Propane vs Kerosene Garage Heater: Which Is Better? (2023)

Your garage is usually a productive part of your home where you may need to spend an hour or two a week. Using the workbench or servicing your car may require you to work in the garage, even in winter, which can be quite uncomfortable.

Before deciding between propane or kerosene heaters to keep your garage warm and comfortable year-round, weigh the efficiency of each type of heater against the space you want to heat. You should also choose the one that is best in terms of security and within your budget.

Propane vs Kerosene Garage Heater: Which Is Better? (1)

Contents hide

  • Which is more efficient propane or kerosene?
  • Which is safer: kerosene or propane heater?
  • Kerosene vs Propane Heater: Availability
  • Which is cheaper to run: propane or kerosene heating?
  • Best kerosene heater for garages
  • Best Indoor Propane Heater
  • Resume

Which is more efficient propane or kerosene?

Propane heaters are efficient because they do not emit smoke and the fuel source is cheaper per gallon compared to kerosene. You can run the heating on one tank for several days. In addition, the propane heaters can heat up your garage much faster and give you more heat per square foot of space.

(Video) Portable Heaters PROPANE vs KEROSENE: Which is the BEST for You?

One drawback to using a portable propane heater is that they need good ventilation to function safely and efficiently. So if your garage is not well ventilated, you will need to install some vents before placing the unit.

For kerosene heaters, the fuel source produces more BTUs per gallon than propane. That means kerosene heaters use less fuel and give you more efficiency per dollar than their propane counterparts.

However, keep in mind that kerosene heaters have a larger carbon footprint, so they need good ventilation, otherwise carbon monoxide buildup can be very dangerous to your health and safety.

Related Post:Propane and kerosene heaters that work without electricity

Which is safer: kerosene or propane heater?

Whatever heating you choose for your garage, you must have a good ventilation system for it. Both heaters, propane and kerosene, emit carbon monoxide in varying amounts, which can be fatal if ingested and must be disposed of.

Propane is an odorless and highly flammable gas, so it requires extra caution. However, if there is a gas leak, the gas will only ignite as long as oxygen is present in the ambient air.

Propane is also cleaner than kerosene and it doesn't give off a strong odor or too many noxious fumes common to kerosene heaters.

In terms of flammability, kerosene is not as dangerous for indoor use as propane because the spark must come in contact with the liquid for a fire to start. In case of liquid spoilage, you can smell and see this, which is a great advantage for kerosene heaters.

Still, there is a risk of accidental fire and noxious fumes that kerosene gives off when it burns.

(Video) Propane vs Diesel Multi Fuel Heater

Kerosene vs Propane Heater: Availability

There's no point making a choice if you can't find the fuel where you live.

You can find a kerosene tank at camping stores and hardware stores, but those aren't the best deals you can get. Instead, it makes more sense to buy kerosene from a gas station that has a kerosene pump.

If there are no kerosene pumps near you, you can still look for them and stock up on some fuel. Or you can opt for propane heaters for more convenience.

Propane is easier to buy, as it is usually used for gas grills. You can probably find propane in home improvement stores, grocery stores, convenience stores, and a few other places.

You can even store propane in bulk by purchasing a large propane tank. But large-scale storage may not be ideal for many users. It is more convenient if you ask for a regular supply of propane to your home.

Related Post:Does kerosene go bad and how long will it last?

Which is cheaper to run: propane or kerosene heating?

Propane heaters are efficient with a cost effective fuel source. Propane will cost you about $2.70 per gallon. But since costs fluctuate with fuel prices, fuel may cost you differently throughout the year.

Nevertheless, you do not have to worry about the propane quality and its effect on the efficiency of the heater, making the fuel a good choice.

Another advantage of propane stoves is that you can choose how much heat output you want, so the amount of fuel you want is up to you. If you need a higher heat output it will cost you more, while a low consistent heat will use less fuel.

