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Despite being the trusty storeroom of many a house, our garages often go underutilized and underappreciated. Whether you use your garage for your car or not, it’s likely that you’ll still use your garage for storage, one way or another. Perhaps it’s those old photographs, or maybe it’s somewhere you throw things that you’ll definitely use…one day. Maybe you keep your tools and trusty serviceables there.
The problem, of course, is that that over time you’re less likely to go in your garage due to the cold. Worse still, you’ll discover indications of mold or damp in your garage- and there’s nothing worse than coming back to old memories, only to discover that they’re damp and falling apart. It can also prove costly if you discover your tools are beginning to rust, leading to yet more expense as you replace them.
This doesn’t have to be the case. If you want to use your garage to the best of its capabilities, without converting the entire thing into another room, a great alternative is to get an insulation kit. Garage door insulation kits are the biggest thing to hit the market right now. They allow you to bring your garage up-to-speed with modern usage and therefore opens its full potential- without breaking the bank.
If you’re not sure where to start, fear not. We’ve taken the time to put together a list of the best garage door insulation kits available on the market, right now. Not only that, but our buying guide and FAQ can help you discover which door insulation kit is right for your needs. Read on, for more info.
The Best Garage Door Insulation Kit
Topping off our list is the Matador insulation kit. This is a proven set that provides best insulation for garage doors, thanks to the hundreds of high ratings it’s received since it came online. It’s incredibly easy to use and fit even the largest garage doors.
It’s made from a polystyrene and comes with a laminated panel, to give your garage a more finished, clean look- and that’s what really sets it apart from many of the others on this list. The matador garage insulation kit gives you a real option of turning your garage a more livable area, without the colossal costs involved in converting your space.
It’s also well-loved by buyers, who noted that the pieces were easy to cut and install, as well as how quick it was to get their garage insulation fitted. Overall, this is a great choice at a great price, and therefore a great option for anyone interested in insulating their garage.
Easy to use
- Weight5 pounds
Owen’s is a well-known brand in the insulation world and the name alone carries some weight, as well as the positive experiences with customer services that reviewers have had. Our second option for garage door insulation is Owen’s corning kit, which comes complete with clips to hold it in place.
Made with fiberglass, this kit comes with an R-8 rating, which is one of the highest available. It is, however, more difficult to set up and is held in place with clips, which means more precision is required when installing your kit. Some customers note that more than a little bit of Gorilla tape is required to get the optimal hold, over using the clips alone- a great tip for those looking to invest!
Cleanable vinyl layer
- BrandOwens Corning
- Weight11.8 pounds
Carrying a name like NASA is bound to carry some weight when it comes to materials- however be mindful that this is NASA tech, and not provided by NASA themselves. That said, it’s easy to understand why this could be used by aerospace engineers, when you consider the effectiveness of what is a disarmingly thin piece of material.
Again, using clips to hold it in place, this material comes in rolls and requires a little more preparation before installation. Of course, this comes with some huge positives as well. The finished product can look great and an R-value of 8. It doesn’t take up much room and it even comes with a reflective layer, that can help keep out moisture and heat- perfect for garages that get extremely hot in summer.
- BrandUS Energy Products
Reflectix is one of the newer items that comes jam-packed with scientific backing. Being compliant in nearly every area, including fire resistance and is completely non-toxic, non-carcinogenic and has an R-value of a whopping 14.8. It’s also made of various layers of foil and lightweight metals, making this an extremely lightweight offering, and can therefore be much easier to install.
Since it’s fiber-free and very thin, it can easily be cut with scissors, which can cut down installation time drastically. Meanwhile, the center bubble-pack style layer can prevent the transference of heat, which means heat is kept in during the colder months and out during the warmer seasons. The materials are also considerably cheaper than most others, meaning that cost-effectiveness is passed on to you, as this is one of the cheapest options available.
Easy to install
- Weight5.5 pounds
Reach Barrier’s offering runs along similar materials to Reflectix, in that their insulation is made of multiple layers of foil over a bubble-packed center. Again, this makes for a lightweight option that is easy to cut and install- with the main difference being that, instead of coming in roll-format, these come in panels. This can make it much easier to cut to size and measure-up for your garage doors, however it can also lead to a little more wastage, as you’ll be trimming and chopping little bits at a time.
In order to fit these, you’ll just need to use the Stick’ems provided in the pack- no clips, which means no mess. This is definitely preferable for some users, as it’s quick and easy to install- it also means you likely won’t need to make holes in your insulation, in order to keep the foils in place.
Easy to install
- BrandReach Barrier
- Weight3.32 pounds
Back to the traditional polystyrene format of insulation and this offering from Cellofoam is all about usability. In order to get this installation kit into place you’ll simply need a Stanley knife and the usual safety gear. This is a slightly heavier option at 0.3lbs apiece, which will add roughly 4lbs to your door but that shouldn’t change your garage door’s effectiveness, so don’t be too alarmed by the shipping weight.
