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

November 24, 2020

Your garage can be more than just an area to put your vehicles in Siloam Springs. It can be a work space, offer 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 needed for common heating and cooling systems. While you can add ductwork, it’s not the most economical option. The smartest method to heat your garage is by installing 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 ideal solution for your needs.

What is a Mini-Split?

A mini-split is much like a heat pump since it transfers heat as opposed to creating it. This makes it a highly energy-efficient heating and cooling system for areas without ductwork. These electric systems are often put on a wall and joined to the outdoor unit through a small hole in the wall.

Although a ductless mini-split is higher priced, many have earned ENERGY STAR® designation for their energy efficiency. They’re also extremely quiet and deliver zoned comfort, which gives exact control over your garage’s climate.

The majority of mini-splits allow you to connect more than one indoor unit to one outdoor unit. If your garage is connected to your residence, you might be able to use added indoor units in areas that are tricky to heat and cool.

What is a Garage Heater?

A garage heater isn’t a space heater. This all-encompassing heating solution is mounted on the ceiling or the upper corner of a wall. Depending on the model, these heaters can use electricity, gas or propane. They’re an excellent solution if you live in a cold climate and perform a lot of dirty dirty work. Garage heaters are heavy-duty and created to withstand added grime.

Comparing Key Features of Garage Heaters and Mini-Splits

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


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

Operating Costs

Garage heaters are much like a furnace, using fuel to create hot air. A mini-split air conditioner is more like a heat pump, which transfers warmth. This makes a mini-split more efficient to use. You’ll enjoy decreased heating and cooling bills if you choose an ENERGY STAR® certified model. And you may have access to added rebates as a result of that energy efficiency.

Fuel Source

Garage heaters have the widest options for fuel sources—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 offers both heating and cooling.

Precise Temperature Control

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

Space Considerations

Since garage heaters are often mounted on the ceiling, they can take up valued overhead storage area. In contrast, space-saving mini-split systems are usually placed higher up on a wall and don’t need a lot of room.

If you’re still debating between a garage heater and mini-split, the pros Siloam Springs Heating & AC can help. Call us at 479-308-8176 right away to receive a free, no obligation estimate. We’ll discuss your needs, advise you on a solution and get it working fast, so you can start enjoying your garage workspace much faster.