Is security and comfort not as important as your home’s appearance? Modern homes are worth renovating now and then to improve their effectiveness, as well as their look. And as garages turn into more than parking and storage spaces, they deserve the same attention.
If you’re thinking of investing in a new garage door in 2021, there’s good news. Manufacturers provide more and more innovative upgrades you should take advantage of. But there are things you need to be aware of before starting such a project. Factors that affect garage door prices and works. That’s why reading up on what professionals and retailers have to offer is important to installing the right garage door.
Our 2021 guide is here to help you work out how much you’re likely to spend. You’ll also find a detailed rundown of garage door types, materials and measurement tips. In the end, you should be able to narrow down which product to get and when to schedule the project. Pick out the prices and information that apply to your circumstances the most. This will give you a firm footing to start your project on.
- Do your research
- Factors to consider about garage doors
- Types of garage door mechanisms
- Garage door measurement tips
- Garage door installation process
- How long does it take to install a garage door?
- Do you need planning permission for garages?
- Set a budget
- How much does a garage door cost?
- Installation costs
- What adds to garage door prices?
Do your research
What type of garage door would you like? Which material? Do you have a colour or finish in mind? Making sure you know the answers to these questions helps when it comes to finding out costs and complications. This isn’t something to stress about. Instead, explore the industry so you have a better understanding of how it and garage doors work.
Factors to consider about garage doors
Why replace a garage door?
You need money, time and patience to see a garage door installation through. So why start this project in the first place? UK homeowners have a range of reasons to want their garage working and looking good.
- The existing door may be old, faulty and unattractive
- It’s not secure, insulated or damage-resistant enough
- Or you simply need a bigger and better garage door to get the cars in
Standard materials and figures
While garage door sizes vary from property to property, a common size to keep in mind is around 2290mm wide x 2250mm high. When browsing for styles and materials, check the dimensions advertised. You’ll have to take measurements of your own door to compare them with. There are different parts that need measuring to get the most accurate garage door prices. Keep reading to learn more about these requirements.
In terms of great materials for garage doors, there are now five popular options:
- uPVC – one of the most cost-effective yet efficient choices for a project on a budget
- Steel – an affordable and very effective material but less versatile and attractive than superior solutions
- Glass-reinforced plastic or GRP – the next step up in terms of expense, performance and visual appeal
- Aluminium – a slightly pricier options but one you can customise more
- Timber – a very attractive and strong material, but high maintenance and typically quite expensive
Wondering how secure a garage can be? Modern manufacturers are conscious of your concern and try to design doors that can withstand intruders as much as other problems. Reviews are a valuable source of information you should explore alongside different brands. At the same time, qualified and experienced tradespeople can install garage doors and extra features for maximum safety.
If these measures aren’t enough, you can get more assurance from Secured by Design (SBD) certified products. The initiative was established by the police in 1989 after the housing boom, which gave burglars plenty of opportunities to profit too. What the accreditation does is test garage doors – among other features – to ensure they meet high anti-burglary standards. So, before making a purchase, check that your doors and additional elements are SBD certified.
Types of garage door mechanisms
This is the very first thing to think about. Your garage should fit everything you need and be easy to get in and out of. Any disruptions to your access or movement reduce its usefulness. To help decide what design will work best for you, we’ve put together a handy outline of the most popular styles on the market. If you already have a checklist of requirements for your project, it will be easier to spot the right matches.
Manual vs electric
A fundamental choice you need to make is whether or not you want to open and close the door manually. If you don’t, an electric system might be your best bet, as long as you have the budget for it. Despite the increase in necessary materials and garage door prices, automated access is worth considering, especially for the extra security features.
Manual doors are no less beneficial, though. They’re simpler to install and easy to use – some mechanisms more than others. And you can feel just as safe. Quality designs are durable and often don’t include locks that intruders can force open. It all comes down to how high your standards are in terms of performance and aesthetics.
Apart from access for your car, don’t forget about a smaller door for yourself. Replacing both may add up to more than what you’re willing to pay. But, if you do have the funds, it’s not a bad idea to assess whether the side door could do with an upgrade too. It would boost the garage’s look, effectiveness and security even more.
Up and over
This is basically a single panel of either wood or metal that slides up into the ceiling. The design is simple and solid. It does require a sub frame to work properly, so you need to think about both these parts when making a choice. Up and over garage doors prices vary even more based on dimensions, materials and installation requirements. But it’s often the cheapest style on the market.
