Most garage doors occupy a substantial part of your home’s exterior so it is important to decide on the type of door that will blend with your overall design. But the aesthetic factor is not just the only concern, you should also consider the practicality of your decision such as durability, security and function. Before you make your decision, check out the following tips on how to choose the perfect garage door.
Garage doors typically come in two forms: tilt-up or roller. Tilt-up doors consist of a single panel of material that turns on a pivot and tilts open. They are ideal if you want windows in your garage door however, they are less practical than roller doors because they need a lot of space to open.
Roller doors are made by binding horizontal strips of material together to make a flexible door that can be mounted on a track and rolled up. They are more practical than tilt-up doors because they give you a lot more space for your car and the other items in your garage.
Maintenance and Durability
The most popular materials used to manufacture garage doors are wood, steel and aluminium; different materials can be finished with various weather-proof seals and anti-corrosion layers.
Wood is a good, eco-friendly option if you have a low budget, but you will have to fork out for maintenance when the wood needs to be treated and painted every year. Also, wood is vulnerable to rotting, warping and pests.
Galvanised steel is the strongest option but it can be prone to rust. Steel doesn’t need as much maintenance as wood and is less prone to dents than aluminium.
Aluminium doors are more affordable than steel and they are also very lightweight, meaning they will place less stress on the components thus allowing the door mechanism to last longer.
Wood and steel can be painted and repainted whereas aluminium is usually powder-coated with special paint that is designed to last.
Automated or Manual
Both automated and manual garage doors are secure because intruders cannot open a manual door if it is locked and they cannot open an automated door without a key fob. Automated doors are generally preferred over manual doors because you don’t have to get in and out of the car every time you want to open the garage door. Some automated doors come with an override feature which means that they will work in the event of a power blackout.
Tilt-up doors can incorporate windows or frosted glass panels. Windows are great for letting light in but they are not recommended for cold climates because they decrease the insulative abilities of the door.
Insulation is important for the following reasons: an insulated garage door acts as an extra barrier between the outside and the door leading into your home; insulated doors make the garage more comfortable to work in; they limit airflow and thus enhance the insulation of the room above the garage; and they are generally quieter to operate. Insulation is measured in R-value; the higher the R-value, the more effective the insulation is. Aluminium doors are insulated with special polyurethane foam that has proven to be very effective.
Professional Installation or DIY
Garage doors are heavy and require a large number of complex mechanical and electrical components; Adults, children and pets will regularly walk underneath them; and they will be used multiple times a day for the rest of your life. For all of these reasons, it is vital that a garage door is installed by a professional who knows exactly what they are doing. It just takes one slight imbalance to damage your door forever so park any notions of DIY.
Don’t forget to ask your garage door manufacturer the following questions: Does the door come with a light?; How long is the warranty?; Does the price include installation?; How many key fobs do I get with the door?; How much does it cost to replace a key fob?; Will the installer take my old garage door away?
Next time you ponder over the possibility of a new garage door, you will have a lot more food for thought.
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