Garage Doors 101: What Material is Best for You?

Ready for a new garage door? Have you thought about what kind of material you’d like? There are a variety of materials to choose from, and each has its benefits in terms of style and function. Here a breakdown of the most popular materials.


One of the most popular garage doors, steel is both affordable and easy to take care of. It’s easy to paint and you can get a texture that mimics wood. Steel isn’t the best for heat, so you might want to consider an insulated door.

The other question is thickness. Low-cost doors have thin panels of 27- or 28-gauge steel but don’t stand up to impact (not very kid friendly.) Mid-level doors have 25- or 26-gauge steel. The rule of thumb is the lower the gauge number, the thicker the steel. Top quality doors tend to have at least 24 gauge.


Wood has a beautiful traditional appeal. It also comes in a variety of styles. Windows are easy and natural. It is also a better insulator than steel, though steel insulated doors are better for energy conservation. The real catch with wood is the maintenance. They need to be regularly refinished and painted. They tend to rot.

Wood Composite

Wood composite doors offer a happy medium between wood and steel. They offer a natural look with the strength of steel.


Aluminum is light and inexpensive, but it dents easily.


Enclosed in aluminum frames, fiberglass doors are light and easily painted. The catch is they tend to dent easily. The real advantage of fiberglass is its resistance to salt water corrosion, which makes it an ideal material for California and Roseville, Lincoln, and Rocklin winters.

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