Man and Son Working in a Garage

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

Your garage can be more than just an area to park your vehicles in Mankato area. It can be an area to work, provide extra storage and more. But when you’re working out there more often, it needs to be a comfy temperature.

Garages don’t usually have the ductwork needed for regular heating and cooling systems. While you can get ductwork, it’s not the most advantageous remedy. The wisest way to heat your garage is by having a ductless comfort system, like a mini-split system or a garage heater.

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

What is a Mini-Split?

A mini-split is similar to a heat pump as it shifts heat rather than creating it. This makes it a very energy-efficient heating and cooling system for rooms that lack ductwork. These electric systems are usually placed on a wall and joined to the outdoor unit through a tiny hole in the wall.

Though a ductless mini-split costs more, most have earned ENERGY STAR® designation for their energy efficiency. They’re also highly quiet and provide zoned comfort, which provides precise control over your garage’s temp.

The majority of mini-splits allow you to link several indoor units to an individual outdoor unit. If your garage is part of your residence, you might be able to install additional indoor units in rooms 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 upper corner of a wall. Depending on the model, these heaters can consume electricity, gas or propane. They’re a great choice if you reside in a cold climate and do a lot of grubby dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and created to stand up to added grime.

Reviewing Top Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

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


Garage heaters are the lowest-priced style. The typical cost is different due to fuel type, but they’re frequently about half the cost of a mini-split.

Operating Costs

Garage heaters work similarly to a furnace, using fuel to create warmth. A mini-split air conditioner is more like a heat pump, which shifts hot air. This makes a mini-split more efficient to use. You’ll get reduced utility costs if you choose an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you might have access to added rebates as a result of 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 title says, 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 exact comfort control, a mini-split heat pump is the smartest answer since it offers zoned heating and cooling. That way, your garage will be the right temperature you want it to be.

Space Considerations

Because garage heaters are usually installed on the ceiling, they can eat up premium overhead storage space. On the other hand, low-profile mini-split systems are usually installed higher up on a wall and don’t require a lot of real estate.

If you’re still debating between a garage heater and mini-split, the pros Northern Comfort Inc can help. Contact us at 507-307-4818 today to request a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll review your needs, recommend a solution and get it installed quickly, so you can get started enjoying your garage workspace much quicker.

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