Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!
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Author:  ngpmike [ January 27, 2018, 12:59 am ]
Post subject:  Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

As some of you may recall, we suffered a pretty nasty flood here last spring. We (Carol, myself, and the fur-kids), and our home came through not too much the worse for wear. My garage... not so good, but definitely could have been worse. With the weather beginning to get nicer, I'm about to start the cleanup and rebuild. The building is a 23 x 35 metal pole barn on a concrete slab, so definitely worth the effort to refurbish it! I'm also taking the opportunity to upgrade where I can!

What I'm looking for at this point is suggestions is on how to make the place more habitable in any season besides Spring and Fall. I'm going to have to insulate to make Summer and Winter use feasible. I was considering the spray-foam (Icynene) approach but I've been advised that this is NOT a good idea with a metal structure due to concerns about condensation and radiant heat mitigation. Fortunately, a couple of years back, I replaced the old galvanized roof with a white painted metal one, and that has made a noticeable difference in the summertime.

So, any of you guys out there that live with a "pole barn" in winter and summer, what have you done to make it more "Hospitable"?

Author:  BBlue [ January 27, 2018, 10:03 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Does the guy that gave you that tip know what he is talking about? What is unique about spray foam insulation that disqualifies it from use in metal buildings? He should be able to give a rational explanation, not some mumbo
jumbo about condensation and heat migration.

Condensation occurs when warm, wet air is cooled. So how can heat migration cause condensation?


Author:  ngpmike [ January 27, 2018, 12:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Not sure, Bill. I was on a couple of "DIY" sights and they gave a listing all the different types of insulation with their pluses and minuses and they both noted that spray-foam was not recommended for steel buildings. I was thinking of the S/F primarily because of the ease of application since it's not especially cheap. I had a good supply of glass batting and foam board that was given to me, but that went Bye-Bye in the flood. :roll:

Author:  BBlue [ January 27, 2018, 4:40 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Just did a quick search, using the "spray foam insulation on steel buildings". Seems to be a perfectly acceptable practice. But like everything you can mention, is not perfect. Well, maybe except for me. Anyway, condensation was not mentioned, (but cost was) except by a manufacturer of an insulation system that had zero drawbacks!!!


Author:  ngpmike [ January 27, 2018, 6:00 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Thanks for the input, Bill. We have a contractor that goes to our church. Maybe I'll buy him lunch tomorrow and pick his brain. I should have thought of that in the first place!

Author:  geek49203 [ January 27, 2018, 9:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Big-Ass Fan.

Before I get flamed here, that's the name of the brand. Also have some really cool lights named.....

I've wanted AC and heat in the garage, but at least a really big overhead fan would be great.

Paint it white and have lots of light.

Author:  ngpmike [ January 27, 2018, 10:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

I doubt that I'll ever get to where I can afford A/C in the garage, but fans I have aplenty. I just need to remember to turn them off when I'm welding! :roll:

On the To-Do list after the insulation is wiring and plumbing. Plumbing for the new stationary air compressor that I have coming, and wiring both for the compressor (it's 220VAC) and the welders. Right now the garage is only 110VAC on a 35 amp circuit. That's enough for some lights and a few light duty power tools, but little more. A friend gave me a new 100 amp service panel so that will run the compressor and welder plus whatever new equipment I drag home! :lol:

Author:  geek49203 [ January 28, 2018, 7:45 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

I'd love to have a toilet and shower (or at least a laundry sink) out in my garage. Wife would appreciate that too.

The 220 is smart, especially if you believe the hype about electric cars being the norm any day now.

Author:  ngpmike [ January 28, 2018, 9:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Tim, that's coming some time in the future. There is a 11.5' x 17' addition on the back of the garage already framed in, and there's room on the slab to stretch that 17' out by another 11' if needed. It's divided into two rooms, a bath and a kitchenette. The plumbing is already roughed in. I'm sure you've seen the pic going around on Facebook of the automatic trans case used as a bathroom sink. I'm going to do that! The original plan was to make the garage into a Granny flat for Carol (Granny) & myself, and give our mobile to our son & his family, but the kids went out and bought themselves a house, leaving me with an oversize 3-car garage with attractive options available. The actual garage is roughly 36' X 32' without the addition.

