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    Your garage door isn’t just another door in your home. Your garage is a major entry point to your home, and a big part of your exterior style and curb appeal.

    Choosing the right door is very important! It not only has a big impact, but it needs to provide the right amount of safety and security for your home.

    updated garage door installation

    Depending on how you use your garage, the level of insulation when choosing a new door is important. For homeowners that use their garage for working out, to do work, or as an additional living space know just how important a fully insulated garage door is.

    So, if you are in the market for a new garage door, you need to choose a door that is functional AND stylish, along with considering your budget.

    #1 Composition and Durability

    When evaluating new garage doors you want to focus first on composition and durability.

    Garage doors are made from fiberglass, vinyl, steel, wood and other materials. You can narrow the choices by looking at the style of your home, your budget, and how durable you need your door to be. Wood doors are beautiful, but are high maintenance and expensive. Steel, by comparison is more affordable.

    #2 Insulation Level

    Insulation comes in an R value and it’s something to consider when purchasing a new garage door. Depending on the climate and how you are using your garage door will inform you about the R value you want to look out for. The insulation in garage doors is usually polystyrene or polyurethane. Consulting with a garage door tech can help you decide what material and level you need.

     

    #3 Do your research!

    The worst thing that can happen once you choose a great garage door is to have it installed improperly. Make sure you research NOT just your new garage door, but also the installer.

    Can you find independent 3rd party reviews for them on Yelp, Google or Facebook? These review sites can help you see the entire picture. Asking around to friends and co-workers can also insure you are getting a quality company to install your new doors.

    Make sure the company you choose, at the minimum: offers a free inspection or a free quote AND that they guarantee their work. You want to find a reputable garage door installation company that can help you find a good door to match your budget and style, and install safely for you!

     

    Our customers, Robert and Jen, wanted to update the exterior of their home. They decided to invest some of their budget into a new garage door

    Updating your curb appeal with a new door is not only a style choice, it’s also a great option to increase your home’s security with the features of a new door, and provide other benefits such as increased insulation, which lowers heating and cooling bills. 

    Robert and Jen chose this beautiful Clopay Gallery garage door. 

    clopay gallery garage door

     

    The woodgrain look is gorgeous and really adds an expensive looking touch to their exterior. 

    The Clopay Gallery door also has 2″ steel back insulation. This will allow Robert and Jen to use their garage door to workout in, as it will help regulate the temperature in the hot and cold months. It will also save them money on heating and cooling bills since their garage is attached. The insulation on the back of the door looks like this:

     

    This would normally be a standard installation for this door, except Robert wanted to install a car lift in his garage. 

    In order to install a car lift, we need to get the door to open as high as possible in the garage. This type of door installation is called a “high lift”. 

    In order to maximize the amount of clearance for the garage door, we installed a LiftMaster Jack Shaft garage door opener. This opener is not an overhead opener, it is installed on the wall (not the ceiling), as you can see below. This helps gives us the clearance we need for the high lift installation. This also allowed us an early break away from the frame, so we were able to have enough clearance for the decorative hardware you see on the outside of the door, in the photo above.

     

    liftmaster jack shaft opener

    Our customer, Mary, didn’t want to sell her home. She did, however, want to rent it out. Generally, when renting a home you used to live in, you want to make some upgrades before you invite renters in. These updates are different than if you are selling your home. You want to make smart, strategic upgrades that don’t cost a lot but add a lot of value for renters.

    One of those great, easy upgrades is a garage door. A garage door can increase the security of your home, as well as up the curb appeal, which can help it rent more quickly.

    The job seemed straightforward at first, just a regular garage door replacement. Once we got there, we realized some issues.

    Mary’s door is a one piece door, as you can see below:

    one piece garage door

    Now, typically to convert a one-piece door to an overhead door isn’t a problem. But the issue with Mary’s house was the bedroom that was built in the garage.

