New Garage Door Options
- What to consider when buying a new garage door
- Different types available
- What materials garage doors come in
When choosing a new garage door, there are a few considerations to factor in. You’ll need to choose something to complement the style of your house, be it a colour or particular material, as well as how much you want to pay. The choice of material also impacts how much maintenance will be required once it’s installed. Additionally, some garage doors can be automated, saving you the trouble of opening them up manually. These will cost you more and will require maintenance to ensure they’re working optimally.
This article will look at all what you should consider when replacing your garage door, what the available options are and what materials garage doors can come in.
Considerations When Buying a New Garage Door
You’ll first need to think about what style of door you will need. This can range from electric to manual, but can also include the colour and the appearance. Ideally, a garage door should complement your home and not look out of place. If you have wooden gates, windows and a front door, it won’t necessarily work if you have a steel garage door. While cost is always a factor, and different materials are available, it’s important to know what your options are before you potentially limit yourself to a costly option.
Security is another factor. Usually, a new door will be more effective at keeping your garage secure than an older garage door. Side hinged doors can feature electro-magnetic locks, for example, while sectional doors are strong by design and are difficult to force. Likewise, with electric garage doors, the locks can be incorporated into the motor system, which makes it more difficult to open out of operation. It’s important to look for accreditations such as Secured by Design to give you peace of mind. This is an initiative set up by the police as a way to phase out crime through good design, featuring 30 different crime categories for thousands of products.
Finally, to help decide on a new garage door, you need to think about what maintenance will be required. Different materials will require various levels of maintenance. From composite doors that will only need an occasional spray down to wooden doors that may need recoating or oiling, maintenance helps prolong the life of your garage doors to stop you paying out for another one earlier than you need to. If the idea of maintaining your garage door doesn’t sound appealing, it might be worth considering an option that doesn’t require as much maintenance.
Types of Garage Door
Up and over doors feature a frame that lifts up in one section and is suspended overhead when open. It’s the conventional garage door on the market. They can be noisier to operate and feature a four point locking system. This kind of door can either be manual or automated and comes in a range of styles and materials, depending on budget. Up and over garage doors are straightforward and easy to operate.
Side hinged garage doors look more like a standard door for your garage. Usually on several hinges to compensate for the extra weight, they can be split ½, ⅓ or ⅔, depending on whether you require a smaller door for more frequent foot traffic. They are a newer kind of garage door that operates quietly, while also providing insulating properties. Side hinged doors can also be electrically operated or left as manual doors.
A roller (or shutter) garage door opens vertically and rolls into a space-saving solution overhead. You’re able to make use of more space inside of your garage with this door. They’re easily automated and come in a range of colour and finish options, which can mimic woodgrain. They can be fitted in a number of ways and cover the most amount of space.
Sectional door garage doors lift up in sections and curves up towards the roof space. It gives you more overhead room than an up and over door as it isn’t made from one static panel. This type of garage door doesn’t impose on drive space, which allows for more room with bigger vehicles. Able to be operated electrically or manually, a sectional garage door will operate quietly.
Sliding and folding garage doors are like giant bi-folds for your garage. Typically available in steel, aluminium and timber, they offer an alternative for those looking for a bit more style. Round the corner doors make use of any existing space to the side where overhead space can be limited. Typically available in wood, aluminium and steel, they are a more sophisticated kind of garage door, being made bespoke to order.
Garage Door Materials
Now that we’ve gone through the different types of garage door available, what materials can they all be made from? This will affect the price of what you’ll pay. See our guide on how much a new garage door costs for more information.
Steel is widely used in garage door construction as it is strong and durable. It weathers well, being resistant to dents and rusting and can be customised in a number of different coatings and colours to suit your needs. This material is very low maintenance as it doesn’t require painting too frequently. Steel is used for all types of garage door. It’s widely available and fairly competitively priced.
Natural wood or timber is used for a natural appearance and has a wide range of implementations. It can be used in up and over, side hinged and sectional garage doors. Wood comes with additional maintenance compared to other materials. It should be cleaned with warm, soapy water and a soft cloth in the direction of the grain. It should also be allowed to dry naturally. A build-up of dirt and water can cause the wood to warp, so it’s important to keep them clean. They could also require regular restaining or repainting every couple of years to keep them looking fresh. If you like the wood look but don’t want the maintenance, a wood-effect style door could be better for you.
Glass reinforced polyester (GRP) garage doors are available in up and over and side hinged. They offer reliable strength without the weight and provide insulating properties without any of the associated maintenance. GRP doors aren’t susceptible to warping through humidity changes and don’t need regular attention. Because they are so versatile and have been on the market for years, they are fairly cheap garage doors to buy.
Aluminium is typically only available as a roller door because it is compact, but it can also be used in sliding, folding and round the corner garage doors. Its best feature is how resistant to degradation it is. While steel is the only other option for roller garage doors, aluminium offers insulating properties whilst being more lightweight. It places less stress on the operating mechanism, which means it will last longer. It is more susceptible to scratches and dents than steel, but can be available in a wide range of colours.
Interested in going electric? Find out the pros and cons of an electric garage door here.