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Michael Thuman

IR heater good for a shop

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Michael Thuman -
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I have a basement shop but as I age and now we live next to Lake Michigan the shop cold ness is not tolerable.  I was looking into Infrafed Heat options would they be good for a shop for wold they ignite sawdust?

The will heat me, the concrete walls, the tools.  Beyond cost is ther any other drawbacks or concerns?  Other than wasting engry by not having the basement insulated.

 

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Infra red heaters come in a number of styles, including some gas models with open flame/non-vented. My personal experience with these types isn't good. It's less about igniting wood dust, and more about the odor (which I find intolerable) and the moisture they put in the air. My opinion would be to skip those completely. But the vented models are very good, and they can be had in electric versions as well as gas fired (and maybe other types which I'm not familiar). We used the enclosed tube type at my plant when I had a day job. The were hanging over the dock doors which were pretty much open all the time. The did a good job (not great) of keeping the contractors warm during the cold months. I'd point out we cleaned them off periodically and they would have upwards of 1/4" of fine cardboard dust on them, yet we never had a fire.

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22 minutes ago, Michael Thuman said:

The proposed heater will be 220V electric.

Michael, are you talking about a garage type (dedicated) heater something like this?

image.png.bdc85550458a986473aeffb6cb2f9c35.png

 

What square footage are you trying to heat? How cold does it get when the Lake effect snow doth blow?

If you're just trying to keep the chill off (~55o-65o) maybe a couple of these strategically placed. Portable, 110V, nothing exposed, dust or fumes is not an issue and easy to clean. Since it's radiant heat, it also heats the air and objects.

 

image.png.55606022ef47e37dac3dbc11db5055ae.png

 

If you haven't already, might consider placing some of these mats and transitions on the floor where needed. For me, I know if I can keep my hands & feet warm, I'm usually good to go with a flannel shirt...sometimes a sock hat since my natural protection there has diminished.:P

 

image.png.5fe785dda48e6c824af40754d3bee77e.png

 

 

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Yes Garage type but positioned at the end of my shop so it covers all the metal tools and me.  Room size is 24 x 50 shop is 12 x 30 on one side.  Band saw and Mitre saw in front of router and table saw then come jointer and thickness planar in back.  Don't want to heat air just tools and me.  65 would be grand.  The block wall next to the shop would also act as a heat sink.

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My shop is heated with one of those non vented, flameless propane heaters. It does an excellent job. I can't detect an odor from mine. And, in our arid part of the country, moisture hasn't been a problem. That being said, I don't think it could be operated safely in a basement.

Even on the coldest days, I leave a window partially open to prevent carbon monoxide build up. 

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You would certainly have no worry about any fire hazard with an electric heater of that type, but I think what Dave said about using a couple of 120V floor models might work just fine for what you want. They would likely have to be on separate circuits.

Edited by Fred W. Hargis Jr

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1 hour ago, Michael Thuman said:

Don't want to heat air just tools and me.  65 would be grand.

So what is the average ambient air temperature typically during the weather you describe? You noted 65o would be your desired. What's your starting point? Are you heating the entire space or only the shop footage? Are they separate spaces closed off from one another or jointly open?

Edited by Grandpadave52

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15 minutes ago, Fred W. Hargis Jr said:

They would likely have to be on separate circuits.

Most definitely.

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grandpadave et all the basement during the winter goes to the lower 50's or upper 40's so I am looking for a 15 to 20 F gain.

The space is open 24x50.  I do have 2 forced air vents but they do not keep up.

I wold rather get 1 large unit than multiple small units on seperate circuits.

 

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Anything with a fan will be a problem because it will pull dust onto the heat / heat exchange elements.  Floor units (without a fan) will also collect dust pretty quick.  So, my choice has always been something at/near the ceiling, and as far away from dust-producing operations as you can get.  IR heat broadcasts through distance quite well.  If you are contemplating gas, I'd use a model that allows ducting in and out.  Otherwise, the combustion air, vented outside, tends to draw fresh air into the shop, and that fresh air is cold, and it finds your feet pretty quick.  Electric is simple, but might be expensive depending on your utility rates.  To just "take the edge off" of 1200 square feet, it might need about 20,000 btuh, or 6000 watts.

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