Home Improvement

How Long Do Garage Doors Last? A Homeowner’s Guide

Would you spend $1,100 without budgeting it?

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what a lot of homeowners wind up having to do. Every year homeowners spend about $1,100 on home repairs. However, over 30% of them had to complete the repairs as an emergency, without any warning for their bank accounts.

If you want to avoid having to unexpectedly replace your garage door then you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ll review the average garage door lifespan, as well as things you can do to keep your door working longer.

How long do garage doors last? Read on to find out!

How Long Do Garage Doors Last?

Typically, a garage door can last anywhere from 15-30 years. However, to get a more precise answer to the question, “how long do garage doors last?”, there are several personal factors you’ll have to take into account.

For instance, your daily usage will play a role in how long your garage door’s ability to function properly. Doors that are used frequently every day will wear out sooner than those that only open and close now and then.

Another factor to consider is the type of garage door you have. If you have a low-quality garage door, it’s going to start having problems well before higher quality doors will. Next, if you live somewhere with extreme weather conditions, your garage door will likely need to be replaced sooner than later.

How Long Do Garage Door Springs Last?

The torsion and extension springs are responsible for allowing your garage door to open and close smoothly. The torsion springs sit right above the door when it’s in the closed position. While the extension springs sit along the sides of the horizontal tracks. Similar to your car, the springs will likely need to be replaced more frequently than any other part.

When a garage door opens and closes, it’s called a garage door cycle. Standard springs are designed to be effective for up to 10,000 garage door cycles. So, if you have 2 cycles every day, your springs will last about 13-14 years.

Whereas if you have higher daily usage, such as 8 cycles a day, you’ll need to replace your springs within 3 years. If you’re willing to invest in higher quality springs, some springs last for 100,000 cycles or more!

Signs You Need a New Garage Door

When your garage door springs break, it usually means that the other moving parts will need to be replaced as well. However, replacing the other moving parts only makes sense if your sections or panels are in good condition. Whereas, if your panels and sections are falling apart, it’s probably time to replace the entire door.

Next, take into consideration the physical appearance of your garage door. Does it look presentable? Or do you have all sorts of cosmetic issues that are stealing away from the beauty of your home?

For instance, if you have a wood door, check it for any cracks, damage, or warped areas. Peeling paint, and holes are also clear signs that it’s time for a new door.

Finally, if your door’s been hit by one of your cars, replacing it is the safest option. While you might think you can repair the damage done by vehicular contact, there could be unseen structural damage. Left unfixed, structural damage will make your door unsafe to operate, and you’ll have wasted your money trying to repair a door you should’ve replaced.

Common Problems With Garage Doors

Not all old garage doors need to be replaced! Sometimes an older garage door that’s having a problem simply needs a quick repair. What’s even better is that after getting a few DIY Garage Door Parts, you can do a lot of the repairs on your own.

For instance, let’s say your garage door’s making a loud grinding sound when you open or close it. Oftentimes, noisy garage doors just need lubrication.

Another common problem is when your door closes, only to immediately open again. If your garage door seems to have a mind of its own, it could be because you have an issue with the alignment on your garage door’s photo-eye.

The photo-eyes are tiny plastic safety devices, and you can find them on both sides of the door. If the photo-eyes are the problem, you’ll just need to realign them and you’ll be all set!

How to Maintain Your Garage Door

Moving on, let’s look at what you can do to help your garage door last as long as possible. About 2-3 times a year, you should evaluate how the door’s operating. By noticing issues while their small problems, you’ll be able to avoid needing a full door replacement later on.

Next, you should regularly clean the garage door’s surface. If you have a wooden door, wipe it with a clean, dry towel. Whereas if you have a vinyl door or other synthetic material, you’ll want to buy cleaners made specifically for that material. Moving on, you should keep an eye on the weatherstripping on the bottom of your door.

If the weatherstrip is cracked, or brittle, replace it right away. You can buy weatherstripping at your local hardware and home improvement stores, and it’s oftentimes sold by the foot.

You’ll simply need to cut the amount of weatherstripping you need, and then put it on your door by inserting it into the grooves. When you put the new weatherstripping in place make sure the wide-angle of the strip’s flange is inside the door.

Keep Your Garage Door Working Smoothly

Instead of wondering, “how long do garage doors last?”, now you know! Remember that the difference between a door that lasts 15 years, and a door that lasts 30 years, largely depends on you.

By keeping an eye on the condition of the door, and properly maintaining it, you can help increase its lifespan. Go ahead and inspect your garage door today, and if you notice any problems, fix them right away.

Are you ready to learn more ways to be the best homeowner possible? Then check out another one of our articles.

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