Your garage is a large, empty space, and it likely has bare concrete walls or stretches of non-insulated drywall. Additionally, if you have the typical garage door, then that door likely has gaps between the slats that allow outside air and temperatures to flow into the space. That same air leaks into your home and drives up your heating or cooling bills. So what can you do to become more energy efficient?
Below, you’ll find a series of tips and tricks to help your garage door reach peak energy efficiency. Use all or some of these tips to save money on power in the future.
1. Invest in an Insulated Garage Door
If a garage door has insulating characteristics, it will have an R-value listed next to it. The higher the door’s R-value, the higher its energy efficiency. A door with an R-8 rating reduces heat flow in and out of your garage by 90%. However, if you want to do better than that number, you can also invest in a door with an R-32 rating, which reduces heat transfer by 97%.
Of course, an insulated garage door with an R-32 rating will cost more than one with lower ratings, but the energy savings will make up for the initial cost.
2. Add Your Own Insulation
You can add foam insulation to the back of your current garage door to increase its energy efficiency. You can also add flexible foam insulation around the moving parts or mount wood blocks to fill the gaps between slats when the door closes. However, use this strategy carefully so you don’t accidentally break your garage door. Ask a professional if you have any questions.
3. Choose a Door With a More Insulating Material
Some materials prevent heat transfer better than others. For example, wood insulates better than most metals or plastics. However, you can also purchase insulated steel or aluminum garage doors that control heat better than wood by itself. If you can find insulated wood garage doors in your area, you’ll get maximum control over heat transfer with that option.
4. Seal the Gaps Around the Door and Between the Slats
Because garage doors have moving parts, they often have gaps between those parts. The gaps allow outside air to get inside. So if you want to make your door more energy efficient, then you need to seal those gaps with weather stripping or some other flexible material, like builder’s caulk.
Keep in mind that builder’s caulk will only work around the garage door frame, not around the slats. You will need weather stripping or something similar for the moving parts. Remember to add some stripping between the door and the concrete floor.
5. Insulate the Walls Around the Door
You should not spend a lot of money insulating a door when you don’t insulate the walls and ceiling around it. Insulate the rest of your garage as well, and you won’t have to worry about wasting money on heating and cooling.
6. Seal the Gaps Around the Door Between the House and the Garage
Just as you need to seal the walls and the ceiling, you need to seal the gaps around the door between your house and garage as well. This sealant simply adds another protective and insulating layer between your home and the outside temperatures.
7. Fix Cracks That Go Under the Garage Door
Cracks under the garage door allow air to pass through them, just like the gaps between slats and other moving parts. To control heat transfer, you need to fix those cracks. Call a concrete contractor to perform the repairs.
You have plenty of options if you want to make your garage more energy efficient. To get started, use the tips above. And if you need further tips on taking care of your garage door, browse our other blog posts.