Comparing the Various Types of Garage Door Materials

Comparing the Various Types of Garage Door Materials


Types of Garage Door Materials

For the most part, as garages became more common features for residential properties, the doors for these structures were constructed from wood.  Wood was the most readily available material and, since many garages were detached from the home and/or tucked fully or partly behind it, there was more emphasis on function than style or curb appeal.

However, as attached garages grew in popularity, and as more varieties of material were introduced in the manufacturing of garage doors, homeowners became more conscious of the balance between aesthetics and purpose. Today, many garage doors represent as much as 25-30% of the façade of a home, and technological developments have allowed homeowners to choose from a wide range of garage door materials that includes:

  • Steel
  • Wood
  • Vinyl
  • Aluminum
  • Fiberglass
  • Wood Composite

All of these materials offer a range of advantages, benefits, or solutions that can address specific homeowner needs and/or preferences; and, as in many instances where multiple options are available, one should be aware of possible drawbacks or disadvantages also.

To that end, the following summary, presented in alphabetical order, compares the pros and cons for each type of material:

Aluminum Garage Doors

  • Lighter material
  • Rather inexpensive
  • Resistant to rust/corrosion
  • Can be made to look like painted wood
  • Quite susceptible to dents and other damage

Fiberglass Garage Doors

  • Light yet durable – resists dents, rust, warping
  • Can withstand penetration by moisture and insects
  • Can be manufactured to give the appearance of wood
  • A relatively poor insulating material
  • Appearance may fade from exposure to weather
  • Integrity can deteriorate/decline in very cold climates

Steel Garage Doors

  • Very durable
  • Reasonably-priced
  • Low maintenance required
  • Can be painted or made to look like the texture of wood
  • Not a strong insulating material
  • It can dent easily and may rust if not well-maintained

Vinyl Garage Doors

  • Very affordable and easy to maintain
  • Original color cannot be changed if so desired
  • Not as aesthetically-appealing as other materials

Wooden Garage Doors

  • Available in a wide range of prices
  • Reasonably good insulating properties
  • Aesthetically-pleasing/high curb appeal
  • Requires regular maintenance and refinishing
  • Vulnerable to warping, splitting, rot/decay, insect infestation

Wood Composite Garage Doors

  • Capacity to be stained or painted
  • Offers parallel strength to steel doors
  • Better resistance to decay, cracks, insects than actual wood
  • Of lesser quality than traditional/natural wooden garage doors
  • Not as durable as other materials (steel, aluminum, fiberglass)

There are clearly several alternatives when selecting a garage door; if there was an ideal choice, there would essentially be no choice at all i.e., every garage door would be made exactly the same.  But having options is actually a positive since homeowners will have varying needs and preferences based on such dynamics as door size and weight, color schemes, energy efficiencies, the main purpose of their garage, and, of course, budget.

A Comprehensive Range of Garage Doors Made from a Wide Variety of Materials

As inferred above, homeowners will need to weigh many variables when purchasing new or replacement garage doors.  This buying process can be particularly challenging and gets compounded further when the element/investment of time is added to the mix.

To aid homeowners in streamlining the buying process, Markham Garage Doors displays a wide range of full-scale garage doors in their 1,000+ square foot showroom located at 176 Bullock Drive, Unit 11, in Markham.  Markham Garage Doors distributes and installs residential garage doors, constructed across the spectrum of available materials, by such manufacturers as:

  • Amarr
  • Clopay
  • Haas Doors
  • Steel-Craft
  • C.H.I.
  • Equal
  • Richards-Wilcox
  • Wayne Dalton

For further information on the scope of residential garage doors available from Markham Garage Doors, please go to our Products page.

Need a new garage door?  Call Markham Garage Doors today at 905-472-9178 or 416-570-3667 or visit our showroom to find the right door that best suits your needs.

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