5 Important Questions About Minimum Garage Ceiling Height for Wall-Mounted Openers Finally Answered

This full-view garage door is in the California, 18' x 8', Black aluminum frame, Clear glass.

This modern glass garage door is ideal for relaxing while watching the kids play in the pool. When the weather warms up, you can open the garage door to create a more open space for receiving guests or enjoying the sounds of nature. As you can see, the garage door tracks are hidden by these wood planks, and the garage door opener is barely visible. Here is the California full-view garage door, 18' x 8', Black aluminum frame, Clear glass.

Are you planning a garage renovation? You're building new construction and want to include a garage? You must have a lot of decisions to make regarding your garage project!

When looking for a new garage door and opener, you may come across terms you've never heard before or have no idea what they mean. Don't worry! This is completely normal! Garage door professionals are available to assist you!

Garage dimensions and garage door clearances are one of the most confusing subjects. What exactly is headroom? What effect does it have on the type of lift or garage door opener that will be installed? You’ve come to the right place for answers!

Below are 5 frequently asked questions about garage height, headroom, wall-mounted garage door openers, garage door installation, and other subjects that may be confusing. As you look for garage doors, we want to facilitate your research so you can make a more informed decision.

Our goal is to help you better understand what garage door headroom is and what garage door opener options are available if you have low vs. high garage door headroom.

Q1: What is garage door headroom? Why is it important to consider it when buying an overhead door?

A helpful illustration to see where are all of the locations to look at when measuring a garage door.

This image contains all the measurements you'll need when buying a new garage door. As a result, you can be confident that your garage door will fit in the frame and have enough space to open properly.

Garage headroom clearance is the space between the top of the door opening and the ceiling. It is critical to determine the door movement and garage door size so that there is no obstruction for your garage door to open.

Q2: What is considered a low headroom garage door? Can I put in a low clearance overhead door?

A low headroom situation occurs when there is insufficient space for a standard lift, the most common lift used for residential garage projects.

This means that the space above the garage door for extension springs is less than 8 ½ inches and less than 10 inches for torsion spring over the garage door header.

Low headroom is more typical in…

  • Older homes without high ceilings in the garage
  • New constructions (make sure the architect or designer left enough space above the garage door)
  • Ceilings with obstructions (ventilation system, fire system, etc.)
  • Concrete-based construction (underground parking)

Here's a technical drawing of a low headroom garage door.

Here's a technical illustration of what low front headroom looks like. As can be seen, there is little or no space between the ceiling and the garage door tracks.

The difference between front and rear low headroom

There are 2 types of low headroom: front and rear. The only difference is the location of the spring and drums, which means that front low headroom indicates front mount springs.

Notice the difference between low headroom front vs rear garage door

This illustration gives a better visual of the difference between front and rear low headroom. As seen in the image above, the drums where the cable is wrapped are not in the same location. There is also low headroom hardware installed, consisting of two tracks one on top of the other.

Yes, you can still install a low headroom garage door, but you must use a specific type of hardware in that case.

You'll need low headroom hardware, also known as a double- or dual-track system, designed for overhead garage doors with low headroom. There are 2 tracks, as seen in the image above, one on top of the other.

The upper track is used by the top section of the door, while the other 3 sections use the lower track. The operation of a torsion or extension spring system is the same. The 2 tracks are used to make the top door section turn faster and require less space.

Q3: How do you install a garage door with low clearance?

Low headroom garage doors are installed the same way as other overhead doors, although the garage door opener and springs are installed in a different location. The only difference is in the hardware components: horizontal tracks, bottom brackets, and top roller brackets.

These garage doors are in the Village Collection, A Design, Plank base, 9' x 7', Cherry, windows with Cascade Inserts.

Does your home's basement have concrete walls like this one? Because this material is costly, most people try to save money by lowering the space's height, which can directly impact headroom. Pay attention to this detail! Here is the Village Collection A Design, Plank base, 9' x 7', Cherry, windows with Cascade Inserts. The embossed patterns on the Village Collection garage doors create a charming wood finish!

Q4: What is a wall-mounted opener, and when is it a must-have?

A wall-mounted opener, also known as a jackshaft, is a garage door opener that is installed n the wall to the side of a garage door. It is primarily designed for high lift clearance and cathedral or sloped ceilings.

Why so? Because the garage door opener is connected to the door’s torsion bar to operate the door instead of using a rail track.

Furthermore, wall-mounted garage door openers are versatile because they can be used with any types of lift: standard lift, high lift, low front headroom, and inclined track.

