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Got Wood?

Some things do come back in style if you wait long enough. Think hip-hugger pants, shag carpeting and, yes, even wood garage doors. The wood garage doors of the 1970s are back in a big way. It’s one of many design trends that have come and gone.

The first revolution in garage door materials happened in the 1980s, when raised panel steel doors replaced wood ones. They continue to dominate the market today, mainly because they’re economical and low-maintenance. But for certain homes — especially custom homes or those with an Old World look — a big expanse of cold steel just won’t do. Frequently the garage door is a major part of the front of a home and people are finding that they can do something more interesting.

For this reason, wood has become the most popular option. But these aren’t the humble wood doors of two decades ago. For example, 1st United Door Technologies offers wood doors in a carriage-house style that has an old-fashioned craftsman look. Made of the finest wood, they offer a much richer appearance and you can expect to pay four times or more what you would for steel doors.

Just as wood is beginning to catch on, the next wave of garage doors is already approaching. If you have a steel garage door, there are ways to ramp up its curb appeal. You can select different patterns or textures and install windows; and there’s always the do-it-yourselfer’s best tool: paint. But if you want your garage door to be a focal point rather than something to disguise, wood may just be worth its price tag.

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Many homeowners like the look of wood garage doors but are apprehensive about the extra cost involved with the material.

There are many positive aspects of utilizing this beautiful and natural material for your garage door.

Types of Wood

Most wood garage door manufacturers  recommend opting for a sturdy hardwood material for your doors. This will help your entry to stand the test of time and last for years to come. Popular natural materials include pine, mahogany and most popular, cedar.

Architectural Feature

The benefits of wood doors include the fact that they are highly customizable and unmatchable in their natural and rich appearance. Many high-end architecture firms select these types of materials for the homes they build.

Wood can be shaped and carved, glass features can be added, and the entire piece can be custom-made for your home from start to finish. This allows your home to have a unique feature that will surely boost the value of the property.

Tips for Maintaining a Natural Garage Entry

To keep up the healthy appearance of your natural entry, be sure that there is adequate water drainage outside and inside the entrance. This helps to prevent standing water from collecting at the base and causing the natural material to rot. Another great way to prevent weathering and damage from the elements is to apply a coat of sealant at least once a year. This will protect the entry from wind, rain, snow, and extreme temperatures.

A good, experienced installer will make sure to compensate for the expansion and compression of the natural material when they perform the initial installation. Every two years you may wish to repaint or re-stain the exterior to keep the material looking fresh and new and preserve its natural beauty.

As with any car entry, you will need to keep an eye on the tracks and hinges that operate the door, keeping all moving parts well lubricated and all nuts and bolts tightened. Springs and all metal parts should be free of rust for smooth operation.

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Wood Garage Door Care

Woodie Plank

If you have a wood garage door, you’re probably pleased with the natural look it gives your home. To keep it looking nice, you need to maintain it. This ensures that you won’t have to replace it anytime soon or pay for major repairs, as regular maintenance can keep it looking nice and functioning properly.

To keep your product looking its best, you should make sure it is sealed to protect it from UV rays and extreme weather. If it has panels, you will need to apply acrylic latex caulking to the insides. This should be done before applying the sealant, and before painting or staining it. If you do decide to add color, you will probably need to reapply the paint or stain about every two years; otherwise the color will appear faded.

The maintenance does not just apply to the door’s appearance. You will need to inspect the rollers, springs, hinges, and other parts annually. This will ensure it works properly. If everything is not balanced or in proper working order, your wood garage door will need to be repaired or replaced much earlier than if you had checked its working parts every year. You will know it is not balanced if it is difficult to open by hand, or leans to one side when halfway open.

A common ailment for doors is for them to warp or sag, and extreme cold or hot weather only helps this along. You can prevent such damage by providing proper ventilation in the garage.

If you don’t think you will have the time to keep up the required maintenance for your wooden covering, consider buying a steel carriage style door. It offers the same classic appearance, but needs much less upkeep than the real product.

However, if you commonly take part in home improvement projects, and do not mind working outside, a real wooden door might be for you. As long as you continually keep up maintenance on your wooden covering, you should not have to make large repairs for years, which is why many homeowners are happy with their wood garage door.

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