Taking the time to learn about the advantages and disadvantages of the wide variety of garage doors available in San Diego will reap benefits now and in the future. Garage doors not only provide a level of security for your vehicles and the items you store in your garage, but they can also add to the overall beauty and appeal of your home. San Diegans, with their active outdoor lifestyle, make use of their garages in a myriad of ways and often create multi-use garages. Finding the door with the right features and the best look will add to the security and safety of your home while providing both energy savings and optimal flexibility of use.
The two basic types are the tilt-up garage door and the sectional roll-up door.
Tilt-Up Garage Doors in San Diego
A tilt-up or swing-up garage door is a solid door fabricated of either metal or wood. It pivots up into a horizontal position when opened and is positioned in the ceiling over the garage door floor. The door is manually operated by the use of heavy coil springs that enable you to raise the door (sometimes weighing hundreds of pounds) quietly and with minimal physical exertion.
The tilt-up mechanism uses the principle of the fulcrum for balance and leverage, balancing the weight of the door so it’s easier to lift. These doors are still common in San Diego but are seldom installed in new homes, having been replaced by the safer and more versatile sectional door.
Roll-Up and Sectional Steel Garage Doors in San Diego
The roll-up door was originally designed for commercial operations. Where residential sectional doors are normally sectioned into 4-6 interlocking horizontal panels, commercial-grade doors, often used in warehouses or industrial parks, will have many more sections, resembling a roll-top desk. The door rides along a vertical track that makes a 90-degree curving turn, running horizontally along the ceiling track until it rests in the fully open position. Commercial roll-ups are often hoisted manually by a chain.
Doors like this can be opened and closed hundreds of times without incident. If a section of the door should be damaged, it can be replaced or repaired quickly and inexpensively. Utility, durability, and reliability are the key qualities in a roll-up. These points factor into residential sectional door installations as well, even though the number of times the door is opened and closed may be far less.
Wood Garage Doors in San Diego
Wood garage doors in San Diego are the popular choice of people looking for beautiful doors that complement their home’s architectural style. They add character and “life” to a home or business in ways not matched by other materials. In other regions of the country with heavy rain and snow, metal doors are sometimes preferable, but here in San Diego, wood doors and gates, when well maintained, can last for several decades. If you live near the ocean, the salt air can dry out the wood or corrode metal hardware, so regular maintenance is especially important.
Another risk to wood structures we have in San Diego is termites. Wood garage doors in San Diego should be treated for termite resistance, performed at regular intervals.
Wood garage doors can be painted or refinished to cover minor scratches and dings; a nice plus. In San Diego’s climate, a well-maintained wood door will have a working life comparable, in many cases, to a metal one. While wood garage doors usually cost more than steel ones, the extra investment can add value to your home. Well-designed and installed custom wood doors have a very high ROI (return on investment). Ultimately, though the choice is about enhancing your lifestyle and the ambiance of your home.
Metal Garage Doors in San Diego
Metal garage doors, being a frame design rather than solid, are lighter than wood so there is less weight on the door’s apparatus. This usually means less long-term repair and maintenance, and often a longer life span for the opener, torsion springs, and other stress-bearing elements.
New advances in metal doors can add a durable, weather-resistant vinyl or plastic veneer that looks like wood – including the grain. Some even feature embossed grain that is “architecturally accurate.” For painted doors, it is often very hard to see or even feel the difference, and those with wood-grain coloring can be quite realistic. Steel doors, of course, also offer the advantage of high-tech insulation.
Glass Garage Doors in San Diego
Glass garage doors are a fast-growing segment of the market in San Diego – they have broad commercial/retail applications and, for many people, make a beautiful and distinctive residential door. Essentially a large sectional window that rolls up into the ceiling along sturdy tracks, the glass sectional door floods the garage or other space with light. They were originally used for traditional firehouses, where two factors were especially important – ceiling-to-floor visibility and quick exits.
Glass garage doors in San Diego are popular because of their distinctive simplicity, their feeling of “openness” whether closed or raised and their unique capacity to bring light into a home or commercial space – much like a segmented bay window. Concerns about privacy can be at least partially addressed with smoked or textured glass, and concerns about security are answered by smaller glass frames. They don’t have the insulating capacity of a steel sectional door or even wood, but San Diego’s temperate climate makes that, for many, a fair trade-off for the huge advantage of natural light and visibility.
Automatic Garage Doors – San Diego’s Premier Source
Garage doors are either manual or automatic. Automatic doors are operated by an electric garage door opener, installed in garage door ceiling, or (in some models) wall and activated by remote control or keypad. One limitation: The door does not work during power failures (though all doors have a fail-safe mechanism to manually operate if that happens). Since tilt-up doors are spring-loaded, they are normally opened and closed without electrical power. In nearly every other feature, automatic doors are the smart choice to make – ease of use, safety and security (such as automatically turning on the garage light), convenience for the elderly or disabled, and the over-all integration of your garage into your home environment. Automated door and door openers keep getting “smarter” – in fact, many can be operated from your smartphone – and these advantages will only increase over the next few years.
At ADS, we have a full selection of wood and metal and glass garage doors. We can install or service all types of garage doors, even the older tilt-up models (many garage door businesses don’t know how). Visit our showroom in the Miramar district and get a hands-on experience of what a new door from ADS can do for you, even test-driving our fully operational models.