Why Is It Not A Good Idea To Connect Your Garage With A Central Air Conditioner System
There are many reasons why you should not connect your central air conditioner to your garage. The cost of adding ductwork from the AC unit into the garage could run into thousands of US dollars. Access to the ceiling and walls between the garage/air conditioner will also be required.A garage without adequate insulation will result in significant air leakage, which can cause your monthly energy bill to skyrocket. The central air conditioner will have a harder time cooling a space that isnt adequately cooled due to the large space. This will cause the house to be too warm while the garage will be more comfortable.
How To Air Condition Your Garage
If you live in a warm climate or have a hot garage, you know how important it is to have a cool space to work in. If you spend any amount of time in your garage, whether to work on a car or just hang out, you need to make sure that the space is comfortable.
Unfortunately, garages are often one of the hardest rooms in the house to keep cool. But dont worry. You can do a few things to air condition your garage and make it a more comfortable space.
How Many Btus To Cool A Garage
When shopping for the best AC for a garage, the most important consideration is the size of the space you intend to cool so you can buy a unit with the right amount of BTUs. Buying a unit thats too small will overwork the system and increase your monthly energy bill. A portable AC unit thats too large could use more power than you need and cool so fast it isnt able to remove some of the humidity in the space.
ENERGY STAR offers guidance on how many BTUs you may need. To determine the garages square footage, multiply its length and width. For example, a garage thats 20 feet wide by 20 feet deep will be 400 square feet in size. Use the chart below to determine the best BTU amount based on the size of your garage.
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Installing An Air Conditioner In Your Garage Here Are Your Options And Approximate Costs
My two-car garage has everything but a car in it. Thats because I spend a lot of time in my garage working on my motorcycles and various home improvement projects. I would say my garage looks like what would happen if a hardware store and the tool department at Home Depot had a baby.
I know Im not alone because my company, Magic Touch Mechanical, gets several calls a week from people interested in the best way to cool their garage. Weve installed hundreds of new AC units in garages that were being used for wood shops, sewing rooms, and even food pantries. We even had a client that converted a 3-car garage to a dog room for her very large, and very spoiled fur babies.
A Note On Shop Heater Safety
Any shop heater should be UL listed or certified by a national safety laboratory to avoid any violation of your homeowners insurance policy. Always make sure your heater has a wide and safe space to operate that is free of debris and combustibles. Make sure your heater stays clear of blowing sawdust and remains properly ventilated.
Never plug your heater into a power strip or any overloaded socket. When in doubt, make sure your heater has an outlet all to itself. Be sure that your heater’s safety guards remain in good working order and that pets and children cant reach the heating elements or controls.
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Problems With Using Portable Air Conditioners In Your Garage
There are other problems with using portable air conditioners in your garage.
At a VERY high level, an air conditioner brings in warm air through an inlet valve, cools it down and sends it into your room. The warm exhaust air is then kicked back outside and the process starts over.
For more details, I really recommend this video from Technology Connections. Nobody is ever going to say that digging into how portable air conditioners work is exciting stuff, but he at least makes it interesting.
The point I want to make is that the exhaust air needs to go somewhere. If your garage doesnt have a window or a vent that you can connect the air conditioner to, then that air is just going to go right back into your garage.
That may actually increase your garages temperature instead of lowering it.
Finally, as I said before, if your garage isnt insulated, all that cold air will just bleed through to the outside.
All that said, in some cases, a portable air conditioner can be the right solution. It just takes a little knowledge to pick the right one.
Best Air Conditioners For Garage With No Windows
Believe it or not, your seemingly useless garage can become a highly functional and productive space if it is ventilated correctly. While most people use their garages as workspaces and studios, they can also be used as garage gyms and other recreational areas.
However, with most garages coming without windows in modern houses, it can get difficult to control the temperature. Trapped hot air creates a stuffy atmosphere inside during summers, while winters can make the space freezing cold.
The best way to regulate the temperature inside your garage is to install an air conditioner. But, what is the best air conditioner for a garage with no windows? Read below to find out.
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Can You Cool A Garage With A Portable Air Conditioner
Id love to spend my free summer days fixing a classic car in my garage. But living in Florida, my garage quickly becomes unbearable during the hot summer days.
I started looking into different ways of cooling down my garage and one of the first things to come to mind was a portable air conditioner.
Can you cool a garage with a portable air conditioner? Yes. A 7,000 BTU air conditioned should be enough to cool a 1-car garage, while a 2-car garage would need a 12,000 BTU air conditioner. However, its important to have insulation so the cold air doesnt escape.
