How to Install a Garage Door

Rob Sabo | Improvement Center Columnist | December 13, 2011

Removing and replacing an old steel or wood garage door can bring a fresh look to the front of your home, but installing a garage door is usually a job for professionals. Even if you are savvy with tools and a good handyperson, garage doors can be dangerous to remove and replace. Professional installation insures that you won't get hurt during the removal or installation of your old garage door, and it also guarantees that your new door is installed and working correctly.

Installing a garage door

Sectional garage doors, which roll along tracks at the sides of the garage doorway, are large and heavy, and they also use torsion springs and cable drums to help them roll up and down. These large springs and cables take up much of the weight of the door during its path up and down and are under a great deal of tension. These springs can easily put you in the hospital and are the main reason why garage door installation is best left for professionals who have experience removing them. Garage door installation companies understand your temptation to do the job yourself, but they advocate professional installation if you have even the slightest hesitation about your ability to safely remove and replace your old garage door.

Garage door and installation costs

Garage doors vary greatly in price depending on the type of door you desire, the materials used, and whether it is insulated. A standard 8-foot hollow single-car steel garage door can cost as little as $600 or as much as $3,400 for a solid wood double-wide insulated garage door. A hollow steel 18-foot wide garage door can cost about $1,200 or closer to $10,000 for a high-end product.

Installation costs vary by the size of door and its weight. Single-car garage doors might cost you an extra $250, while larger doors could run an additional $350 to $500. You can shave some of the cost off the installation by removing your old garage door, but therein you run the risk of getting hurt when removing the dangerous torsion springs. Garage door installation typically includes removal and disposal of your old garage door, so gauge your risks carefully. In most instances, it is better to let the professionals handle the mildly complicated installation while you sit back and enjoy the beauty of your new garage door.