Different Types of Garage Doors – Pick the Perfect One

Garages used to be considered more of a utilitarian structure, providing little or no aesthetic value to your home, especially a detached garage. In recent years, the majority of single family homes have an attached garage which is simply an extension of their home. The appearance of the garage can have a significant effect on the curb appeal of your home. When you look at the garage the first thing you probably notice is the garage door. The types of garage doors vary in both style and material. When choosing a garage door for a new build or an upgrade, you want to choose a material and style that’s durable, easy to maintain and complements your home.


Much like the front entry door of your home, garage doors are constructed in a variety of different materials. Different materials will create different looks. Some materials can be made to have the appearance of wood, which remains a popular choice with homeowners seeking a traditional style. It is a good idea to first familiarize yourself with the different types of garage doors before choosing one.

Different Types of Garage Doors - Pick the Perfect One

Wood Doors

The first garage doors were built of wood and many still are today.  Wood doors are built with layers or plies to prevent warping, and woods like cedar, redwood, fir and meranti or luan. Wood doors may be factory-stained or painted, or finished on-site.

The most cost effective option is painted wood with flat hardboard panels. While stain-grade wood doors are more expensive,the warmth natural wood provides can go a long way when it comes to curb appeal. Wood doors are available in a variety of different styles with or without windows.

Wood garage doors require regular maintenance and refinishing to keep up their appearance. Wood naturally insulates better than steel, but modern steel doors tend to be insulated and are more energy efficient.


Wood Composite Doors

Composite garage doors typically have a wood frame covered with sheets of fiberboard. The cores are filled with polystyrene insulation. Better models offer higher-density fiberboard skins and often include details, such as overlays and grooves to simulate natural wood.

Composite doors provide the strength of steel with the looks and texture of wood. They can be painted or stained and are more durable than wood as they resist rot and splitting.

Steel Doors

Steel doors can be painted to match your home and are available with or without insulation.

Superior quality garage doors are constructed of two layers of galvanized steel. The surface of the door can be primed and painted with a tough topcoat finish or clad with a composite material.

Steel doors are reasonably priced, durable, low maintenance and available in just about any style you like. The downside of steel doors is that they can be dented and are subject to corrosion, especially in coastal areas.

Aluminum Doors

Lighter and less expensive than steel, aluminum doors share many of the characteristics of steel. They are available in many contemporary colors and finishes. Aluminum frame doors are typically fitted with aluminum panels but translucent glass panels by be used instead to let in more light.

Aluminum garage doors will eliminate the problem of corrosion associated with steel doors but tend to dent easily.

Fiberglass Doors

Garage doors made from fiberglass are less subject to denting or cracking. They do not rust but can break upon impact. Two layers of fiberglass are typically bonded to a steel or aluminum frame and filled with polyurethane insulation.

While fiberglass garage doors represent a smaller segment of the market, it is more resistant to saltwater corrosion, making it a good choice for coastal locations.  Because it is a lightweight material, it can fade from weather exposure and does not insulate as well as some other garage door materials.

Vinyl Doors

Often labeled as “kid proof”, vinyl garage doors are difficult to dent or break. Usually built upon steel frames, they are filled with polyurethane insulation.

Vinyl doors are very durable and are low maintenance. They can simply be cleaned with the hose. Similar to fiberglass doors in appearance, vinyl doors may not be available in as many colors.

Different Types of Garage Doors - Pick the Perfect One

Garage Door Styles

There are many types of garage doors on the market for residential use. They include sliding, folding, up-and-over and roll-up doors. The sectional door is the type of door most commonly used in the United States and can be operated manually or with an automatic garage door opener. Sectional doors are available with or without windows.

Carriage or swing-style garage doors operate just like a pair of large french doors. They are attractive and their strong vertical lines often help integrate the garage with the rest of the house. Swing-style doors tend to be more energy efficient as they seal well. They do require more clearance to open and close and can be complicated and expensive to automate.

Sectional doors are even available that resemble the popular carriage style garage doors but operate like the sectional types. From contemporary to traditional, there are many decorative types of garage doors as well.

Jersey Coast Garage Door is a family run business that has been providing, installing, and servicing top-quality garage doors and openers in Monmouth & Ocean County, New Jersey for nearly a decade. We pride ourselves on our friendly customer service, our attention to detail, and our longstanding expertise.

We can guide you through the different types of garage doors and help you choose the perfect one for your home. Contact us for all your garage door needs.


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