You’re planning your new home but the developers have different ideas - one thinks you should install two single garage doors, and the other thinks a wide double door will look better - how do you choose which is the best fit for you?
Here are some pointers that should help you choose the best type of door for your needs and the style of your home.
How wide is your garage?
Regardless of whether your garage is attached or detached, it should be at least 18 ft. wide by 22 ft. deep if you plan on parking two cars in it. If you’re leaning towards two single 8 ft. x 7 ft. garage doors, your garage must be at least 22 ft. wide, whereas it will need to be at least 24 ft. wide for 9 ft‑wide doors, and possibly even wider if you’re also planning on installing an access door on the front of the garage.
Of course, you’ll also need to take into account the type of vehicle you want to park in the garage (SUV, van, pickup, small RV, etc.). Don’t forget to leave space for storage along the walls. The wider your garage, the easier opening vehicle doors will be.
That’s pretty much the specifics regarding the size, but of course your final decision will also be influence by your budget.
First things first, let’s think about PRACTICALITIES
- Cold and humidity
If you live in a cold climate, two garage doors can reduce the amount of cold air that flows into the garage, which, if you heat your garage, will reduce your heating bill.
If you live in a hot, humid climate, two single garage doors can reduce the amount of humidity that enters your garage, which will reduce your air conditioning costs.
- Garage door malfunctions
If you have a double garage door (16 ft.) and there is some sort of malfunction, like a torsion spring break, you will likely be left with two cars you can’t take out of your garage. Whereas if you opt for two single garage doors, you’ll at least be able to get one of the cars out.
- Three car family
If you own three small or compact cars and are planning on parking them all in the garage, a 16 ft.‑18 ft. double garage door is the best choice. If you opt for two single doors, you’ll struggle to manoeuvre the three cars through the doors for parking.
- Do triple garages exist?
You don’t often see double (16 ft.) and single (9 ft.) doors together on real estate developers’ plans. However, triple garages can be found, particularly in the USA where the cost of land is lower. In these cases, the smaller door is usually used for parking motorcycles, ATVs, snowmobiles, or small fishing boats. If you’re thinking about a triple garage your garage must be at least 900 ft.2 (84 m2).
So, that’s the practicalities covered, now what about APPEARANCE?
- No two people have the same tastes, but…
Ask any designer or architect and they’ll tell you that two single doors look better when the garage is at the front of the home. A double garage door at the front really stands out and people will be drawn to the garage door rather than the overall architectural design of your home.
But, you can reduce the impact of a double garage door by installing decorative features such as a pergola or trellis for climbing plants.
- If you’re lusting over carriage‑style doors
You have to opt for two single garage doors. The carriage‑style doors’ traditional style only works with 8 ft. or 9 ft.‑wide doors.
But wouldn’t a double garage door be cheaper?
The cost of installing two single doors rather than one double door is quite similar, the main difference is the cost of a second electric garage door opener. And of course, there will be the additionally cost of building a narrow wall between the two single doors.
We would also like to point out that you don’t need a more powerful garage door opener (e.g. ¾ HP) for a double garage door. The garage door spring system (counterweight) does the work of opening the door, therefore your door must be well balanced whatever its size. Thus, the door should weigh somewhere between 8 and 10 lbs (3.5 to 4.5 kg). The motor on the door opener only does what you would do manually. But you must be careful ‑ door openers can lift heavier loads and just as easily bring that same weight back down so make sure your feet aren’t in the way of the garage door when it’s closing.
Are you ready to get started?
Contact us at 508-875-3508, we’ll be more than happy to talk to you about the range of garage doors and door openers available, and help you make the best choice for your needs and budget. If you would prefer, you can send us an online quotation.
Finally, if you need a visual aid, why not try out our Design Centre or visit our image gallery?