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How to Repair Cracked Garage Doors

You can repair a cracked garage door by using an appropriate filler or other materials.

Table of Contents

If you have a crack or two in your garage door, then repairing it is relatively easy as long as you have the tools and materials to hand.

How can a cracked garage door be repaired quickly?

Safety comes first:

Before you start any work on a garage door, make sure you have turned off the power to the garage door opener or disconnected the power lead to the motor.

Ascertain what damage there is and how much.

If there are several cracks, then you will need to put aside time for the repairs, probably a day or two. A single crack can be done in a few hours.

Garage door material that cannot be repaired.

NOTE: Cracks in some garage door materials make it virtually impossible to repair. Wooden garage doors can have panels replaced or cracks repaired without too much trouble. If your garage door is made from vinyl, fiberglass, or metal, then repairing cracks will never be a success.

Steps to ensure a good repair.

Make sure the affected area is clean.

Use soap and water to clean the area around the crack. If needed, you can use a wire brush to get rid of any stubborn pieces.

Fill the crack.

If the crack is merely on the surface, you can use a waterproof exterior filler. Before proceeding, the filler must be completely dry and hard.

The area should be sanded.

Using varying degrees of sandpaper, starting with coarse grit, sand the whole area, gradually moving towards fine grit until the surface is completely smooth.

Finish the surface.

Using matching paint or stain, finish the newly sanded area until it blends in with the surrounding area.

Panel replacement.

If you discover the crack is too large to fill, or the panel is split, a new panel is your only option. Replace the damaged panel with a new panel, securing it with the existing hardware.

Re-install the hardware.

Any hardware that was removed should be re-installed securely to ensure the door operates correctly

Test your work.

When the job is complete, test the door to make sure it opens and closes without any problems.

DIY or professional.

If you are concerned that you may not be able to repair the door yourself, you should contact a garage door professional to carry out the repairs.

Various garage door-type repair problems.

Wooden Garage Doors

Garage doors made from wood pose no real difficulty as long as the crack is not too large.

Steel Garage Doors

A crack in a steel garage door may be repaired by welding the crack if you have the skills.

Vinyl Garage Doors

A cracked vinyl garage door is almost impossible to repair, but it can be patched with a similar piece of vinyl material.

Aluminum Garage Doors

Aluminum garage doors that have a crack may be repaired by covering the crack with self-adhesive aluminum tape.

What Causes Cracks Above Garage Doors?

Foundation settlement.

The most common cause of cracks above a garage door is due to the foundation settling.

Weather variations.

Weather can affect the structure of the garage. Rain may seep into the structure. It may freeze and then thaw, causing cracks to appear.

Inadequate maintenance.

Neglecting your garage door and surrounding areas, such as the lintel above the door, can result in cracks developing.

Bad installation.

The supporting structure above the garage door must be level and strong enough to take the weight of what is above.

Older Property.

As your property ages, parts of the structure begin to deteriorate and fail, resulting in possible cracks in the load-bearing elements

Damage to the structure.

Any damage to the major structure of the garage may cause cracks to appear as mortar joints separate and expand.

Excess weight.

If the area above the garage door has been modified, resulting in a heavier load placed on the door’s lintel, cracks may begin to appear.

Accidental damage.

Accidents happen, but if the garage structure is damaged by a vehicle coming in contact with it, then you may start to see cracks in the walls.

Do you repair a garage door panel or replace it?

What is the cost of replacing garage door panels?

The average cost to replace a garage door panel is between $150 and $400, depending on the type and zip code.

What is the cost of repairing garage door panels?

Depending on the damage, and the door material, average costs for repairing a panel range between $130 and $190.

Repairing a rusted or dented garage door panel cost.

Rusted or dented panels may be repaired with costs varying from $250 to $400 depending on the material and damage

Deciding to repair or replace a garage door?

How old is the door?

If the garage door has seen better days, it may be more economical to replace it rather than try to repair it.

How much damage is there?

Extensive damage to a garage door will make it almost impossible to have it repaired, and replacement will be your better option.

Can just one panel be replaced?

Yes, you can have a single panel on your garage door replaced.

Can multiple damaged panels be replaced?

If there are multiple panels with damage, then they can be replaced without replacing the entire garage door,

Can the replacement door panel be matched?

Color and texture matching is essential when replacing garage door panels and should be taken into consideration.

Is repairing or replacing a panel a DIY project?

If you have the skills needed and the time available, then you can replace or repair a garage door panel yourself. However, it is not a one-man job because of the weight of the door panels.

Types of garage door damage.

Material damage.

Dents, cracks, or surface deterioration can occur over time, or as a result of a vehicle coming in contact with the door.

Warping or bending.

Door panels can become warped or have bends in them due to their age or merely normal wear and tear.

Improper installation.

Improper installation can cause the door to sag or warp.

Exposure to extreme temperature changes.

Extreme temperature changes can lead to the expansion and contraction of the panels.

Rust or corrosion.

Excessive exposure to moisture can cause rust and corrosion.

Insect or pest damage.

Pests and insects can damage the door and the surrounding frame.

Vehicular damage.

Vehicles or other objects coming in contact with the door will cause damage.

Misuse.

Using too much force when opening or closing the door manually.

Exposure to UV radiation.

Doors will fade or crack if exposed to too much sun.

Normal wear and tear.

Frequent use over time leads to normal wear and tear.

Can I leave the door open just a crack?

Since heat rises, opening the garage door a little will not do much to keep the garage cool.

How hot can a garage get?

On average, a garage will get 20 degrees hotter than the temperature outside.

Problems arising from the heat.

Heat from the garage will permeate into your living area, making the HVAC system work harder. Items stored in the garage may also get damaged by the heat.

Discharge the heat.

Without having vented openings near the garage ceiling, opening the garage door will do little to release the heat.

Risks of having an open door.

You are vulnerable to theft. Intruders can gain access to your home via the garage, not to mention bugs and small animals.

Ventilation.

Open any windows in the garage, install a ceiling fan to help circulate the air, or an attic fan to draw the air up and out.

Install Air Conditioning.

Never be tempted to extend your home’s HVAC system into the garage. It is safer to install a stand-alone A/C unit to keep the garage cool.

Insulate the garage door.

Installing insulation to the inside of the garage door will help to keep the garage slightly cooler.

Garage door repairs by type.

Average garage door repairs cost.

On average, simple garage door repairs will cost between $150 and $375 depending on the type of door and the repairs needed.

Aluminum Garage Doors.

Being one of the cheaper materials, repairing standard aluminum garage doors costs range between $200 and $600.

Fiberglass doors.

The least expensive garage door material, a repair to a fiberglass garage door, can be between $150 to $500.

Wooden garage doors.

Wood is the most expensive of garage door materials, and repairs vary from $250 to over $1,000.

Steel doors.

Becoming more popular, steel garage doors have a repair price range of $250 to $700.

Questions.

Can a cracked door be fixed?

A cracked door may be fixed if the damage is minor, and the door material is suitable.

What causes garage doors to crack?

Cracks can be caused by changes in temperature, excessive humidity, or old age.

Can you patch a garage door?

A wood garage door can be patched either with wood filler or spray foam. Other types of garage doors cannot be patched successfully.

Garage door buckling when closing

Causes can include warped panels, misaligned tracks, a badly installed door arm, and flimsy door materials.

Is It Possible to Save a Cracked Garage Door?

In many cases, a cracked garage door cannot be fixed, wooden doors possibly being the exception.

Can I Repair the Damaged Garage Door?

If the damage is minor, then you can patch it or use filler to repair it. However, more severe damage may justify replacement rather than repair.

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