Author:  ngpmike [ March 28, 2018, 5:45 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

OK, that new air compressor is mine! Have to drag it home Saturday. It's 6.5 HP, 11.5 CFM, with a 60 gal tank. Still need to run in the 220VAC wiring, as well as some plumbing for the air, but that won't take long! :D

Author:  BHRmotorsport [ March 29, 2018, 12:10 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Hi Mike,

I have a 20' x 30' corrugated metal garage on a concrete slab. I can tell you;

1) uninsulated it produces condensation in the spring and winter months, enough that it will drip on stuff that you don't want dripped on.

2) I bought batt insulation for my building because it was about 1/4 of the price of spray foam but I HATED the installation process of the batting. It would have been so much easier to spray foam. Installing batts in a corrugated building is a real PITA.

3) If you spray foam (flammable) you're going to need an intumescent paint (fire resistant) covering of the spray foam. Your insurance company and local building codes will require it. The intumescent paint will end up being around 40% of the cost of the spray foam. Note that a batt insulation requires some type of fire resistant covering also but that can in a variety of forms...the stuff I bought has a fire resistant composite metal backing that it rated for a garage environment.

4) metal buildings usually require electrical to be run in conduit which really adds to cost of wiring the building.

5) even though my building has a 100 amp panel in it, it was really easy to use up the available capacity and breaker slots due to the size of the welder and heater breakers. You may find the same thing. If you haven't seen them, be aware that some manufacturers produce pony breakers, literally two breakers in one, so that you can get two separate circuits out of a single breaker slot.

6) the current draw of LED lights is so low that you can easily fill your garage with lights and not exceed a single 15 amp circuit. It really helps leave electrical capacity available for other things.

7) Put lots of plugs over and around your workbench. I've got 10 duplex plugs over and around my workbench and it is wonderful to be able to leave things plugged in and not have to be changing plugs all of the time.

Hope this helps. Bill

Author:  Warren Nethercote [ March 29, 2018, 6:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

An insulated shop is great. I don't live in a really extreme climate, but my experience with a fiberglass-insulated 22x30x12ft studwall shop is a positive one. I use about 700liters of oil per heating season (my workshop heat is always on from November through April) and the shop stays comfortably cool through the summer.

A benefit of spray foam over batts is that the foam also acts as a vapour barrier. There is no air gap between the insulation and the exterior sheathing (steel in this case) so there is no opportunity for condensation between the insulation and the steel, which might occur with poorly-applied batts, or poorly-applied vapour barrier with batts. Those air leakages are also a breeding ground for mould or decay of wood structure.

An intumenscent coating can add cost to foam, but may also be a cost-avoidance measure if, for example, it allows you to avoid having to frame and sheath interior structure that will not be working surfaces. There may be foams that are not flammable and do not need the intumescent coating.

Admission: I have never used foam insulation, but everything I see or read would make me consider it in future projects.

Author:  ngpmike [ March 29, 2018, 9:55 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Thanks for the comments guys. As much as I'd like to go with the spray foam. It's just too pricey for my financial situation. Any upgrades to the building has to come out of the car budget, so the $$$ will go to truly needed items like electrical and plumbing. For now, my insulation will be restricted to glass batts & foam boards. I've worked with them before, and yes, they're a PITA, but they were free! I have a friend in the building trade that occasionally gives me the left-overs from big jobs.

As to the lighting, I agree 100% about the LED conversion. Our house is almost totally LED now, and it has made a noticeable difference on the power bill. I have three 4' flourescent fixtures, and two 8 footers, all of which will be converted to LED for use in the shop.

The 100 amp service box I'm installing (another freebie) will be in addition to the 35 amp box already in place. The main service drop for the property is very close-by so the 3AWG cable and the conduit for the job shouldn't be prohibitive. The old 35 amp service will handle the lighting and the 15 amp outlets. The 100 amp service will run the compressor, the welders, and the 20 amp outlets.

Once again, thanks for the comments! :)

Author:  ngpmike [ March 31, 2018, 5:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Got the new compressor today. It didn't look quite as big on my friends trailer as it did at the building supply, but it's the biggest one I've ever had in my garage and... it IS MINE! I think Ive got enough 10 AWG wire on hand to wire it up and test run it, maybe even enough to wire it in permanently! It's nice to see actual progress for a change. :D

Author:  ngpmike [ April 5, 2018, 3:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Beginning Post-Flood Rehab On My Garage!

Going through the garage today and surveying my current electrical system. The bad news is "It Needs Help", but i figured on that going in. The good news is, my 30 amp service panel already in place is actually a 100 amp jobbie! I'll have to replace the incoming wiring to make use of it, but knowing the electrical prowess of the previous owner, I was already planning on that!

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