The warm summer months are finally here, and while this may be a great time for an outdoor picnic, it’s a whole other matter for an unkempt garage – a room that may unaffectionately become known as “the heat chamber”, if you’re not careful.
Whether you work in the garage, or maybe you have an attached garage that’s affecting the temp of your home, it’s a good idea to battle the heat, saving yourself both money and comfort!
5 Tips to keep your garage cool in the summer months
Some of our tips are are quick and easy, others may require a little DIY planning, or a professional in certain cases.
Shade your garage
This can potentially be a cheap and easy fix, depending on your strategy! The rationality is simple: provide a barrier between the sun and your garage. Either plant a tree or two, or install a retractable awning. Placement is crucial here, shade should typically come from the east or west, depending on whether your garage is at its hottest in the morning or late afternoon.
Seal your garage
This is a great help for both extreme winters and summers. Anywhere that the outdoor elements could potentially find their way into your garage should be sealed. This entails weatherstripping the bottom of the garage door as well as caulking around the door frame and any windows.
Apply cooler colors
This is an easily overlooked tip that can actually help a good deal. You see, darker colors are like magnets to the sun’s heat, they’ll soak it up and transfer that heat into your garage long throughout the day. Apply light colors to both your exterior paint as well as the roof shingles for an added measure of heat resistance.
Now we’re getting into the heart of this heat expulsion, the heavy-hitting tips that really do some damage (to the heat, that is). Depending on your climate and garage setup, there are different approaches to heat ventilation.
If your garage is attached to a home with a swamp cooler, open the garage door 1/3 and keep the door to the home open, allowing that cool air to move through the house and out the garage.
If your garage has a window, you may invest in a window-mounted cooler.
Portable air conditioners may supply a little extra cold air, though this is more like a bandage rather than a real solution.
Ceiling & Wall Vents
Depending on your setup, you may be able to install ceiling and/or wall vents that drive the rising heated air out of your garage space.
Fans & Airflow
In conjunction with vents to allow hot air to escape, it’s a good idea to get that heated air moving in the right direction. This can be accomplished through installed fans or even portable options. Installed fans are typically placed high on the wall opposite the garage door, moving air out through the main garage door. Portable fans should face an open man-door or window.
Proper insulation can be a big help, especially in situations where there is an attic or living space above the garage. Use blown-in insulation in the garage’s ceiling to prevent the rising heat from affecting the spaces above. For garages without an above living space, simply staple paper-backed insulation to the ceiling. This will work great in combination with a ceiling-mounted vent. Garage walls can also be insulated and it is recommended they be covered with wallboard for added protection & effectiveness.
Finally, the garage door itself can be insulated. You can do this yourself by gluing 2″ rigid insulation boards over the door panels, using Contact Cement Glue. Although, a more stable and recommended method is to have an insulated garage door professionally installed, this will make for a cleaner, more attractive, and more efficient solution.
KEEP IN MIND: Insulating your garage can have a negative affect if not used with the proper airflow. As you can probably imagine, hot air will become trapped in an insulated room if you don’t have a means to move air out through ventilation.