Keep in mind, though, that it has three main downsides:
- When moving, the bottom of the panel juts outwards – make sure there’s plenty of space and no obstructions
- You won’t be able to use the garage’s ceiling or roof because the panel takes over that space too
- It’s easier to handle with an electric mechanism, which leads to extra expenses
If these factors aren’t an issue, an up and over door is a great solution for a garage of any size. When you get in touch with professionals to install it, make a note of its different parts and stages. This way you’ll have better idea of how to calculate your budget.
A great solution to maximise your garage space. Like the up and over door, a sectional overhead mechanism slides up and down. The difference is that this system consists of segments that move vertically and fold into the ceiling. Steel is the most popular materials. The mechanism is a lot smoother than an up and over. And it doesn’t need extra space in front of the garage. On top of that, you get good insulation and security.
Disadvantages to consider:
- The ceiling is still off limits
- You can only get a ribbed design
This mechanism is similar to a sectional overhead door, except it’s even more sleek, discreet and easy to use. Instead of wide sections, you get thinner strips of metal or laminated wood. These make up the curtain roll that neatly folds into a casing above the opening. A roller door is a far more graceful system suitable for any garage shape or size. It provides the same level of security and insulation, while looking a lot more attractive than the last two options. Modern houses appreciate it the most.
Even this system has its flaws, which include:
- A roller garage door price can be on the expensive side
- It needs room above the door for the casing
- Like the sectional overhead, it only comes in a horizontal, ribbed look
- It can take a while to fold completely
Not interested in high-tech, modern looks? If a traditional mechanism is more to your tastes, a side hinged door is the way to go. It may be better for a classic style, but this doesn’t mean that you can’t get a super-efficient and attractive system. It would basically involve double doors of either metal, wood or GRP, which you can adapt for manual or automated use. They can be as stylish, durable and insulating as your budget allows without taking up too much unnecessary space.
Their downsides are few but handy to keep in mind:
- They tend to be among the most expensive garage doors
- Installation and maintenance can be demanding if not handled properly
- It’s a job best left to professionals, which will take up a large part of your budget
Garage door measurement tips
There is a degree of DIY involved in replacing garage doors, whether you hire someone or not. Your job involves more preparation than anything else, including setting a realistic budget and taking detailed measurements. The first information determines the garage door design you’ll ultimately go for. The second helps the tradespeople understand your needs and provide the right quotes and advice. This is what we’ll focus on now, so here’s a list of garage door dimensions you’re need to make a note of.
Opening width and height
Get your tape measure and write down the dimensions of your door’s opening. Depending on the type of mechanism you’ll be installing, you may need to pay attention to certain aspects. Precision is vital in getting the right frames and features. So, if you have an extra pair of hands to help you take measurements, make use of them.
Up and over tips
The panel is the main and solid feature of this design. It goes right between the existing wall and frame. So your dimensions should be as exact as possible. If you’re thinking of making the garage door bigger, that’s when you need extra diligent measurements. Go from side to side and top to bottom, only calculating the space between the sub frame. The size of this feature matters too, but you just need to measure them separately.
While planning this project, remember the mechanism that will be lifting and lowering the door. This takes up space on the frame, but is also connected to the panel. It’s one of many factors that determine allowances on the door’s size. While the panel should fit the frame quite closely, something as simple as local temperatures that affect materials can drive your plans. Research the matter with both manufacturers and professionals before settling on a design.
Sectional overhead tips
It’s a sleeker design to an up and over garage door, but no less tricky to install. Depending on the structure and condition of your garage, your professionals may need to make changes to it and your plans. This is not just to help the mechanism fit, but to make sure it works properly too.
First, you need to measure the opening. But keep in mind that this mechanism goes inside the garage, not just on and between the frames. Include this fact in your calculations. Then, it all depends on whether you’re replacing your existing sectional overhead system or converting to one. Take measurements accordingly alongside the new dimensions you want the door the have. These details translate into the amount of work your tradespeople will have to do.
You can install a size of your choosing to maximise the usefulness of your garage. But also consider the requirements for such a door. A sectional overhead mechanism needs considerable space for the frame and track. Specifically, calculate the height and width of the door with at least another 350mm leeway. This is the amount of room you need on your ceiling where the tracks will go. Be aware that the more labour your project requires, the higher your quotes will be.