It’s also noteworthy that this will leave your garage door with a nice, clean finish as the inner-facing side has been laminated with vinyl, making your garage door look smooth, with a nice, clean finish. Customers are big fans of how easy it is to install, as well as how quickly they were able to install it, without professional help.
Easy to use
- BrandCellofoam North America
- ModelGarage Door Insulation Kit – 8 pcs
Our final option on our top garage door insulation kit list, is another fiberglass alternative, this time by ANCO. Again, this comes in a roll and requires a little effort in order to utilize its full potential- and at an R-value of 9, there is certainly much potential there!
The biggest benefit here is the use of fiberglass materials without having to compromise by using clips, since this item can be fitted to your garage door using any fastener you prefer. While some customers have commented that double-sided sticky tape can leave the door sagging in places, using a strong adhesive could easily do the trick and keep your garage well-insulated from the outer environment- or, as with the last fiberglass option, a little duct tape.
R Value 9
No specified fixings
- ModelANCO Residential Insulation Kit
- Weight14.6 pounds
Best Garage Door Insulation Kit Buying Guide
Things to Look for When Buying Garage Door Insulation Kits
Not all garage insulation kits are made equal, and it’s important to know what to consider when you’re looking the best way to insulate a garage door. Because each door is unique to your property, there can be multiple options available, which can sometimes lead to the first-world problem of being confused by the level of choice you have. If you’re looking for what makes for a great garage door insulation kit, bear in mind these variables:
Not all kits will suit all doors and, although you can cut some down to the right size, others are not so accommodating or easy to fit. Searching for garage insulation that comes to roughly the right height and width from the start should be a priority, as it’ll help you immeasurably when installing it, later.
There are four different types of garage door insulation kits that you can fit yourself: fiberglass, spray foam, rigid foam and cellulose. They all come with their own set of pros and cons, which you can read further down this page. The key is to get the right material for you- bearing in mind that it’s likely you’ll be fitting this kit, yourself.
One of the key aspects when buying door insulation is just how well it’s going to work. There’s not much point spending money on something that’s as useful as a chocolate teapot! Look at the R-values given, when buying your kit, as this is the most informative way of telling you the insulation’s effectiveness.
As with all things, a higher quality insulation is likely to cost you more. However, there will always be a ceiling price when it comes to how effective you need the quality to be. Consider the cost vs yield of each item when choosing your insulation kits- the main factor in choosing insulation should be how much energy it will save your household over the course of a year. Factor this in when picking your garage door insulation panels, as you should be able to “pay it off” through saved bills over a few years.
Why You Should Insulate Your Garage Door
- To save energy
This is usually the choice at the forefront of most housework. The idea of saving energy over time by investing a little in our house has led to many a jump forward in our energy efficiency. Of course, as much as we want this to be a part of bettering society, it realistically comes down to saving ourselves money.
Good insulation inevitably leads to cheaper gas and electric bills, as we’re not paying to heat up areas that we’re less likely to use or covering up those drafts that present throughout the home, stemming from a poorly insulated area. Using insulation on your garage doors can provide the bonus of stopping these from appearing- making your house more energy efficient and saving you money.
- To make your garage door more durable
Providing another level of protection from the outdoors will also stand to make your garage door more durable. The added layer helps your door stand up to rough usage and therefore dents are less likely to happen, when you have insulated garage door panels.
The multiple layers your garage will have, if you decide to insulate, mean less maintenance over time, especially as the environment is less likely to warp your garage door through continual expansion and contraction. This is all thanks to the extra helping of insulation you would use, which not only protects the interior of your garage but the components for the door itself. Not to mention that having less exposure to the elements can ensure the mechanisms that open your garage work as they should, for longer.
- To soundproof
Depending of the type of garage door insulation you use, you can even soundproof your garage while saving energy. Killing two birds with one stone, this can help keep relations between you and your neighbors much more positive- especially if you have teenagers who like to use this area as a kind of den.
The added layer on the inside of your garage door will absorb more sound as it emanates from its source. This cuts down on noise pollution and stops any neighborhood curtain-twitchers from knowing what’s going on in your- now more private- dwelling.
- To protect your belongings
We’ve already briefly mentioned how the added insulation stops possible thieves from detecting the presence of noisy goods they might want to get their hands on- but there’s so many more ways having insulation can protect your goods. For example, one of the most common reasons a battery in your car will die is due to the cold weather. Having that extra heat in your garage saved by using insulation on your garage doors can mean you’re less likely to have car trouble. Therefore, no more wasted money on an avoidable incident, no more missed days at work and no more frustration at having a car battery that has the charge zapped out of it by the cold.
