Garage door insulation kits, as the title indicates, are kits designed to help you insulate your garage door. Because the garage (either attached or detached) is one of the most significant heat loss areas of your home, your energy bills can skyrocket in the winter. During the summer, your central AC will run longer, trying to cool the extra space.
Enter insulation. Not only will these kits help maintain the temperature in your garage, but they can drastically cut the costs of your monthly energy bill. This article will give you everything you need to know to find the best garage door insulation kit.
Garage Door Insulation Kits Compared
|Model||R-Value||Insulation Type||Pieces Included||Price|
|Matador||4.8||Polystyrene Laminate||8 panels||Check Price|
|Owens Corning||8||Vinyl-covered fiberglass batt insulation||8 panels||Check Price|
|NASA TECH White||8||Reflective foam||1 roll||Check Price|
|SmartGARAGE||6||Foam and aluminum roll||4 rolls per kit||Check Price|
|Reflectix BP24050||6||Reflective roll||1 roll||Check Price|
|Reach Barrier 3009||5||Reflective bubble insulation||8 panels||Check Price|
|Cellofoam North America||4||Expanded Polystyrene||8 panels||Check Price|
Benefits of Well Insulated Garage Doors
There are several benefits to having a well-insulated garage door. Aside from the energy efficiency of your garage AC and heating system, an insulated garage can do all sorts of things. For example, you won’t have to worry about the weather outside. Whether it is too hot or too cold, your garage will hold heat (or repel it) easily, keeping the temperature inside comfortable.
If you use your garage for storage, you won’t need to worry about high heat or exposure. For those that work in the garage, you won’t have to use extra heaters or fans to maintain your comfort level. Your car collection will also maintain its comfort zone.
When you get in the car, it won’t be too hot or too cold. You can save time and money by not having to run the car while it heats up or until the AC cools the interior before you drive away.
Buying a Garage Door Insulation Kit
You don’t want to be hasty here. There are several factors you need to consider before you buy any garage door insulation kit. Let’s look over those factors now.
Your insulation kit and the garage door need to be compatible. Garage doors are generally made from aluminum or galvanized steel. While durable, they offer no insulation from the heat or cold.
Your kit needs to fit with the door type you have (other door factors below). The climate in your region is also a factor. You will need different insulation types and ratings based on where you live. You can check the region map for insulation on the Home Depot website for more information on your zone.
You also need to factor in the type of insulation material you want to use. Some are pliable, and others are more rigid. You may find that you have to trim or adjust the insulation panels. Some materials prove challenging to cut, while others are simple.
The R-value of insulation is a measurement of its resistance to heat. It is the base factor for determining the effectiveness of the insulation. In attics, for example, you need quite a high R-value. Walls need a high R-value as well, but not as high as the insulation in your attic.
Garage doors need a moderately low R-value. Depending on your region and climate, of course, an R-value of 4 to 9 will suffice well and remain affordable.
Size is going to be a major factor. Garage doors come in standard sizes, but there are a lot of different standards. From 6-foot doors to 14+ feet, your door size will determine which type of insulation you need, plus how much of it is required.
You can get more than enough or insulation panels that are too large and cut them. But if you purchase panels that are too small or not enough to cover your door, you can’t make them bigger.
Material & Weight
Garage doors are already heavy enough. If you have an automatic garage door opener, it will have a weight limit. The insulation material needs to be sturdy, thin, and lightweight enough for you to still be able to open the door.
For manual doors, this is less of a problem, but still something you need to consider. If your garage door is wooden, it will weight a lot more already. Any extra weight can make it difficult for you to pull the door open or push it closed.
Cost is always going to be a factor. While you will always want the best deal (see our kit review list below), you also want to be practical. Saving money on the upfront costs is nice, but not if it will cost you more in the long run.
Better insulation types and materials will cost you more from the start but will save you money in energy bills, efficiency, and other factors down the road. The trade-off is one that only you can decide on, but it is a decision you have to make.
Easy to Install (DIY)
Luckily, most garage door insulation kits are simple to install. You won’t require the help of a professional, and you won’t even need many tools if you need any at all.
However, it is essential to understand what is required for installation. You may need to make other purchases such as adhesives, screws, or specific tools. For our best-of list below, we have done our best to find the best insulation kits that included everything you need to install them right in the box. Sometimes, though, little extras may be required.
