BY ROBERT BROOME, OWNER
In this post, I would like to discuss how to measure for a new garage door. I get calls on a regular basis from customers that are closing in carport or extending the size of their garage doors. They often want to know what the rough opening should be for the door that they should order. The measurements they give me are typically quite odd, and I become very apprehensive about ordering a garage door for them. For some reason, these odd size doors being ordered incorrectly somehow becomes my fault. So, in the spirit of good business, and neither of us getting stuck with a useless garage door, I would like to go over some terminology and what measurements you will need to shop for a new garage door.
1st of all, let’s cover the difference in a rough opening and a finished opening. A rough opening is the size of the opening before any finish work has been done. If you have a rough opening that is unfinished and you need a guide in to getting the door ready for an installation you can find our how to guide here. For everyone else, let’s cover some basics. I know many of you want to pick up the phone or scour the internet for prices and models, but you may not have enough information. You will 1st need to know the width and the height of the garage door opening. If you have a door that is being removed, do not measure the existing door. Measure the opening itself. Knowing the width and height of the door will give you the tools needed to do some research and know the price points of what you may want to buy. There are other measurements and variables needed to be gathered before ordering a new garage door, but that is typically gathered by a garage door professional when he is on site. These variables can add a small amount to your overall investment, but it’s minimal. Like many that I have dealt with in the past, you may be confident in your ability to get these measurements right and feel that you can get your new door ordered with a simple phone call. I know that salespeople in your home is super uncomfortable, and some of their rap is unbearable, but it is always best to let the people installing the door do a site check. If they make a mistake, it’s on them, and the liability is not on you. This post is intended for purposes of clarifying how garage door sizes work and opening preparation.
Standard garage doors in our area are 8′, 9′, 16′ and 18′ wide. 99% of the residential garage doors that we run across are different than these widths. 1/2″ or 1″ in one direction of the other will won’t typically cause you to have to shop for a non-standard garage door size. Next, you will need to know your door height. Standard garage doors start at 7′ tall and increase in increments of one foot. For residential homes, 99% of doors are either exactly 7′ or 8′ tall. When pricing your door, you will need to price a garage door exactly the size of the opening, so when calling around for price points be sure that you have this information in hand. You may not want to hire the lowest cost provider in town, but you will want a fair price from a company that will honor their warranties and offers a quality product. Happy shopping!