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Thread: Insulating a shop

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Lafayette, Indiana

    Insulating a shop

    I have another thread about having my new prebuilt shop being delivered this coming week but I wanted to come here and ask about insulating it. My shop will have 2x4 framing with 3/4" pine siding. My shop area is only going to be about 10x12. I will still need to run electric after it gets here as well. I need to know what is going to be the most economical option. I'm guessing roll insulation. Then that also means that I'll need to then cover the walls with some kind of wall board..... OSB? If I do it this way do I also add a layer of plastic before I put on the wall board to act as a (vapor barrier)?

    Does this sound like a plan or am I missing something? I have wondered about foamboard sheets instead of the roll insulation.
    It's not what you achieve in life...It's what you overcome!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Kansas City, Missouri
    I'd go with the roll insulation and a plastic barrier over it before hanging OSB. The roll insulation will fill in any pockets better than rigid foam will. You can do the paper back insulation, but we typically cut the paper and put plastic over it anyway, which should seal out any air leaks, which you will have, especially with osb since the joints aren't sealed.

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word boo. Robert Brault

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Indianapolis area
    I agree with Darren, unless I could find somebody to spray foam in it without charging an arm and a leg for the trip to do a small job. Don't forget the ceiling/roof.


    "Individual commitment to a group effort--that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work."
    Vince Lombardi

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Thomasville, GA
    Just another thought about wall covering: I decided to put 1/4" white pegboard on the top half of my walls with 1/4" lauan ply on the bottom. The white pegboard makes the shop brighter and, of course, gives me lots of space to hang stuff!
    Bill Arnold
    Citizen of Texas residing in Georgia.
    NRA Life Member
    Member of Mensa
    Live every day like it's your last, but don't forget to stop and smell the roses.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Lafayette, Indiana
    Yes Bill, I had thought of doing peg board on at least part of it. I remember seeing your thread (I think that was yours)the other day. Thank you!

    Ron I have been asking around about spraying foam but do not see that as an option for me on this project but thanks for the tip.
    It's not what you achieve in life...It's what you overcome!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Tom I used Roxul not the safe and sound but the R22 however mystuds were 2x6 there is roxul for 2x4.

    The beauty of this stuff as i understand it is that its the batts and comes cut to size of the stud cavity. Second and most important unlike the pink fibre glass if you compress this stuff it still retains its R value. SO when you have a corner or left overs and stuff it in its still insulating.

    The other big thing i found is that it cuts with a breadknife very easily so you can install easy.

    I would definitely put poly on as the vapor barrier and tuck tape all round where there are seams and joins. Poly is pretty easy with staple gun or staple hammer.

    Get the electrics in first. There is another good point to the roxul with the breadknife you just cut it a bit and the wires that travel at say waist height from one receptacle to another can have the roxul slid right over with no problem.

    Cannot quote price i did not even look at another option. And i did the ceiling too. With it pressing into the stud cavity nicely it was not problem having it stay in the ceiling while i got the poly up.

    Best of luck i am sure spray foam would be horrendously expensive for a shop.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Toronto, Ontario, CANADA
    Like Rob, I used Roxul batts between 2x6 framing, installed the insullation after I had installed the wiring, then covered it all with plastic before I attached the interior wall surface. Roxul is much much better to work with than fiberglass.

    I covered my walls both with plywood and with pegboard.

    If you download the document about my woodworking shed building project, you will find lots and lots of details and photos. Instructions for downloading the document can be found in the thread:
    Last edited by Frank Pellow; 09-19-2011 at 09:45 PM.
    Cheers, Frank

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Deming, NM
    I built a new shop this summer in preparation for a cross country move. The steel building came with 6" of fiberglass in the ceiling, but only 4" on the walls. I added interior walls to divide the shop into three rooms, and added 2" thick styrofoam between the 2x4 studs in the walls. I hate handling fiberglass, and the foam 4x8 sheets were only $15 each. It seems like a bargain, and it went up super fast. The building stays quite cool most of the day, even in the desert heat. In Indiana you might want to go with 4" or more in the walls.

    My plan was to find some cheap paneling to put up. Ha. Try to find cheap paneling! It now starts at $20 a sheet and at about 1/8" thick is very flimsly. I went with 7/16 OSB. Always hated the stuff, but at $6 a sheet, it makes for solid walls that you don't have to be afraid to hang things on. Note, the building was starting to look like a dungeon until it was painted white. Now it is very bright, and the finished job actually looks pretty good. Can't wait to move in…
    Last edited by Tom Clark; 10-12-2011 at 03:20 PM.

  9. #9
    My shop was built with 2x6 construction. I insulated the walls to R-19 with rolls of fiberglass and covered that with 4 mil plastic.

    Then I hired a company to blow R-40 fiberglass into the ceiling.

    I have Lennox hanging gas furnace. The supply for the gas is teed off the feed for our home. With the shop well insulated, it added virtually nothing to our heating bills.

    In the summer, our temperatures can be over 110F. It's not unusual for the shop to be an 18-20F cooler due to the insulation.

    Insulation is cheap and the payback comes quickly.

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