Insulated Garage Door vs. Uninsulated Garage Door

If you’re in the market for a new garage door and trying to choose between insulated and uninsulated, it’s important to understand what each type offers before you make your decision.

In the following post, Precision Garage Door of Delaware’s garage door specialists reviewed the differences between both doors to help you select the one that’ll best suit your needs. 

Insulated vs Uninsulated Doors: Material and Construction

Before we dive into comparing these two door types, let’s recap the fundamental build differences between insulated and uninsulated garage doors.

Uninsulated doors consist of a single material layer. Whether you choose vinyl, wood, or glass, these doors have one sheet of that material, creating a barrier between indoors and outdoors.

Insulated garage doors are referred to as double-layer or triple-layer garage doors because they’re built out of multiple material tiers that alternate between the door material you choose and either polystyrene sheet insulation or thicker polyurethane insulation. 

Door Durability: Insulation Strengthens Your Garage Door

At Precision Garage Door of Delaware, we recommend homeowners go with an insulated door for the strength factor alone. Why? In an insulated garage door, there’s more layers of material backing the door, so it’s significantly stronger than a single-ply version.

This added thickness and durability allows insulated garage doors to better withstand everyday wear and tear and hold up to minor impacts better than an uninsulated door can.

This also means that insulated doors are more likely to last well into the double digits and reach a garage door’s full life expectancy. In comparison, uninsulated doors tend to need to be replaced more often. 

Insulated vs Uninsulated Doors: Price

Because insulated doors are more durable and of higher quality, you can expect to pay more (on average a couple hundred dollars more) than you would for a single-layer door.

But, if you factor in things like how long the door will last and how insulated doors can save you money in other areas, in most cases, investing in an insulated garage door will even this cost difference out (and then some) in the long run. 

Insulated Doors Save You Money on Energy Bills

When you think about your garage door, think of it as a moving wall. The only problem is that this moving wall is made of door panels and edges that allow air to flow in and out, so all the warm or cold air that you’re paying for is going right out your garage door opening.

An insulated garage door is better at trapping heat or cold air inside so it doesn’t escape and cause you to rack up your energy bill to keep your home at a desired temperature.

The climate in your garage may be a few degrees different from the temperature inside your home, but creating a buffer between the outdoors and the inside of the house means that your heater or AC doesn’t need to work as hard; this is what amounts to higher energy savings in the long run.

Insulated vs Uninsulated Doors: Extreme Climates and Garage Utility

If you live in a climate that experiences intense heat or cold, choosing an insulated door will be a better option. Think about summer’s sweltering heat, or winter’s most frigid chill. With a single-layer garage door, your garage becomes wasted space, taken over by the extreme temperature.  

Homeowners who have an insulated garage door can still use their garages, even when the temperature outside is outside their comfort zones.

If you like to use your garage as a space for more than just parking your car, this is a key factor to consider. Garages that double as at-home gyms, workshops, or band practice spaces are best off with insulation. 

Garage Door Noise Level

Most insulated garage doors tend to rattle less and operate quieter overall. The insulation in the door works to act as a soundwave absorber, so the opening and closing of the door is less noticeable from the inside of your home.

If your garage shares a wall with an area of your home that you wish to keep quiet, or has a bedroom located above it, this may be more important to you. The opener drive style you choose for your garage will also contribute to the door’s noise level. 

Choosing an Insulation Level for Your Garage

By now, we hope you’ve seen the numerous benefits of choosing an insulated garage door over one without insulation.

When selecting the right insulation level for your garage, these tips will help you get started in the right direction:

About R-value: A garage door’s R-value is the measure of its insulation thickness. The higher the R-value, the more effective the insulation in the door. For example, a standard wall in a house has an insulation R-value of roughly 11.

Match R-values: You want to make sure that your garage door either meets or exceeds the R-value of the walls around it for it to be the most effective.

  • If your garage is attached to your home and you use it frequently, you’ll want to consider a higher R-value than you would if your garage is a separate unit.
  • You’ll also want to opt for a higher R-value if you live in a cold climate. You’ll want to trap as much warm air in as possible, and a garage door that’s well-insulated will do this.

Insulation will prime your garage door to last longer, help you save money on your home energy bills, provide quieter operation, and support a more comfortable garage climate. 

If you have specific questions about choosing the right garage door for your home, you can contact Precision Garage Door of Delaware here.

For professional guidance on other areas of your new garage door plan, including cost, warranty, and installation, download our Total Garage Door Buying Guide!