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 park your vehicles in Long Island. It can be a workshop, give extra storage and more. But when you’re out there more often, it needs to be a comfy temperature.

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

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

What is a Mini-Split?

A mini-split is much like a heat pump as it shifts heat instead of generating it. This makes it an extremely energy-efficient heating and cooling system for areas that don’t have ductwork. These electric systems are typically put on a wall and joined to the outdoor unit through a tiny hole in the wall.

Though a ductless mini-split costs more, a lot have achieved ENERGY STAR® recognition for their energy efficiency. They’re also extremely quiet and deliver zoned comfort, which gives accurate control over your garage’s climate.

Many mini-splits allow you to connect more than one indoor unit to an individual outdoor unit. If your garage is connected to your residence, you may be able to use extra indoor units in rooms that are hard 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 use electricity, gas or propane. They’re an excellent option if you are situated in a cold climate and do a lot of grubby dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and made to withstand added grime.

Comparing Key Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

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


Garage heaters are the most economical style. The estimated expense varies 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, consuming fuel to make heat. 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 enjoy even lower utility bills if you choose an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you could be entitled to extra rebates as a result of that energy efficiency.

Fuel Source

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

Heating and Cooling

As its designation indicates, a garage heater is restricted to just delivering heat. A ductless mini-split provides both heating and cooling.

Precise Temperature Control

When you want the most accurate temperature control, a mini-split heat pump is the smartest option because it delivers zoned heating and cooling. That way, your garage will be just the temperature you want it to be.

Space Considerations

Because garage heaters are typically mounted on the ceiling, they can eat up valuable overhead storage space. In contrast, slim mini-split systems are typically placed 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 professionals Airmax Long Island Inc can help. Call us at 631-737-5566 today to request a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll review your needs, recommend a solution and get it working rapidly, so you can begin enjoying your garage workspace much faster.