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RIDGID 18-Volt Hybrid Propane Forced Air Heater Review | R8604241B

Low Fume Heat

The Ridgid GEN5X Brushless 18-Volt Hybrid Forced Air Propane Heater is an awesome unit compared to the kerosine powered salamander heaters we used to use. This propane heater can be powered by a Ridgid 18-Volt battery or regular extension cord. When you compare the size, weight, and ability to move easily, the Ridgid heater is no comparison to a kerosene or diesel powered heater.  The fumes left from this small heater are minimal, although still there.  To use this heater in a garage, one must have a fresh air intake.  Carbon monoxide is nothing to mess around with!

We did a lot of testing with the Ridgid brushless heater.  We found the combustion temperatures just inside the heater to be over 500 degrees.  The heater was able to heat up a large metal bumper 2 feet away to over 200 degrees in less than 15 minutes.  There is a serious amount of heat leaving this hybrid heater.  Those temperatures demand some respect when using this in tight areas.

R8604241B Features

  • Power the hybrid heater fan with any RIDGID 18-Volt battery or extension cord
  • Variable power dial – 30,000-60,000 BTU output
  • 7-hours of continuous fan runtime with 5Ah battery on Low
  • Brushless motor
  • 12-hours of continuous tank runtime using a standard 20 lb. tank on Low
  • Electronic ignition
  • Quiet fan operation
  • UL certified

Garage Heat

We have an unheated 26′ by 24′ garage at our home that is insulated.  With this heater on high, we were able to heat the garage from 40 degrees to 80 degrees in less than 20 minutes with very little smell.  Inside our home, there was not smells that would let anyone know we had a heater running in the garage.  Once we were up to temperature, I opened the walk-in door and let the heater run on low.  This allowed for us to get fresh air to be safe and for us to keep the same working temperature in the garage of 80 degrees.

If there is a downside to this heater, it would be the amount of propane it consumes on high.  In a matter of two hours use, 20 minutes on high and the rest on low, we were able to use up 1/3 of a 20-pound tank.  If left on high, we could have used up the full 20-pound tank in two hours.  Battery life with the 5.0 Ah battery is spectacular with Ridgid claiming 7 hours of runtime on low and we feel that might be conservative.  Ridgid claims 12 hours of runtime on a 20-pound propane tank on low and we feel that might be optimistic.

At this point, we cannot find a conversion to change this unit over to natural gas, but that would be neat for a home workshop.  Ridgid’s heater is a home run for portability, but be safe with it.  Even if you cannot smell the fumes, carbon monoxide is still there and it can be deadly!  We really like this heater and would rate it as one of the best tools made by Ridgid.  Currently, it is priced at $129.00 at The Home Depot and it includes the heater and 15′ hose and propane regulator.  Supply the power and propane tank and you are in business.

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