Overhead Garage Door Types

By HomeAdvisor

Updated March 10, 2017

Overhead garage doors

Overhead garage doors are by far the most popular type of garage door available to homeowners, and they are affordable with good prices. There are a number of styles out there, each with its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Here’s a short list of your options, as well as some other things to consider, so that you can be best informed in choosing the best door for you.

Garage Door Types

Retractable doors are solid, one-piece overhead garage doors that swing out and up when opened, coming to rest entirely inside your garage. Retractable doors provide a little more of an antiquated feel to them, thus are often more popular for those looking to install a new garage door to match an older home. On the downside, retractable doors need quite a bit of space to open (you’ll need to be sure you don’t park any cars too close), don’t insulate as well as some of the other options on the market, and are easier to break into than other door types.

Canopy doors are similar in design to retractable doors, but don’t require as much room to swing open, which one of the main headaches of retractable doors. In order to achieve this, a canopy door does not retract all the way into the garage, instead leaving about 1/3 of the door exposed outside of the house. They are a little more secure than retractable doors when closed, and they are the easiest type of garage door to fit with a garage door opener.

Sectional doors are by far the most popular type of overhead garage door on the market today. Built of several hinged sections that rise up and then back along a system of rails, sectional doors provide you with the highest amount of security, come with varying degrees of insulation, and take up very little space in your garage. Because of their popularity, going with a sectional door will also provide you with the largest range of design possibilities.

Roller doors are garage doors made of a “curtain” of narrow slats that actually wind up onto a roller when retracted. On the positive side, they don’t require any of the tracks or frames that other garage doors do since they simply roll up. As for downsides, they don’t provide much in the way of design possibilities since features such as windows and panels generally don’t fit with the narrow slat design.

Design Possibilities

Besides the type of door you want to go with, you also will want to consider how elaborate you want your door to be when it comes to design. Garage doors come in a huge range of possibilities, everything from your basic steel sectional door to beautiful finished wood doors with windows and details. Since your garage door is the single most prominent feature of your home as seen from the curb, you want first and foremost to be sure your door matches your house in design and style. Beyond that, your budget and sensibilities will be the deciding factors.

How Do You Use Your Garage?

The final thing to consider carefully before you purchase a garage door is what you use your garage for. If it’s just to house your car or store clutter, you’ll be fine choosing a lower insulated, basic overhead garage door. If you’re one of the growing number of homeowners who uses their garage as a workshop, washroom, home office, children’s playroom or other more frequently used area, you’ll want to be sure to invest in a door that seals well when shut and has plenty of added insulation to protect you from the elements.

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