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  • Propane Heater Safety

    I was wondering if it is considered safe to operate a propane heater in a garage while scrolling and/or sanding? Obviously, lots of dust is being generated. I don't currently have any dust collection in place.

    Would an electric heater be safer? I am assuming an plug-in electric heater puts out less heat and costs more to operate then a propane heater.

    -Alan
    Excalibur EX-II, Delta 40-560

  • #2
    I have used both kerosene and propane at different times in different shops. Dust like we make in a one man shop scrolling and sanding should not be an issue with these open flame type heaters. You should use care if spraying lacquer, shellac or any oil finish close to the running heater. WHAT YOU MUST DO is install a Carbon Monoxide and smoke alarm. Also you will need a window or door to provide some fresh air.
    Scott
    Creator of fine designer sawdust.

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    • #3
      Alan,

      You do not say where you would be getting combustion air for a gas heater. I would a bit dubious in using either heater in a dust laden atmosphere. Electric heat produces a very dry heat as a result static electricity is apt to more common.

      That said presently I have a dust collector (dust deputy) and my propane gas heater takes the combustion air from outdoors.
      Last edited by cwmagee; 02-19-2020, 03:38 PM.
      cwmagee
      aka Fibber
      Producer of fancy firewood​

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      • #4
        Originally posted by cwmagee View Post
        Alan,

        You do not say where you would be getting combustion air for a gas heater. I would a bit dubious in using either heater in a dust laden atmosphere. Electric heat produces a very dry heat as a result static electricity is apt to more common.

        That said presently I have a dust collector (dust deputy) and my propane gas heater takes the combustion air from outdoors.
        I am considering the simple propane heater that sits on top of the 20lb refillable propane tanks.
        I would leave my garage door open half a foot to get fresh air in the garage. I would also have a Carbon Monoxide detector in the area for safety. I guess the sawdust would be my biggest concern. Perhaps if I had a dust collector that would eliminate he risk of fire.
        Excalibur EX-II, Delta 40-560

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        • #5
          I realize that a dust collector does reduce amount of dust in the air, however I would be concerned with the open flame of a simple gas heater because the dust can be a flash point. That is why I have a gas heater that uses air from outside.
          cwmagee
          aka Fibber
          Producer of fancy firewood​

          Comment


          • #6
            I see it a bit differently then my buddy Fibber. While it is best to cautious, I have been in many very dusty shops heated with kerosene or gas and they never had a fire. Wood dust is not as exposure or flammable as grain or chemical dust. Follow the safety rules for your heater, specifically distances from flammable surfaces and you will be fine.

            If you were creating enough dust to be a fire hazard I would be more concerned about your respiratory health.
            Scott
            Creator of fine designer sawdust.

            Comment


            • #7
              I am assuming that it is a radiant heater, since it is mounted on top of the tank. Like Scott said get a digital CO monitor.
              Rolf
              RBI G4 26 Hawk, EX 16 with Pegas clamps, Nova 1624 DVR XP
              Philosophy "I don't know that I can't, therefore I can"
              Proud Member of the Long Island Woodworkers Club
              And the Long Island Scrollsaw Association

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              • #8
                It is a radiant heater. I will have a CO monitor near the heater.
                Excalibur EX-II, Delta 40-560

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