While I was digging into this, I found out a few things that surprised me. Ill get into those in a bit, but first, lets talk about why its so hard to keep your garage cool in the summer.
Garage Ac Btu Size Guide
The number of BTUs a garage air conditioner should have is the first thing to consider when purchasing a new unit. Youll waste money and energy if you purchase one that is too large. However, an 8,000 BTU unit wont adequately cool a garage with four cars.
Big garage, big BTUs. Small garage, small number of BTUs. Its easy enough.
You should at the very least be able to estimate what size AC you would need for your garage. The EPA recommends that you use 20 BTUs per square foot of living space to save energy. This is a good guideline for sizing AC units for garages as well.
But I would recommend counting the 30 BTUs per square foot when determining garage air conditioner capacity. This is due to insulation variations, higher garage ceilings, and sun exposure.
How many BTUs your garage requires will be directly related to the type of air conditioner you choose.
Although the above guide is intended to be simple, there are some additional things to consider when properly sizing garage air conditioners.
- Insulation You should add insulation to your garage if it doesnt already have it. Read more about it in the next paragraph.
- Position Add 1,000 to 2,000 BTUs to your garage if it faces west or south.
- Climate Add another 1000 BTUs if you locate in an area with hot summers.
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Properly Venting Hot Air Out Of The Garage
Every AC unit, including the one in your garage, has to be properly vented. Venting is just letting the hot air out, and there is no way around that.
For proper venting, you need an opening in your garage. Window venting is most commonly used but for that, you do need a garage window. The exhaust hose is simply installed through the window with a specialized window seal kit that envelops the exhaust hose and covers the window, preventing cool air leakage.
Of course, everybody who doesnt have a garage window immediately asks this question:
How do I use an air conditioner for a garage with no windows?
Heres what you can do: Use an opening in the garage door to vent the air conditioner. Youll have to insulate all the openings that are created when the garage doors are opened. The best choice is to create a hole in the wall yourself especially useful for garage mini-split AC units and vent the air conditioner directly through the wall.
Heres what you cant do: Use an evaporative cooler for the garage. Its the that these units dont need to be vented, and there is a good explanation for that. Evaporative coolers or swamp coolers are not air conditioners at all they do not decrease the garage temperature, they have 0 BTU of cooling effect, and if put in an insulated space like a garage, they will rather increase the temperature instead of lowering it.
In short, a window, garage door opening, or drilling hole in the wall are the only 3 options.
Which Ac Type Is Best For Different Garage Sizes
A mini-split AC will be the best air conditioner type for all garages. For most window ACs you will need to account for some extra space, as the window AC will occupy the window and block the area in front of it.
A portable AC will occupy the largest space and is, therefore, only suitable for larger garages, where it wont be able to supply enough cooling power.
To find the best-suited air conditioner cooling capacity for your garage, I used standard garage sizes. Assuming you need 20 BTU per square foot, you get the following results:
|16,000 BTU 21,120 BTU||split or window|
The AC type recommendations are based on the cooling capacity of the ACs and the available free space.
For example, a 1-car garage will usually not have enough space in front of a window to support a window AC.
In a 2-car garage, all AC types are suitable.
For larger 3 or 4-car garages, split or window units are the best type of air conditioner, as they have a large cooling capacity suitable for large spaces. Portable ACs would not be able to cool these large spaces efficiently.
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Black+decker Best Portable Ac For Your Garage
Having an air conditioning system in a room will keep you relaxed, comfortable, and cool, particularly during scorching hot summers. However, if youve got a small garage room, placing a wall-mounted air conditioner might be unneeded.
Looking for a way to cool your garage without installing a large AC unit? If so, look no further than Black+Decker portable AC.
This portable AC is one of the best garage room air conditioners available today. All youve got to do is: take it to your garage room and attach the window adapter and hose to the sliding or double-hung window and thats all. The unit will start cooling and providing cool air to breathe.
In addition, the model comes with four unique caster wheels, carry handles, and compact size, allowing you to easily move it anywhere in the garage.
It has a modern structure with smart tech. Besides an LED display and a remote, the unit also has various other features like sleep mode, a 24-hour timer, etc. that help keep you in control of the ambiance.
Plus, it has three efficient functions for your ventilation and cooling needs with fan, cool and dehumidifying models in one system. Not to mention, the system runs at 1150 watts.
Mini Split Heat Pumps Work In Any Size Garage
Capability: Whether its a 100 sq. ft. single car garage, or a giant RV garage with 16 ceilings: ductless makes sense. Recently I purchased a new home in Gold Canyon, AZ with a 4-car garage that has 16 ceilings. I spend a lot of time in my garage wrenching on my bikes and attempting to improve my woodworking skills. My garage is my happy place and it keeps me from being a couch potato when Im not working.
