Regular garage door maintenance goes a long way. It helps your door last longer, perform better, and function safely. It also helps to control the costs of garage door repair by being proactive, and helps to minimize the need for emergency garage door repair. But preventative maintenance only goes so far. Eventually, you’ll need to replace the door and install a brand new garage door. This is important for safety, overall functioning, and aesthetics. All 3 of these factors can affect your property value.
Here are a few factors that affect its durability and shelf life.
Garage Door Parts & Panel Average Life
First, it’s important to note that there are many different parts on a garage door. In general, most of these parts are very cheap. In fact, some pieces cost as little as a few dollars to replace. And if you replace them before they break, you may end up saving your garage door from a costlier repair.
For example, if your garage door rollers are starting to wear it, spending a few dollars for new ones can help protect the track and keep the door from going off it.
The more expensive parts typically include your opener, springs, and the panel itself. How long do these parts last? Well, the answer depends.
The average garage door opener will usually last you between 10 to 20 years, but it can certainly burn out before then.
The lifespan of your garage door will also vary considerably but 10 to 20 years is a fairly good estimate. Now, if you don’t care for the door and let it rust, it might end up only making it 5 years – so proper care is key.
Springs: Torsion & Extension Durability
When it comes to your garage door springs, you usually estimate the lifespan based on the manufacturer’s specifications.
In simple terms, there are two types of springs: extension and torsion.
Extension springs are cheaper and don’t last as long. On the other hand, torsion springs cost more but can have a long lifespan.
The springs on your door are measured in cycle.
1 cycle = opening and closing the panel once.
Extension springs are usually rated to last between 5,000 to 10,000 cycles.
Torsion springs are usually built to last a minimum of 10,000 cycles and can go up to 50,000 cycles!
So, to find out how long your spring may last, you’ll need to do a little math.
For example, if you use your garage door 4 times per day, that’s 4 cycles.
4 cycles times 365 days equals 1,460 cycles per year. That means if your spring is rated to last 10,000 cycles, it’ll only last a little longer than 6 years.
And do note that we don’t actually recommend waiting until the very last minute. When a spring breaks, you won’t be able to operate the garage door at all. In fact, most panels are so heavy that you wouldn’t even be able to raise it manually. Trust us – you don’t want to have your car stuck in the garage on a workday.
Now the estimated lifespan of a garage door spring can be reduced if you’re not lubricating it and clearing off rust. That means it could break in as little as 3 years of not cared for!
The Importance of Maintenance for an Overhead Panel
Now that you know the estimated lifespan of garage door parts, let’s take a look at the second most important factor of how long your panel will last: maintenance.
Just like most hardware requires care, maintenance, and tune-ups, your garage door is no different. And it’s understandably easy to overlook this fact, as most garage doors do tend to work reliably for many years. Its only when we’re left with a broken door that we wish we took proper care of it earlier.
Fortunately, tune-ups, inspection, and routine maintenance are all fairly affordable services. And they can prevent a costly breakdown before it happens.
On average, expect to pay between $50 to $200 for an overhead door company to perform a tune-up. Remember – even just once-a-year tune-up could save you thousands of dollars in repairs if your garage were to break down.
Overall the major garage door parts like your panel, springs, and opener can all last more than 10 years, providing that you’re caring for them yourself or having a technician do it for you.
Minor parts like hinges and rollers may not last as long, so they should be inspected and replaced accordingly.
The Bottom Line: Should You Replace Your Garage Door?
If you are wondering whether or not it’s time to install a new garage door, you probably already know the answer in your gut. If the door is too noisy, rusty, or just plain ugly, it’s likely time. Like everything else, garage doors wear out. In the end, they can become not only an eyesore but extremely dangerous, especially if you have young kids or pets.
A new door is not only safer and more visually appealing, but it can significantly increase the value of your property. In fact, installing a new garage door has nearly a 97% return on investment, almost dollar for dollar, because of the improved equity it gives your home. Give your home a facelift with new garage door installation.