How to Insulate a Garage Door

Your garage can mean different things depending on the individual. To some, it is just a place where you store your cars. Maybe along with all your other items that don’t quite fit within the house. To others, a garage is one of the largest areas in the house. A rugged exterior within the interior with the most potential of any location in the house. A garage can be a workshop or a hangout spot along with its normal convenience. If you are interested in making your garage a bit more than normal, insulation is key. Regardless of what you plan to use your garage for garage door insulation never hurts. It can make your house more energy-efficient along with increasing your overall property value.

An insulated garage door can serve multiple functions while making your garage overall more comfortable. When it is cold it will help you stay warm while reflecting harsh sunlight keeping the area warm in the summer. There are almost as many ways to go about insulation as there are methods of getting it done. Thankfully unlike garage opener installation (no matter belt or chain), there are more reliable do it yourself methods that can be effective. Going about insulating your garage door can be pretty difficult so here you can find what you need to make the process smooth. 

Skip the work: Built-in Insulation?

Before going into the ways you can do the job there’s always the option of paying for the procedure at the beginning. Purchasing an insulated garage door can save you some trouble but may end up more costly in the end. It’s not stupid to pay attention to a quality door opener as well. Overall this method will increase your house’s energy efficiency along with reducing the noise and increasing the durability of your garage door. You can find doors with either 2-layers for steel and insulation. 3-layer doors with another layer of steel sandwiching the insulation are another option with greater effect.

For built-in insulation, every garage door has an R-Value for its insulation. R-8 is around the low end with R-32 at the near peak. R-16 is the most popular value most shoppers end up purchasing. This isn’t a bad route to go, however.  Purchasing an insulated door can increase its lifespan and appeal over time.

Garage Door Insulation: Do It Yourself

With purchasing a brand new R-16 door reaching costs of over $1000 it’s rare that buying a new door is the best way to go. Taking the time to calculate the energy savings to make it worth the monetary investment isn’t necessary though. There are all sorts of ways you can insulate your door without spending nearly that much money.

A stop by the local hardware store and a few hours of work can have the job done. Depending on your method self insulation can cost less than $200. While you might be able to hand this job off to your teenager. You will need to use some tools so make sure your careful.

A Few Necessary Tools

The tools that pretty much every insulation will require are a tape measure, a utility knife, and protective gloves. Of course, you will also need your insulation as well and pens or markers can help. The tape measure will be used to measure your insulation before the knives are used for cutting the board. The protective gloves will help make the whole process easier as you will need to use pressure around the garage frame.

Choosing Your Insulation

First, you will need to decide on the insulation you want to use. There is a wide variety of choices to make so we won’t go too deep here. This is a general installation guide that should help no matter which material you choose. There is an option like an R-8 vinyl-faced fiberglass batting kit.

You can find these with various R-values to suit your price range and insulation needs. For a standard 16-foot garage door usually, two kits will be needed so make sure you check. You can also opt for pre-cut panels with different R-values. These will require minimal cutting or you can buy larger panels at a lower price and cut them yourself.

Your panels shouldn’t be cut for a perfect fit. You want the panels to be bowed in your garage door for a layer of air in between. This allows the panels to stay in place due to friction while doing their job more efficiently. 

Retainer Pins

Installing retainer pins will help the insulation stay in place. They aren’t always necessary but can be useful. In order to install you will use markers to mark spots for them 12 inches from the edge of your panels. Aim for the locations at the midpoint between each horizontal rail. After they are properly marked you will then place two-way tape at each marked point. From there you just need to stick the retainers on.

Cutting Tips

Roll out your insulation vinyl side down over a scrap of plywood if you have it. Really any surface that you wouldn’t mind getting cut a bit could work here. From there you will compress the insulation with a straight edge. Then cut out your panels with a utility knife. Try to leave an inch on each side the top and bottom so it will bow out and trim down to fit.

Insulation Installation

The actual insulation installation is quite simple with just a bit of effort required to finish the job. With properly cut panels all you have to do is line them up with each section of your door and pop them in. Kits with retained might ask for a more snug fit so make sure you pay attention to their specific instructions. Foam panels will generally work better with a slightly bowed look and seldom have retainers.

Should I Insulate My Garage?

Insulating your garage door is one of the best ways to save money in the long run. This is due to it not taking too much time of effort in the grand scheme of things. Searching for the perfect first house doesn’t need to include the garage door with a bit of work. Whether you’re itching for some easy DIY home improvement or just make a rational move garage door insulation is simple. You don’t have to live in your garage to appreciate all the benefits a properly insulated one can bring.