Furnace for garage heat
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    Furnace for garage heat

    Hi folks,

    While running the risk of starting yet another "how do I heat my garage" thread, I've come across the idea of using a forced air, propane furnace. Recently, I found a couple furnaces on CL that were pulled from mobile homes and for the price, they seem like a great option for the garage.

    It seems there are up-draft and down-draft style hot air furnaces. The one's coming from mobile homes seem to be down-draft style and might be more difficult to use how I'm thinking...

    Has anyone setup this type of thing in their shop? My idea was that I could get it hooked up with the necessary power and then have a propane tank setup outside and pay the propane people to hook up the furnace. I was thinking that I would not need any duct work...just let the thing blow air into the 28x24 garage. It would also rise onto the second floor and heat the workshop upstairs. The garage and upstairs are insulated.

    Any thoughts? Crazy idea or good idea?
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    John

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    Hmm...maybe this should have been in the Barns and Buildings thread.

    Mods: Please feel free to move!
    John

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnM45 View Post
    Hmm...maybe this should have been in the Barns and Buildings thread.

    Mods: Please feel free to move!
    Moved it.
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    My neighbor does this with a used oil burner furnace he picked up for real cheap. He had a friend that does HVAC and watched for a good one that he was replacing to grab for him. He fashioned a couple simple homemade duct elbows coming off the top to blow hot air into the garage space. Is there a way to do the install so it is compatible with vapors typically found in garages? I am sure his is not.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Titleist1 View Post
    My neighbor does this with a used oil burner furnace he picked up for real cheap. He had a friend that does HVAC and watched for a good one that he was replacing to grab for him. He fashioned a couple simple homemade duct elbows coming off the top to blow hot air into the garage space. Is there a way to do the install so it is compatible with vapors typically found in garages? I am sure his is not.

    Sounds like its fairly effective at heating?

    I have a couple options for exhaust...the garage is outfitted with a chimney for a wood stove, which I could go that route, but I'd like something more on a thermostat to just keep the garage at a nice, comfortable 50 or 55 degrees. I figured if I went witha propane furnace, worst case is I direct vent it outside with a 3 or 4 inch pipe...or whatever is required by the furnace.
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    It really comes down to btu demand,,
    if you have an uninsulated shed that will need 400,000 btu's to get comfortable,,
    and your mobile home furnace is 20,000 btu's,,,
    you may not be happy with the installation,,,

    If the opposite ratio is installed,, it will be more comfortable,,
    I want to be warm,,,,
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    Hmmmm......Lebanon, PA........wood stove chimney.....hmmmmm....

    Have you thought of picking up a small used coal stoker?

    Coal is cheap fuel in your area compared to LP, oil & pellets, thermostat control, can use direct vent or chimney exhaust, minimal work getting fuel compared to wood, minimal tending compared to wood, more BTU's compared to pellets probably enough to heat workshop too. There are downsides depending where you live with respect to the ash.

    Still have the vapor / flame issue to deal with but it can be done.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Titleist1 View Post
    Hmmmm......Lebanon, PA........wood stove chimney.....hmmmmm....

    Have you thought of picking up a small used coal stoker?

    Coal is cheap fuel in your area compared to LP, oil & pellets, thermostat control, can use direct vent or chimney exhaust, minimal work getting fuel compared to wood, minimal tending compared to wood, more BTU's compared to pellets probably enough to heat workshop too. There are downsides depending where you live with respect to the ash.

    Still have the vapor / flame issue to deal with but it can be done.
    Coal can certainly be had here quite easily - I was born and raised up in Schuylkill County...a hard-headed coal cracker...

    I burned coal for about 10 years in our first house and now burn wood in the house, plus a baseboard-hot water-oil furnace. For the shop, I'm looking for a "flip the switch" solution. Right now I'm using the torpedo heater and a mr.heater propane cylinder mounted heater. Works okay, but ultimately, I just want to keep the garage temp in the 50's...

    I'm either working on one of my old motorcycles, or upstairs in the wood shop doing a project. The concrete floor is like a block of ice and the cast iron table saw, jointer and planer act the same way upstairs. Keeping the shop around 50 degrees would sure feel a lot better, I think.
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    My garage is 30X40 with 10' ceilings called pole barn. The ceiling is insulated, the walls are not. I use a kerosene furnace from a mobile home. Down draft type. I burn offroad deisel. I have no smell and can keep the garage 50 deg with no problem. I am sure it will do higher but above 50 deg or so is rather warm for me to work in. I like the downdraft as I set the furnace to swept the heated air flow directly across the floor warming the floor at the same time. The concrete floor stays comfortable with the rest of the area nice to work in. I made a square frame with angle iron then took metal flashing and made a curve from the back of the top of the frame to the bottom front. This forced the air to the bottom and across the floor. I sealed up the rest of the square with the left over flashinig I had. I think I set my furnace about 2' above the ground on top of the metal frame. So far I have had this setup for about 15 years and have had no problems, even on windy days with temps in the teens. So yes it is duable.
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    Make sure you use a dial type thermostat. I bought a nice digital one for my shop. They don't work below 32 degrees.
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