Im in the process of designing my garage heating and cooling system as we speak! Im looking forward to tinkering in there comfortably year-round. Ill also follow up with an article complete with pics and video for anyone interested.
First things first, I replaced my homes central air heating & cooling systems, air quality & ventilation systems shortly after I moved in. With that complete and already saving me money on my utility bills, Im ready to complete the HVAC in my garage.
I mentioned designing my garage heating and cooling system for a reason. Ductless mini split heat pumps are available in many different forms and arent limited to the type that hangs on the wall. Luckily the way my garage is designed, I have almost every air handler option available to me.
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Serenelife Portable Air Conditioner
If you need an air conditioner for your windowless garage but dont spend much time in the room, consider this portable air conditioner by SereneLife. It has a robust operating system combined with a sleek and lightweight exterior to facilitate efficient cooling in your garage.
Additionally, the unit comes with accessible rolling wheels, so you can take it out and use it in any other room when your garage is not in use. Finally, the AC can easily regulate the temperature in an enclosed garage with three cooling modes, including a dehumidifier and an automatic swing mode.
Furthermore, it has an accessible remote control system to adjust the settings whenever you want without any hassle. The unit can cover an area of more than 450 square feet and delivery up to 12,000 BTUs of cooling, which is ideal for medium to large garage spaces.
A Note About Energy Efficiency
Even the best garage heating and cooling unit doesnt make sense if your conditioned air escapes as fast as its produced. Its very rare that outside walls, garage attics, or garage doors are insulated.
If there is attic space above your garage and its not insulated, I highly recommend adding insulation when adding HVAC. The same is true for uninsulated garage doors. Installing a garage door insulation kit, or at the very least a radiant barrier is highly recommended. If there is a bedroom above the garage, the ceiling should already be insulated unless the home is very old.
Installing exterior walls is possible after the fact by a method known as drill and fill. Drill and fill is the process of installing foam insulation without having to tear down all the drywall. That said, depending on the structure, this isnt always necessary and often the savings potential doesnt justify the cost.
I will be insulating my garage ceiling with blown cellulose and using a spray-on radiant barrier on my garage doors. I will not be doing a drill and fill on my walls as the juice isnt worth the squeeze in my garage.
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What Is The Cost Of Installing An Air Conditioner In Your Garage
The type of air conditioner, garage insulation, professional labor costs, and additional items required to properly install the unit will all impact the installation costs. The average cost of professional installation for a window or through the walls unit is less than $1,000. The cost of insulation and drywall can be more expensive for a permanent solution.
Senville Mini Split Air Conditioner
The Senville mini split air conditioner works as a cooling and heating unit so that you can regulate the temperature inside your garage in any season.
It can also dehumidify your garage area. So, if youre using it as a storage space or keeping your crucial equipment in there, you can be concern-free about its safety in the enclosed environment.
This air conditioner is ideal for garages with no windows that double up as workshops and studios. Thats because it barely emits any sound higher than 38dB so that you can work in peace without any disturbance.
It also comes with an installation kit, so you can save up on installation services by taking up the task by yourself.
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Types Of Air Conditioners
Garage Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioner
I believe the mini-split AC unit is the perfect garage air conditioner. They are ductless, unlike central AC units, and can provide up to 30,000 BTUs cooling effect . They are a good solution for even the largest 4-car garages.
Mini-split air conditioners have been deemed piece-of-the-art in air cooling and conditioning. The conditioners are made up of two parts. One is mounted permanently on the inside wall and the other on the exterior wall. A small hole in the wall connects two halves of the unit. The condensate drain is used to transport water from the garages indoor unit.
A mini-split air conditioner can keep a garage cool in hot weather. It is very energy-efficient and has high BTU power.
Advantages of Mini-Split Garage Air Conditioner:
- Efficiency. This is the most efficient type of air conditioner, with the highest SEER/EER ratings. They are also highly efficient in terms of energy, making them more affordable to run and reducing your carbon footprint.
- Size. Mini-split air conditioners come in many sizes. Mini-split air conditioners are more versatile, so you can choose the right size for your garage to maximize efficiency.
- Heating and cooling: Mini split air conditioners can produce both hot and cold air. They can provide 15,000 BTU cooling effect in summer and 12,000 BOTU heating effect winter. You can use them all year round, so you can keep your garage cool in summer and warm in winter.
Window Air Conditioner