7 Best Garage Door Insulation Kits Reviewed
Best Garage Door Insulation Kit
|R Value||4.8 per panel|
|Sizes Available||2 sizes (large and X-large)|
|Insulation Type||Polystyrene Laminate|
|# of pieces included||8 panels|
The best garage door insulation kit overall is from Matador. The kit includes enough panels to cover a standard segmented garage door, and there are no expensive tools or adhesives needed for a proper install.
You will need to cut the panels to fit in the railings of your garage door. However, if you do not have horizontal and vertical railings, you will need to use an adhesive like liquid nails. You won’t need much, though, as the entire kit only weighs about 10 pounds.
Each panel has an R-value of 4.8, which is ideal for most mid-range zones. However, you can easily double the R-value by applying two layers over your doors and effectively eliminating all but the harshest hot and cold temperatures.
The kits come in two sizes (large and extra-large), with the only difference being the height of the panels. The large panels are 20.25 inches tall, while the XL panels are 23.25 inches. Each panel is scored for easier installation and can be cut to a more exact size if needed.
Each Matador garage door insulation kit is designed to fit one door (7 feet by 9 feet). If you have a two-door garage or your door is wider than 9-feet you will need to purchase a second kit. The kits are cost-effective enough to purchase multiples, though, and with the energy savings involved, you will still come out ahead.
- Requires little to no tools or adhesive.
- 3-step install
- Fits 8 and 9-foot doors
- Requires horizontal and vertical railings in your door panels.
- Polystyrene can cause health concerns for a small percentage of people
2. Owens Corning
Best Fiberglass Insulation Panels
|Sizes Available||One size|
|Insulation Type||Vinyl-covered fiberglass batt insulation|
|# of pieces included||8 panels|
Owens Corning, the famous Pink Panther mascot insulation company, comes to help you with your garage door. With fiberglass batt insulation wrapped in vinyl, your garage will stay comfortable year-round.
Instead of adhesives, you will use a puncture-pin system to mount the panels to your door. The pins secure in place to a clean and dry door panel. Once the insulation is cut to size, you push the panes over the pins and attach the pin cover. Two pins per panel are recommended.
Each kit comes with 8 panels and enough pins to cover a standard 7 x 9 foot door. If you need to cover more space or your garage door is larger than a standard size, you will need to buy more kits. Luckily, Owens Corning thought of this and sells these in 1, 2, 3, and 4 packs for your convenience.
It is not recommended to cover these panels with any other type of insulation. The batting can retain moisture if pinned between other insulation types (each creates an air pocket to raise R-values).
The R-8 value means that this insulation is ideal for almost every region and climate, but it is best suited for temperate climates and metal garage doors.
- Installation takes less than an hour
- Cut-to-size panels will fit 8 and 9-foot garage doors
- Vinyl covering is washable without needing to be removed
- Not ideal for wood doors
- Must use protective gear for hands and respiration as fiberglass can be hazardous
3. NASA TECH White
Best 2 Car Garage Door Insulation Kit
|Sizes Available||One size (16x 8 feet)|
|Insulation Type||Reflective foam|
|Weight||About 3 pounds|
|# of pieces included||1 roll|
NASA Tech brings you the best 2 car garage door insulation kit on the market. This roll of foam has two sides for a reflective finish or white vinyl finish and installs in minutes. If you want a simple solution without spending a ton of money or time, this is your answer.
The reflective side should face the direction you want to keep the heat. Inward towards your garage will make your garage warmer. If you have the white vinyl side facing out, the garage will stay cooler.
The only cuts you need to make on this roll are where your door hinges are. It is a simple process or cleaning the door with basic water and detergents, wiping dry, and applying the double-sided tape to the garage door.
As you unroll the insulation, you can peel the tape backing off and adhere the insulation in place. When you are finished, you simply find the panel hinges and cut the square out around them, so their movements are not impeded. Installation can be done in less than 30 minutes with two people performing the install.
The roll of insulation is measured for a 4-panel hinged door. If you are the more rare 5-panel door, you will need to purchase a second roll. However, if you contact NASA Tech, they can special order you any size that you need in a single roll.
The kit also comes with a squeegee so you can apply the needed pressure to firmly mount the insulation onto the tape, a roll to tape, and the insulation. For large garage doors, 2-car garages, or multi-door garages, this is the easiest, most cost-effective insulation method there is.
