The garage door is the largest thermal interaction zone in your home. It’s constantly exposed to the action of external agents such as UV rays, wind, rain and snow. During a hot summer, these doors can turn your garage into an oven. During an extreme winter, they can also transform your garage into a refrigerator.
If you’re constantly doing different activities in your garage, such as repairs and cleaning, you must ensure a comfortable temperature. That way, you’ll feel more comfortable while you’re in your garage.
In this article you’ll learn in a simple way how to insulate a garage door by yourself using one of those insulation kits that you can easily find in the market. The procedure also includes a detailed list with the equipment required during the installation process.
What is Garage Door?
It’s the largest door in a house, located at the main entrance of a garage. It’s designed to allow vehicles to enter the property. The dimensions of these doors can vary between 7-10 feet wide and 7-8 feet high.
Garage doors can be single or double. Some garage doors are retractable, allowing you to take advantage of free space on the ceiling for the installation of garage door openers.
Garage doors made in one piece use hinges to move, which can be located on both sides or at the top of the garage entrance.
The most common materials for garage doors are hardwood and metal. Hardwood garage doors are the most popular, due to their low weight, ease of installation and low thermal transfer.
Metal garage doors allow greater thermal interaction with the outside, so it’s mandatory to insulate them.
Insulation kits are the best alternative to insulate garage doors. They’re cheap and easy to install. They can use polystyrene panels or fiberglass batts as insulators. Installation is quick and easy in both cases.
Usually, polystyrene panels come precut from the factory in measures of 23.25X54 inches. The thickness may vary depending on the R-value of the insulator. The higher the R-value, the higher the thickness. Normally, 5 fasteners per panel are necessary to keep them in place.
Some polystyrene panels are coated with vinyl on one side to make them easy to clean. Others include an aluminum foil layer to reflect radiant heat.
Fiberglass batts also come precut in standard sizes to fit the panels of the garage door. But, when the measures of the batts aren’t suitable for the garage door, it’s better to buy complete rolls and cut sections manually.
To keep fiberglass batts in place, you can use heavy-duty adhesive tape or staples.
How to insulate a Garage Door Yourself?
Fiberglass batts are by far the cheapest and easiest to install insulators for garage walls and doors. The installation process doesn’t take more than 1 hour and you won’t need help from someone else to do so.
Garage doors insulated with fiberglass batts provide five times better thermal performance than uninsulated metal garage doors. In addition, they reduce the noise generation up to 20%. To install fiberglass precut batts you just have to follow these steps:
- Before getting started, make sure you have the following items at hand:
- Utility knife.
- Measuring tape.
- Steel ruler.
- Work gloves.
- Pencil and paper.
- Open the installation kit box and verify that the following items are included:
- Double-side adhesive tape.
- Fiberglass batts.
- Retainer clips.
- Vinyl repair tape.
- After verification, it’s time to start. First of all, stick an adhesive tape patch in the center of each garage door panel.
- Then, install a retainer clip over each adhesive patch.
- Use the measuring tape to determine the length of each garage door panel. Each batt must cover 2 panels at the same time and be attached to 2 retainer clips.
- Use the steel ruler and the utility knife to cut each fiberglass batt to the required length.
- Set in place the first fiberglass batt. Then, make a small “X” cut over the batt, at the contact point with the retainer clip. After that, push the clip through the fiberglass and set the other half of the retainer clip.
- Repeat step 7 with the rest of the fiberglass batts.
- After installing all the batts, make sure there´s no fiberglass areas exposed to the air. If that happens, use the vinyl repair tape to cover exposed areas.
If you carefully follow the tips in this article, you certainly won’t have problems during the installation process. Before you start, make sure you have all required equipment and materials at hand to avoid interruptions during work.
Also, make sure to choose a suitable R-value depending on the maximum and minimum temperatures that the garage door reaches during summers and winters. If the material you choose doesn’t have enough R-value, there won’t noticeable changes in temperature.