Does Your Garage Door Need Help?

When a garage door is located on the front side of a home, it has an enormous impact on curb appeal. A door that’s broken, dented, in need of repairs, or a fresh coat of paint, will drag down your home’s image, even if the rest of the exterior is pristine.

Perfectly manicured lawns, new windows, professional landscaping, and a freshly blacktopped driveway can’t overcome the detrimental impact of a marred garage door.

Fortunately, there are many excellent ways to remedy an ugly garage door situation.

First, however, make sure your garage door is in good working order. You can do a lot with a couple of coats of paint, but you have to start with a structurally sound and functioning door.

Supporting Cast

If the front of your home already includes a standout feature, like a beautiful entryway or an eye-catching front porch, it may be preferable to camouflage the garage door so that these features can take center stage. Cover the garage door in a neutral shade of paint that blends with or matches your home’s siding.

Color-coordinated garage door and siding

To zero in on the best color before heading to a paint store, take advantage of one of the augmented reality apps offered by paint companies, which lets you use your smartphone camera lens to preview various colors.  

A Matter of Style

If paint won’t do the trick and it’s time to replace your garage door, your toughest decision may be determining what looks best on your home.

If your house already reflects a distinctive architectural style, like English Tudor or Spanish stucco, it’s best to stay within those boundaries—although you still have considerable latitude to keep your door simple or go ornate.

On the other hand, if your home displays a more “generic” style, a statement garage door may be an excellent way to boost the overall image of the house. In this case, you also have numerous options.

Make a Statement

An otherwise “plain vanilla” exterior can become more dramatic with a fantastic garage door. If you want the garage door to become a focal point, you can achieve that goal by working with unusual materials, textures, and colors.

A coat of blue paint adds a splash of color to this one-car garage door

With hundreds of choices in garage door styles, it’s easy to be creative. Choose from modern, graphic-arts, country, minimal, classic, industrial, natural, or hand-hewn. The sky is the limit. Just be sure the style you select coordinates with the style of your home.

Material Matters

In terms of garage door construction material, steel and wood are two of the most common options, with important trade-off considerations.

Heavy gauge steel is durable and easily insulated, making it an excellent low-maintenance option for many homeowners. Insulation is especially important if you live in an area with extreme winter or summer temperatures and have interior access to your house through the garage.

One of the downsides of steel is that it can become dented if, for example, kids use the driveway to play ball or practice their hockey moves.

Luxurious wooden garage doors contrast beautifully with surrounding stone textures

Wood, on the other hand, is typically more aesthetically pleasing and incredibly sturdy. It does, however, require more routine maintenance. Newer composite options, made of wood fibers and synthetic resins, replicate the appearance of wood but entail less upkeep.

How Much Glass?

Windows improve the appearance of most garage doors and provide valuable light in otherwise dark garage interiors. They do, however, introduce additional considerations, in terms of privacy, security, and energy efficiency.

Limiting glass to the top panel will make it harder for prying eyes to view your garage’s contents. Frosted glass is another way to bring more light into your garage without compromising privacy. To maximize energy efficiency, opt for insulated thermal panes, especially if your garage is heated.

A contemporary home featuring a frosted-glass garage door.

Light It Up!

If you go the extra mile to make your garage door a focal point of the house, make sure your efforts don’t disappear once the sun goes down. Add downlights and sidelights to show off your style, enhance security, and eliminate dark shadowy corners.

More Tech Tools

To visualize how various garage door styles will look on your home, check out the design tools offered by major manufacturers like Clopay and Overhead Door.

Big box hardware retailers are also developing augmented reality applications that help you envision their products in your home. For example, the Menards’ app is currently limited to front entry doors, with plans to add design tools for garage doors, fencing, shutters, and more.

With thoughtful planning, your garage door can be an expression of your personality, it can advance the style and impact of your house, and it will be something you look forward to seeing every time you return home.