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How Overhead Commercial Garage Doors & Residential Garage Doors Differ


On the surface, overhead commercial garage doors and residential garage doors serve the same function — open and close to allow vehicles to pass. But how do these doors differ, exactly? And most importantly, what do you need to understand about overhead commercial garage door installation to be able to choose the perfect new garage door for your business?

The most obvious differences in these types of garage doors is where they are used — one for commercial businesses, the other for family homes. But that’s no small difference. The unique needs of a commercial business can significantly affect different considerations when it comes to size, design, construction, and function.

A Look at the Differences

First it’s important to consider how these types of doors differ from each other. The biggest difference is size. Depending on the needs of your commercial business, you may need a fairly sizable overhead garage door — especially if you need to admit large semi trucks. These doors are not only larger but more fortified since they are essentially protecting a business from theft. A commercial garage door sees more use and needs to offer greater protection.

For residential garage doors, appearance is key. An attractive new garage door can brighten a home’s appearance and even boost its property value. In fact, if you install a new garage door, you’ll recoup 98% of your expenses in improved resale value, according to real estate experts. New garage door installation is practically money in the bank, dollar for dollar.

On the outset, overhead commercial garage doors cost considerably more than residential garage doors. But keep in mind these doors are highly durable — they can take a beating and they last a long time. This is great because they also tend to be heavily used. How many shipments do you get in a day? How large do the doors need to be to handle the cargo you need? These are sizable doors but they are built to last. You won’t need to install a new commercial garage door nearly as soon as a residential garage door.

Commercial garage doors also close differently. Most roll up into the ceiling and require minimal storage space when open. This can significantly save you on space as you’ll need to devote less area to the garage door itself.

Garage Door Size

Since overhead commercial garage doors are designed to admit much larger vehicles than residential garage doors, they come in much bigger sizes.

That’s why many people building custom garages for RVs or Semi trucks will install an overhead commercial garage door, even though it’s a private home. The size options allow for so much more.

Of course, the space you need to install an overhead commercial garage door may not be standard. If this is the case, you may need to consider custom sizing. This can be more expensive, but you should be able to find options that can accommodate nearly any size. They even make garage doors for airplane hangers capable of admitting an entire jet!

Garage Door Material

The type of material you choose for an overhead commercial garage door will be vastly different from what you’d want for your own home.

For residential garage doors, wood, vinyl, and steel are popular options for garage door materials. For overhead commercial garage doors, wood is rarely even considered. Glass and aluminum are popular for commercial businesses like restaurants, breweries, and coffee shops that have customer facing needs. For warehouses, steel is more popular because of its durability and fortification.

Garage Door Repair DIY: Tread Lightly

Think you’re a DIY guy who can do garage door repair? Maybe. It’s totally possible if you are fairly handy with tools and somewhat know what you’re doing — at least when it comes to simple garage door repairs. Keep in mind, however, that it’s never as easy as it looks in the YouTube video. And if you don’t know what you are doing, you can cause serious damage to the door, not to mention hurt yourself. Garage doors are highly complex mechanical objects weighing hundreds of pounds. Tread lightly. It’s also worth considering that no garage door repair is simple. If something can go wrong, it usually will. This can be extremely frustrating. If you find you need some help, we’re always here. We offer 24/7 emergency garage door repair to the greater Sacramento area.