Should You Insulate and Drywall Your Detached Garage?

While a garage isn’t the most ideal place to keep your pricey items, it offers a temporary and sometimes permanent store for commonly used items.

Whether you plan to stash it with gardening equipment or outdoor supplies, there’s a need to shield the space from the winter cold and summer heat.

Accordingly, Should You Insulate and Drywall Your Detached Garage?

About insulation – YES. It feels better to work in a garage that’s NOT baking in the summer sun. A freezing garage isn’t a fun place either.

Regarding drywall, whether you should use it is going to depend on a few things but, generally, YES – you should go for no other material but it. Drywall itself isn’t a great insulator, but it’s exactly what you need for your walling needs. Although it comes with a few flaws, it carries numerous benefits over plywood, OSB, cement board, and other commonly used materials.

What’s Drywall, To Begin With?

Sometimes referred to as plasterboard/wallboard, drywall is made of gypsum sandwiched between two paperboards.

Gypsum has 2 key qualities – unlike similar materials like plaster and wood, gypsum is not combustible.

We’ll explain later why a noncombustible material is perfect for construction.

Secondly, gypsum is lightweight and low cost.

WHY Should You Insulate And Drywall On A Detached Garage?

First off, let’s take a glance at the advantageous qualities that make gypsum perfect for the job:

1. Impressive Fire Protection

As mentioned in the beginning, gypsum is not combustible, meaning it can slow down or stop a fire.

Depending on what you keep in your garage, a fire could be a second away from razing down the structure.

Flammable petroleum products, for example, are known fire hazards.

Lawn care paints, paints, and solvents are just as dangerous.

Therefore, if you plan to stash your garage with materials that may qualify as fire hazards, it only makes sense that you use a fire-resistant material – drywall.

2. Drywall Means Less Noise

First off, drywall is not considered to be a real sounding-proofing material. But it does slow down sound waves, reducing noise in the process.

If there’s any place in your home that deserves more sound-soundproofing, then it’s your garage.

Sound-proofing should be one of the key considerations when improving a garage, more so a detached garage.

Besides regular noise produced by usual garage work, the space could end up being your kids’ Rock n’ Roll experiment lab.

To prevent conflicts with your HOA, consider using drywall as a sound dampener (plus a suitable sound-proofing material).

3. Better Visibility / Lighting

White drywall is one of the most reflective building materials out there.

You will be satisfied with the reflectivity of the default white color but you have an option to paint it even brighter.

Better yet, you can reduce the reflectivity by adding your favorite shade of white.

Since most garage jobs require maximum visibility, there’s absolutely no reason you shouldn’t settle for drywall first before you think of any other material.

4. Higher Resale Value

A home is an investment. You always hope to resale it later for a higher return or pass it to your children as an inheritance.

There are several ways of improving the resale value of your home besides the usual appreciation determined by market forces.

Gypsum gives drywall a clean, eye-catching look that can transform your interior in an instant. A buyer would prefer to purchase a clean and fresh-looking home and garage.

Six Reasons To Go With Drywall

Besides the natural advantages of drywall, there are a few compelling reasons:

Reason 1: Drywall Makes the Garage More Livable

There’s more to a garage than keeping tools and providing a roof over your car.

In the future, you might want to put it to mixed-use or repurpose it for something entirely different.

Let’s imagine a scenario where you carve out a studio or gaming room – the new space should be less rugged to create a cozy and appealing working environment.

To achieve this, the best starting point would be walls made of drywall.

Reason 2: Drywall Helps You Conceal Plumbing/wiring More Easily

Detached garages are very much like stand-alone structures complete with their electrical wiring, gas supply line, drain, and other channels.

Since drywall is easier to punch holes and work with, you will have an easy time setting up and concealing the plumbing and wiring.

Reason 3: Drywall Boosts the Insulation Properties of the Wall

Because your garage is detached, you need to add a layer of insulation in the remaining cavity to stop the summer heat and winter cold.

It’s important to note that drywall isn’t a great insulator on its own.

But it accompanies regular insulation materials as a booster because it’s an impressive air barrier.

Also note that you will use a slightly different kind of drywall for insulation, not the type with holes used on windows, ductwork, or electrical boxes.

Reason 4: Drywall is easier to patch up

Drywall has one major flaw – it’s weak and dents easily. For that reason, it’s easier to punch holes or crack.

We’ll talk more about this later, but, when it comes to patching, this flaw makes repair as easy as ABC.

Small damaged parts can be easily filled whereas larger parts are cut out in a rectangle and replaced with a new board of drywall.

Reason 5: Drywall is cheaper than plywood

For homeowners improving their homes on a budget, drywall can be a more attractive option than most other materials, including plywood.

A 4’ X 8’ board of drywall costs anything in the region of $15.

A panel typically has a price tag anywhere between $12 and $20. This translates into $0.40 – $0.65 a foot. A 4’ X 8’ of plywood, on another hand, costs about $60.

Besides the cost of acquisition, it’s cheaper to replace drywall (in terms of labor, expertise, and material) than plywood.

Three Garage Drywall Drawbacks

Finally, let’s look at some of the drawbacks of drywall that might make you consider other materials:

1. Drywall Is Considerably Heavier Than Plywood

If you are looking for lightweight material for the job, you might need to look elsewhere.

Drywall weighs about 30 percent more than plywood of the same size.

Heavy material can be more challenging to lift and install in correct places, especially the roof. Depending on the size of the project, you might need a crane and extra labor for the job.

2. Drywall Is Known to Soak in Water

Moisture encroachment is one of the worst fears for any homeowner and drywall happens to be damn good at absorbing water.

What makes this flaw more concerning is the fact that most homeowners take ages to inspect the garage.

If the drywall comes into contact with water (even significant moist air) without your knowledge, it may grow mold rapidly enough to render the room unusable before you get to understand the situation.

3. Disappointing Impact Resistance

Drywall performs abysmally when it comes to impact resistance.

A slight hit from a wayward ladder is enough to create a dent. Although it’s equally easy to repair, it gives you more to think about.

If your garage is always buzzing with activities, accidents may be commonplace, meaning frequent repairs until you can’t repair it anymore.


To summarize everything, you certainly should insulate and drywall your garage.

Insulating is a must-do if your tools and supplies are sensitive to the summer heat or winter cold.

Drywall itself isn’t a great insulator, but probably the best material out there for the wall.