How to Keep a Garage Warm in the Winter

Vintage car in garage
Whether or not you plan on spending a great deal of time in your garage this winter, keeping a garage warm is more than a luxury, saving you money and aggravation down the line and providing a range of benefits…

Why Keep Your Garage Warm?

  • A warm car is great.
    Unless you’re a Polar Bear Club member and enjoy scraping ice off your windows in temperature extremes, a warm car is great, shortening the time it takes you to get out and on your way, and reducing the need for wasting fuel to warm your car and defrost windows.
  • Appliances and equipment function better in tolerable temperatures.
    Appliances/equipment with hoses that hold water can freeze and crack in frigid temperatures. Fuel in vehicles and lawn equipment can ‘gel.’ And tank style water heaters (particularly those lacking adequate insulation) will expend far more energy trying to keep water to temperature in frigid temperatures.
  • A garage can provide a warm respite for pets.
    With freeze warnings come advisories to ensure proper shelter for pets in extreme temperatures. An insulated garage serves as an ideal solution, providing warm, safe shelter and a place where’s Fido’s water bowl won’t freeze.

How to Keep a Garage Warm

Invest in Insulation

Improving insulation is the cheapest way to ensure garage warmth, limiting heat loss and keeping the temperature in your garage much warmer than that outside. Install it snugly (but don’t jam it in). There should be no gaps in insulation batting and it should be securely fastened.

Replace Worn/Missing Weather Stripping and Caulk

Cracked, worn, and missing weather stripping around windows and doors causes heat loss and creates cold drafts in your garage. Scrape off the old stuff with a putty knife, replacing worn caulk and seals to prevent cold air infiltration and heat loss.

Don’t Neglect Garage Door Insulation

Your garage door takes up a massive amount of wall space. Don’t forgo insulation here. There are a number of options for insulating your garage door, including batting, spray foam insulation, foam board, and reflective barriers. As with wall insulation, ensure a secure fit, cut to size, and secure with the proper adhesive for safety and functionality.

Install a Space Heater

The simplest way to warm your garage, adding a space heater can keep your garage toasty warm. Which is best for you?
  • Electric: Cheaper and easy to install, electric space heaters are great for spaces you only need to heat occasionally but cost more to operate than gas-powered models.
  • Gas: Noisy but fast, portable gas/oil heaters can bring your space up to temperature quickly but require exhaust venting and a gas supply (portable cylinders or direct access to utilities). When using these, it’s advisable to add a carbon monoxide detector for safety.

Add a Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pump

For a higher initial investment, die-hard workshop fanatics may wish to install a ductless mini split system, which can provide both heating and cooling year-round with the addition of only a 3-inch hole through an exterior wall for installation.

Be Mindful of Energy Use

Optimal garage temperature should be determined based on insulation levels, the amount of time you plan to spend in your garage, and energy expenditures.

Keep Your Garage Warm with Aire Serv

Tired of shivering your way through your winter ‘honey-do’ list? Ensure a more comfortable garage environment with the help of Aire Serv® today.