Originating from the idea of the “telephone pole barn” used as a house by the homeless during the Great Depression, pole barns have since exploded in popularity among businesses in need of erecting a quick and inexpensive property requiring a minimum of wood and steel. These buildings consist of poles staked into the ground without the use of any interior supporting columns. A pole building could be:
- an engine facility
- an equipment storage facility
- a greenhouse
- a residential building
- a shop
- a garage
- many more objects.
The concrete savings alone will save you up to nearly a quarter of the cost. The average pole barn size is 30 x 40 with a cost of 500-1,500 USD per square foot and a price of about 4 to 7 thousand dollars to insulate them. An advantage of pole barns is that insulation can be placed higher, and their simpler construction provides for fewer cracks in the frame, ensuring lower heat and cold permeability. On the flipside, however, they do require favorable, solid ground to be built on, their interior is not suitable for buildings that require separate departments with different insulation conditions, and they are also not recommended to be built more than 600 centimeters tall. Furthermore, their minimal use of materials as well as their unorthodox nature make buyers less eager to buy them and banks less willing to issue loans to construct them.
Main Insulation Objectives in Pole Barns
One of the main challenges when it comes to pole barn insulation is humidity and weather elements accumulating on the roof causing condensation on the inside, thus threatening the value and long-term integrity of the building. This consideration requires a form of drip stop to make sure no moisture gets to the insulation (which drops in performance when wet). Common methods for this are using aluminum foil or plastic. Others use bubble wrap, though this is not an ideal material to use for that purpose. The other challenge is the extreme temperatures pole barns tend to be subject to without insulation.
<h4>Best Insulation Materials for Pole Barns </h4>
Insulating a pole barn is smartest after making all the corresponding decisions as early as the original building planning stage as this will provide for significant savings. Among the cheapest and most commonly used options for wall insulation of pole barns is fiberglass. Fiberglass batt is a poor insulator with an insulation value of R-5, compared to polyurethane with a value of R-16. Fiberglass also features little resistance to moisture. Polyurethane is more expensive up front but provides much more savings in the long run, lasts for decades, and, used in a sprayer can, it is well known as the gold standard. As for other types of insulation, cellulose is also somewhat cheaper than spray foam insulation but doesn’t offer the same coverage or insulation value.
Polyurethane sprayers are one of your few options when it comes to insulating your ceiling, the most important part, best combined with a foam board. This is difficult to perform, and it is recommended you have an outside company do the service for you as it is very difficult for anyone to do it properly on the ceiling but a professional. After you’ve determined the dimensions of your future pole barn, use a calculator to determine what insulation will cost in your construction project.