Garage Door Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between an insulated garage door and a thermal insulated garage door?
In the door industry just about everyone has an insulated door. The most common being a metal pan-style door with polystyrene insulation inside and some sort of cover, metal, or vinyl over the inside, depending on the grade of the door offered.
This is “the insulated” door. It usually does not have a thermal break to keep the outer face from connecting with the inner face, called thermal bridging, which allows the inner face to become the same temperature as the outer face. In other words, it conducts the cold or the heat to the inner surface of the door and really doesn’t do much for insulating your building.
A “Thermal Insulated Door” is what we recommend here in the Northeast if the customer will heat the building, have a special usage, or if there is living space above the area behind the door.
Thermal insulated doors are constructed with polyurethane type insulation, which is much denser than styrene and it fills all voids in the door. There is a “full” thermal break around the entire section perimeter. This means that the outer surface can maintain different temperatures and do the job that this insulated thermal door was designed to do.
Do you recommend “Fix It Yourself”?
D&D Doors understands the homeowner who desires to fix it yourself, so here’s to you. Call us so you get the right part the first time. We will order the part for you and send you home happy.
If you are not sure what part you need, call us and we’ll give it our best-educated guess based on the information you’ve given us. You could even send us a digital photo (or mail us a regular photo) of the part or parts in question, and we’ll call you and let you know what we think – how’s that for service!
We want to be your garage door system company ready to serve you with whatever your needs are – no matter how large or small. Because not only is the garage door one of the most visible elements of the typical house–it’s also the largest moving part. So it pays to keep it looking good and working properly.
SAFETY FIRST: Garage door springs are under extreme tension because of the loads they must lift–and this makes them dangerous to adjust. If your door’s springs are out of adjustment, DO NOT attempt to work on them yourself. Call a qualified garage door contractor – D&D Doors.
What is the standard garage door size?
It depends on the use of the garage door. If you would like to build a garage attached to your house or a garage in your backyard, we carry garage door models from 4 to 20 feet wide, to the nearest inch, so you’re sure to find the size you want.
Single garage door: For an approximately 12’ x 22’ detached garage or one attached to your house, the most common width is 8 or 9 feet, and the most common height is 7 or 8 feet. Depending on your needs, the height can go up to12 feet.
Double garage door: For an approximately 18’ x 24’ detached garage or one attached to your house, the most often seen width is 16 feet. For height, the most common size is 7 or 8 feet. Depending on your needs, the height can go up to 10 feet.
What’s the difference between laminated and tempered glass?
Laminated glass is made from two or more panes of glass separated by an interlayer of vinyl. If broken or punctured, the glass pieces stay bonded to the vinyl interlayer, lending some flexibility to the glass and greatly reducing shattering. This is why it is used in modern windshields. In addition, this type of glass acts as a sound reducer and blocks 99% of UV light transmission. In general, laminated glass is more expensive than tempered glass.
Tempered glass is made through the process of extreme heating and cooling of standard glass which produces a glass that is four to five times stronger than the original. If it does break, it shatters into small, dull, less harmful pieces, and has been used for side and back car windows.
Help! My garage door is frozen shut!
The metal components of garage door systems tend to contract when very cold which overtaxes the opener especially if your garage isn’t insulated. Your electric door opener is under even more stress if it is confronted with a garage door stuck in the ice.
Another contributing factor to a door frozen shut is a high level of humidity in the garage. How to prevent this situation:
- Open and close your garage door at least once a day. This helps keeps the door from sticking to the threshold as well as ice from forming between any metal components.
- Shovel or sweep away any snow that builds up in front of your garage door. Do this as soon as there is any precipitation so that snow doesn’t accumulate or ice form.
- Make sure winter has no unpleasant surprises in store for you by having regular maintenance performed on your garage door throughout the year.
How do I clean my pre-finished steel garage door?
Follow these guidelines for cleaning your pre-finished steel garage door:
- Clean the door with a mild detergent solution consisting of one cup detergent dissolved into five gallons of warm water will aid in the removal of most dirt
- Clean behind weather-strips on both sides and top of the door
- Use your bare hands to feel and dislodge any caked-on particles
- Use a soft, grit-free cloth, sponge, or chamois to wipe the surface
- Dry with a clean damp chamois
- DO NOT use a pressure washer on your door!
