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Heating up the garage with a natural gas furnace fed by a refillable tank

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Forum topic by MiniMe posted 10-06-2019 02:38 PM 2180 views 0 times favorited 29 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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MiniMe

406 posts in 928 days


10-06-2019 02:38 PM

Topic tags/keywords: heating garage

Hi guys

I need to keep warm a one car garage (no car in it) that I use as workshop.
I have tried to use the propane gas tanks we have for our barbecue but it is not really usable as the air circulation is not great and you start feeling uncomfortable after a while (it feels like the air is not breathable anymore)

I am not sure if there is any way to do it safely using the above method. If you know of any solution please give me some pointers, where and what I should read about it

The other option I am exploring is the natural gas heating, one of the options that I am considering is having a small natural gas furnace and a natural gas tank to feed it, if there is such solution. I am interested in your experience with this solution if you could share it

thanks

Edit: I am reading that kerosene is an option -not sure what difference would it make (kerosene vs propane I mean) but if it is less smelly and it consumes less oxygen I would consider it


29 replies so far

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

5940 posts in 4120 days


#1 posted 10-06-2019 02:44 PM

I’m sure there are regulations regarding open flame devices in enclosed spaces, especially if the garage is attached to the house. An electric heater may be a better solution. More insulation would help.

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MiniMe

406 posts in 928 days


#2 posted 10-06-2019 02:48 PM



I m sure there are regulations regarding open flame devices in enclosed spaces, especially if the garage is attached to the house. An electric heater may be a better solution. More insulation would help.

- MrRon

Adding more insulation would take from the already too small space in the garage
The electric heater is slow … I would spend only the afternoons, evenings or weekends working in that space

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

6492 posts in 3370 days


#3 posted 10-06-2019 03:34 PM

It sounds like you were using a ventless LP heater? I’ve never heard of anyone using bottled NG for heat. But I can assure you a vented gas furnace on LP works just like a NG furnace, and no smell or other problems. My last 2 shop and the current one was (is) heated with an LP furnace, the first 2 were direct vented (draw outside air for combustion) and the current is not. The are great sources of heat, the downside being (for mine) was the forced air…it does blow dust around. If you had a ventless heater before, it’s their nature to have some odor, and generate moisture that stays in the room. This was always a problem for me, though a good many folks use them and claim no problems. I suggest you look for a vented LP furnace. They come in various configurations, I had a small wall furnace (made to fit between the studs,) and the last 2 were the ceiling hanger type.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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MiniMe

406 posts in 928 days


#4 posted 10-06-2019 04:30 PM

Yes it was ventless
By “LP vented furnace” you mean one like this one
https://propanedepot.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Martin-MDV-Installation-Manual-2018.pdf
So this will take propan as fuel ?

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Eric

216 posts in 1114 days


#5 posted 10-06-2019 04:30 PM

I have been using a 15kBTU propane “sunflower” heater in my one car garage on cold days. I open the window to ~24 square inches and run it wide open for around an hour to get the temperature over 60F. There are some fumes but it’s what you get with un-vented propane. I run a box fan to circulated the air and prevent stratification of the heated air.

My buddy is running a vented natural gas heater in his three car garage and it works great.

I insulated my garage with r19/vapor barrier insulation and drywall. This winter I’m going to try an electric space heater set to ~60F with a fan running to see if I can keep it warm without too much expense. I have an insulation blanket hanging over the door. That makes a big difference in thermal loss and draftiness.

-- Eric

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Fred Hargis

6492 posts in 3370 days


#6 posted 10-06-2019 05:28 PM



Yes it was ventless
By “LP vented furnace” you mean one like this one
https://propanedepot.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/Martin-MDV-Installation-Manual-2018.pdf
So this will take propan as fuel ?

- MiniMe

Well, that’s not the type I was referring to, but it would work. It is vented. They are made for nat gas and LP, you need to buy the one you want since they are not convertible. But it has an exhaust, that would solve the smell and moisture problem. I was referring to a style like this one, or maybe this one. Both styles are available from several manufacturers, and the prices will vary from supplier to supplier. These types can be converted from nat gas to LP and back, if that’s important to you.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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squazo

192 posts in 2522 days


#7 posted 10-06-2019 08:46 PM

Ive got a house I heat by burning a natural gas stove (its supplied by the city not bottled though) I bassically figured if ok to cook a giant thanksgiving dinner all day on it its probably ok for this as well. I got a 4 in 1 gas meter, it checks for carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, anything explosive and oxygen content, just to be comfy about it and its totally fine, so I would say you can safely burn natural gas indoors with very little ventilation. I do not know however when you can get natural gas in bottles, have bout bullet heaters, they burn diesel, kerosene, and maybe alcohol. alcohol is pretty clean burning.

