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Garage Door Material & Sizes

If you are considering installing a new garage door you should consider which of the many materials available best suits your requirements. Table 1 provides some insight into the materials available, their advantages and disadvantages. Installing a new garage door is a home improvement project that should be well within the capabilities of most home handymen.

single garage door
  • Most garage doors are available in standard sizes with custom widths available on special order.
  • Standard garage door widths are: 8', 9' 10', 12', 15', 16', 18' and 20'.
  • Standard garage door height is 7'

Table 1 - Garage Door Materials






One of the most popular materials for garage doors.

Paints well
Long lasting
Textured panels mimic wood grains.

Poor thermal insulation (can be purchased with insulation panels)
Many quality levels (thickness/gauge of the steel)
Relative to other materials steel dents easily (from ball, bicycle and other impacts)


Similar characteristics to steel

Lighter weight than steel
Less expensive than steel (primarily due to shipping costs)

Dents easily
Poor thermal qualities
Can be purchased with insulating panels.


Wood garage doors provide a level of elegance that cannot be duplicated

Appearance - many styles and configurations
Better insulator than metal

High maintenance
Better insulator than metal
Harder to add extra insulation

Wood Composite

Expensive, but lower maintenance costs. Looks like natural wood but at much lower cost.

Can be stained
Elegant appearance
Resists cracks, splits, separation, shrinkage, expansion, rot, and will not rust.

Different composite qualities (plastics and wood fiber, wood / resin)


Limited availability

High corrosion resistance
Opaque quality allows for light transmission

Can crack due to cold temperatures
Yellows with age


Lower cost, but looks like an inexpensive product.

No denting, peeling, mildewing or rusting

Difficult to replace individual panels
Color can fade

Also see: Glossary of Garage Door Terms