You have a bit more choice when it comes to where the curtain roll and its mechanism can go. Between the opening or inside it? This variety also means different retailers and professionals may advertise using different standards and dimensions. Make sure you understand what each one is selling and that you’re on the same page in terms of dimensions.
The tracks and brackets for the curtain roll typically go on the inside of the opening. The casing you’ll be installing behind the lintel, high enough for it not to obstruct the opening. This means you need that space in the ceiling. Measure your garage for all these things. Apart from such elements, a roller doesn’t need much else, including a sub frame.
You’ll still find variations of the roller garage door design with a range of features. Decide what you want it to provide the most – security, insulation, ease of access – and plan your project and budget from there.
Side hinged tips
This type of mechanism does need a sub frame to support the hinged doors. Since they’re usually of wood or steel, the structure needs to be strong enough to accommodate it. Also be aware that side hinged garage doors are usually pre-assembled. Some products even come with a prefitted sub-frame. Take materials, thickness, insulation and other factors into account when planning and browsing.
The range of options available is exciting, but it also means you have loads of research to do. And it’s doubly important that you get the dimensions right for the existing door and what you want it to turn into. Measure the garage opening, as well as features like the frame and door leaves. Each of these choices affects the size of the project and its overall cost.
In addition to the height and width of the opening, you need to know about the wall around it. Start with the sides. Depending on the type of garage door you’re installing, measure from the opening or frame to the edge of the wall. This will give you an idea of how much room you have to spare or make use of. Handy information to have in front of you when adapting the project to new specifications.
Another very important part of the wall you need to make a note of. Measure the distance between the lintel and the ceiling’s edge. Some of the most popular and efficient mechanisms need a degree of ceiling space. So the dimensions of the roof clearance are a good indicator of how much room you actually have. For this same reason, you should also calculate the depth of your garage to see if it can accommodate an up and over or sectional overhead door.
Garage door installation process
Once you know the different dimensions of your garage, it’s time to move on to other areas worth exploring. For example, if you want to make a viable plan, you should find out what goes into replacing a garage door. Simply understanding the stages a professional follows opens your eyes to the details if your own project.
Here’s a brief rundown of these steps:
- Remove the old door – a panel may be trickier to dismantle than a curtain roll
- Remove the old mechanism – different systems have different demands when being taken apart
- Install a new sub frame as necessary – different walls and frames have their own handling needs
- Add the new door – the removal process in reverse, but converting the door can need extra alterations for a correct fitting
- Add the new operating, locking and automated mechanism as necessary – each design varies because of the different types of door, materials, features and more
- Dispose of waste – this would require some labour, time and transport, which professionals provide for an extra fee
How long does it take to install a garage door?
On average, a construction service should be able to install two garage doors per day. If you just have the one, you can expect the project to take a couple of hours. On the other hand, there’s always a chance that things won’t go according to plan. So it’s not unlikely that you’ll need to give your tradespeople extra time or even another day to finish off.
In the end, the extent of work required affects how long it’s going to take to complete. You can estimate this using a range of factors, including:
- The door’s size and design
- The number and complexity of necessary alterations
- If the products are pre-assembled or made on-site
- The number of workers involved
But the best place to get an accurate timeframe is the service itself. When gathering quotes, make a point of asking about this. It’s a good way to judge the most trustworthy tradespeople. These won’t make unrealistic promises or spread the work out without good reason – a costly factor.
Do you need planning permission for garages?
You don’t have to worry about getting planning permission, unless you’re converting the whole garage into a living space or proper house. If it’s just the door you’ll be changing, a visit to your local authorities shouldn’t be necessary. On the other hand, works on a conservation area or similar locations do need approval. Also permitted development rights don’t always include garages, so it may be worth checking where you stand. This way you can feel confident that your project is perfectly legal.
Set a budget
It’s important to know roughly how much you’ve got to spend on your project. This will help prevent you from overspending or not investing enough in the perfect garage doors. Above all, be careful and realistic when you set your budget. Don’t let problems take you by surprise, especially if you could prepare for them to begin with.
How much does a garage door cost?
