What Are the Differences Between Steel and Aluminum Garage Doors
You love your home. You’ve cared for and maintained it from the moment you took possession. So when it’s time to replace the garage door, you want one that suits your specific needs and improves the look of where you live.
Fun fact: According to Remodeling Magazine’s 2016 annual Cost vs. Value report, in the U.S. garage door upgrades rank among the top five home improvement projects that have a return on investment of over 90%.
Once you’ve researched what is available and narrowed your search to either a steel or an aluminum garage door, it’s time to make a decision. You like that both these materials are available in many styles, colours, and finishes. So where do they differ? Let’s look at some pros and cons of steel vs. aluminum:
Pros of a Steel Garage Door
- Doesn’t warp
- Doesn’t delaminate
- Requires little to no maintenance
- Proven track record for durability
- Reasonably priced
Cons of a Steel Garage Door
- Steel dents and can be expensive to repair
- It is not a strong insulator
- It can corrode, which could be a problem if you live in a humid or coastal region
Pros of an Aluminum Garage Door
- Lightweight, which causes less strain on the torsion springs and door opener
- Corrosion resistant
- Less expensive than high-quality steel
- Low maintenance
- An eco-friendly material that can be recycled
Cons of an Aluminum Garage Door
- More susceptible to dents than steel
- Damage can be difficult to repair
- Not as popular so some of the replacement parts are not readily available
With both steel and aluminum doors there are other factors that influence their quality. Here are a few to consider:
- Insulation: A door with a layer of polyurethane foam or rigid polystyrene insulation will improve the energy efficiency of your garage and reduce noise from the outside. A higher R-Value will deliver better results. The layer of insulation also can add strength to both steel and aluminum.
- Weatherstripping: Full-width weatherstripping along the bottom of your door can stop wind and rain from getting in. The strip should conform to the floor when the door is closed. If you live in an area with extreme weather or high winds, also consider weatherstripping at the top of and around each section of the door.
- Gauge: If you’re considering a steel door, look for a thickness of at least 24 gauge. Keep in mind that the lower the gauge is, the thicker the steel is.
Due to their cost, durability, and minimal maintenance both steel and aluminum garage doors are good options. The weather in the area where you live and the activities in your driveway—such as kids playing ball hockey or basketball—could be the deciding factor in your choice of material.