- Comes with everything you need except the utility knife.
- Application takes less than half an hour
- Made in the USA
- Reflective or vinyl facing to match your specific climate needs
- Can be difficult for single person application
- Adhesive tape may lose adhesive properties in high heat areas
Best Reflective Garage Door Insulation Kit
|Sizes Available||One size (4-panel door)|
|Insulation Type||Foam and aluminum roll|
|# of pieces included||4 rolls per kit|
If you want reflective insulation, SmartGARAGE by Insulation Marketplace has what you need. The fully reflective foam insulation rolls will fit any 4-panel door with ease. The included double-sided tape ensures adhesion in any climate, and you will notice the effects of the insulation within hours of install.
With this kit, you get four rolls instead of one. Each is designed to be trimmed to fit the rows of panels on your garage door. If you have a flat door or a 5-panel door, you will need an extra kit and a bit of extra work. However, for the majority of the 4-panel doors (with or without windows), an installation by two persons takes about an hour.
You will start at the bottom, cleaning the door, placing the tape and applying the rolls evenly, cutting out for springs and hinges as you go. If you have windows, you will need to cut out the space for them and apply tape all the way around to mount properly. The result is a fully insulated door with an air barrier to maintain an R-6 value for ideal insulation in most climate zones.
- 2-person installation in about an hour.
- Real aluminum sides for added reflection
- Durable adhesive tape can be applied in any temperature
- Extra cutting may be needed during application.
- Not suitable for flat doors or 5-panel tall doors
5. Reflectix BP24050
Best Budget Reflective Foil Garage Door Insulation
|Sizes Available||One size (24 inches x 50 feet)|
|Insulation Type||Reflective roll|
|Weight||About 6 pounds|
|# of pieces included||1 roll|
Insulation on a budget doesn’t have to compromise quality. The Reflectix BP24050 is the best budget reflective foil garage door insulation on the market. This bubble pack roll of insulation will cover up to 50 feet of garage door.
You will find that most 8 and 9-foot doors need about 60 feet of roll, though. If you have a large door, you will need a second roll. However, two rolls will still be a significant savings compared to the energy bill you would have without it.
On average, consumers are reporting between 30 and 42% savings from a single application. This means that buying two rolls of the Reflectix will save you hundreds annually on your heating and cooling bills.
Installation of the rolls is similar to other similar types, You will need to supply the double-sided tape, or you can use other adhesive materials. Many owners use glue caulking or even staples to attach to their garage doors (staples for wooden doors, obviously).
If you have a panel garage door, you may find it easier to but the roll to match the rows of the door segments. If you have a flat door, though, you can unroll the entire bat and apply it in a single sheet.
The roll will add some weight to the door, for manual lift doors, you may need to adjust your springs to keep the door operation smooth and easy.
- Easy to cut, place, and install, even for one person.
- Roll is pliable and flexible but won’t dent.
- Instant noticeable effects
- Most standard applications need multiple rolls
- Doesn’t come with adhesive
6. Reach Barrier 3009
Best Cheap Garage Door Insulation Panels
|Sizes Available||One size (precut pieces)|
|Insulation Type||Reflective bubble insulation|
|Weight||About 3 pounds|
|# of pieces included||8 panels|
If you are looking for the easiest to use, best cheap garage door insulation panels, look no further. Reach Barrier offers you a box of precut panels ready to install right out of the box. Each box comes with 8 panels and 48 self-stick adhesive squares.
The idea is that after you clean your garage door, you affix the sticky squares, peel the backing off and press the panels in place. One person can complete the install in about an hour. The only downside is that it doesn’t always work that way.
A lot of owners find that the panels are too tall but not wide enough. The simple fix is to cut the top off so the height is correct and use the cut off piece to add to the width. It’s a little extra work but does the job without sacrificing efficiency.
Another issue is that the included adhesive squares aren’t the most durable. It is advised that you purchase a tube of Liquid Nails or double-sided all-weather tape to use instead of the included sticky squares.
Once the installation is complete, though, the finish is aesthetically pleasing and works instantly. You can save money on your energy bills and, in most regions (deep south and extreme north being the exceptions), will find immediate relief in their garages.
