Polystyrene vs. Polyurethane: Which Garage Door Insulation is Right for You?
So, you’re thinking about insulating your garage door. This is a relatively simple project that can reap great benefits, but with the wide variety of approaches you can take to insulate your garage, how do you choose the one that is right for you?
First, you need to know the materials. The two most common materials used for garage door insulation are polystyrene and polyurethane. Let’s examine the advantages of each:
Polystyrene – Popular because of it’s value and simplicity of installation, polystyrene is the less expensive option of the two. In addition to being waterproof, polystyrene is manufactured into large sheets or panels that can be easily modified to fit any garage door. Available in varying thicknesses with insulation values ranging from R2 to R10, polystyrene is a great value if thickness and R values are not a limiting factor in your decision.
Polyurethane – The denser choice of the two, polyurethane is the best insulator, but comes with a heftier price tag. Polyurethane boasts R values ranging from R10 to R17.5. In addition to efficiently insulating your garage, polyurethane also adds support and rigidity to your garage, making it more resistant to damage. It will also decrease the noise emitted from your door and soften the associated shaking and vibrations that come with opening and closing the door.
Now that you know the difference between the two materials, it’s time to decide which one is right for you. To figure this out, you must answer the following 3 questions:
- What is my goal? – Is your goal to lower your energy bill? Is your goal to get more use out your garage in the winter months? Depending on what you are trying to achieve with your insulation project, one material may better serve you than the other. If you are wanting to turn your garage into an extra living space or workshop, you may want to consider polyurethane. But if you just want to cut down some of your energy costs, the cheaper polystyrene may be of better value.
- How will the insulation effect my garage? – Yes, insulation will keep your garage warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer, but insulation will also decrease the space of your garage. If you want to maximize the space as a workshop, then you may opt for a thinner insulation.
- What is my budget? – As with any home improvement project, budget is always an important factor. Although insulating your garage is a relatively simple project, it is nevertheless an investment. Thus, it is important to factor in what kind of value your project has beyond the money you are putting into it. Will it increase or decrease the value of your home? What effect will it have on your energy costs?
After taking into consideration these questions, you should have a clearer picture of the approach you should take with your garage insulation project. If you’re still unsure of which approach is right for you or if you have any other questions, contact the experts at RCS Garage Doors.