Comparing Fiberglass and Steel Garage Doors

Every material has its pros and cons

Fiberglass and steel garage doors offer their own distinct benefitsShopping for a new garage door is a complicated process, but it’s worth the effort to make an informed decision. If you live in the Pacific Northwest, be sure to compare steel and fiberglass models. Both materials offer numerous benefits and drawbacks for homeowners.

Contents

Before comparing them, it’s helpful to realize that these doors actually contain several different materials. Most steel units consist of insulation, galvanized metal, and synthetic coatings. More costly doors tend to have thicker metal.

Many fiberglass models also contain insulation, but they usually don’t have outer coatings. Metal frames hold two layers of this material together. Different brands use aluminum or steel; units with aluminum frames weigh somewhat less.

Fiberglass

A fiberglass garage door provides several advantages with regard to price, weight, and durability. You’ll probably pay less for it than you’d spend on a comparable steel unit. This material also resists denting and rarely develops cracks.

Unlike some metal doors, fiberglass never rusts or corrodes. It’s particularly resistant to the salty air in seaside locales. These qualities not only make a door last longer but help to preserve its appearance.

This material also weighs considerably less than most metals. It makes a door easier for you to open and close by hand. The difference in weight rises if you compare it with heavy two-layer steel. This is one reason why some sports cars have fiberglass bodies.

Nonetheless, there are also a few disadvantages to keep in mind. A strong impact can cause fiberglass to shatter, and this happens more easily in cold weather. As the National Association of Realtors points out, panels may gradually fade or turn yellow.

Steel

Although they’re somewhat prone to denting and corrosion, most steel doors are quite durable. High-end models feature thick metal that can absorb strong impacts, and doors with vinyl coatings seldom rust. Metal often retains colors longer than fiberglass.

Another advantage of steel is that burglars and vandals find it difficult to break. It can stand up to harsh winter weather as well. The ruggedness of this material allows companies to provide longer warranties. If you choose a steel garage door, the factory may guarantee certain parts for up to 10 years.

This material also insulates better than most alternatives. It may reduce heating and cooling expenses, especially if you live above your garage. However, metal lacks the translucence of fiberglass. If you spend many hours in a garage with steel doors, you may need more windows or lights.

Deciding

The right choice largely depends on your location and budget. A steel door on a garage in Portland, OR, will probably last longer and need fewer repairs. On the other hand, a fiberglass unit may work best if you live on Cape Lookout. It’s also an appealing choice when you don’t have a lot of money to spend on garage doors.

Either way, the Overhead Door Company of Portland can supply and install well-made doors at competitive prices. Please fill out our contact form to get started.