmth. A mini-split air conditioner is closer to a heat pump, which transfers hot air. This makes a mini-split more efficient to use. You’ll get decreased utility expenses if you select an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you may be eligible for added rebates because of that energy efficiency.

Fuel Source

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

Heating and Cooling

As its title suggests, a garage heater only provides delivering heat. A ductless mini-split offers both heating and cooling.

Precise Temperature Control

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

Space Considerations

As garage heaters are usually placed on the ceiling, they can eat up valuable overhead storage space. In comparison, low-profile mini-split systems are usually placed higher up on a wall and don’t require a lot of real estate.

If you’re still deciding between a garage heater and mini-split, the specialists Air Service Co. can help. Contact us at 918-212-8943 today to get a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll review your needs, advise you on a solution and get it put in rapidly, so you can get started enjoying your garage workspace much faster.