How To: Build a Passive Solar Garage Door and Keep Your Garage Warm During Winter

Build a Passive Solar Garage Door and Keep Your Garage Warm During Winter

I hate being cold. That's why I live in Los Angeles. But, there are plenty of folks who are experiencing some pretty chilly temperatures this year, despite global warming, and one of the worst places affected is the garage. C'mon, who has a freakin' heater in their garage?

Still, you'd probably like to have a heated garage during the winter months, right?

Well, math teacher 99graham over on YouTube posted a great guide detailing how he turned his old dilapidated sixty-year-old garage door into a fancy passive, solar-efficient one that keeps the garage nice and toasty.

It went from this:

To this:

Although it may look complicated, it's really just reusing the garage's original hardware and replacing the old wooden panels with plexiglass. Just know that you're going to need a lot of wood.

He measured the the length of the vertical and horizontal bars, making sure that his new wooden pieces matched the original measurements exactly. He created a smooth crevice in each of the smaller frames. This is where you will place the plexiglass panels.

Then, he went ahead and started putting the pieces together, section by section. Here is one finished section being glued into place. He uses the clamps to keep the pressure on until the glue is set.

Now, repeat the process for the other sections. In this case, he needed three more. Once all of the sections are done and glued, you can sand down the exterior facing sides and prime and paint.

Here are the panels sanded and painted.

Then he cut the plexiglass panels to size and inserted them as well (the blue film is a protective cover which you can take off at anytime)

Now it's time to start mounting the section into the garage. He starts placing and installing each section from the bottom up.

Remember, he is using all of the same hardware (screws, springs, bolts, hinges) that came with the original door so he doesn't mess anything up. Once everything is in place and screwed in, it should look great.

Even on the coldest days, all the light from the sun will pour into the garage through the newly installed plexiglass frames. It's a great way to naturally heat your garage.

Check out his detailed video tutorial on how to do this for yourself.

Now, you can get rid of all of those energy-wasting space heaters!

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1 Comment

Nice door but... for rust, about the worst thing you can do in Winter is park a car in a warm garage.

Corrosion occurs only in temps over 0 degrees C. which is the freezing/melting point. That's why Ford moved their corrosion lab to AZ because in Northern states the cars would not rust below freezing temps.

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