Steel buildings are durable, easy to construct, and frequently used as a choice for those who want a long-lasting structure for commercial or residential usage. Sometimes people worry about the insulation of a metal building because insulation does play a major role in deciding whether you could use a metal building for your commercial, agricultural, or residential purposes.
Metal conducts heat and cold very easily. This means that temperature differences outside and inside of a metal building will be transferred without much of a hindrance by the metal sheeting that makes up the sides and the corrugated metal roof panels of the building. Any significant difference between the outside air temperature and the air temperature inside a metal building will naturally cause water condensation to form on the metal sheets.
To avoid the problem with water condensation and to improve the temperature of the inside of a prefab metal building, insulation can be used. Insulation provides a “radiant barrier” to help reduce the transfer of heat from the inside to the outside and vice-versa. Water condensation is reduced when the interior surface of the building does not have a significant difference in temperature from the exterior surface of the metal.
What is the meaning of R-Values?
R-values are used to grade insulation in terms of its effectiveness. A higher R-value indicates that the specific type of insulation is more resistant to temperature transfer than a lower R-value. The R-value of any insulation material is an effective measurement of how the insulation will perform in both hot and cold conditions.
Types of Insulation
There are many types of insulation that can be used for metal buildings depending on the project requirements and your budget. For example, in addition to temperature control, insulation can also have fire-protection characteristics.
Here is a discussion of the choices of insulation materials with the advantages and benefits of each type:
This type of insulation comes in rolls or in large sheets of a certain size. It is best used for new construction to fill gaps that are of pre-determined size. When used properly, with the correct addition of batting and taping in place, this type of insulation is very effective for new steel building construction.
Loose Fill Insulation
This type of insulation is better for filling places that have an irregular space that is hard to access. Most times, it is blown into small holes placed in the finished walls to fill up the interior space with insulation. Although this technique can be used for new construction, it is more commonly used to insulate existing structures. There are many eco-friendly choices for loose-fill insulation, which makes it a popular choice for saving money on utility expenses and saving the environment at the same time.
Spray Foam Insulation
This type of insulation is extremely effective especially around pipes, ventilation ducts, and other things that cut through the insulated barrier. The spray can easily be applied to these irregular areas and it expands to cover the gaps that might exist. This insulation technique is expensive and best reserved for use in these specialized areas where something may pass through the insulated barrier
Rigid Board Insulation
This solution is very cost-effective for covering larger areas and improvement in the R-value factor by putting up this rigid board as a barricade to prevent warmer or cooler temperature transfer. One very common use of this form of insulation is to put up a solid sheet of rigid board insulation as the first barricade for temperature resistance on the interior of a metal building.
In fact, using this method and then installing additional insulation on the interior side is a very effective way to block any outside temperature difference from affecting the interior space.
Bubble Wrap Insulation
There are many types of insulation materials, even for those on a very limited budget. While you may not get much R-value factor improvements by using cheaper materials, you can at least get some benefits. However, be careful about not using any flammable materials in these spaces.
For example, if you want to use sheetrock to make the interior of a metal building look smooth and have a nice foundation for an interior-painted surface, you might as well use something for insulation in the space between the metal and the interior walls. This can be bubble wrap, Styrofoam beads, or any variety of things that will help with the insulation.
Benefits of an Insulated Metal Building
The benefits of insulating a metal building are the energy-savings from interior climate control, temperature balance to prevent destructive condensation, and the increased longevity of the building structure derived from such protective measures.