Replacing a garage door can be a tricky and time consuming task. However, if you back your DIY skills and read through this guide, you should be able to replace a garage door without breaking too many sweats.
How to Replace a Garage Door
To replace a garage door, follow these 5 steps:
1. Choose a New Door
Select a new door that fits the dimensions of your opening and meets your needs for insulation, durability, and design.
When choosing a garage door, consider the following factors:
- Size: Make sure the door is the correct size for your garage opening and has adequate clearance for your vehicles and storage.
- Material: Choose a door material that meets your needs for durability, insulation, and design. Common options include steel, wood, aluminium, and fiberglass.
- Style: Consider the style of the door and how it will look with the rest of your home. Options include traditional raised-panel, modern flush, and carriage-house styles.
- Insulation: If you want to improve the energy efficiency of your garage, choose a door with good insulation.
- Security: Consider the security features of the door, such as locking systems and reinforcement.
- Maintenance: Choose a door that requires minimal maintenance, such as rust-resistant steel or low-maintenance composite materials.
- Price: Set a budget and choose a door that offers the best combination of features and value for your money.
Consulting with a professional installer or manufacturer can help you make the best decision for your needs and budget.
2. Remove the Old Door
In this step, you need to disconnect the springs and tracks, then remove the old door from the hinges and springs. To remove a garage door, follow these steps:
- Disconnect the opener: If your door is connected to an automatic opener, disconnect it by pulling the emergency release cord.
- Remove the springs: If your door uses torsion springs, use a winding bar to unwind the springs and remove them from the brackets. If your door uses extension springs, remove the springs from the brackets and the cables from the pulleys.
- Remove the tracks: Remove the screws or bolts that hold the tracks to the walls, and carefully lower the tracks to the floor.
- Remove the hinges: Remove the bolts that secure the hinges to the door and the header, and carefully lift the door off the hinges.
- Dispose of the door: Place the door in a secure location for disposal or reuse, depending on its condition.
Note: Removing a garage door is a complex and potentially dangerous process, and it is recommended to consult a professional if you are not experienced with these types of installations. Improper removal of a door can result in serious injury or damage.
3. Prepare the opening
First of all, clean and repair any damage to the opening, and make sure it is square and level.
To prepare an opening for a garage door, follow these steps:
- Measure the opening: Measure the height, width, and depth of the opening to ensure the new door will fit properly.
- Remove any debris: Clean out the opening to remove any debris or old hardware that may be in the way.
- Check the header: Inspect the header and make sure it is level, secure, and free of damage. If necessary, reinforce the header or install a new one.
- Check the jamb: Inspect the jambs and make sure they are plumb, secure, and free of damage. If necessary, reinforce the jambs or install new ones.
- Install weather-stripping: Install weather-stripping to the jambs and header to seal the gap between the door and the opening.
- Check the floor: Make sure the floor is level and secure, and repair any cracks or holes.
- Install the opener: If you are installing an automatic opener, install the opener bracket to the header above the door.
These steps will ensure that your opening is ready for a new garage door and that the door will operate smoothly and securely. If you are not experienced with these types of installations, it is recommended to consult a professional to ensure a proper and safe installation
4. Install the new door
Place the new door in the opening and secure it to the header with hinges. Attach the springs and tracks, then adjust the tension on the springs. To install a garage door, follow these steps:
- Prepare the opening: Make sure the opening is clean, level, and free of debris, and install any weather-stripping or opener bracket as needed.
- Install the tracks: Install the horizontal and vertical tracks to the walls, making sure they are level and secure.
- Install the springs: If your door uses torsion springs, install the springs above the door and secure them to the bracket. If your door uses extension springs, install the springs above the door and attach the cables to the pulleys.
- Install the hinges: Install the hinges to the door and the header, making sure they are level and secure.
- Place the door: Carefully lift the door and place it in the opening, aligning the hinges with the hinges on the header.
- Secure the door: Secure the door to the header with bolts or screws, making sure the door is level and the tracks are aligned.
- Install the opener: If you are using an automatic opener, connect it to the door and the opener bracket according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Test the door: Open and close the door several times to make sure it operates smoothly and that the springs are properly tensioned.
I have a more in depth guide on how to install your garage door here: Garage Door Opener Installation: A Beginner’s Guide
Note: Installing a garage door is a complex and potentially dangerous process, and it is recommended to consult a professional if you are not experienced with these types of installations. Improper installation of a door can result in serious injury or damage.
5. Finish the installation
To finish up the steps to replace a garage door, install any weather-stripping or trim to finish the door, then test it to make sure it operates smoothly. To apply weather stripping to a garage door, follow these steps:
- Choose the right weather stripping: Choose a weather stripping material that is compatible with your door, such as rubber, foam, or vinyl.
- Measure the door: Measure the perimeter of the door and the height of the sides to determine how much weather stripping you will need.
- Clean the door: Clean the surface of the door where the weather stripping will be applied to ensure good adhesion.
- Cut the weather stripping: Cut the weather stripping to the correct length and shape, making sure to allow for overlapping at corners and ends.
- Apply adhesive: Apply a bead of adhesive to the door along the surface where the weather stripping will be applied.
- Install the weather stripping: Carefully place the weather stripping onto the door, making sure to align the edges and press it firmly into the adhesive.
- Secure the weather stripping: Use a staple gun or duct tape to secure the weather stripping to the door, making sure it is secure and tight.
Test the door
Now you’ve taken the steps to replace a garage door, to test the door, you’ll want to close the door and inspect the weather stripping to make sure it seals properly and prevents air and water from entering.
By applying weather stripping to your garage door, you can improve the energy efficiency and comfort of your garage, and protect it from the elements.
To test a garage door, follow these steps:
Check the balance: Close the door and disconnect the automatic opener. The door should stay in place and not move up or down. If the door does move, it may indicate a problem with the springs or balance.
Check the opener: Reconnect the automatic opener and press the remote or wall control to open and close the door. The door should move smoothly and quietly. If the door jerks or makes noise, it may indicate a problem with the opener or the tracks.
Check the reverse mechanism: Place a piece of wood or a broom in the path of the door and press the remote or wall control to close the door. The door should stop and reverse direction when it hits the object. If the door does not reverse, it may indicate a problem with the safety mechanism.
Check the weather stripping: Close the door and inspect the weather stripping around the perimeter of the door. If light is visible or air is felt around the edges, it may indicate that the weather stripping is damaged or missing.
Check the tracks: Inspect the tracks for any signs of damage or debris, such as dents, rust, or rocks. If the tracks are damaged, it may prevent the door from moving smoothly or cause noise.
By testing your garage door regularly, you can ensure that it operates safely and efficiently, and identify any issues before they become more serious. If you encounter any problems with your garage door, it is recommended to consult a professional for repair or replacement.
As mentioned above, be especially careful handling objects such as torsion springs, you may want to use this guide to complete one stage in particular and save yourself a labor cost if you decide to get a professional to help.
After your work is done, you can stand back on your drive and admire your new, shiny garage door. These days, garage doors are built to last, with most of them lasting up to 15 years, quality garage doors will last you 30 plus years! So I don’t expect to see many people reading this post twice! Also as a bonus final step, be sure to paint your garage door using one of these 6 amazing paints found here!
Please share this post if you found it useful in learning how to replace a garage door and enjoy your new garage door!