Who manufactures all the products you need plays a big part in your project’s upfront cost. For example, Crocodile garage doors price their materials and features differently to other brands. The quality, popularity and services of the companies you choose affect the quotes you’ll get. But there’s a lot more that goes into them and this is what we’ll look at now. Here are some handy prices to keep in mind.
|Door type||Approx. cost (incl. VAT)|
|Single up and over||£1,000 – £3,000+|
|Double up and over||£1,500 – £4,500+|
|Single roller||£1,000 – £2,000+|
|Double roller||£1,200 – £2,800+|
|Single sectional||£1,000 – £2,000+|
|Double sectional||£2,000 – £3,500+|
|Single side hinged||£1,000 – £3,000+|
What adds to garage door prices?
We’ve already mentioned removal, installation and waste disposal as parts of the process. Each of these come with their own expenses. On top of these, expect to find other factors taking up portions of your budget.
As already mentioned, you have access to six materials for your garage door. They each have their strengths and weaknesses, so consider careful what best suits your home and budget. Let’s be more specific about this last point. We’ve put together a simple list of the average price ranges you’ll encounter on the market.
|Door materials||Approx. cost|
|uPVC||£500 – £800+|
|Steel||£500 – £1,000+|
|GRP||£600 – £2,000+|
|Aluminium||£600 – £3,000+|
|Wood||£700 – £6,000+|
Colour and finish
Minor but pricey details. Your stylistic choices can add extra little expenses to your budget. We do suggest you invest in a quality finish for your timber door to help it last longer. But sticking with simple colours will keep costs on the low end. As impressive as bold, high-end looks may be, you don’t want to end up regretting them when you see your project’s final bill.
A professional’s effort doesn’t start at your doorstep. The distance they need to travel to get to you costs them time and fuel, which you may have cover. This is the kind of extra fee you should discuss from the start. When breaking down the budget you’ll need, ask the tradesperson for as much detail as they can give about their rates.
The amount of work your project demands defines a professional’s quote. They will include all standard stages in that price, but anything that deviates from the process you’ve arranged will cost extra. So it’s important to make a good plan and stick with it throughout the project. But saving up a little more ensures you can cover any surprises.
Alterations to the structure
Not every garage door project is the same. The work required varies from building to building. Is the existing opening wide enough for the new mechanism? Do you have enough ceiling space? Do you need to make changes to the roof as well as the walls? The amount of changes to the garage determines how large a budget you’ll need.
Does an electric system sound appealing? It’s one of the best options on the market right now, but you do need the wiring for it. If your garage already has it, you may just need to adjust or upgrade it. If you’re converting from a manual to an automated door, however, the job will be a lot more complicated. Expect electric garage doors fitted prices to include the labour involved in upgrading the garage with its new tech.
The next set of your questions you should ask yourself involves how much technology you want to add to the mechanism. You have a huge range of very exciting options, but you need to be selective. For example, a decent motion sensor and security system should be plenty of security, if that’s your main concern. Or you could invest in simply making the door easier and faster to open, while trusting a heavy-duty lock for the garage door’s safety.
When designing your garage, it’s easy to forget about basic structural needs. Insulation is one of them and a priority to ensure the space and everything in it are safe from the outside elements. You can choose just how effective the garage’s insulation is. But if you intend to use that space a lot, you should strive for the best results possible. Even this room can affect your home’s energy efficiency.
|Service type||Approx. cost|
|Labour||£200 – £500|
|Garage door paint||£15 – £100|
|Electronic operator||£190 – £530|
|Wired button||£10 – £35|
|Keypad (wired and wireless)||£45 – £200|
|Garage door insulation||£20 – £60|
Different garage doors come at a different expense. The most accurate prices you’ll be able to find are from reliable professionals. If you provide them with all the information they need, they’ll be able to respond with a detailed breakdown of their services and rates. We hope that our guide has been helpful in filling you in on the current garage door market.
Keep exploring available mechanisms, as well as advice on garage door related topics. Why not learn how to maintain your garage door? Or how to make full use of that space beyond simply storing cars and belongings? Getting to know your property makes it easier to find the right tradespeople to help you improve it.
And when you do get round to comparing quotes, make sure you approach multiple garage door companies. This way you can work out the fairest price. We can help with this too. Simply fill in our form and you’ll hear from up to four local professionals. Their quotes and expert guidance are a good first step towards planning your ideal garage door project.