    After some creative thinking, we were able to take an overhead door, which you can see below, and mount it as a one-piece door. Basically, this gives you the look of a standard overhead door, but with the function of a tilt door.

    Mary is looking to rent her house. This job was not your usual door replacement. She had a one-piece door which typically won’t be an issue to convert to an overhead door but the catch was the bedroom that was built in the garage. So being creative we took an overhead door and mounted it as one piece door. So you get the looks of a standard overhead door but the function of a tilt door.

    standard overhead door as a one piece door. 

    Mary is very happy with the installation, and she was able to rent her home soon after we completed the replacement job.

    Customers of ours gave us a call because they had a problem with the garage door on their rental property they own. 

    They recently had renters move out, and upon inspection, saw their garage door had been totally trashed. The garage itself was in bad shape, and the garage door had been damaged. The garage door was also off track and so was in immediate need of repair since it couldn’t be used in its current state. 

    Our customers needed to rent the home again, so fixing these problems were imperative to getting the home listed and rented again.

    We came out to have a look and found this: 

    new garage door rental 

    new garage door rental

    new garage door rental

    After inspecting the garage door and the entire system, we decided to replace the garage door completely. The first thing was ordering a new, thicker garage door. The thickness will add durability and is a great choice for a rental property where more wear and tear is expected. Thicker doors also generally last a bit longer, so this is a great choice for a rental unit as well. 

    In addition to the new door, we upgraded the moving parts of the door as well. The new parts are heavy duty, so they will stand up to any abuse. We changed out the springs, garage door rollers, and the cables. Lastly, we lubricated the moving parts so they will work optimally. 

    The last part of this repair was painting the new garage door to complement the rest of the home’s paint. We went with an almond color. White paint, if not properly maintained, can yellow with time. The almond stays the same, so it’s a great choice for a rental home.

    Now the door looks good inside, and out! Our repair and installation only took a few days, so our customers were able to get their home listed, and rented the next week!

    new garage door rental  new garage door rental

     

    Our latest project is a beauty! This homeowner has lived in her home for over 30 years and was finally ready to retire and downsize. That meant getting her home ready to put on the market. 

    Her home’s exterior hadn’t been updated since she bought the home decades ago. In addition to repainting the exterior, she wanted to put in new, more updated garage doors as well. While she was at it, she wanted to upgrade the garage door openers as well. They were original to the home! 

    Below you can see the old doors and paint color. 

    The home’s exterior while old and out of style, it is full of beautiful big windows. 


    When looking for new garage doors to choose for installation, we ended up picking the Clopay t52 model. It included plain windows throughout the top panel. This was a great choice to compliment the large amount of windows in the front of the home. 

    We also installed new openers in her two car and single car garage door. She chose LiftMaster 8065 chain drive openers. Both are 1/2HP and is a great choice for this home. Affordable and durable! 

    After installation, here is what the house looked like. She wanted to wait for the doors to be finished before she had the home painted.

    The doors are already such a huge improvement to the curb appeal of her home. But the final step in getting this home ready for going on the market: fresh, modern paint!

    The final result is just stunning.

    This home went on the market soon after and sold within 2 weeks! Never underestimate the power of a facelift for your home, whether you are selling or not. Investing about $5,000 with new doors, new openers and new paint can add 3x this to your home’s list price.

     

    If your garage door has been damaged or you are just looking to upgrade your garage door, then buying a new garage door might be on your to-do list. But what do you need to know when buying a new garage door to help you make the decision?

    But what do you need to know when buying a new garage door to help you make the decision?

    A garage door is an investment. A good quality door can help to improve the efficiency of your home’s energy, as well as up the curb appeal of your exterior. It can also help to increase the value of your home.

    There are many different styles, materials, and prices of garage doors on the market. Below is an overview of the options in those three categories: style, material and price.

     

    Garage Door Style

    There are different styles of garage door that can compliment the style of your home, or to give your home a new style. Styles include: flush panels, painted panels, carriage house style, long raised panels, short raised panels and contemporary panels.

