What is a Garage Door?: Types, Choosing, Materials, Maintenance and Repair


A garage door in a door which is used to protect vehicles and other automobiles in the home. Garage doors are mainly 5 types with considering their size, functionalities, and aesthetic appeal. Those types are roll-up garage doors, sectional garage doors, slide-hinged garage doors, canopy garage doors, and side sliding garage doors. These garage doors are available in three main sizes. Those are single garage doors (size around 8 to 9 feet wide and 7 to 8 feet high), double garage doors (size around 16 feet wide, with a height of 7 to 8 feet), and RV garage doors (size around 16 feet wide and 8 to 9 feet high).

Before choosing a garage door, you should consider the budget, security, insulation, style, material, functionality, and safety features of the garage door. The most used garage door materials are steel, aluminum, wood, fiberglass, and vinyl. When you choose a material for a garage door, you should consider the properties of the materials, such as durability, thermal conductivity, water resistance, aesthetic appeal, maintenance, and cleaning.

When you install a garage door, you should hire a professional expert in order to prevent door damage and increase the installation efficiency. The garage door is operated by the DC motor, and it is powered by the domestic 110V. The garage door can be controlled using a button and remote controller. Smart garage doors can be controlled by the mobile app easily. 

You should maintain the garage door by lubricating, spring adjustments, track alignments, sensor maintenance, panel repair and replacements and seal inspection regularly. Garage doors advantages are improving security, higher convenience, stylish aesthetic, and energy efficiency, and it can improve the home value. The disadvantages of the garage doors are higher cost, required maintenance, potential malfunctions, safety concerns, installation challenges, and limited customizable.

These are the most common garage door problems such as garage door won’t open or close properly, noisy garage door operation, garage door reverses before hitting the ground, garage door off the tracks and broken or weakened springs. You can fix these problems by referring this guide easily.

What is a Garage Door?

A garage door is a large door in a garage which is used to protect vehicles and other automobiles in the home. The garage door can be opened either manually or by an electric motor using a remote controller. Small garage doors may be made in a single panel that tilts up and back across the garage ceiling. Larger doors are usually made in several joint panels that roll up on tracks across the garage ceiling or into a roll above the doorway. 

What Are the 5 Types of Garage Doors?

Garage Door Types

Garage doors are several types, considering their size, functionalities, and aesthetic appeal. The most common garage door types are

  1. Roll-Up Garage Doors: Roll-up garage doors are suitable for compact spaces, These doors roll up into a coil hence it can save door storage space. Roll-up garage doors are a great solution for smaller garage spaces at home.
  2. Sectional Garage Doors: Sectional garage doors are comprised of panel sections connected with hinges.  These doors are quite popular in the US. 
  3. Side-Hinged Garage Doors: Side-hinged garage doors consist of large barn doors. This door is hung from frames on either side of the opening. Side-hinged garage doors offer a classic appearance. Hence that is suitable for traditional designs.
  4. Canopy Garage Doors: Canopy garage doors create a canopy-like protrusion when open, providing shelter and a unique aesthetic. Canopy garage doors are suitable for garages with sufficient driveway clearance.
  5. Side Sliding Garage Doors: Side sliding garage doors are designed to bend to one side, sliding along the wall of the garage, these doors do not require a ceiling-mounted operator, making the installation relatively straightforward.

Read More About – 11 Types of Doors: Usage, Maintenance, Pros and Cons

What are the Standard Garage Door Sizes?

Understanding the standard sizes available for garage doors aids in making an informed decision that complements the structure of your home. Generally, garage doors come in the following sizes:

  1. Single Garage Doors: Single garage doors are suitable for single vehicles. Typically single garage door is 8 to 9 feet wide and 7 to 8 feet high.
  2. Double Garage Doors: If you have more than one vehicle or need extra space for storage or a workshop, consider a double garage door. The double garage door size is about 16 feet wide, with a height of 7 to 8 feet.
  3. RV Garage Doors: RV garage doors are suitable for households with recreational vehicles. RV garage doors are usually measuring around 16 feet wide and 8 to 9 feet high.