- No cutting required, kit is ready to apply out of the box
- Ideal for 8-foot doors with panels
- Blocks up to 95% of radiant heat
- Included adhesive may not stick well
- Difficult to use on wood and flat doors
7. Cellofoam North America
Best DIY Garage Door Insulation Kit
|Sizes Available||One size (20 x 54 inches per panel)|
|Insulation Type||Expanded Polystyrene|
|Weight||About 3 pounds|
|# of pieces included||8 panels|
Cellofoam North America brings you the best garage door insulation kit. This simple to use panel foam insulation is made from expanded polystyrene, which offers you an R-4 rating to help cut down on heat transfer from your garage door.
A single person can complete installation in about an hour. You will need cutting tools, like a utility knife. If your garage door doesn’t have horizontal and vertical rails for the panel slides, you will also need some additional adhesive. The panels are designed to fit in the rails without adhesive.
If you want to install these panels on a wooden door without rails or a flat door, you will need to use adhesive. Double-sided tape is the best bet if you get the all-weather style for extreme temperatures. However, any adhesive will work as the panels aren’t heavy.
Once the installation is complete, you will have added about 3 or 4 pounds to your door, which means that most applications with automatic garage door openers won’t need to be adjusted. However, you will need to test it and make sure the extra pounds don’t put a strain on the motor or chain drive.
Even with the lowest R-value on this list, you can still expect about a 15 to 20-degree difference inside the garage in the summer. This kit will fit most 7 x 9-foot garage doors. If your door is bigger or you have a two-door garage, you will need multiple kits for a complete finish.
- Pre-scored panels for simple installation
- Covers up to 7×9 foot garage doors
- Ideal for metal panel doors with horizontal and vertical rails
- Extra cuts and adjustments can be difficult to make
- Won’t work for flat doors without a lot of extra work.
Types of Garage Door Insulation
There are several types of garage door insulation available. However, there are a few that are more common than the others. Because of availability, cost-effectiveness, and ease of installation, we will look at the most common versions here.
Reflective insulation is any type of insulation wrapped or sided with a reflective material. Some kits will have their insulation reflective on one side, while other kits have reflection on both sides.
The reflective side is designed to retain heat to that side, regardless of where it is mounted. If you go with this type of insulation, you will want to face the reflective side where you want the heat to go. For example, in warm climates, you want the heat to stay out of the garage, so the reflective side will face the garage door towards the outside.
Colder climates will want the heat to stay in the garage, so the reflective side should face into the garage. If you live in a temperate climate that doesn’t fluctuate too high or too low often, you can opt for the double-sided reflective insulation to maintain a more even temperature year-round.
Foam board can be fiberglass, or more commonly, pressed foam or Styrofoam. They are less costly than most other types of insulation but come with a lower R-value. The foam boards are easy to size, and you can cut them to fit around the hinges, handles, or springs on your door.
You will need to use some adhesive to attach them to the garage door, though, and most kits won’t include adhesive. Keep this in mind when purchasing this type, and make sure you get enough adhesive to complete the job.
Batt Insulation/DIY Foam Kit
Batt insulation is that fiberglass or rock wool roll of insulation. When you see the insulation commercials or get a general insulation image in your mind, you are probably thinking of batt insulation. These large rolls are ideal for attics and in walls.
They are also used in doors and garages. However, they require a lot more work. You have to cover the insulation so it isn’t exposed. Putting it on your garage door is doable, but you will still require plate covers for the panels.
This type of insulation kit is generally more expensive and more involved. Though when installed correctly, the added weight is minimized, and the finished product looks more professional.
Matching Insulation to Your Garage Door
One thing you should always consider is the climate you are as well as the type of garage door you have. Matching the insulation material to the door (and your climate) will go a long way towards ensuring you have the most efficient and cost-saving match possible.
Steel/Aluminum Garage Door
Steel and aluminum doors are some of the lightest garage door types around. They are usually connected to automatic garage door openers and are segmented, so they roll straight up instead of being flat or one-piece.
The panels in these doors are less pronounced, which means that insulation panels aren’t your only option. Batt insulation, solid sheet insulation panels, and segmented panels can all be used. However, you will want to watch the total weight.
Your springs will need to be professionally adjusted. You should also check your opener mechanism for its weight limit before applying the insulation.
Wood/Composite Garage Door
Wood doors are among the heaviest options out there and, more often than not, are manually opened rather than using a garage door opener. Flat doors (more below) are usually composite or wood, which is also heavy.
