Fiberglass Garage Doors

Garage Doors Are Entry Doors Too

Entry doors to a house include not only the openings where people enter and exit, but also how vehicles get into and out of the garage. The garage door is likely to be a composite structure, made up of a steel frame but overlaid with wood, steel or fiberglass paneling.

One of the most popular manufacturers of such products is Wayne-Dalton, who actually collaborates with the famous residential fiberglass entry door company ThermaTru. Together they have created high quality, wood mimic fiberglass garage doors.

Advantages And Disadvantages

The advantage of using fiberglass is well-known. The material is resistant to wood rot, warpage due to moisture, and forms of cracking and peeling due to salt-water corrosion. However, this doesn't mean the owner will never have to worry about maintenance or damage. Under pressure or impact, fiberglass can still become misshapened. One drawback is that the upfront cost will be higher given limited manufacturers and higher production costs. Insulation and heatloss in fiberglass garage doors

Fiberglass garage doors have comparable insulation

Mimicking Wood

For owners interested in the beauty of wood grain, fiberglass garage doors can be made to mimic different kinds of wood. The kinds of grained textures that Wayne-Dalton offers, for example, include cherry wood, oak wood and mahogany wood mimics. These surfaces come in a variety of designs, which follow a few conventional guidelines. One of the main features of the surface design is the paneling. Closely spaced panels, vertical and horizontal paneling are a few of the possibilities. To many people, the detail of the wood grain texturing is very convincing, and fools most except for the sharpest eyes. The surface of the door is laid over an underlying steel framework which gives it the necessary structural integrity to withstand constant opening and shutting.

Color And Staining

The majority of homeowners elect to buy the doors prestained and painted because the job to cover such a large area is quite labor intensive. However some manufacturers will upon request ship an unfinished exterior skin that is ready for gel staining. Painting with latex or acrylic paint follows.

Matching Doors

Some manufacturers offer homeowners the option of getting a matching front door, after all they get to sell you another product. But before you dismiss it, consider that the front of your house will have a pleasing symmetry in color with matching entry doors.

Great For Heat Insulation

There are two things to mention here: for some reason, if you search on the internet, there are some claims that insulating is poor. Nothing can be further from the truth. These doors come with special foam cores that are highly resistant to heat transfer. Energy specialists use something called the R-value which measures the heat resistivity, or the resistance to transmission of heat. R-values typically range from 6 to 7 for fiberglass, but much lower for wood. The foam core is full of air pockets which minimizes thermal transmission. Moreover, the foam core also dampens out noise coming from the street, to help insulate the interior of the garage from exterior noises. The other thing to mention is that heat loss through the garage door is generally not a problem as the space isn't heated. However, good insulation means a more comfortable walk from the house to the car.

Lites And Windows

Some also have small windows to let in a bit of light. In actuality, the fiberglass garage door can be made to be somewhat transparent to light, but the windows help increase the light level which can make it easier to move around inside without having to turn on a light. The small windows are akin to lites on residential doors. One may choose from one of several types of glass. For example, acid etched glass makes it hard to see clearly into the interior while letting light through. It also makes it hard to see outside! That's why one can also opt for clear glass.


Beyond glass, there are a number of accoutrements one can add to the door. For example, the metal lift handle can be custom designed. Lift handles come in different shapes and styles. At the corners one can also add metal brackets to accent the surface. Metal brackets can be made to match the lift handle in color, thickness, weight and style. Some people even put a knocker on the fiberglass garage door making it easier for neighbors to knock on the door.

Door And Weather Seals

Like regular doors, a sweep or seal at the bottom will keep out cold air and particulate matter like leaves, dust, and dirt. It enhances energy efficiency but reducing loss of heat. You should get a high quality one that does not crack after one season of alternating summer and winter temperatures.

Double configuration

Doors can come in a double configuration. Moreover, "side-lites" can be added to adorn the frame of the door.


Depending on your home, your door can be customized to include a "transom" that runs over the top.

Robust to Weather

Regions with changeable climates that see wintry rain and snow can be ideal for non-wood doors.

(C) Copyright 2015 Fiberglass Entry Doors

photo by jdickert via CC 2.0

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