    If you are working with a garage door installation company, sit down with a book of the different options and just see first what you like most. Then consider how it will compliment the style of your home.

     

    Garage Door Materials

    Once you understand the style of door you want, then consider what material you want to purchase. The most common materials are wood and steel. Aluminum and fiberglass are also options, though not as common.

    Size of Your Garage Door

    If you are working with a good garage door company, you don’t need to worry about this since they will size it properly. But make sure when you are searching for the door you want, that it is available in the size you need.

    You can measure the opening of your garage to guide you in selecting the proper size.

    Where can I find garage door options?

    First, find a reputable company in your area that does garage door installations. Make sure they are licensed, bonded and insured. Try to see if they have 3rd party reviews that are positive online. Yelp and Facebook are great options to find these reviews.

     

    We repaired this damaged garage door a few weeks ago. This door had 2 damaged panels, so when we arrived, we inspected the extend of the damage.

    damaged garage door

    What happened, you ask? Our customer was leaving her house in a rush and forgot to open the garage door as she backed out. Whoops!

    Below is a picture of the door’s damage from the inside.

    inside damaged garage door

    We thought the repair would be replacing the damaged panels with new panels. Our customer had other plans. She opted to purchase a brand new garage door. Her goal was to get a more durable and thicker garage door.

    We ordered a brand new door and installed it a few days later. We installed braces to the door as well. This will help to reinforce it if another minor accident occurs. The stronger door plus the braces should help in the future to keep the door secure and undamaged!

     

    reinforced garage door with braces installed

    The photo above shows the braces installed.

    The last thing in this repair included installing insulation to the garage door. The front of the house faces west, so it gets a lot of hot Texas sun! The insulation will help to keep the garage door cooler in summer and warmer in winter. It will also help to reinforce the door as well!

    Final Garage Door Reveal!

    Once the door was installed, braces installed and insulation complete, the last step was painting the door on the outside to match the trim on the house. Painting your garage door is a great way to update your curb appeal, and you can do it without purchasing a new door!

    The door looks great now, as you can see below! The door is opening and closing much more quietly and smoothly, thanks to the brand new door and insulation! Our customer loves it as much as we do!

     

    updated garage door installation

    Most realtors have their go-to people and companies they call when they need help getting a property ready to list. Included on this go-to list is a great garage door repair company that help quickly fix any garage door issues before a home will be shown or listed on the market.

    There are small repairs or updates you can make to a garage door before selling it, that a garage door company can easily help with! This includes installing a new and quieter opener, doing a maintenance check to make sure everything is working well, and insulating the garage door.

    Repairs also sometimes need to be taken care of quickly in order to get the house listed. Recently a Keller Williams realtor called us a few days before their open house. She needed to take pictures of the home, but the garage door was in need of some repair that was visible.

    The panels, as you can see below, are damaged. Likely that the homeowner or someone else hit the door with their car.

    This was a pretty easy fix. The bottom 2 panels were damaged and needed to be replaced. Since the door is still being produced, we were able to order 2 new panels quickly and install them just in time for the pictures to be taken.

    Replacing the panels, if you can, is a much more affordable option than buying and installing a brand new door. Especially if you are selling your home, you want to minimize repair costs as much as possible.

     

     

    Even if your panels are damaged and you AREN’T selling your home, replacing panels is still your best bet. It is a quick fix, and cost effective. Replacing a damaged panel is also a great way to instantly upgrade your curb appeal.

    Good news: After we made this repair, the realtor took pictures and has open house. The home sold in less than a week!

    Regular maintenance on your garage door will help to prevent major problems from catching you by surprise. It’s possible for a skilled homeowner to take care of most or all of this garage door maintenance. You can also hire a professional garage door company to come out and perform this maintenance regularly.

    Proper garage door maintenance is the key to the longevity of your garage door and to keep your garage door working properly.

