How to Choose the Best Garage Door for Your Home
You care about your garage. You not only care about what goes inside it, but also what kind of door goes outside it. So you want a garage door that works best for you.
But with all the brands and options out there, it can be daunting to figure out which is the right one to buy.
And it’s not a decision that you want to get wrong, considering you’ll be opening and closing that door every time you drive your car in or out of the garage.
But fortunately, you’re in the right place. In this post, we go over everything you need to know about buying the best garage door for your home.
So you can rest assured that your garage entryway is efficient, safe, and secure.
Sound interesting? Keep reading to find out more.
Living in a Material World
One of the best places you can start when deciding on the right garage door is to figure out what kind of material you want to use.
This decision will affect things ranging from the general aesthetic of the garage door, to the way it withstands weather, to how dinged up it will look over time.
Often this decision will also be based on the overall look of the rest of the garage, as well as the house itself. So you’ll need to decide how much you’d like the garage door to match.
Popular Materials to Consider
The most popular four styles are aluminum, steel, wood and fiberglass/PVC overlay.
Aluminum is great because it’s rustproof and it comes in a wide variety of styles and colors. It also generally requires less maintenance than other materials, which can save you time and money in the long run.
Another positive is that it’s a light material, so the garage door will tend to operate with ease. That will generally extend the life of the garage door mechanism, so you can utilize a roll-up garage, like the ones in this helpful post.
Steel has possibly an even greater variety than aluminum, in terms of finishes, designs, colors. And it’s a sturdier material than aluminum, which translates into longer use overall.
One drawback is that it can potentially get dented or scratched and then can rust.
Wood is the most classic material for garage doors. It gives the garage a traditional look and is generally available in a large array of painted looks.
Or if you want the look of would without actually using it, you can have veneers or overlays placed on top of another material to give the door the look of wood.
Fiberglass/PVC overlay is a final option. It’s a newer material, so it’s a little less available. But it is less expensive than solid wood and comes in a wide array of styles and colors. It’s also more sturdy than wood and metal.
Design Is Key
Homeowners often want their garage doors to be more than functional. They make up a sizable portion of the visual space, so why not make them exactly as you want, design-wise?
Back in the day, there weren’t many options. Garage doors were basically either white or almond colors. But now you have many different, often customizable styles to chose from.
Some of the decision will depend on if you want the door to blend in with the look of your house, or stand out as an accent piece.
So, What Styles Are Out There?
Don’t get us wrong – traditional door looks are still very popular. If you get a Victorian, Georgian or Colonial garage door you’ll be in good company.
They generally use paneled wood and have a stable/coach house look. If there are windows in the garage door, they will often match the house’s window style.
You also get a chance to highlight with iron hinges or handles.
If you go with an Edwardian/Arts and Crafts garage door, you’ll be working with raised panels or sections. They will generally feature divided light windows or even arch-tops.
50’s Ranch Style garage doors are also still very much in vogue. They offer a clean look, often with banding and wood slates. They generally utilize a plain finish with an emphasis on horizontal lines.
Finally, you can opt for a more modern garage door. With this option, the sky is the limit as far creative expression. A modern garage door can be purely functional or be an art piece in and of itself.
Contemporary garage doors come in all sorts of materials, and their designs run the gamut from stained wood to frosted glass.
The high cost of energy means that insulating your garage is a must. So you’ll want to pay attention to the thermal property of your potential garage door.
And garage door insulation can also help dampen the noise both coming in and going out of the garage.
It’s measured in what’s known as an R-value. A high R-value means it operates quieter and reduces outside noise more.
You’ll also need to choose from polystyrene or polyurethane, which is foamed in place. Polystyrene doors will tend to be thicker, but with a lower R-value. Polyurethane will look thinner but comes with a higher R-value.
How Much It Costs
Finally, you’ll want to take a look at what the garage door will cost, and how more you’re willing to spend.
There’s a rule of thumb saying that the garage door should cost around 1% of the price of the house. That’s only a suggestion, of course, so that’s not something you have to stick to.
But just keep in mind that this is an investment that will be with you for many years, and will affect the look, design, and insulation of your house. So choose carefully!
So What’s the Best Garage Door?
Now that we’ve gone over some of the options in garage doors, you are much closer to deciding what’s the best garage door for you.
It’s all a matter of taste, matching your house, and factors like price and material you’d like to use.
If you have questions or want to learn more about how to maximize your credit to pay for things like garage doors, check out this post on buying with bad credit!