How to Insulate a Tuff Shed?
I had a Tuff Shed installed a couple months ago, & am slowly turning it into the “She Shed” of my dreams. While the exterior is coming along nicely (I’ve painted it & added some antique mirrors & a cute sign over the French doors): the inside still needs a lot of work! If you’re turning your Tuff Shed into an actual, usable guest room or potting shed, one of the first things you’ll need to do is to insulate it ~ particularly if you live in a place with temperature extremes. I spent an entire weekend insulating the shed (BY MYSELF!!), & in this article, I’ll explain in simple, easy terms “How to Insulate a Tuff Shed.”
I found both antique mirrors as well as the “Fresh Cut Flowers” sign on Amazon, & LOVE them….
How to Insulate a Shed: Step-by-Step
- Step One: The first thing you need to do when beginning your insulation process is to measure the distance between studs (the wood pieces) on your walls, vs. on your ceilings. Usually, these are two different numbers, thus: you’ll need two different sizes of insulation. The distance between the pieces of wood on my walls was 15″ (a few pieces were spaced 14″ apart); while my ceiling beams were all spaced 24″ apart. Now I know that I needed to order two different sizes of insulation.
- Step Two: Order your insulation. If you’ve got a big truck or pick-up, you may want to grab it yourself. I had mine delivered from Home Depot for a nominal $8.99 delivery fee, & it was totally WORTH IT!! The insulation material is itchy, & if you don’t want its tiny particles circulating in your car: get it delivered. How much will you need? All I know is, both Home Depot & Lowe’s calculators were WRONG: I needed WAY more insulation than they calculated, due to how much I used in the ceiling. You can find my exact calculations below.
For my 12″ x 12″ shed, I ended up using 5 rolls of white R-13 Fiberglass Roll Insulation (15-inch Width x 32-inch Length), for a total of about 200 sqft. Then for the ceilings, I used an entirely different insulation: it was Owen Cornings Pink, R-19 Faced Fiberglass Insulation (23″ x 93″) ~ & I ended up needing TWO of these; 180″ length total.
The ceiling took a LOT of insulation to get it fully packed.
- Step Three: Start installing the walls! All I used was a serrated kitchen knife to cut off pieces of insulation (it feels like cotton candy & is very easy to cut through), a pair of work gloves (the foam gets very itchy), safety goggles, a step stool, ladder, plastic sheets (for the ceiling), a heavy-duty stapler, & lots of staples. Start with the walls first, which are pretty easy; I cut off a long piece first, stuffed it in ~ then measured the remaining length of wall, cutting off a piece of insulation that was slightly LONGER than the measurement. It’s better to have more ~ not less.
- Step Four: Install the Ceilings. This part is a little more challenging, so take your time here. Grab a step stool or ladder, & use the wood ceiling beams to staple on a piece of plastic to each beam ~ leaving room on the top & bottom sides of plastic (you want to be able to reach in & adjust the insulation). Once the plastic is up, measure its length, then cut off a piece of insulation that is slightly longer than your measurement. Slide the piece of insulation right onto the plastic, & if you need to make adjustments at either end, do so.
See my photos below for how I insulated all the way up to my roof’s pitch.
- Step Five: Add insulation to any spots that look bare or thin. After you’ve completed the ceiling, take a step back & scan all the walls & ceilings: are there any bare or thin spots? Add more insulation here.
And that’s pretty much it!
Photos of My Shed Insulation Process
Don’t skimp on ceiling insulation!!! My friends who are in the building industry say that installing plenty of insulation in the roof is extremely important in terms of keeping your shed cool in the summer, & warm in the winter….
How to Insulate a She Shed
If you’re contemplating insulating your shed by yourself, I highly encourage you to go for it! On a scale of 1-10 (10 being the hardest), I’d rate installing insulation about a 2 in terms of difficulty. For other articles on “She Sheds,” read about great flooring ideas, or how to create a foundation for your shed…
Read Next: 26 Amazing “She Shed” Design Ideas
Does your shed have a roof vent that spans the top peak from end to end? If so, did that get covered by the insulation?
Thank you for your input, because I have a roof vent (no wall vents).
Hi Marian, thanks for your question. No, my shed doesn’t have a vent that spans the top peak ~ I just have one wall vent on the back wall of the shed (opposite my French doors). As far as insulation covering the vent…I honestly didn’t even notice? We probably covered it because we covered everything. Hope that helps!
I have a tuffshed barn, 10 x 16. The guys at tuffshed said I need a vapor barrier before I put up insulation. Is this correct?
Hi Mellony, thanks for your question & congrats on your Tuff Shed! So I did NOT use a vapor barrier with my insulation. My climate in Bend is very dry (typically about 15% humidity), & I was told not to use a vapor barrier ~ that it was unnecessary. Certain types of insulation also have a vapor barrier component already built in, so you may want to check on that. There’s a video on YouTube by a guy named Matt Risinger, & he goes into the science of “do you need a vapor barrier or not?” It may be worth checking out. At the very least, I’d get a second opinion from guys at your local home improvement store, & see what they say about using vapor barriers in your climate zone. Hope that helps!