I live in Branson Missouri and I have to keep my Glowforge in the garage. and the winter time it can freeze and I know we’re not supposed to keep it in those conditions. I was wondering if we used an engine warming blanket to keep it warm while not in use covered by a regular blanket. Here’s an example
Will this keep the glow porch safe from freezing and damage?
I’m sure nobody is going to give you an official answer. I mean heat is heat. So the question is how much volume can that thing heat, and to what temperature. So this isn’t much different than if you had an electric baseboard heater next to the glowforge. The question is how hot does the actual thing get (I assume not crazy hot) and how cold is the garage (remember engine compartments of modern cars have some insulation). So if you just put this in the air then it likely would not produce much warmth. If the room is seriously cold (like -20) I can’t imagine this will do a whole lot of anything. You can try it say on some piece of equipment not as fragile as a laser cutter and then see how warm the thing gets, if it gets sufficiently (but not too) warm then it sounds like a reasonable solution.
The auto pad might get too warm…I was reading that in order to keep a car engine block from freezing in sub zero temps you only had to run it for 15 minutes every other hour or so. Unless you want to be running outside every other hour to turn it off, it might be too much for it.
I would suggest two things…both relatively inexpensive…
One…a Delonghi oil filled radiator. One will work to keep an 8’ x 10’ room toasty. If you set that under or near the table that the Glowforge is on, it should raise the temperature enough to keep it from freezing. (It’s what we use for the cat room attached to the garage.)
Some cheap room dividers to section off the area around the Glowforge and hold the heat in. (Much more economical to just heat a small area.)
And always disconnect the hose from the exterior if you have it vented through a port when it’s not in use.
Don’t know much about engine heaters but it doesn’t have a thermostat. Getting too hot might be a problem. I use a plant germination pad with a thermostat. Will always try to keep the temp at the dialed in value but they don’t put out a lot of heat so might not work in really cold temps. Works just fine for keeping my unit in the sweet spot in a basement that gets to 40F quite often. But I also need a space heater when operating. Otherwise the GF will suck in very cold air and shut down.