Door & Windows

7 Garage Door Installation Errors and How to Avoid Them

Do you want a new garage door for your home?

The average garage door opens and closes 3 to 5 times a day, totaling about 1,500 times a year.

If you take good care of your garage door, it can live up to 30 years. Its automatic opener will last around 10 to 12 years. It means you can enjoy a well-functioning garage door for decades.

However, that is if you install it correctly in the first place. Garage doors are quite complicated. The average DIYer will make several mistakes along the way.

Want to ensure your project is a success? Learn the most common garage door installation errors to avoid.

  1. Choosing the Wrong Door

Do intensive research before buying a garage door. Familiarize yourself with different materials, like aluminum, steel, wood, vinyl, and composite. Find out which one works best for your needs and budget.

Get the exact size you need as well. If the door is too wide for the opening, it may crack. If it’s too small, it won’t give a tight closure, allowing air and water to enter the garage.

Don’t forget to consider your home’s overall aesthetics. The garage door must match its façade. Otherwise, it will stand out like a sore thumb.

  1. Not Aligning the Door Properly

Even if you have the right size, you’ll still get problems if you don’t check the alignment. It results in a tilted door if you’re not careful.

During installation, you might make mistakes in the track assembly or measurements, causing misalignment. It poses several problems, including security and safety issues.

The garage door might jam while opening or closing, leaving your car stuck. It may also not close and lock in place.

The worst issue is that it can result in injuries and fatalities. Your garage door’s misalignment is so bad that it falls off the track and into an unsuspecting person.

  1. Installing the Opener Off-Center

Speaking of alignment, ensure that the opener is at the center. One of the common garage door installation errors is placing the opener to one side. Some DIYers even place wiring, fixture, or outlet in the center instead.

It results in an unbalanced garage door, which will struggle while opening and closing. It will twist because the weight doesn’t have an equal distribution.

It will lead to garage door damage, which might bend over time. The mechanism and other parts are at risk as well.

However, some models allow off-center placement of the opener. Confirm with the instructions first. If in doubt, call a professional for help before incurring damages.

  1. Using the Wrong Tools

When installing new doors, you can’t use any tool lying around. DIYers tend to improvise. Meanwhile, professionals use the best tools for the job.

The most popular mistake in this category is using nails instead of screws. After all, it’s easier to acquire and hammer down, especially if you don’t have a screw gun.

However, nails have a limit in their strain level. Garage doors surpass that. As a result, your new garage door will break down and malfunction faster.

  1. Doing Everything Alone

The most common misconception is that DIY is cheaper than garage door installation costs. However, it isn’t always the case.

When you opt to DIY instead of hiring a professional, your project has a high risk of failing. You’ll likely waste materials because of mistakes. Furthermore, garage doors are pretty heavy, so you can’t install them alone.

Even if the end product seems successful, it won’t stand up to the quality of a professional’s work. When things begin to break, you might spend more repairing things that would have not broken in the first place.

When it happens, bring in a professional to fix the problem. By then, you’ll pay more. In the worst-case scenario, someone gets injured because your DIY project is unsafe.

The same concept applies to installing and replacing old garage doors. They may seem simple, but they have complicated mechanisms best left to an experienced contractor. For example, installing torsion springs isn’t for a DIYer with zero knowledge.

It’s okay to DIY some areas you know about. For others, it’s much cheaper and safer to call a garage door installation service.

  1. Not Taking Time

If you’re impatient, DIY is not right for you. Professionals can finish the same project fast because they already know what to do. The average homeowner has to check the instructions, measure and remeasure many times, and check every step multiple times to ensure they’re doing everything the right way.

To get everything right the first time, hire an installation service instead. Otherwise, prepare to dedicate a lot of your time to ensure the success of your project.

  1. Failing to Adjust the Garage Door After Installation

After installation, check if the garage door is operating as it should. Try to open and close one time. If there’s even a slight hitch, don’t force it and check for what might be going wrong.

Adjust your door as necessary. Professionals make critical adjustments, like tweaking the opener travel limits, alignment, and so on. They’re not content with their work until after they’re sure everything is operating smoothly.

Don’t be complacent as well. Forcing the door when it’s not opening will damage your garage door and its mechanism. You’ll then need to call a repair service, which will add to your expenses.

Avoid These Garage Door Installation Errors

Some garage door installation errors are simple to avoid. However, some can become complicated. For the average DIYer, it might be much simpler, faster, and cheaper to hire a professional instead.

It helps if you learn as much as you can first before undertaking the project. Visit our website today for more information.

About author


Hi, this is Hugh Hook. I’m here to share my insights on a wide variety of home improvement topics. I hope that my site becomes a platform for your inspiration on green living and DIY projects.
Hugh Hook
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