View mike02719's profile

mike02719

254 posts in 4662 days


#8 posted 10-06-2019 08:52 PM

My shop is 12×26 and it has been heated by a direct vented natural gas wall heater with a blower which is an option and well worth the money. These come in a propane version. Empire is the brand. If installed according to code, they pose no health or fire risks. As for comfort, my shop warms up in minutes even on the coldest days here in New England. Performance of these units are best with proper location of the thermostat. This is critical.

-- Mike, Massachusetts

View Phil32's profile (online now)

Phil32

1143 posts in 780 days


#9 posted 10-06-2019 09:40 PM

One of the products of any combustion (burner, heater, furnace) is carbon monoxide. It is odorless and will KILL YOU. It must be vented to the outside. You cannot safely use a barbeque, fire pit, or unvented heater in a closed space!

-- Phil Allin - There are mountain climbers and people who talk about climbing mountains. The climbers have "selfies" at the summit!

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ArtMann

1483 posts in 1693 days


#10 posted 10-06-2019 10:03 PM

Let me answer your question regarding natural gas. It is not possible to have a tank at your home that will hold liquid natural gas. That requires an extremely strong pressure vessel that keeps the gas at -260 degrees F. The only choice is propane unless you have public natural gas service nearby.

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squazo

192 posts in 2522 days


#11 posted 10-06-2019 11:01 PM

Id say if you had a completely air tight building the carbon monoxide levels could build up to lethal levels but with a regular building as well as when you open a door you’ve got enough ventilation to be safe, that and the fact theat most gas burning appliances now a days are almost 100 percent efficient, but for sure get a CO detector its like 20 bucks and could save your life.

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Woodmaster1

1552 posts in 3463 days


#12 posted 10-07-2019 12:48 AM

I use a bigmaxx natural gas heater and it keeps the 30×33 shop at 68 degrees in the cold weather. It cost me about $120 a year to heat.

View MiniMe's profile

MiniMe

406 posts in 928 days


#13 posted 10-07-2019 04:31 AM

I was suggested this guy
https://www.homehardware.ca/en/25000-btu-natural-gas-workshop-radiant-heater/p/5530800

Can’t understand how it works without venting…I guess it is like a stove ..it consumes oxigen from the garage and a minimal air draft must be secured

View TDSpade's profile

TDSpade

121 posts in 3292 days


#14 posted 10-07-2019 06:26 AM

This is all you need for a small space.

https://www.ecomfort.com/Williams-3509621A/p100046.html?gclid=Cj0KCQjwoebsBRCHARIsAC3JP0JBPm8yfkFnhl-dYrQlkm2bIb3arZsZa4HVvTQKIr22FMpqs_dN7IkaAjx6EALw_wcB

35,000 btu, will fit between 2×4’s, will stick out some, but still some what of a space saver. You will have to vent through the roof with this model. Have a propane company set 120 gallon tank outside against the wall or what local code will allow. You have to be 3 feet from windows, doors,etc. Drill a small hole in the wall and run a short line straight the furnace. Small tanks will freeze up and are a pain to keep changing out.

Empire makes a direct vent (straight out of the wall exhaust and intake) in a 24,000 btu.

https://www.totalhomesupply.com/empire-comfort-systems-dv-25-sg-25-000-btu-direct-vent-wall-furnace/p/empire-dv25sg

-- For every expert, there is an equal and opposite expert.

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ibewjon

2051 posts in 3670 days


#15 posted 10-07-2019 01:19 PM

With a mini split AC / heat pump I use nice, clean, safe electricity to cool my 16×22 shop for less than 25 cents a day, and heat it in northern Illinois for about 50 cents a day. It stays at 60 degrees. It is a 28 seer cooling, and a 14 for heating. Yes it cost about $1200 plus install, but it is cheap to run . And the shop is warm when I get home. Add the internet card, and you can turn the temp up before you head home. And no CO, no tanks, no smell, no CO detector, no danger. There are compressed ( not liguid) natural gas vehicles, but you must run the compressor for several hours to fill the tank. Ceiling insulation is the most important, and won’t take up your shop space.

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