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How to Buy New Garage Doors for Your Home

     Your garage door has a significant impact on the look of your home, especially if it faces the street. And since curb appeal plays a critical role in the value of a home, realtors often suggest replacing the garage door prior to listing it for sale, especially if it’s worn or outdated. The “right style” can increase the asking price by several thousand dollars.

Going Shopping

Here are factors to consider when choosing a residential garage door:

- Budget. Like everything, budget dictates options. Garage doors range in price from a few hundred to several thousand dollars depending on the size, materials and design you choose. Even if you have a small budget you can still get a great looking door that is going to enhance your home’s cur appeal.

- Design. Get the most out of your garage door upgrade. Choose a model that complements your home’s architectural style and details including the shape and size of the windows and entry doors, and exterior accents like wrought railings, window boxes, etc.

It’s a good idea to visit dealer showrooms and review garage door manufacturer web sites to get a sense of the options available. Many companies, including Clopay, offer a Web-based design tool that allows you to upload a photo of your home to see how various garage door styles look. Try it out at

Insulation. Garage doors can be insulated or non-insulated. If your garage is attached to your house, insulated garage doors can help reduce utility bills – both in hot and cold weather. Insulated doors are especially important if there is living space next to or above the garage, or if you utilize the garage as a workshop or additional recreational space.

If you live in a mild climate or have a detached garage that is only used to park the car, a non-insulated door is an economical choice.

There are two different types of insulation used in garage doors: expanded polystyrene and polyurethane. Doors constructed from either kind qualify for the Energy Tax credit, and both are strong and durable.

R-value or U-factor. These are measurements of the thermal efficiency of a door’s insulation. The higher the R-value, or the lower the U-factor, the more energy efficient the insulation is.

Energy Tax Credit eligible. Available for garage doors with a minimum U-factor of 0.30 installed on a homeowner’s primary residence.

Maintenance. Every garage door needs regular maintenance to maximize its life and reliability. Steel garage doors are very durable and virtually maintenance-free, whereas wood garage doors will need to be painted or stained every few years.

“Green” Factor. Sustainability is a key element of green building, and, with a life cycle of between 15 to 20 years, an investment in a durable garage door that can withstand the rigors of daily use is money well spent for a home and the environment.

Building Code Requirements. If you live in a coastal region or high wind area you may need a reinforced door as specified by the local building code authority.
Because of their size, garage doors are more susceptible to wind damage than other exterior openings – especially two-car garage doors. Unless you have a tested, reinforced door installed, high winds can force it out of the opening, putting your home and property at risk

Materials. Today, homeowners can choose garage doors constructed in a variety of materials.

Wood: There’s no substitute for the warm, distinctive look of wood. It offers the most design flexibility to create a one-of-a-kind door, and the species and stain options are endless. Depending on the climate and exposure, wood garage doors require more finish maintenance.

Composite: Composite garage doors offer the benefits of durable, insulated steel with added charm and design flexibility, making them an attractive, low- maintenance alternative to real wood.

Steel: Classic steel panel garage doors offer the broadest range of insulation and price options from as little as $300 for a single-layer, non-insulated door, up to $1,500 for a premium three-layer door featuring 2” thick insulation and decorative windows.

Aluminum: Rust-proof and corrosion resistant, this garage door material is ideal for humid, caustic environments as well as coastal areas. And it’s incredibly durable.

Article Source:

Pat Lohse is Vice President of Residential Marketing at Clopay Building Products, North America’s leading residential and commercial garage door manufacturer. A Purdue University graduate, Lohse has nearly 25 years of experience in the garage door industry.

Posted on 2010-01-19, By: *

* Click on the author's name to view their profile and articles!!!

Note: The content of this article solely conveys the opinion of its author.

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