Not only that, but cold weather can influence paint (even when sealed), tools, soft furnishing and so on. Having a cold area attached to a warm house also inevitably brings on areas of condensation, which then lead to mold. Mold can then lead to health problems in the household as well as damp. Having that extra layer of protection can save you money, cleaning time and energy, simply due to the change in temperature the insulation brings.
- To improve your house value
All these benefits won’t just affect you. Future prospective buyers will consider these benefits when considering your home- and this simple addition of garage door insulation can push your house over the finish line, when it comes to a tie-breaker.
Types of Garage Door Insulation
Also known as Batt insulation, this fiberglass can come in rolls or pre-cut. The pre-cut versions will usually be backed with aluminum or paper, which stops vapors from working through and attacking the material. It’s the most affordable form of insulation and easily fits between studs and joists for a snug fit.
- Spray foam
The most expensive form of insulation. It comes in two types- closed cell form, which is the more expensive of the two and has a higher R-value, and open cell form which is the cheaper variant but has a lower R-value. It works by combining two components which then meet during the spray and form a foam that can get into all the smaller spaces a garage door might hold. It’s very strong and holds out moisture better than other types.
- Rigid foam
This comes in large sheets of polystyrene, this is ideal for those wanting to cut the sheets down to size. You’ll need to ensure that each piece fits perfectly- if you manage this, then the insulation can be fantastic. Of course, incorrectly cut pieces can allow for cold air to seep through, as well as moisture. You’ll also need to ensure that any foam you choose is fire-resistant, as some forms can be very dangerous if a fire breaks out.
Made mostly from recycled newspapers, this is a great option for the more environmentally-minded. Cellulose insulation is treated to make it fire-resistant and it’s great for keeping rodents out. It’s very rarely made for garage doors, however, as it needs to be blown into cavities to make it work, since it’s a loose material that needs packing.
Best Garage Door Insulation Kit FAQ:
Q: How does garage door insulation work?
A: Garage insulation kits work in a variety of ways, depending on which you type you choose. However, they should all cover the following:
- Maintains an extra barrier between your home and the environment outside
- Provides protection in one of the least insulated areas of the house
- Slow conductive heat flow
It is made of layers that work together to reflect extreme weather, while keeping the area inside temperate.
Q: What is R value in insulation?
A: The r value equates to the thermal resistance of a material. Essentially this typing breaks down the main components which make something resistant to changes in temperature. These components are:
- Type of insulation
- Moisture accumulation
These all come together to form a single R-rating, making it easier for customers to choose which is the better option available to them. Bear in mind that each R-rating is individual to each layer, so you may need to add together the R-values to find the correct, total rating of your insulation.
The R-value is also completely dependent on correct installation, so bear this in mind when fixing your new insulation to your garage door. Always follow the instructions exactly as described or get a pro in to help you install your new garage door insulation kit. In order to choose the best variant, try to go for the highest number available, that is still cost-effective for your budget.
Some kits will also come with what is known as U-value. This indicates how well a material conducts heat or allows the passage of heat. Unlike the R-value, when using the U-value, you’ll want to look for the lowest number possible for your door insulation, since you don’t want the insulation to allow for heat transference.
Q: How do I install garage door insulator?
A: Each different type of garage insulation can be applied differently, depending on the type of material, brand and type of insulation bought, as well as whether your garage door had insulation before you decided to replace it. For some, you can simple cut the insulation to size, before adding it to your garage door. Other types may need more preparation, or even a professional to come in and complete the task for you.
For example, one board brand uses double-sided tape and retainer clips, which the board of insulation can clip onto. The insulation is then cut to size and pushed into place and a final retainer clip is used to hold the entire piece in place.
Regardless of the type of insulation you end up choosing, remember to choose your health and safety first. If you are looking to undertake this task yourself, protect yourself by using a dust mask, safety glasses and cut-resistant gloves. And, if you’re ever unsure, get someone who knows what they’re doing to help you- it might cost a little more but it’s worth it in the long-run.
Our Top Pick
With it’s ease-of-use and sleek, finished look that can turn your garage into a spare room that all the family can enjoy, it’s not surprising that we chose Matador’s garage insulation kit as our top pick. With super-fast installation time and an easy to follow guide available, you should have your garage door insulation up and saving you money, in no time at all.
Meanwhile, the added soundproofing means you can easily change your garage into a space for playing instruments or doing some hardy DIY- without annoying the neighbors or alerting potential thieves about any pricey possessions you might store in your garage. Of course, the most important factor is how well your insulation lasts over time, and as one of the most popular options available online, you can be sure that this has been tried and tested by hundreds of users- many of whom praise its ability to do the most important job- keeping your garage well-insulated from extreme weathers.
- How to Insulate a Garage Door - wikiHow
- Top 7 Ways to Improve the Energy Efficiency of Your Garage - howstuffworks