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Tight on Overhead Space? 3 Alternative Approaches to Garage Door Opener Installation


Are you installing a new garage door opener on a new or existing garage door? Don’t be surprised if space ends up being a challenge. The carriage for a garage door opener is going to require a good deal of space. It needs room to move freely, as well as store the door when it’s open. This is especially true if you are installing an opener on an older door that has never had an opener before. Sometimes the space just isn’t there. Fortunately, there are a number of creative approaches that facilitate an opener in nearly any space, no matter how enclosed the overhead area around the garage door is.

How Much Headroom Will You Need?

Most standard garage door openers will require at least 15 inches of overhead clearance — 3 inches for the garage door opener and 12 inches for the door and torsion spring system. If you don’t have 15 inches to spare, you might have to get creative. There are several alternative approaches that will work well.

Jackshaft Garage Door Openers

Sometimes there’s a beam in the middle of the garage ceiling that doesn’t allow for an opener. (This happens a lot in older garages when openers were not yet common). Sometimes you just don’t have a few inches to spare for whatever reason. A jackshaft garage door opener is a great solution. They work just as well as your standard garage door opener, but sit on the side of your garage door rather than the more standardized top. Naturally, you’ll need enough room on the side of the door to allow for the opener, but that usually isn’t a problem. This is a great solution if you don’t have a lot of headroom or just prefer a more spacious looking ceiling for your garage.

A Frame Down Opening Door

A frame down opening door is another option. You can get them at 3 inch increments for no extra charge. That way the garage door opening can be raised or lowered to meet the desired opening height.

A Low Headroom Track System

They design low headroom track garage door systems specifically for when space is an issue. With this option, you can install a door and an opener in as little as 9 inches of space. Remember to consider how much headroom you might need if you’re repairing your car and have lifted the hood.

Consider Installing a Rolling Overhead Garage Door

Rolling overhead garage doors are typically used by commercial businesses, but they are a perfectly fine option for residential homes. These doors are constructed with interlocking flat or curved slats of galvanized steel, stainless steel or aluminum. They typically coil around a drum to open and close. The beauty of these doors is they can close in a very confined overhead space — typically the size of a long gym duffle bag. Beyond the head unit above the door, there really is no overhead space required. These types of doors may be a preferred option no matter your headroom. By eliminating overhead storage of your garage door, you have more room for other storage — storing ladders, boxes, or other storage crates. It’s a very versatile choice when it comes to new garage door installation.

Safeguard Your Business with 24/7 Storefront Door Repair

There’s a reason we offer 24/7 door repair — especially for businesses with storefronts. That’s your business behind that door — perhaps hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions in inventory. And even if its insured, it’s your heart and soul, what you pour your sweat and tears into making reality. If you’ve got a busted door, you need it fixed immediately — whether it’s the middle of the night, Christmas, or a freaking hurricane. Don’t worry. We’ve got you. Sacs has been serving the Sacramento, California area faithfully for years. We’re here when you need us — or more accurately right at your doorstep as soon as you call. Your problem is our problem because we’re the right solution.