    Monthly Garage Door Maintenance

    Every month, you should visually inspect your garage doors. Notice anything different from last month, and any wear and tear.

    Make sure to look specifically at your springs, pulleys, tracks, rollers, cables and your hardware. Do you notice any loose hardware? A fraying cable? A sound you didn’t hear last time you opened and closed your door?

    Check out your mounting hardware as well. Mounting hardware is your screws and hinges. Make sure they are secure.

    Another task monthly you should do while visually inspecting your garage is cleaning your tracks. Take a damp cloth and wipe the tracks down. Make sure to dry them when you’re done. Keeping the tracks free of debris or built up residue will help them perform optimally.

    Every month is also a great time to lubricate your garage door or check if any parts need lubricating. Lubrication should be done, at a minimum, twice a year, but checking monthly is good practice. Don’t use WD40, use a silicone or lithium based spray. You can find this spray on Amazon or a local hardware store.

    Spray lubricant on all tracks, hinges, and rollers. This will help to prevent damage to those parts, and allow the door to open smoothly.

    Lastly, put a small soft object in the path of the garage door sensors and try to close your garage door. Your door’s auto reverse function should automatically open your garage door back up again. This is a very important safety feature, and checking that it is operating properly is a good idea. Takes 30 seconds! If it doesn’t work, call a professional ASAP!

    All of these tasks each month will take 10-15 minutes of your time and is well worth it!

    Extra Credit

    Checking the balance of your garage door is another important maintenance task, but you need to know what you’re doing. Here are some quick steps if you feel comfortable performing this task. Otherwise, it’s best to call a garage door company.

    Step 1: Disconnect your garage door opener.

    Step 2: Manually lift the door and check that it glides smoothly on the tracks, with no resistance.

    Step 3: If you lift the door, it should stay open. If not, or it’s hard to open manually, then your door is not balanced.

    If your door isn’t balanced, call a professional garage door company to balance it for you.!

    Your garage door is a common way that intruders find their way inside a home. Most people focus on window and door security, but forget about their garage door. There are a few ways to increase the security of your garage door.

    Below are 5 things you can add to your home to increase your home’s overall security, as well as that of your garage door.

    Make sure your interior door is locked. 

    If you have an attached garage door, make sure you lock this when you leave your home (and when you’re home!) Most people assume that locking it takes too long, and it’s more of a nuisance to have to unlock it when you come home through your garage. But this is just another way intruders can easily gain entry to your home.

    You should also consider installing a dead bolt to this door as well, if you don’t already have one, and a peep-hole like your front door. This added security can help keep you safe.

    Use a remote on your key chain for your garage door.

    If someone breaks into your car, they can easily steal your garage door remote and find your address on your registration, before you even know your car was broken in to! By carrying your garage door remote on your key chain, you eliminate this possibility and can keep your home safe. For this same reason, never keep a copy of your house key in your car either.

    Install motion sensor lights around your garage door and home.

    This is a quick project anyone can do in a few hours over the weekend. You can purchase motion sensor lights on Amazon or your local hardware store. Install these all around the perimeter of your home. Don’t forget around your garage door. If an intruder were to try and gain entry through your garage door, the sensor lights would shine directly on them. This can act as a huge deterrent for a break in!

    Install a garage door opener with added security features.

    Most garage door openers you find on the market today come with rolling code door technology. This feature, which changes the code of your opener each time it operates, makes it very difficult for an intruder to reprogram a remote and gain entry to your home when you’re away.

     

     

     

    Always keep your garage door closed.

    This seems obvious, but many people forget to close their doors when they leave, or leave it open while they are home. You might think it is no big deal when you’re home, but this is a great opportunity for a would be intruder to drive or walk by and see what you have in your garage. And also to see how they might enter your home when they know you’re away, by canvasing your garage layout.

    Unless you need to move a car in or out, leave your garage door closed.

     

    Making these small changes to your opener, lights, doors as well as your behavior, you can go a long way to keeping your garage door as an entry point to your home secure.