What Should You Consider Before Choosing a Garage Door?

Before choosing a garage door you should consider whether the garage door has an affordable budget, higher security, proper insulations, attractive style, material durability, smart-functionalities and safety features of the garage door.

  1. Affordable Budget: You should consider the budget of the garage door. The budget of the garage door will be varied with the size, manufactured material, installation cost, durability and door operating method. 
  2. Higher Security: The garage door should be strong and secure to protect against break-ins and vandalism. 
  3. Proper Insulation: You should consider a properly insulated garage door. Properly insulated garage doors can keep cool in summer and warm in winter in the home.  This is important to maintain energy efficiency in your home and reduce energy costs.
  4. Attractive Style: Your garage door should complement the style of your home design.
  5. Material Durability: Your garage door manufactured material should be a longer lifespan and less maintenance.
  6. Consists of Smart Functionality and Ease of Use: Your garage door should operate smoothly and reliably. It should consist of smart features like automatic openers and smartphone controls for added convenience.
  7. Safety Features: Your garage door should have built-in safety features like anti-pinch technology and manual override functions. Those are important to prevent accidents and ensure the safety of your family.

What Are the Garage Door Materials?

Garage Door Materials

The most popular garage door materials are steel, aluminum, wood, fiberglass, and vinyl. When you choose a material for a garage door you should consider the properties of the materials such as durability, thermal conductivity, water resistance, aesthetic appeal, maintenance, and cleaning. 

  1. Steel: Steel garage doors have higher strength and durability. Hence they are resistant to warping and cracking, offering excellent security and longevity.
  2. Aluminum: Aluminum garage doors are lightweight and rust-resistant. Aluminium garage doors are easy to operate and maintain. Most of modern designs are based in aluminum.
  3. Wood: Wood garage doors have a higher aesthetic appeal. Wood garage doors can be custom-made as it can suit for any architectural style. But these require regular maintenance to prevent decay and retain their appearance.
  4. Fiberglass: Fiberglass garage doors are known for their resistance to denting and cracking. They provide excellent insulation and can mimic the appearance of natural materials like wood.
  5. Vinyl: Vinyl garage doors are suitable for low-maintenance options. It resists denting and cracking, and it’s less likely to fade over time compared to other materials.

Garage Door Installation, Operation, Maintenance and Repair

Garage Door Installation

When you need to install a garage door, you should hire a recommended expert. Because garage doors come with intricate parts and mechanisms, in order to fix and install them properly you should have professional knowledge, specific tools and equipment, and safety. Hiring an expert will save your time, protect the door from damage, and increase the installation efficiency. 

Garage Door Operation

Two main garage door operation are power up the garage door and controlling. Garage door can be powerup by the domestic voltage and it can be controlled by button, remote controller and app easily.

  1. Power Up the Garage Door: A garage door is powered by a DC electric motor that can be operated by a domestic voltage of 110 V. The motor is connected to a trolley which moves along a rail. The trolley is connected to the garage door, and as it moves along the rail, it pulls or pushes the door open or closed.

The trolly moving mechanism has 4 main types those are chain drive, belt drive, screw drive and direct drive. Among them, direct drive is the very quiet operation of the door moving. 

  1. Control the Garage Door: You can control the garage door by opening or closing with the push of a button.  Modern garage doors can be operated with using a remote controller as well as using a mobile app.

Garage Door Maintenance and Repair

Garage Door Maintenance

You should do these important maintenance and repair to your garage door in order to have smooth movements always.

