When you think of installing a new garage door, there are several factors to consider. They include type, size, style, and price of the door. One of the most important things is also the material. Not all garage door materials are made equal. Each has its merits and drawbacks. Here is a review of the most widely used garage door materials and some useful tips from garage door installation professionals.
Originally, all garage doors were made of wood. This material is a good choice for large double doors.
- Different kinds of wood can be used for garage doors including clear cedar and mahogany.
- Wooden doors are provided in a variety of styles. They are highly customizable and can be made with windows.
- Appealing from the esthetic point of view, giving your garage natural warmth and beauty.
- The risk of denting wooden doors is considerably lower compared with their steel or aluminum counterparts.
- Wood has better natural insulation properties.
- Wood can be painted or stained. Thus, you can change its color or style to match that of your house.
- More expensive than other materials, although wooden doors made of painted flat hardboard panels cost less.
- Wooden garage doors require regular maintenance and refinishing.
- Wood doesn’t last as long as steel, vinyl, or aluminum. It is not water resistant and can start rotting in damp environments. Splitting also presents a problem with wood.
2. Wood composite garage door
This material is made of recycled wood fibers and can be considered a step up in comparison with basic wood. It’s the best choice for large double doors.
- As strong as steel and as visually appealing as wood.
- Rot-resistant and splitting-proof. That makes it preferable over simple wood.
- Can be painted and stained, easy to customize.
- High price.
This is by far the most popular garage door material.
- Lower price compared with alternatives.
- You can paint steel and give it any style you desire. Steel garage doors can even feature wood designs that look almost authentic.
- Lower maintenance in contrast to wood.
- Durable and weather resistant.
- Poor insulator. For better noise reduction and energy conservation, professional garage door installers recommend an insulated steel door.
- Depending on its thickness, steel can be damaged by dents. If you select a cheap steel garage door, which is made of 27 or 28-gauge steel, and your kids often play ball on your driveway, be prepared to discover dents on the metal. Alternatively, you can order a garage door made of thicker 25 or 26-gauge steel. That will cost you more, but will exclude denting. There is another, mid-way option. You can buy a door with thicker steel on its outside-looking part and thinner on the inside-looking one.
- With poor maintenance, steel may rust.
If you need a contemporary garage door to match the modern style of your home with many windows, select aluminum. With an aluminum door, you will have more natural light inside your garage. It is especially good for extra wide double doors.
- Aluminum has many characteristics of steel, but is much lighter.
- The price is lower.
- In contrast to previous models, modern aluminum doors are dent-proof, although they cost more.
- Low maintenance.
- Durable finishes. Example: Faux wood.
- Lower warranty than that of steel garage doors.
- Poor insulation properties make aluminum a weak option in places with very high or very low temperatures.
- High risk of dents in cheaper models.
Fiberglass garage doors are not so common as those made of other materials. However, they have their advantages, too.
- Fiberglass is light.
- Thanks to its excellent salt-resistant properties, fiberglass is the top choice for places located close to the sea or ocean.
- Can mimic wood or any other material thanks to its malleability, but don’t require the same level of maintenance as ordinary wooden doors do.
- You can paint fiberglass in order to match the color or style of your house.
- Can be encased in aluminum frames, which reduces the risk of denting.
- Fiberglass can get a yellow tint due to weather or sun rays.
- Poor insulation properties.
- Can break over time, particularly in locations with temperatures below the freezing point.
This material has a construction resembling that of fiberglass.
- Hard to break or dent, which makes vinyl a good choice if you have kids.
- Low maintenance.
- Comes in various designs, easily customizable.
- Rust and damp resistant.
- Similar to fiberglass garage doors, vinyl is good for coastal locations.
- Warping, splitting, cracking, or rotting is excluded.
- Few colors are available.
- High price tag.
While selecting your garage door material, you need to take several things into account such as the house location, your budget, energy conservation, style, and a few others. We wish you to make a good choice!