Installing a new garage door can make or break your home renovation. These outdoor structures draw a lot of eyes and take up a lot of space at the front of your home while also protecting one of its most valuable spaces. And for most homeowners, the vital decision typically comes down to a debate between steel vs. aluminum garage doors, but which type of garage door is best for your house?
The leading Lakeside garage door repair company, Garage Door Medics, has the best steel and aluminum doors available and unbeatable professional installation. So your garage is in good hands with Garage Door Medics, regardless of which door you choose.
However, despite their similarities, these two options have distinct advantages and disadvantages. Each makes a big difference in their fit with your home, so we’ll look closer at what separates them below.
What To Know About Steel Garage Doors
Steel represents one of the most common garage door materials among Lakeside homeowners, primarily for its size, strength, and customizability benefits.
Steel garage doors offer thicker and tougher materials than all other garage doors. So all the wear and tear that typically plagues garage doors, like dents from accidental vehicle collisions and scrapes from unintentional drops, won’t affect your steel door. In addition to durability, steel doors are easy to recycle, giving them a positive environmental impact.
Their size and strength also make steel garage doors highly weather resistant. They will hold up against heavy winds without damage and severe rainstorms without their paint fading. However, as robust as steel is, it is more prone to corrosion than other garage door materials.
Steel garage doors have design benefits as well as durable ones. Because of their popularity and because steel is so easy to paint, you’ll find pre-made steel doors in whatever color you want.
What To Know About Aluminum Garage Doors
Aluminum garage doors have gained popularity recently as a cost-effective substitute for steel with many of the same advantages. They both prove environmentally friendly and easy to repaint, but aluminum doors have a few unique pros and cons relative to their steel counterparts on top of their lower average price.
First, aluminum garage doors weigh far less than steel ones. And while weight is an advantage for steel with durability, the lightness of aluminum means that aluminum doors work with all sizes and strengths of garage door openers. That provides a significant perk for homeowners who don’t want to replace their entire setup when installing a new garage door.
Aluminum garage doors are also easier for professional technicians to install, primarily because of the weight difference. So rather than waiting days for an installer to get the right parts and navigate a complex installation, your new garage door will be ready quickly.
Aluminum also naturally resists corrosion. So while aluminum garage doors are weaker than steel and will demand annual maintenance and spot repairs to keep in shape, you won’t have to worry about them rusting like steel doors.
Factors To Consider
Now that we reviewed the traits separating steel vs. aluminum garage doors, we can look closer at the situations where those traits make a difference.
Selecting a garage door often represents a massive decision, and the one you pick will likely come down to how you feel about price, home safety, the comfort of your garage, and the curb appeal of your house.
Short and Long-Term Costs
If upfront costs are your only concern when debating steel vs. aluminum garage doors, aluminum is the way to go. It stands out as one of the cheapest garage door materials, and because aluminum doors are so lightweight, they’re easier to install than steel, leading to lower average installation costs.
But long-term repair and maintenance costs are just as important when setting a garage door budget as short-term installation rates. And because of their feathery weight, aluminum garage doors dent quicker and more often than more robust materials like steel.
Though you’ll still likely pay more overall for a steel garage door than for aluminum, the difference isn’t as significant as the initial costs suggest. Because steel is a strong material that won’t break easily, you’ll rarely have to pay for annual repairs the way you will for aluminum doors.
Steel garage doors’ strength is helpful for more than just dent and weather protection; it will also protect you from potential break-ins.
Aluminum doors can secure your space, but they prove easier for home invaders to pry open and wild animals to break through than steel doors. Since steel is so thick and durable, it won’t grant easy access to anyone looking for a welcome way through, and its element resistance keeps it strong for years.
But you need to consider some elements to home safety other than break-ins, specifically, accidental garage door injuries, where aluminum has an advantage over steel. Poorly maintained garage doors with rusted tracks can snap off their hinges, and even well-kept ones will fall if you’re not careful. And the chances of you suffering a severe injury from a garage door fall are lower with aluminum than with steel based on their weight difference.
Garages are traditionally the warmest rooms in summer and the coldest in winter because they don’t usually have HVAC systems or temperature-regulating flooring or doorways. So if you plan to convert your garage into a social spot where you’ll need to remain comfortable against harsh weather conditions, installing a door with strong insulation is essential.
Because of their size and steel’s natural properties, steel garage doors make fantastic temperature insulators. Even without a heater or air conditioner in the garage, a steel door will keep the room close to your home’s average temperature, even on the year’s warmest and coldest days.
On the other hand, aluminum garage doors have very few insulating benefits. That likely won’t matter for homeowners using their garages as nothing more than storage for their vehicles. But if you want to stay comfortable in your garage for hours any day of the year, you can’t go wrong with a steel garage door.
Of course, you can’t overlook style when debating steel vs. aluminum garage doors. Both options are easy to customize and have distinct appearances that boost your home’s curb appeal, but aluminum doors have slightly more flexibility.
You can paint aluminum garage doors or order pre-painted ones in nearly every color imaginable, and it’s also easy to equip glass windows onto an aluminum door. This not only makes for a unique aesthetic advantage that’s harder to replicate on steel garage doors, but it also provides a practical way to bring natural light into your garage.
Steel garage doors are also available in several colors, and some also have windows. But finding windowed steel doors is rarer than aluminum since it’s more challenging to customize steel.
Residential and Commercial Garage Door Installation From Garage Door Medics
Regardless of how you feel about the steel vs. aluminum garage doors debate, you’ll find stellar options, top-quality installation, and competitive prices at Garage Door Medics.
Our fully licensed and insured garage door maintenance and installation company has nearly 30 years of experience bringing high-end garage doors to homes and helping homeowners keep them looking and operating as good as new. And if your garage door breaks, our expert repair team will quickly diagnose the issue and repair it on-site within hours.
Call Garage Door Medics today at (888) 997-2423 to schedule an appointment or learn more about the different types of garage doors.