Insulating block wall garage


Part of my garage was going to be below grade so to make things easy, we did the whole 1st floor block. Now I'm really regretting it due to high heating and cooling costs. My original plans were to stucco the outside of the block. It looks like 10 times the work and a lot more money to put 1/2" or 3/4" foam panels, then wire lath, then stucco. Besides the obvious I'd have to tear out and redo 3 windows, one door, and do something up top were the stucco would now meet the vinyl soffit to allow room for the foam panels. I know the foam panels aren't the best insulation, but it would triple or quadruple the current r-value of 8" block (about 1.11 r-value).
My other choices of course include framing and insulation the inside of the block walls. Or maybe the foam panels outside with something else besides stucco covering it? I suppose it doesn't have to look as nice as I had hoped since only the front with 2 garage doors will really show. With the garage doors covering most of the square footage of the front wall, I could still just stucco that part right over the block. What about not framing out the inside, gluing 1" foam on the inside and cover it with drywall. But screwing drywall to block doesn't sound like fun? What if the drywall was glued onto the foam panels which is also glued to the block, and just had a few screws to hold until the glue set up. I'm picturing blue screws with fender washers, not a pretty sight, but it is just a garage/workshop.
Open to all... well, MOST suggestions.
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wrote:

I imagine you could glue it all up. Do the foam first, when that has cured, do the drywall. If you used contact cement on the drywall, you might not even need the tapcons and fender washers. Even with regular construction adhesive you could take them out after it cured and mud the holes when you were taping the joints. Just be sure you get the appropriate box extension rings for your electrical boxes and you might need to pigtail on longer wires. That is easier to do before you start doing the foam.
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Really your most cost effective option.

Given your problem I would contact an Icynene installer and price out 2 x 4 framing with 3 1/2" foam filling behind drywall (INSIDE). The way higher insulating value of such an installation will definitely have a reasonable payback period compared with the limited options you could do other wise. Your personal tax expert could also advise you of energy tax credits available to sweeten the project cost. Once the framing is in place you can add electrical outlets, water lines, air lines, whatever, prior to the foam operation. From an appearance standpoint this is also a win-win situation as no external changes will be obvious to your tax assessor. Forget about the attitude that it is 'only' a garage/workshop'. For the hours you will spend there, there is no common sense reason not to have heat and AC. My little 26' x 26' shop is heated/cooled and there is no way I would do otherwise. Projects get done more quickly, tools don't rust from excess humidity and list goes on. The shop is a major utility at our house, like laundry. And a money saver to boot.

Joe
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Inside " Icynene" was my first thought. DAGS images for walls.
Forget all the outside stucco stuff -
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Oren wrote:

I'm waiting for estimates

The only reason I considered outside stuff was from some posts here regaurding different insuating technics for heavy mass wall. Forgetting that idea and putting stucco directly on the block will be much easier and less expensive then having to deal with wire lath.
Ah, I got some info now. For Icynene brand foam on 2x4 walls, with 1/2" gap between the 2x4 wall and the block wall.
A) $1.35 square foot B) $1.20 square foot
"A" was a guestimate from the secretary, she wasn't quite sure.
I talked shop with "B" and he also stated that they don't subtract square feet for windows and doors except for the front where there is more garage door square footage then wall square footage. The time they spend taping windows and doors evens out with the extra labor. Sounds like a good family owned and run business.
Does anyone here know what they charge in your area? Maybe other brands?
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Joe wrote:

By saying that it is "only" a garage/workshop was referring to the looks of tapcons and fender washers. My last garage/workshop had heat and A/C also and I don't consider it a luxury.
I called the 2 closest Icynene dealers (43 and 44 miles away) and I am waiting for rough over the phone estimates, then next would be an on site estimate, or maybe a price quote?
I understand the reasoning why the Icynene is so much better because it fills in cracks and stops air infiltration, but in my last stick built garage I believe I insulated it better than 99.9% of contractors, paying very much attention and detail for the fiberglass to expand properly and sealing off air infiltration and air convection currents on both sides of the insulation. That was 24x32 sq', up in PA, and heat cost me $100 to $175 per winter. That was with a oil/hot air furnace from a mobile home. It was left at 50-55F unoccupied and about 65 or more when working in there. What I'm trying to say is that if I do fiberglass myself, it will be far better than in the fiberglass/Icynene comparisons.
I'm still looking for an affordable heater that is approved for garage use. In the old one I suppose I was lucky the place never burnt or the insurance company could have blamed the non code heater. I have a mobile home LP heater sitting in there, trying to find out if the insurance company will approve its use. (like my other posts, there is no building code to follow, I only have to go by what my insurance company says.
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The "fix" (or fixes) at this point depend heavily on environmental conditions where the garage is located. AZ or OR...(I'm too lazy to look up your IP address)
Who did the design & who signed off on the plans? Did the designer know the garage was to be heated & cooled? How much of the garage is actually below grade?
The key to how successful the fix you choose is............. how well it handles the local moisture conditions. Just throwing up some insulation & drywall may cause more problems. :(
btw are the blocks filled or hollow? If currently hollow, filling with perlite "might" be an alternative but I doubt it will improve the situation a great deal. :(
Just a SWAG but I think (if unfilled) you'll go from an R of about 1.5 to maybe 5 by adding perlite.
If the blocks are filled (grouted) you've got an R of about .6 and no way to add cavity insulation.
good luck
cheers Bob
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DD_BobK wrote:

East Tennessee.

I did. We have no building code.

He was a numb nuts and didn't think ahead.

Less then 1/4... about 1/6th.

Before the soil was graded, after some very heavy rains, 3 blocks showed moisture. Since the grading was finished, and still no gutter it hasn't got wet and we had some very heavy rains. It will have gutters soon anyway.

Every 4' is rebar and filled with concrete. On the side that is about 1/2 under grade is 12" block. I had some extra concrete and rebar so that wall is filled every 2'.

I was looking for this figure on a web page and couldn't find it. Even if all of it was filled with perlite, it's hard to believe it making that much difference, but that's just my guess.
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Tony wrote:

That's the norm where I live.

Uhhh...one attaches 3/4 x 1 1/2 PT to the block wall. Air nailer works nice.
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dadiOH wrote:

That makes sense, can you tell I'm not a builder? ;-)
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Contact a local foam insulation contractor to get a quote on injecting expanding foam into the block cells. This is a normal installation on commercial work. It involves drilling small holes above and below any trough blocks in every block cell line. The foam looks strange as it oozes out of the holes, but once cured and cut off flush with the block face it is undetectable, ready for paint.
Very cost effective.
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