Are Wooden Garage Doors Worth The Cost? Here's What We Know

When it's time to do some remodeling to the exterior of your house, you may be looking for a garage door style that can boost your home's curb appeal. One of the most intriguing styles involves wooden garage doors, as wood delivers elegance and a timeless esthetic that's difficult to duplicate with other materials. You can add rich stains and use high-end hardwood, like cedar, redwood, oak, mahogany, or cypress. You also can select among multiple designs, ensuring that they fit the look you want for the house and door. You even can pick solid wood garage doors or ones that have window panels in them, allowing light to penetrate.

However, adding this style can be pricey. The cost to replace a garage door averages about $1,200 whatever material you use, but you can expect to pay anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 for the wood option. If you decide to install a wood garage door, will it be worth the extra cost? Can it increase the value of your home? It can, and may even give you a good return on your investment, according to some estimates. Wooden garage doors have a number of other pros and cons, too. Let's break down the different factors and help you decide whether you want to add one to your house.

Advantages of installing a wooden garage door

One of the best things about a wooden garage door is the sturdiness it provides. This is one of the best ways to protect your garage from break-ins, which are far more possible with lightweight materials or glass doors. The solid wood material provides maximum privacy, too, especially versus glass. Even if you choose to add windows, they are usually placed along the top, which maintains the privacy you are seeking.

You have multiple customization options when you select wooden garage doors, including the shape of the panels and any decorative elements or custom carvings that appear on them. You can select among multiple stain colors or paint colors to add to the material. Using stain enhances the grain found in the natural material, bringing out and enhancing the unique look. Some new wood garage doors may be pre-stained with custom colors when they arrive, but others allow you to apply the stain yourself.

If you use your garage space for more than parking the car and storing the lawn mower — for example, as a kids' play area or for a gymnasium setup — you will want the wood garage door to have some insulative properties. If you are worried about protecting the space from cold weather, select a wood garage door that adds insulation between layers of the material for a higher level of protection.

Reasons you may not want a wooden garage door

Beyond the higher price involved in purchasing a wood garage door, you also will have extra costs related to maintenance. The natural wood requires more upkeep than other types of materials used for garage doors, like fiberglass or aluminum. You need to repaint or restain the material on a regular basis, as weather exposure is going to cause the wood to start to show its age faster than a material like aluminum.

The wooden garage doors are extremely sturdy, but with that sturdiness comes extra weight versus other materials. If you are installing an automatic opener, the weight may force you to purchase an opener that has extra horsepower. You may even have to invest in custom equipment to be able to handle the heft of the wooden garage door, such as tension springs and cables, increasing the overall cost of the project.

Should your wooden garage door ever suffer damage, making repairs to it is a more challenging and expensive process than with other materials. You can expect to pay up to $1,000 to make repairs to your wooden garage door, while repairs to metal ones typically peak at around $400 and repairs for fiberglass often top out at $200. In some cases, you cannot repair the wood and will need to do a full replacement, further driving up the cost.