insulating a pole barn what do i do?

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Forum topic by doyoulikegumwood posted 01-24-2009 11:58 PM 27149 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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384 posts in 4226 days

01-24-2009 11:58 PM

ok couldnt figure out where to post this so this sounds good my new shop is housed in a 36’ by 36’ pole barn the prolem im having is how do i insulate the dang walls thiers no stud cavaties so bate is out i thought foam sheets but it so darn exspessive and at best gives me an r- 3 or so any other ideas on what i can do thanks in advance


-- I buy tools so i can make more money,so ican buy more tools so I can work more, to make more money, so I can buy more tool, so I can work more

9 replies so far

View john's profile


2376 posts in 4615 days

#1 posted 01-25-2009 12:08 AM

How about this stuff?
I,m not sure what the R value is though .

-- John in Belgrave (Website) ,

View lew's profile


12495 posts in 3989 days

#2 posted 01-25-2009 12:47 AM

Here is a site that uses a soy based spray on insulation

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View dennis mitchell's profile

dennis mitchell

3994 posts in 4548 days

#3 posted 01-25-2009 12:57 AM

Yep and it will be hard to hang tools and cabinets on the outside walls. It might have been better to just have built a regular wood frame building to start with. My guess is you thought you would save some money. Pole barns are ok for garages and animals, but not the best for woodshops.

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 4108 days

#4 posted 01-25-2009 01:24 AM

When I built mine, I had it insulated with the industrial blanket insulation. It gets sandwiched between the purlins and the metal sheeting – they just drape the blankets over the structure before they attach the metal. The R-value is only like 7 or 8, but it’s better than nothing! And it leaves the purlins accessable for hanging tools and cabinets.

After the building is done, I think all you can do is frame the walls to the inside of the poles and hang batts. You should be able to frame at 24” since the walls won’t be bearing a load.

-- -- --

View bhack's profile


349 posts in 3954 days

#5 posted 01-25-2009 01:39 AM

Peter O has a good idea. I partitioned my 30’ x 30’ pole barn for my woodworking in to a 12’ x 22’ room. I did as Peter O mentioned and used batts. Pretty good climate control. The rest of the barn is for farm equipment.

-- Bill - If I knew GRANDKIDS were so much fun I would have had them first.

View SteveKorz's profile


2139 posts in 3947 days

#6 posted 01-25-2009 02:17 AM

I built a 16×32 room in my pole barn with standard 2×4 framing and 2×12 ceiling joists. That allowed me to properly wrap it in 6mil bisqueen plastic and insulate it with the standard wall and ceiling insulation. The room is for my wife’s business, I tease her that if she ever quits it, it’ll be my shop. It stays exceptionally warm, and it was worth it to put in the studs and rafters. I put the 2×12’s on 12” centers so that I could use the upstairs for a storage loft.

Also, if you don’t stud the walls, it’s going to be hard to hang shop cabinets and stuff like that. I don’t know what your truss height is on your pole barn, but remember that in the winter all the heat is going to go up. It’s going to be pretty hard to heat that barn without a standard height ceiling to contain it.

It’ll cost you some cash to stud it in, but I don’t think you’ll regret it.

You’re other options would be the blown on foam… and I can’t remember the name of the stuff, but it has the texture of chopped up fiber paperboard. It’s also blown onto the walls and ceilings with some sort of adhesive.

Good luck.


-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View doyoulikegumwood's profile


384 posts in 4226 days

#7 posted 01-25-2009 03:47 AM

thanks for all the advice guys im leaning in favor of the sprayed in foam just so all know the building wasnt my first choice but it was thier when i bought the house and i would love to build another building but really cant afford it at this time. i wish i could have stayed in my old shop but in these hard times i had to down size in home and lost my old shop any ways thanks agine

-- I buy tools so i can make more money,so ican buy more tools so I can work more, to make more money, so I can buy more tool, so I can work more

View motthunter's profile


2141 posts in 4032 days

#8 posted 01-25-2009 03:59 AM

spray foam.. it should make it toasty and well sealed.

-- making sawdust....

View John in SD's profile

John in SD

140 posts in 4046 days

#9 posted 01-26-2009 07:16 PM

Many, many years ago ,before I retired,I used to build pole buildings (Post frame construction). Most insulation companys will sell you a blanket insulation of fiberglass batting of whatever R-value and whatever width you want (spacing of vertical columns may be 7 1/2,8, or 10 feet)...Just roll it out, hang itbetween the columns ….use vapor barrier as normal…...then put 2×4 or 2×6 purlins every 24 inches (horizontally) ....then hang your drywall , plywood ,osb or whatever you want for interior wall covering.

As opposed to many peoples thoughts Pole barns actually do make great shops and quite economically too.

-- Life used to be soooo much simpler!!!!

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