  1. Lubrication: Every 6 months, lubricate the moving parts like the tracks, rollers, and hinges to ensure smooth operation.
  2. Spring Adjustment and Replacement: The springs are subject to wear and tear. They should be inspected annually and replaced by a professional when necessary to prevent accidents.
  3. Track Alignment: If the door is not operating smoothly, the track might be misaligned. Check it periodically and call a professional for realignment if needed.
  4. Sensor Maintenance: Ensure that the safety sensors are functioning correctly by testing them monthly. If not, call in a professional to fix them.
  5. Panel Repair or Replacement: Depending on the material of your garage door, you might need to repair or replace damaged panels to maintain the door’s functionality and aesthetics.
  6. Seal Inspection and Replacement: Check the bottom seal and weather stripping at least once a year. Replace them if they are worn out to maintain insulation and prevent pests from entering.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Garage Door

Advantages of Garage Doors

  1. Improve Security: A well-built garage door offers a robust line of defense against intruders, protecting your vehicle and other valuable assets stored in the garage.
  2. Higher Convenience: With the simple press of a button, you can effortlessly open or close your garage door, a boon especially in inclement weather.
  3. Stylish Aesthetics: Modern garage doors come in a variety of styles and finishes, enhancing the curb appeal of your home.
  4. Energy Efficiency: Insulated garage doors can help maintain the temperature in your garage. It contribute the overall energy efficiency in your home.
  5. Space Saving: Certain types of garage doors, like sectional or roll-up doors, allow you to utilize the space in your garage more efficiently.
  6. Increased Home Value: A new garage door can significantly boost the value of your home, offering a good return on investment when you decide to sell.

Disadvantages of Garage Doors

  1. Higher Cost: High-quality garage doors with advanced features can be quite expensive for both in terms of initial investment and maintenance.
  2. Maintenance Requirements: Garage doors require regular maintenance, including lubrication, alignment checks, and part replacements, which can be time-consuming.
  3. Potential for Malfunctions: Automatic garage doors can sometimes malfunction due to sensor issues, power outages, or mechanical failures, causing inconvenience.
  4. Safety Concerns: Without proper safety features, garage doors can pose a risk of accidents, including pinched fingers or even more severe injuries due to falling doors.
  5. Installation Challenges: Installing a garage door can be a complex process requiring professional expertise, which adds to the cost.
  6. Limited Customization: While there are many styles available, there might be limitations in customization options, especially with pre-fabricated garage doors, restricting your ability to match it perfectly with your home’s aesthetics.

What Are the Common Problems and Solutions of the Garage Doors?

1. Garage Door Won’t Open or Close Properly

Garage door won't close

Problem: Your garage door isn’t responding to the remote or wall switch.


  • Check the power source to ensure it’s connected.
  • Replace the batteries in the remote.
  • If these steps don’t work, you might need to reprogram the remote or inspect the circuit board in the garage door opener.

2. Noisy Garage Door Operation

Noisy Garage Door Fixing

Problem: The garage door makes squeaking or grinding noises during operation.


  • Lubricate all moving parts, including springs, rollers, and hinges, with a high-quality lubricant designed for garage doors.
  • If the noise persists, consider calling a technician to inspect for any underlying issues.

3. Garage Door Reverses Before Hitting the Ground

Garage Door Reverses Fixing

Problem: The door reverses direction before it fully closes, leaving a gap at the bottom.


  • Inspect and clean the sensors to ensure they are not obstructed.
  • Check the close limit switch and make necessary adjustments to ensure the door closes completely.

4. Garage Door Off the Tracks

Garage door track off fixing

Problem: The garage door has come off its tracks, preventing it from moving up or down.


  • Do not attempt to operate the door.
  • Disconnect the opener to prevent further damage.
  • Call a professional to realign the tracks and set the door back into its correct position.

5. Broken or Weakened Springs

Garage door weakened springs

Problem: The springs of the garage door are broken or have lost tension, causing the door to not lift properly.


  • Avoid trying to fix this yourself, as it can be dangerous.
  • Call a professional technician to replace or adjust the springs appropriately.

Remember, while some minor issues can be resolved on your own, others involve risks that are best handled by a skilled professional. Always prioritize safety when dealing with garage door repairs.