Every year I do this, & get nowhere. So any input would be appreciated
I have a barn, with a nice barn aisle etc, but it is a very open space. I can’t close several of the stall doors. This time of year, things obviously get cold (in colorado).

Any input on some form of space heater to heat the area we tack/groom/farrier/vet so that these things are not so miserable when it is really cold? I am not looking for constant heating, just something we can have on when we are working in the area that will take some of the bite out. I also don’t expect it to bring the temp up to the point where we are working in shirt sleeves.

I have looked at the propane salamanders, but they seem very noisy. Get mixed reviews on the radient heat items, and the infrared stuff. What do you guys use that you are happy with, or that has been useless or worse…

I had an infrared in my wash stall. Frankly wasn’t impressed. Do you have a propane source/configuration to vent possible? If so, look at a Modine type heater on a thermostat or simply on/off. They kick out the heat if sized for the space. Husband has one for his workshop and it does well (and gives me a place for my hot water heater). Boarding barn uses a salamander an it is very noisy.

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I second that. We had a Modine Hot Dawg heater professionally installed in our barn basement 16 years ago to keep the plumbing from freezing. It has worked well, gets an annual service and the only time it quit was when a creative pony took down the exhaust pipe. And we have hard wired fire detectors (can’t remember if smokes or heat detectors down there).

so it is very dusty & I don’t have a good place to place something like those. I am thinking I need to go portable…

DH occasionally has to use this in his workshop.


There have been a few times the temperature was in the teens, and the windchill made it single digits. He brought this into the barn and placed it near the 10’ door, leaving the door open a few inches. It would warm the area up for the farrier to where he had to shut off one of the burners.

If this won’t work, google “vertical outdoor heaters”. There are a lot of options:)

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It looks like it might be a good option, it doesn’t get topheavy when the propane gets low?

No, the tank doesn’t get top heavy but you would have to be sure to have good air circulation, so everyone can breath without breathing in propane fumes.

If the air is “tight”, in a closed place, the smell of propane will make everyone sick.

it’s the same principle as not running a generator in a closed space:)

Not just the smell. The carbon monoxide won’t be too good either, and can possibly be lethal.

My “ventilation” is part of my problem. Stall doors don’t close, so essentially we are working in something only slightly more enclosed than a run in shed…

I’d do those red heat lamp bulbs. You can even put them in portable clamp lights.
They will warm you and your horse up without loosing most of your heat to the air. I’d probably set of 3 on each side of the grooming area facing down.

The barn I’m in has these big electric heaters. I can look at the brand name next time I’m there. They work really well, but only when the space is enclosed.

portable clamp lights

verify the wattage limits of these as many are limited to 100 watts, whereas many heat lamp bulbs are 250 watt

(Porcelain Lamp Sockets are probably the most durable in terms of withstanding a much higher temperature, usual rating is up to 600 watts. Check for UL Testing or CSA labels)

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What about a Sweeter Heater?

I’ve seen these heaters at a barn before. They were kept in the grooming stalls/bays

Those are the heaters I’m installing in my wash rack and in one grooming stall.

Will be interested in seeing any reviews of the radiant heaters.

I got mine at lowes, they are 250 watt. I’ve used them for about 3 seasons with no issues. The bulbs do get hot, but the lamps don’t. I wouldn’t leave them on without me being around, but that would defeat their purpose anyways.

I had one of these above the grooming stall in my last barn and thought it was amazing. I had a light switch wired to turn it on and off and had it placed directly above the horse.