Are Garage Doors Insulated? Everything You Need to Know

Many homeowners are unaware of the massive value an insulated garage can bring to their homes.

Why are some garage doors insulated? What are the advantages of insulating a garage? Can garage doors be insulated in a way that improves overall durability and lowers noise?

Hiring an OGD® contractor to install an insulated garage door makes a lot of sense if you’re looking to improve the overall value of your home or spend a lot of time in the garage as a workshop or other gathering place.

This article will dive into insulated garage doors and walk you through everything you need to know about whether or not you should install an insulated garage door.

How Insulated Garage Doors Work and What You Should Know About Them

The walls, ceiling, and garage door all need to be well insulated to keep out the cold. There are several options for improving the energy efficiency of your garage by adding insulation.

You may not spend much time in your garage workshop, but having it insulated protects your automobiles, equipment, and other stored things from weather and temperature-related harm. In addition to reducing heat loss, an insulated garage will likely lower your recurring monthly energy costs.

Is Your Garage The Problem?

When it comes to energy efficiency, your garage door may be your weakest link. Other areas of your home are well designed to keep the temperature regulated throughout the day, but the garage is often tacked on as an afterthought.

Garage doors that leak air aren’t doing their function, so you need to replace them with new ones that perform the job properly. The temperature in your garage will be better maintained by a properly insulated garage door. An insulated garage door may help keep severe heat and cold out of your home, much like insulating your house.

You should make sure that your garage door is well insulated if you reside in a region that experiences harsh weather conditions. Fortunately, manufacturers employ an R-value grading system to give customers an idea of how much insulation their doors offer.

Taking a Look at R-Value

R value chart1

Your garage insulation’s efficiency in blocking heat movement in the opposite direction of conductivity is referred to as the “R-value” in the construction industry. An R-value around 20 is typical for the average building, for example. It’s easy to get this up to 35 by adding fiberglass insulation.

A garage’s R-value isn’t exact, but it’s a pretty good estimate. The reason for the variation is that various manufacturers use different techniques to calculate the R-value.

You want to make sure you’re getting the best deal possible before you buy a garage door rated at 18, simply because another company might be selling a comparable door rated at 20. But when the two doors are so close together in terms of R-value, it’s possible that the insulation provided by each is on par. 

There are a number of different densities of polystyrene that are used to insulate garage doors. The thicker the material, the greater the amount of insulation it offers and the better the R-value.

How It Works

Polyurethane is layered between sheets of steel in the best garage doors on the market today.  Sealing doors and windows may be done simply with a polyurethane spray, which can be applied into gaps. Because it’s a liquid, it swiftly and completely fills the crevices in the area.

Insulation made from polyurethane typically creates a better seal. When you use a polyurethane spray, up to 83% of air leakage will be reversed, and up to 40% of energy usage will be reduced. This data comes from a 2005 research study by the National Institutes of Standards and Technology.

A door’s thickness may be increased to boost insulation, but even a solid three-inch thick door won’t beat a polyurethane-filled door.

Amarr insulated garage doors
Garage Doors with no insulation (Left), polystyrene insulation with vinyl backing (Center), and polyurethane insulation with steel backing (right).

If you’re seeking value and basic insulating capabilities, polystyrene is a common solution. It can easily be converted into a liquid form that can be sprayed evenly into nooks and crannies.

Polyurethane’s increased density makes it a better insulator than polystyrene, despite its higher cost. Polyurethane also increases the door’s resistance to vibrations and shaking, making it more durable. Overall, if you want a longer-term solution, polyurethane is a better bet.

Advantages

Why do people purchase insulated garage doors? Here are three of the biggest reasons.

Saving Energy

The interior of the home is where most energy-saving strategies are focused. This is logical to most homeowners. Improved heating and cooling systems, as well as more efficient insulation, windows, and doors, may all help you save money on utility bills.

Most advice on conserving energy focuses on the inside of your home, which is understandable. Many people believe garages to be separate from their homes.

Garages are commonly equipped with air conditioning, but many people tend to overlook their role in energy efficiency. The reality is that many have a door through the garage that links directly into the home.

The building codes for garages vary from those that apply to other types of houses and accessory units. There is more tolerance for errors; gaps and air leaks are allowed to become larger per these regulations. It’s little wonder that garages are among the least energy-efficient sections of a house.

Uninsulated garages, on the other hand, allow cold air to seep into adjacent rooms. As a result, they can allow chilly air to seep into your house via the entrance.

You may save money on your utility bills by purchasing an insulated your garage door. Your home’s overall energy consumption will be reduced if you keep the temperature in your garage at a more moderate level.

