Choosing the right insulation for your garage door

December 23, 2014

Choosing the right garage door insulation is essential to keeping your house temperature-regulated, sound-proofed and energy-efficient.

Choosing the right insulation for your garage door

Choosing not to insulate your garage door can lead to unnecessary expenses on excessive energy use. If you're looking to insulate your garage door, here are a few insulation options to consider to help keep a few more dollars in your pocket.

The R-value of insulation

Before delving into the different types and varieties of insulation, it’s important to consider how insulation is measured. Insulation is given what is called an R-value, which translates into how heat-resistant the insulation is. The higher the R-value, the more heat resistant the insulation will be.

Insulation types

  • Batt insulation: This type of insulation comes in pre-cut panels and is often used to insulate floors, walls and ceilings. Ever notice those pink cottony tufts covering unfinished walls in basements? That is batt insulation. They are commonly made out of fibreglass and is one of the most popular forms of insulation. It tends to be very inexpensive but easy to install. It's typically accompanied by paper or foil that act as vapour and air barriers.
  • Foam board insulation: Also known as rigid insulation, this insulation option consists of large sheets of plastic foam that can be cut into any size. It's easier to work with than fibreglass and is more resistant to mold and mildew. Typically made out of polystyrene, polyurethane or polyisocyanurate, foam board insulation is high insulating value for relatively little thickness, thus making it an inexpensive option.
  • Reflective insulation: Also called radiant barrier, the reflective insulation option is a metallic foil material, typically aluminum, designed to block radiant heat transfer. It's ideal for garages that heat up in the summer as it keeps the garage cool by reflecting out the heat. The reflective insulation however is less cost-effective and if you live where winter seasons get cold, then this insulator will not be as effective as a year-round product.

Other considerations before choosing your insulation

  • When selecting your insulation for your garage door, consider how the weight will affect the actual operation of your garage door. In some cases, you'll need to re-balance the springs due to extra stress from the insulation material.
  • Ensure the insulation is fireproof. Most kits come with fireproof insulation, but take the time to ensure this is the case before purchasing.
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