Garage doors, Choosing a Garage Door, Service Tips
Garage doors come in many styles to fit your house's individual needs.
Today's garage doors come in a variety of styles and features – included added security – on the market these days, finding the right garage door for your home, or even maintaining the one you have, can be challenging.
Types and styles of doors:
Types: Rolling, sectional garage doors are the most common found on the market. There is also a single section door. However, some things to consider with these is that they require that the space in front of the door be clear for opening and closing – not practical in areas that get a lot of ice and snow.
Styles: The range of styles is broad. Wood, steel, aluminum, and fiberglass doors are available and can be customized to coordinate with the style of your home. As well, you can choose different window sizes and shapes, different wood stains, grains, etc. Keep in mind, that with each additional feature, the price of the door will go up.
Insulation is available for most all styles of garage doors. You options are single panel doors with the insulation applied to the inside face. Having a second face to the door provides a maximum R-value because the insulation can be sandwiched between the panels. If you have an attached garage, or a garage in which you spend a lot of time – a workshop area, etc. – insulation can be an essential and important feature.
Types of openers:
Chain-drive: The most popular and most affordable. Uses a chain to pull the door open or closed. Price ranges from $100 to $170.
Screw-drive: Slow moving design. Uses a long threaded bar to open the door. Price ranges from $150 to $200.
Belt-drive: Considered the quietest. Uses rubber belts to open and close the door. Most expensive at $200 and up.
-Sensors for automatic reversing.
-Infrared sensors to stop the door if something gets in the way.
-Latest security features include remotes that transmit a different signal each time you use the opener.
Do-it-yourself or pay to have it done?
Garage doors can be an easy challenge for experienced do-it-yourselfers. Internet resources, as well as instructions from the manufacture, make installation an easy, step-by-step process. However, doors and openers with more advanced features can make installation more complicated.
-Metal doors are far more resistant to dings and the elements than wood doors, but any door will deteriorate if not properly cared for.
-Inspect your garage door at least once a year for damage that might affect the finish or lead to rust.
-Wood doors should be refinished/resealed at least every two years.
-Protect any type of garage door from water – especially runoff and splash back from the roof eaves. Direct water away from the door, including proper drainage in front of the lower section of the door.
-Keep kids from using the door as a backstop.
-Wash your garage door regularly, with water and a mild detergent. Use car wax on metal doors to protect the finish.
-Check that the weather stripping along the bottom is in good condition. If it is cracked, it can easily be slid off and replaced.
-Lubricate tracks, hinges, rollers and springs with a light household oil – don’t use petroleum-based lubricants. Apply and wipe away the extra. Openers do not require extra lubricant.
-Test the safety-reversing sensor once a month.
-Always refer to the owner’s manual for your door and opener.
-Garage door companies do offer annual maintenance plans, and will come out, check your door, make sure it is lubricated and in good working order.
An investment in a garage door can range from a few hundred dollars for a new opener, to a few thousand dollars for a custom-designed door. While it’s not a feature of your home you think much about, it is an important part of your home. And, if it’s not well maintained, it can lead to unexpected and expensive repairs that have to be dealt with right away.