The number of garage door styles and their performance and features have increased over the years. This variety creates more ways to boost function and curb appeal by replacing your garage door. There are many styles of garage doors, from budget to high-end, that will enhance curb appeal and increase the value of your home. Older garages and garages with limited space or unusual designs can benefit from some of the lesser-known garage door styles.
Review the styles and costs for classic, carriage, modern, and other styles garage doors. Once you’ve narrowed down the styles you prefer, choose the color that matches your home, and then you’re ready to upgrade.
Classic Sectional Style
Image via Flickr by Kevin Payton
Sectional-style garage doors are the most common, with several panels hinged together and connected to two parallel tracks with rollers. The door opens easily manually or with an electric garage door opener, thanks to a heavy-duty torsion spring tightened into a torsion bar. This loaded spring is a counterbalance to the weight of the door, which is difficult or impossible to open without the spring’s assistance.
Panels are typically the traditional raised style, which provides a classic and clean look. Sectional doors may include up to 16 window panes that create a square or arched pattern. Sectional doors also feature many designs and styles to compliment your home. They are most commonly made from steel and are low-maintenance doors that may also be insulated.
Carriage-style doors, also called swing-style or side-hinged doors, are usually wooden and have hinges, with door jambs on each side. The doors swing open and are stylish. The old-fashioned design also works in garages with low ceilings or other barriers to traditional rails and garage door openers. They can be more energy-efficient but also are less convenient to open and lock. Adding an automated opener can be costly.
A less costly option is a sectional door that looks like a carriage-style door. This style is often found on craftsman or mission-style homes.
Homeowners can customize classic sectional and other garage door styles with special features and materials for mid-century modern and modern home styles. Tempered glass, frosted glass, metal, and other materials combine to create a unique accent garage door that matches modern décor. This style incorporates clean lines to complement mid-century contemporary and modern homes while maintaining high wind building codes. This style may include clear glass panels to showcase collector cars or frosted glass to brighten up hobby workspaces.
Roll-up, or coiling, garage doors are more often in commercial buildings, but the no-frills door style fits in well where ceiling space is at a premium. The door rolls up tightly because the steel sections are only 2 to 3 inches high. The door rolls into a drum when it opens and is built to handle heavy usage. Roll-up doors are more costly than traditional sectional doors.
Tilt-up canopy garage doors are one solid piece that pivots on a hinge mechanism. They tilt into and out of the garage, extending past the front of the garage when open.
A related garage door style is a retractable garage door. It works similarly because the door lifts up and into the garage, but it doesn’t protrude. Retractable doors require more space than the related canopy style.
For exceptionally tight spaces, slide-to-the-side garage doors are a lesser-known option. The door follows a track and opens parallel to a garage wall, using vertical panels instead of horizontal. This style doesn’t require springs but can be automated without a ceiling-mounted garage door opener.
What Materials Are Used To Make Garage Doors?
Garage doors are made of traditional materials like steel and wood, in addition to other materials like aluminum, wood composites, fiberglass, and vinyl. Research garage door materials before deciding which one fits into your budget and style. There are more options than you may expect:
- Steel is the most common garage door material. It is typically galvanized and painted but sometimes is covered with a composite material. Steel doors are easily customized to match your house’s color and can be insulated for energy efficiency or heated garages. When compared to other materials, steel is relatively inexpensive. On the downside, steel doors may dent, and rust can form where paint has been scratched or damaged.
- Wooden garage doors are built with several layers to prevent warping and cracking. Many different types of wood and finishes are available, creating an authentic look. They are highly customizable to match the style of the home. Wood is also soundproof and dentproof. Disadvantages of wooden doors include maintenance, painting and varnishing, cost, and susceptibility to rotting in wet areas. Wooden doors are also more difficult to insulate.
- Wood composite doors often have a wooden frame covered with fiberboard that’s engineered with wood fibers to make it resistant to moisture, weather, insects, and rot. They often include realistic woodgrain and insulated cores. Composite doors are paintable for a custom effect.
- Aluminum doors are lightweight and don’t rust but are easier to dent. Like steel doors, they can be painted in numerous colors and customized with modern components like translucent tempered glass panels.
- Fiberglass doors resist denting and cracking. These won’t rust but can break if they are hit. Typical fiberglass garage doors are built with two layers of fiberglass and are insulated. A downside to these doors is that they can fade over time but are easy to paint.
- Vinyl doors are known as kid-proof doors because they are difficult to dent or break and are usually built on steel frames and insulated. Vinyl doors are low-maintenance and popular for families due to their durability. Vinyl doors look similar to fiberglass doors, but like vinyl siding, color options are limited.
There may be many more options for garage doors than you thought were possible. New doors can flawlessly match historical or modern homes and fit in tight spaces without sacrificing function. Balance your budget with the styles, options, and colors that best complement your home. Overhead Garage Door is here to answer any questions you may have about selecting and installing a new garage door. Contact us today to talk to a member of our expert team about what’s best for your house.