Do know you can install your garage door solely by yourself? Irrespective of the reason why you want to; you can actually get it installed and fitted without professional input, thereby saving you installation cost.
Installing a new garage door or replacing an old one can be quite expensive. But with the right tools and the know-how, you can build a garage door of your own that will serve your needs and also save you some hundreds of dollars.
Doing a DIY project on your garage door needs special skills and expertise and can be quite dangerous if you lack the right knowledge and skill. Consider calling for professional help if you aren't comfortable undertaking the project on your own.
Let's look at different types of garage doors you can make your choice from
A garage door basically falls in these four categories.
- Rolls up
- Swings in
- Swings put
Now let's look at how you can build a garage door of your own.
How to DIY a Sliding Garage Door
This is the cheapest and easiest garage door to operate.
- Make a wooden frame with the same dimensions as your wooden boards.
- Nail, glue or pin your door to the frame.
- Attach your wheels to the bottom end of the door.
- Attach the hinged loops to the door using wooden screws.
- Slide the pipe through the hinged loops on the top of the door. The tube should be cut per your space size.
- Attach any flanges and angled pieces necessary to the end of the pipe
- You'll need someone to help you in placing the level on top of the door. Hold the door in place and mark holes where you'll need to attach the plumbing pieces to the wall.
- Fix the plumbing hardware to the wall
A relatively cheap option for your garage door is to install a roll-up screen. The screen will cover the area after you park your vehicle inside the garage. When you don't need the barrier separating the garage from the outdoors, roll up the screen.
Make a DIY garage door out of old cabinetry with recessed panels. Start with a plywood base and form two doors from the plywood. Screw cabinet doors that have recessed panels on them to the plywood doors. This will add architectural detail to the doors. Add hinges to the plywood doors. Sand and paint the doors in any colour you want.
Replace an Old Garage Door
To replace an old garage door, you'll need
- socket bit
- open-ended wrench
- drill bits
- Phillips driver bit
- safety glasses
- adjustable locking pliers
Release the tension in the torsion spring by clamping adjustable locking pliers to the shaft and also wedge the pliers above the door against the header.
Insert a steel rod into one of the four holes in the winding cone of the spring. Hold the rod tightly and loosen the screws holding the winding cone.
Use the steel rods to loosen the spring 1/4 turn at a time. Use one rod to hold the cone and the second to turn the cone after the first rod is removed.
Disconnect the track by unscrewing or unbolting it from the doorframe.
Remove the old automatic garage door opener.
Begin removing the door panels. Start at the top panel, and remove the hinges connected to the panel. Be cautious when dealing with glass.
Install the new door panels
Attach hinges to the top of each panel. Many new doors come with pilot holes drilled by the manufacturer.
Place the bottom panel into the door opening. Hold the panel upright by driving a nail into the wall next to the panel and bending it over to hold it in place. Make sure it's level before attaching the next panel.
If you're installing a two-car garage door, place a reinforcing bar on the top panel to prevent the door from bowing in the centre. Be sure the bar is centred on the panel. Drill pilot holes, and secure the bar with screws.
Attach axle supports to the bottom of the bottom panel and to the top of the top panel.
Attach the next panel on top of the first one. Make sure the groove of the upper panel rests on the ridge of the lower panel. Repeat the process until all the panels are in place. The final panel should extend 1″ or so past the top of the door opening.
Begin installing the track by attaching brackets to the vertical track pieces. Check your instruction manual to be sure you're installing the brackets in the correct places.
After attaching the brackets, place them against the wall, and make sure the wheels lie correctly in the track.
Attach the door cable to the hook on the bottom panel axle support before attaching the bottom bracket to the wall.
From inside the garage, secure the top half of each hinge to the panel above.
Place the wheeled axles into the side hinges, and the top and bottom axle support.
Rest the curved portion of the track on the vertical piece earlier installed, and attach the other end to the ceiling bracket. Use the same ceiling supports that were used with the old door.
Assemble the pieces to support the spring assembly, and attach them to the track. Check the instruction manual to make sure you're installing it in the correct place.
Attach the horizontal track to the vertical track on the door.
Drill a hole through the horizontal track to line up with the vertical track. Use the holes in the vertical track to determine where to drill the hole.
Bolt the tracks together. Be sure to use the correct size bolt: if the head is too big, it will obstruct the track. Don't tighten the bolts firmly until you're sure the door fits properly and lines up smoothly.
Locate the centre of the opening and mark it on the fore header. It's on this point that you will later attach the support or the spring.
Attach the spring anchors to the springs, then attach the spring locking cone, this will keep the spring from loosing when under high tension.
Bolt the two springs securely to the main header bracket.
Slide the torsion rod into the holes in the side header brackets. Make sure the rod is secure, then attach the pulleys to each end of the rod.
Secure the centre header bracket to the centre mark on the header. You'll probably need to lift the centre of the assembly to get it level before attaching it.
Bringing the cable up from below, attach it to the pulley wheel on both sides. Turn the wheel, so the slack is pulled tight over the pulley from the door side. Slide the wheel to the header bracket, and tighten it securely.
Tighten a pair of locking pliers to the rod right outside the bracket. This will prevent the rod from turning when you begin to tighten the springs.
Tighten the Springs and snap a chalk line across the springs to help you know how many times you've turned the springs when you begin tightening.
Use the steel rods to tighten the spring by reversing the loosening procedure you used on the old door. Check your owner's manual to determine how many turns are required to compress and firmly tighten the spring. Look at the chalk line to confirm how many turns you've made.
When you're quite sure that you have reached the appropriate tension, tighten the bolts in the anchor to lock it in place, and remove the pliers from the torsion rod.
The need for a properly installed garage door cannot be overemphasized as it is a security check. However, ensure that you thoroughly read your garage door manufacturers instruction and owner's manual before attempting to install your garage door as procedures might vary for each manufacturer. Always enlist the help of a professional in the field and maintain your garage door regularly.