Radiant Heater

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Radiant Heater

Post by SupStk » Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:30 am

I have a 4 car residential garage with a work area, about 1000 sq ft. Its insulated and drywalled and has 9' ceiling.
Really thinking about a radiant tube heater. Any brands anyone here can recommend or has experience with?
Natural gas will be used.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Dave Koehler » Fri Dec 08, 2017 10:16 am

I have this brand. No issues Comfy shop.
https://www.reverberray.com/about-infra ... utomotive/
Buy an extra ignitor and keep it on the shelf. May never need it. May need it a couple of years later.
It's not a matter of if but when.
They never die during the summer though.
Easy to change out.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by SupStk » Fri Dec 08, 2017 1:20 pm

Thanks Dave. Got a Re Verbra Ray in the shop and its been a good heater for over 20 years. Didn't know if the low ceiling height would be an issue in a home garage. Know two guys who have Co Ray Vacs, they like theirs too.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Dave Koehler » Fri Dec 08, 2017 2:03 pm

I believe they have such a thing. Probably worth a call to find out. I see low ceilings with them mounted near a corner tilted at 45 degrees.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by hoodeng » Sun Dec 17, 2017 12:25 am

Last year Christmas day was 106° here ,tomorrow's forecast is for 104° but cooling to 86° for Christmas day , which will be great if the forecast holds up .Son in laws folks are from Canada and last Christmas day on Skype they had -40°and we had 41°C !! .
I have never experienced the cold you guys get , i can't get my head around it !! some years back i saw snow on the ground for the first time in my life ,it felt cold , but i have yet to see it come out of the sky.
In winter the temp gets down to 40°f here for a couple of days total ,and i feel that in my bones ,,, the heat just slows you down a bit.

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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Truckedup » Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:46 am

As an electrician and contractor I wired many radiant heat systems in garages. All were in commercial garages ,dealerships etc with ceilings at least 12 foot high...I would be suspect of a long tube radiant system with a 9 foot ceiling. Of course it can be made to work..Ceiling mounted unit heater might be better.....And less expensive to buy and install..
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by sanfordandson » Thu Dec 21, 2017 8:56 pm

This is what I have. Works excellent.

http://www.reznorhvac.com/en/na/gas-radiant

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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Krooser » Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:29 pm

I have an 80k btu hanging at a 45 in my shop with a 9' ceiling.

If I had to do it again I think I could heat my 1100 sq ft with a 40k unit. Lol
Last place in the B-main is better than anyplace in the grandstands...

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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by SupStk » Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:52 pm

What I'm considering is a 40,000 BTU from a 20' tube. Contacted Detroit Radiant for a Revebra ray quote. Business must be good since they haven't answered my emails.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by gmrocket » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:41 pm

Check the manufacturers clearance to combustibles, On all sides. If your walls or ceilings are combustible you may need 12" to 18" or more,, that really puts it low with only 9'.

Also check the local gas code,,residential and commercial installs are sometimes different . Here it has to have a guard protection if within a certain distance from floor to prevent being hit by a vehicle.

Another thing is , always use one that's certified for outside air for combustion. You don't want the cheap ones that just have an exhaust,, you want a sealed unit taking outside air for the unit. For efficiency and safety reasons

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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Brian W » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:02 am

I use space ray tube heaters in my shop. I did a bunch of research when I selected them. They make low ceiling height models as well. I have the two stage heaters, highly recommend 2 stage. It does not go into high mode unless you open big door or boost it 5+ degrees. Easy on the propane, and you can stand directly under it as well. The other thing about space ray is the fan is on the outlet side not the inlet side... that allows a more even heat across the entire tube instead of most of them they are hot on front end and cold on the other...

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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by gmrocket » Sat Dec 30, 2017 2:00 am

With only 1000 sq feet to heat and good insulation, you might be better off with a small direct vent wall furnace.

I had that style in my last two garages,, one was 550 sq ft and other was 800. The small one I had a tiny 20 btu furnace that had 2 settings, I left on low all winter and only used high if I had the big door open and needed it to heat quick. It had a small built in fan

The 800 sq ft one had a 30btu and it was actually more than big enough...they are simple, sealed combustion and small... low to the floor where you need it for good air circulation.

If your opening your door a lot and cars going in and out, radiant tubes are best...remember though, if you can't see the tube from where your working, you won't feel the heat.. they heat objects... not the air. So if your working on thopposite side of the car, from the tube... it's gonna be much cooler

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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Dave Koehler » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:22 am

gmrocket wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 2:00 am


If your opening your door a lot and cars going in and out, radiant tubes are best...remember though, if you can't see the tube from where your working, you won't feel the heat.. they heat objects... not the air. So if your working on thopposite side of the car, from the tube... it's gonna be much cooler
I have not found that to be true. Once all the objects have absorbed and stabilized the heat which doesn't take long it's pretty much the same all over.
Case in point. If I leave the bathroom door closed in the winter it will get cold in there. Northwest corner. Open and its the same temp as elsewhere and it is no where in line with the tubes.
I have thermometers on all 4 walls. All within a degree or two of each other.
If in doubt take your temp gauge and hang out some place for an hour or so that uses tubes.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by Dave Koehler » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:35 am