They are mostly used for commercial purposes, but there is growing interest in them for residential applications. However, the front low-headroom configuration is not optimal.

A picture of the LiftMaster 5500W wall-mounted door opener with all the accessories it's coming with

Do you want to know which wall-mounted garage door opener is the most popular and has the best reviews? It’s the LiftMaster 8500W model is simple to maintain and saves overhead garage space. LiftMaster garage door openers, has a built-in myQ technology allowing you to control and monitor your garage door from anywhere and at any time!

Maximize your overhead garage storage space

Jackshafts are great for freeing up overhead garage space because you don't have a garage door opener and a central rail mounted to the ceiling.

You can then use various products to hang your items from the ceiling. Here are some brilliant ideas from Family Handyman:

  • Cargo nets for light-weight items
  • Garage ceiling storage lifts for boxes or outdoor furniture
  • Coated garage hooks to hang bikes or tools
  • Ceiling-mounted racks for heavy-duty latching totes

Wall-mounted garage door openers are perfect if you want to convert your garage into a beautiful living space

Have you seen an existing garage being converted into a room before? If not, it can be an interesting option to consider if you want a new gathering place for your friends and family.

Transform your garage into whatever you want and expand your creativity or relax

A beautiful garage conversion into a light-filled living space.

Even if your garage is asymmetrical, you can transform it into a beautiful and functional lounge. The light from the garage door makes this living space feel calm and bright. Look at other garage makeovers on HGTV’s website.

Budget Dumpster, a company that provides dumpster rental services to homeowners, contractors, and businesses across the United States, suggested the following garage conversion ideas:

  • Playroom
  • Studio Apartment or In-law Suite
  • Bedroom
  • Art studio
  • Office
  • Family room

You can even turn your garage into the best pub of your neighborhood where you can watch sports or have a beer with your friends. Check out this video for some inspiration!

A wall-mounted garage door opener eliminates the need for visible garage door opener on the ceiling, making it more aesthetically pleasing.

Q5: How much headroom do you need for a wall-mounted garage door opener?

No specific amount of headroom is required for installing a wall-mounted opener thanks to alternative mounting kits!

Usually, 2 inches is preferred above the garage door (center of the shaft) to install a garage door opener. If you don't have that much space, no worries!

A wall-mounted opener can be installed whether you have standard or low headroom. The garage door opener can be lowered and mounted below the torsion bar with an alternate mounting kit. Isn't that brilliant?

Alternate mounting kit if your wall-mounted garage door opener cannot be installed to the torsion bar.

The alternate mounting kit has 2 gear systems, as seen in this image. You can install the shaft on top and the opener on the bottom. This is ideal for jackshaft openers that cannot be directly installed on the torsion bar.

The only requirement is that you have at least 8 ½ inches of space on one side of the door for the opener's casing and shaft collar.

Explore all the garage doors available

Here comes the exciting part: choosing the garage door design and color! A garage door is a great way to enhance curb appeal and make your house stand out.

Garaga offers 3 garage door styles, including Traditional, Carriage House, and Contemporary. Whether you want to add a rustic or modern touch, we have a wide range of garage doors to suit everyone's tastes.

There are many different colors, including Black, deep browns, different beiges, white, and others. You’ll surely find a color that complements your property.

This garage door is in the Princeton P-11 design, 9' x 8', Ice White doors and overlays, 8 lite Panoramic windows.

Prefer classic and clean details? These are Traditional garage doors in white with discreet overlays and hinges. All our garage doors are custom-made to meet the specifications of each customer. From the garage door sizes to the window designs. Here is the Princeton P-11 design, 9’ x 8', Ice White doors and overlays, 8 lite Panoramic windows.

Have fun with our garage door visualizer tool!

Did you know that we had a Design Centre on our website? You can combine various garage door designs and colors. You can add windows and decorative hardware to your garage door to make it more appealing!

You can see how your finished garage door will look on your house! When you have a picture of your home in front of you, you can better see if a garage door matches. With this tool, you are the artist of your garage door!

Ready to move to the next step?

For an overhead door and garage door opener installation, contact a Garaga garage door expert near you!

They have a skilled and dedicated team of professionals garage door and opener technicians and installers who can perform any garage door services.

Comments

Hi James! Yes, there are mount options available for minimal side clearance. To find the closest garage door dealer offering suitable mounts, please visit https://www.garaga.com/ca/find-a-garaga-dealer. They will assist you in selecting the appropriate mount for your specific requirements. Thank you!

Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.