Here, in quick succession, are the 10 questions homeowners ask most often when the time comes to purchase a garage door. There are certainly many others, but here we are presenting those that are most frequently received by a garage door specialist.
A metal or a wood garage door?
Each material has its benefits and drawbacks. Wood garage doors are preferred for their natural warmth. Metal garage doors, whether in steel or aluminum, for being low maintenance. In either case, there are many levels of quality in manufacturing that can double a “basic” price. The choices are practically endless!
An insulated or non-insulated door?
It all depends on how you use your garage, whether it’s attached or detached from the house, and if the garage is heated or not. If you have a room, like a bedroom, over the garage, it is advised to have an insulated door. The more you use your garage for things other than just parking your car, the greater the need for your door to be insulated.
If insulated, with polystyrene or polyurethane?
Polyurethane gives better thermal performance than polystyrene for the same door thickness. As well, the overall thickness of the door must be taken into account. The thicker a door insulated with polyurethane foam is, the higher the thermal resistance or R‑value.
What is the lifespan of a garage door?
Based on the type of construction and the quality of the components, a 1¾-inch (45 mm) garage door, injected with polyurethane foam should last over 20 years. As for how long the paint finish should last (one protective primer coat and two baked-on top coats), it will be the same if you wash it at least twice a year, just like you do for a car. It will keep its shine even when faced with inclement weather.
One double garage door or two single doors?
On the practical side, two single doors are much better. If your opening mechanism is malfunctioning, you can at least get one of your cars out. From the esthetic point of view, everyone has their own preferences, but most architects and designers say that two doors give a more balanced appearance to the overall architecture of the home.
Torsion or extension hardware
If you have at least 12 inches (30 cm) of headroom, torsion hardware is best. Because the spring system is installed in a shaft over the garage door, all the weight of the door is concentrated in the center, on the anchor plate, ensuring better operation of the door. As for an extension system, it has two coil springs placed over the horizontal tracks that work independently of each other.
How much headroom space is needed above the door?
Ideally 14 inches: The hardware system needs 12 inches (30 cm) with another 2 inches (5 cm) for the electric door opener. However, the real minimum space is 6 inches (15 cm). For this situation, we install a double track system for reduced headroom. Conversely, if you have more than 14 inches (35 cm) of headroom or a sloped roof, there are hardware systems that can adjust to this type of application.
How should I prepare the garage door frame?
The opening must correspond to the width of the door. If the door is 9' x 7' (2.7 x 2.1 m), the interior opening of the doorframe must be the same size. As for the construction of the actual frame, meaning jambs and lintel, it is best to use 2x8 or 2x10 boards. Optionally, you can cover the frame in aluminum capping.
Should I put windows in the garage door?
To start off, there are two points to consider: natural light and security. If there are no other windows in the garage, a row of windows is very practical. As for security and privacy, the more this is important for you, the less you should look at adding them.
One more point to examine is the appearance. You want to create an overall harmony in the architectural style of your home. Highly recommended is using an online design center such as Garaga’s, uploading a photo of your existing home and testing out various options. If you decided for the time being to not put windows, be aware that it is possible to add them later.
How much does a garage door cost?
That is the burning question! For comparison sake, let’s say you want a single garage door, in metal (steel or aluminum), insulated with polyurethane foam, and without windows. For a high-quality door, it can cost you about $1000. For a wood door of the same size, the price can vary between $750 and $4000 depending on the quality of the wood, the finish, and the desired design.
Was one of your important questions not on this list?
If so, contact a well-established garage door specialist in your area at your convenience. You can even email them a request for a quotation.
Alternatively, you can go meet them at their showroom. Feel free to use a design center, like the one from Garaga, to choose the style of door that suits you best. Also, take a look at their image gallery to get ideas and inspiration.