The springs can generally handle the added weight of the insulation without needed to be adjusted, as long as there isn’t any interference with their operation. Panel insulation, foam board, and reflective insulation are the best options here.
Garage Door with Windows
Garage doors that have windows will need to be cautious with the type of insulation they use. Panel and reflective insulation are the ideal options if you don’t want to cover the windows. In most cases, the windows should have extra weather striping to help prevent drafts and heat/cold transfer along with the insulation.
The windows will be the tough part as they offer little protection from heat and cold. However, you can tint your windows or temporarily cover them with insulation panels in the winter or summer, depending on your climate.
Flat Garage Door
Flat garage doors don’t use garage door openers and instead rely on pulleys and springs to open or close. Because they aren’t segmented, the best insulation option is batt insulation or full door panels.
The cost is less expensive for a bulk application and can be done much faster. However, you will need to pay attention to the weight and the amount of adhesive needed to finish the install. If you add a lot of weight, your pulleys and springs may need to be professionally adjusted to accommodate the additional pounds.
Insulation For Winter
Winter insulation for those in extremely cold climates does best with reflective insulation faced inward. The idea is to keep as much heat inside as possible. Reflective panels will force any heat back into the garage space while allowing more heat from the outside through without permitting the cold to penetrate as much.
Insulation For Hot Climates
Hot climates will need insulation that allows the heat to escape without adding more to the space. Reflective panels with the reflective side facing outward are ideal here. You can also use standard foam board insulation, batt insulation, or even a combination of batt and panel insulation.
You will want to be careful if you choose full coverage panels instead of segmented as they have a higher R-value and can keep the heat in, as well as out, in a more uniform type of insulating.
How to Install a Garage Door Insulation Kit
Your garage door insulation isn’t a complicated installation. Most garage doors can be completed in just a couple of hours, with one person performing the install. Before you do any cutting or measuring, though, you need to clean the area where you will attach the panels.
You will need a few tools for the job, including a straight edge, measuring tape, utility knife, and adhesive.
Once you have the panel recesses measured, you will need to find your insulation panel that matches or cut one to size. Verify the panel will fit in place and then use the adhesive to mount it securely.
Each panel will be done the same way. If your panels are all equal in size, you only need to measure once. However, some garage doors use different sized panel recesses for aesthetics and each one will need to be measured for a proper fit.
After all of the panels are attached, you are done. You can cover the insulation if you wish, add extra layers, or make them more attractive. If you want to visualize the process you can watch this video on installing reflective board insulation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a good R-value for a garage door?
The higher the R-value, generally the better the insulation. However, this will vary by region, climate, and how much insulation you need/use. For a garage door in a moderate climate, the average R-value falls between 4 and 9 (per panel) or a total of 19 to 30 R-value overall.
How much can I expect to spend on insulating my garage door?
You should expect to spend at least $100 for the insulation and a few hours of time to perform the install. This, of course, will depend on the type and amount of insulation you purchase, the kit inclusions, and if you do the work yourself or hire it out.
What is included in a garage door insulation kit?
The kit contents will vary by vendor and insulation type. Some will only contain the panels you need to attach to the door. Other types will also include attachment pins, templates, and instructions. In most cases, you will be responsible for any tools, adhesives, or mounting options.
Does the insulation add a lot of weight to the garage door? Should I worry about this?
Insulation varies in weight, but all will add some weight to your garage doors. Depending on the size of your garage door, you can expect anywhere between an extra 10 to 100 pounds (sometimes more). This is a concern for automatic garage openers as well as the springs that help the door open and close. In most cases, when you add extra weight to the door, you need to have the springs professionally calibrated to maintain proper operation.
How does garage door insulation work?
Garage door insulation works much the same as any other type of insulation. Heat is either absorbed or reflected away, depending on the type and method of installation. Heat and cold can escape through your garage door, and the insulation helps keep the heat (or cold) on one side of the door or the other. The result is a cooler or hotter garage without having to use a heater or portable air conditioner.
Choosing the right garage door insulation kit can be a confusing process. With so many different options, sizes, and materials to choose from, it is easy to become overwhelmed. If you are in doubt and want a simple solution to your garage insulation problem, we offer you our top pick.
The Matador Garage Door Insulation Kit is designed for 7-foot doors up to 9-feet wide and has enough panels to cover your entire door. The installation is simple, and you will save a lot of money on your energy bills over the coming years.