SuperStock
FWIW, my tubes are the 2 stage version.
That second stage only comes on if the big door has to be open longer than normal. In my 1400 sq ft Morton Building that could be better insulated that the first stage maintains things.
I am exposed to a 200 acre field on the north. If the wind is not blowing and the big door never opens the tube may come on 4 times a day. Sometimes less if machines are running for a while.
Today it is 11 degrees and 15 mph winds after yesterdays snow. Nasty. I expect it to cycle at least 8 times.
I do not turn the temp down overnight. It has proven to me that it does not save any money in this application.
I do have a couple of ceiling fans that run on slow during the winter. This gives the subtle effect of moving air.
One unusual advantage to tubes is TIG welding. No wind.

If you go the tube route make your thermostat cable really long. Experiment with it in different locations to see what works the best for you. Then shorten the cable and mount it.

There is another possibility If the height is a concern and space is limited.
If you are well insulated take a look at mini split AC/heat system.
These work well if you don't have to open and close the door many times a day. Kind of a win/win if it fits your app.

Last year I installed a 36k version on the shop. It will freeze me out in the summer if I want. In hindsight one on each side of my building would likely result in lower operating costs.
I am experimenting with the heat side of it this winter in conjunction with the tubes to see if I can lower my propane usage versus raising my electric bill. By itself I am sure it could not keep up with this building. Building needs to be tighter with an enclosed ceiling.

If this is a possibility do not let someone tell you that the minisplit needs to be sized for the building. That is true of conventional units.
These are smart inverter machines and work really well.
The compressor and fan only work as hard as they need to.
Once the temp is stable they basically cruise or idle.
Kind of like a car at cruise speed. Does not take spit in HP to maintain that speed.
These are really efficient and quiet. You sometimes find yourself holding your hand up to them to see if they are actually working.
One thing minsplits have in common with the tubes is that you have no concerns about an open flame where chemicals and paint might be in play.

Minisplit tips:
Definitely buy as oversized as you can.
Mount the outside unit where it does not see the highest wind or harshest sunlight. East side worked for me.
Mount the outside unit off the ground to avoid drifting snow.
Clean the filters the first day of each month. More often if you throw a lot of dust around.

So far I have used the DIY Mr Cool line (http://mrcool.com/
I purchased from http://ingramswaterandair.com/mrcool-mr ... _4661.html
Best pricing and good service.
As with the tubes these are a dead simple thing for a car guy to install. You do have to read the instructions however.

I installed 2 18K units on my home to supplement or improve over the 50 yr old hot water radiant system. so far so good. Wife happy.

Either way and having been there, got the Tshirt I would never use a conventional hot air system.
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Re: Radiant Heater

Post by gmrocket » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:32 pm

Dave Koehler wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:22 am
gmrocket wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 2:00 am


If your opening your door a lot and cars going in and out, radiant tubes are best...remember though, if you can't see the tube from where your working, you won't feel the heat.. they heat objects... not the air. So if your working on thopposite side of the car, from the tube... it's gonna be much cooler
I have not found that to be true. Once all the objects have absorbed and stabilized the heat which doesn't take long it's pretty much the same all over.
Case in point. If I leave the bathroom door closed in the winter it will get cold in there. Northwest corner. Open and its the same temp as elsewhere and it is no where in line with the tubes.
I have thermometers on all 4 walls. All within a degree or two of each other.
If in doubt take your temp gauge and hang out some place for an hour or so that uses tubes.
Well seeing as how I've been an HVAC tech for 30 years...you said it exactly, once all the objects, in direct sight of the tube absurd the radiant waves of heat, they absorb and give off that heat once the tube is off...only if they are in direct site.

That's why we use radiant tubes in arenas, they do not heat the air or the ice. The people sitting under the tube are getting direct rays . You step one foot out of that area and it's freezing cold.

Same reason they put them in service garages with doors that open many times during the day.

I just did an install in a shop with two service bays, removed one old hanging unit heater that worked fine ...heated everything except it was really old..owner wanted a new system.

So I sized it and suggested 2 sealed combustion tube heaters with less total BTU input than the one old unit heater..one along each wall above the benches and parallel with each bay..

Him being cheap and smarter than me, said he just wanted one..along the back wall..I couldn't explain enough that it would cause to many cold spots because there would be a lot of things in the way , which blocks the rays from hitting the most important objects...his mechanics and the bench area.

Long story short, I'm going back in January to move the one to the side wall and install a second along the other side wall. Because his mechanics complained they were freezing ..all because they were out of the line of site of the tubes radiant waves

And no, never buy as oversized as you can..worst advice ever. Doin a proper heat loss heat gain is the correct way to do it. It's more efficient, more comfortable and best for the whole system

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