- DO NOT use detergents containing greater than 0.5% phosphate
- NEVER mix cleansers or detergents with bleach
- DO NOT use hard or rough cloths that will scratch the acrylic glazing
- DO NOT use any window cleaning fluids, scouring compounds, gritty cloths, or solvent-based cleaners of any kind
How do I clean my wood garage door?
Yearly cleaning and inspection of your wood garage door are easy. If the finish appears to be in good condition, cleaning and touch-up work are often adequate.
- Remove dirt, chalk, and mildew by washing your wood door with a diluted solution of mild household detergent at a concentration of one (1) cup in five (5) gallons of warm water.
- Rinse with clear water after washing and allow it to dry completely.
- If the finish is badly eroded and thin, clean the areas where the wood substrate is showing through as described above and prime those areas using the proper primer. Follow the cleaning and priming with complete priming and finish coating.
- If there is no bare wood showing through, only a finish coat may be required. Review your Maintenance Brochure for detailed instructions and information on cleaning and maintenance of your wood door; improper finishing may void your warranty.
How important is insulation in a garage door?
Insulation is important in a garage door for many reasons. In addition to helping control the temperature, the insulated garage doors that we recommend are patented design and foamed-in-place insulation add strength to your door while reducing noise.
The amount of insulation a garage door provides is represented in its R-value, which is its resistance to heat flow. It is important to select a garage door with an R-value that is consistent with your local climate and lifestyle. In addition, insulation helps reduce the noise of your garage door as it opens and closes.
What garage door materials are available?
Wood offers the widest range of design options and works well in all climates; it is the most expensive.
Steel is typically less expensive than wood, but because it can rust, it should be avoided in coastal areas.
Aluminum costs more than steel but does not rust, making it a good choice for coastal homes.
The tempered glass in an aluminum or wood frame is well suited to modern and contemporary homes.
Fiberglass and vinyl are budget-friendly options and will not rust, but design choices may be limited and these materials can crack in cold weather.
What are the different types of garage doors?
- Sectional: The most common type of garage door; rolls up and down on tracks.
- Sliding: Barn-style garage doors slide open to the side, requiring a wider garage wall to accommodate the door when open.
- Swing-out: Double doors that swing outward when open are not a good choice for cold climates, as snow drifts can block the doors from opening.
All of these door types can be made in a manual or automatic, remote-operated version.
Garage Door Maintenance Tips
A standard garage door is subject to conditions of operation and environment. The consequent failure of the product will occur if the following conditions exist:
NEVER close the door where an obstruction exists within the opening
NEVER open the door too fast making the door open past the top of the opening
NEVER “ride” the door while it is operating
NEVER force the door to operate. If it does not operate smoothly, something is wrong
Lubricate all rollers, hinges, springs, locks, and bearings once every 3 months
CHECK for loose nuts and screws, and tighten accordingly
Have replaced all bent or worn tracks, brackets, hinges, rollers, or springs immediately
Have spring tension adjusted by an Authorized Garage Door dealer periodically to keep the door in balance
Maintain a good coat of paint on the wood sections
Wash your steel garage door sections with soap and water
A garage door can be a very dangerous product. Correct operating procedures and services must be maintained. INSPECT your door and if any situation exists that you do not think is right, contact us immediately. Safety cables are available for extension springs and are highly recommended for your safety.
- It specifically RECOMMENDED that you do not make adjustments to your garage door yourself.
- Only trained personnel are equipped to handle the hazards of a garage door.
- Bodily harm or death can occur if not done properly and with the right tools.
- D&D Doors has gone through the considerable expense to provide you with the best product available to fit your style and budget. Garage door installation should always be done by trained personnel only.
- Maintained, operated, and serviced correctly, your garage door will provide you with safe and dependable years of service.
Electric Operator Maintenance Tips
A standards electric garage door operator is designed to replace manual operation and control of a door. If a door can not be easily operated by hand, an operator is not the solution to the problem. It is not a winch and should never be used as one.
- It is recommended that you ONLY have a TRAINED PERSON adjust and service your door prior to having an opener installed.
- Follow the specific operational, maintenance, and testing procedures supplied by the company installing your automatic opener, or call D&D Doors to do it for you because we know what we’re doing, and we do it right the first time!
- BE CERTAIN that all means of controlling the garage door are kept inaccessible to children.
Liftmaster Residential Operator Manuals
Do you have other questions?
Call D&D Doors at 845-795-9261 we are happy to help. Remember, for garage door maintenance, repair, or installation, it’s important to consider the timeliness of service, services offered, and the company’s reputation. We’ve built our reputation on it!