This will be true even if you don’t have an insulated garage door. Putting Theory to the Test

Insulated garage doors were formerly considered a superfluous luxury. It was thought that temperature regulation in a garage was simply unnecessary. But some developers decided to put this to the test in a recent study.

During a 20-degree day, they recorded the temperature in an uninsulated garage. The temperature in the garage was barely 30 degrees with a single-layer door that had no insulation. They found a 42-degree temperature inside a garage with an insulated door.

Although it may seem like a small change, those 12 degrees may make a huge difference. If it’s warmer than zero degrees outside, your automobile is less likely to be damaged. This also applies to substances often found in a garage such as sealants and paint.

Another notable difference is how much heat escapes from the rest of your home via small openings. Garages are often used as a buffer between the warm inside environment and the colder outside environment.

You won’t be bringing chilly air into your house straight from this in-between region, which is warmer than the outside. In addition, you’ll save electricity since your heater won’t be working as hard.

Durability

Residential and commercial insulated garage doors vary from single-layer garage doors in their construction in that they are far more durable. This extra sturdiness makes logical sense during construction since your door has to withstand the rigors of automobiles, kids, and other equipment.

Steel or aluminum frames are often used in the construction of modern insulated doors. Single or multiple steel panels are placed between the frame and the solid-core insulation. When compared to earlier, less-insulated doors, insulated frames are less prone to dent and is hence more energy-efficient.

This is in contrast to the thin steel sheets wrapped around the panel frames of previous garage doors. Even basketballs or children’s bicycles may damage these panels if they are not properly insulated.

For homeowners, these dings can add up to be quite a nuisance. Additionally, they might harm a property’s curb appeal or resale value. Construction companies found that multiple layers of insulation, steel, and aluminum make insulated garage doors more durable and solved these issues.Performance In Poor Weather

In addition to extending the life of your garage door, a higher level of durability also improves its performance. Garage doors are particularly vulnerable to the effects of inclement weather because of their size. Wind-borne projectiles are the most prevalent cause of weather-related damage, causing dents and scrapes.

Garage doors may also be damaged by simple elements like wind, rain, and sunlight. Metal parts of a door may be warped by cold temperatures.

In addition, high temperatures may cause door panels made of vinyl or acrylic to warp. Your garage door’s lubricant, springs, and driving mechanism may all be affected by extreme temperatures.

It makes sense for businesses too. A wide range of items and equipment enter garages for storage every day via loading docks in business settings. A door with many layers of insulation will stand up better to the abuse that it receives on a daily basis in this setting.

Insulated garage doors are less likely to retain heat than uninsulated garage doors. In addition, they help to keep the area inside the door where your opening mechanism is normally positioned at a comfortable temperature. As a result, these components have a longer functional life since they aren’t subjected to such harsh fluctuations in temperatures.

Noise Reduction

Insulated garage doors often operate at a substantially lower decibel level than those without insulation. Despite the fact that noise dampening isn’t often the most significant issue, an insulated door does provide some additional benefits.

Many garage doors make a squeaking sound. The track system is frequently the main culprit when it comes to malfunctioning vintage garage doors. A jerking noise might be heard if there are loose chains on the track.

Rollers that are worn out may also groan and squeak. Hinges and springs that have been neglected to be properly oiled are another major source of failure.

These are the first places to look if your door is generating a lot of noise. Lubricating hinges, tracks, and roller bearings on a regular basis is recommended for optimal operation.

Noise from the garage might be bothersome if you have a room above or adjacent to it. Obviously, it’s a particular issue in rooms that are right over the garage.

In other cases, however, basic maintenance is not enough to fix the issue of noise.

If your garage door is making a lot of noise, you may want to think about purchasing and installing an insulated garage door or finding other ways to reduce the noise. Most of the vibration is dampened by the insulation. It may also be used to reduce noise pollution from outside the house.

Because of their tighter construction than ordinary doors, insulated doors also tend to be quieter. Each panel is sandwiched together by a thick layer of material so that there is less free material to jostle and produce noise. Due to the added weight and reduced vibration from the rail, they are less prone to jolt or sway than uninsulated doors. 

Should You Buy Insulated Garage Doors??

At the end of the day, should you purchase an insulated garage door? If you are interested in saving energy in and around your home, you want to reduce noise, or you want to improve your durability over the long term, the answer is probably yes. Having a new insulated garage door installed will provide great savings and increase the value of your home.

It’s important to go with a trusted provider who can make sure that you get your new insulated garage door installed properly without any structural damage to your home.

If you’re looking to purchase an insulated garage door, look no further than OGD® garage doors. We have a long-standing history of providing the best-insulated garage door installation in the industry.

If you’re interested in learning more about one of our products, contact us today!

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