(Video) Propane vs Kerosene Garage Heaters | Do Propane Heaters Work - Are They Safe for the Garage?

On the other hand, kerosene costs about $3.30 per gallon. However, when calculating fuel costs for your heating, you need to consider the amount of heat you get per gallon. In this case, kerosene is more energy-rich than propane.

Another thing to keep in mind is that kerosene heaters need good quality kerosene to run smoothly and emit the least amount of bad smoke. In addition, better quality fuel also provides more heat and saves you money.

Since kerosene prices also fluctuate with gas prices, the fuel will cost you a different price every season.

Related Post:Best indoor propane heaters

Best kerosene heater for garages

Propane vs Kerosene Garage Heater: Which Is Better? (2)

OfDyna-Glo forced air heateris ideal for heating large garages up to 3200 square feet. The heater features Dual Heat technology, which means the unit can run on multiple fuels. It gives an output of 135,000 BTU to provide year-round heat in your garage and even outside.

If you are purchasing a heater for the first time, the built-in thermostat and air pressure gauge make it easy to keep an eye on the unit. The manufacturer recommends the use of kerosene for optimum performance and longer stove life.

The whole unit has a robust and compact frame with a handle and a built-in cord winder for mobility. You can easily lift the heater using the ergonomic handles without dragging it across the floor or worrying about cables.


(Video) Torpedo Heater vs. Tank Top Heater- My Garage Setup

  • Dual heat technology
  • Suitable for large spaces
  • Built-in digital diagnostics
  • Portable design


  • Gives off a noticeable kerosene smell

Read also: to beusing a home oven to heat a garage is a good idea?

Best Indoor Propane Heater

Propane vs Kerosene Garage Heater: Which Is Better? (3)

mr. Heater Portable Buddy Propane Heateris a liquid propane heater, ideal for small to medium-sized indoor spaces. It gives 4000 to 9000 BTU with almost 100% fuel efficiency.

Because the device has no fan, you hardly hear it when it's running. One propane tank will give you about three to six hours of heat, depending on your heat settings. If you want more fuel, you can connect a larger propane tank to the heater with an extra hose.

A nice touch to this propane stove is a folding handle on the top that saves space so you can store it in tight places. You will also find the device light enough to hang it on the wall. It's a great backup option for anyone who doesn't have a fireplace or wood stove.


  • High fuel efficiency
  • Minimal footprint
  • Very quiet
  • Light and portable design


  • Top gets very hot


In short, both opponents in the kerosene versus propane heater argument are efficient and effective for keeping your garage warm year-round. Both differ from each other in a number of ways, so choosing between them comes down to personal preferences and specific needs.

(Video) Kerosine VS Propane

To choose the best option for your garage, think about the space you want to heat and weigh it against the capabilities of both types of heaters. You can also calculate how much money you will spend on fuel to make an informed decision.

Related articles:
How to efficiently heat a cold basement
How to prevent the kerosene heater from smelling and producing fumes


(Garage Beers)
2. Do Propane Heaters Work - Are They Safe for the Garage?
(Tahoe Steve)
3. Advantages of a Kerosene Heater
(Gene Lonergan)
4. Best Kerosene Heater For Garage
5. Propane Advantages Over Kerosene
6. Forced air vs radiant kerosene shop heater ... WOW
(Country Mile Garage)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Cheryll Lueilwitz

Last Updated: 09/20/2023

Views: 5413

Rating: 4.3 / 5 (54 voted)

Reviews: 93% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Cheryll Lueilwitz

Birthday: 1997-12-23

Address: 4653 O'Kon Hill, Lake Juanstad, AR 65469

Phone: +494124489301

Job: Marketing Representative

Hobby: Reading, Ice skating, Foraging, BASE jumping, Hiking, Skateboarding, Kayaking

Introduction: My name is Cheryll Lueilwitz, I am a sparkling, clean, super, lucky, joyous, outstanding, lucky person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.