12 Ways To Repurpose Broken Garage Door Parts In Your Home And Garden

One of the best ways to increase your home's curb appeal is to make sure your garage door is pulling its weight. While replacing an older or busted door with a new one can have your home looking its sharpest, you may be asking what to do with that old garage door that is past its prime. While throwing it out is an option, you might want to reconsider repuposing it elsewhere in your home or yard. Internet DIYers are buzzing with many great ideas for upcycling that door into everything from seating and shelving to decorative items, with a rustic or shabby chic flea market vibe. 

Older garage doors are often made of very durable wood that is usually weather-safe and water-resistant. Even newer doors made of aluminum or fiberglass can be broken down into usable parts, as can the metal track system that allows garage doors to easily move up and down. Even better, recycling the door means it can avoid the landfill and save you some money you might otherwise spend on lumber and new materials for whatever you are building.

1. Salvaged headboard

The considerable size of garage doors makes them perfect for upcycling into larger pieces of furniture like headboards. Turn a single panel or set of panels on their side for a rustic wood headboard fitting for cottage or farmhouse-style interiors. You can either attach it directly to the wall at the studs with screws or affix the base of the door to the bed frame. Leave it unfinished for a weathered shabby-chic look, or add a coat of paint in your desired color. While some doors are beautiful on their own, you can also install additional trim and molding along the top or sides.

2. Entryway coat rack

Segments of old garage doors are a fun way to grant some extra hanging space in your entryway or mudroom. Use a portion of a garage door as a backing for some screw-in hooks for a great shabby chic coat rack. Recessed panels allow a great visual marking between panels. You can also use a larger segment of doors on a wall to create an entryway console. Attach a slender shelf to the door held up by beautiful corbels or decorative brackets as a great place to throw keys and sunglasses when you come in or out.

3. Murphy bed

While this one may involve a bit more complex engineering, you can create a space-saving Murphy bed using an old garage door system flipped upside down. Most operate using a system of wheels and metal tracks that can be mounted to the wall at the side of a bed built on the segmented garage door. The bed sits flush against the wall during the day and pulls out at night, guided by the track and a wheeled apparatus underneath that extends to support the bed when it is down. 

4. Rasied garden beds

The planks of wood, aluminum, or fiberglass horizontally segmented garage doors are perfect for upcycling into raised garden beds. Take apart the individual planks and attach them together in a rectangle using screws and a pocket hole jig. You can also add outer braces at the corners for extra support. Fill the interior with soil and plants for an easy way to grow flowers and veggies in raised beds. While you can leave them as they are for a rustic look, you can also add inexpensive plywood to the outside if you want a more sleek and unified feel.

5. Sturdy table

With large expanses of wood, most garage doors make excellent surfaces, even for large dining tables. Because they are usually weather resistant, this means you can create an inexpensive and beautiful outdoor dining spot for very little money in materials. The salvaged wood also makes a great workbench for the garage. For paneled or inset doors, top the table with glass for a smooth surface perfect for a coffee table or desk. Attach a set of pre-made wood table legs or metal hair pin legs to create your table, or rest it on a pair of sawhorses for a more casual look. 

6. Shabby chic bench

Because they are very sturdy and usually expansive in width, garage doors make excellent pieces of salvaged wood for creating long benches. Use them outdoors in the garden or inside under a window. Create a simple bench by screwing three partial door segments under a longer one  or create a bench with a back or arm rests that uses more of the door. While most benches will have a rustic flea-market style feel, you can also make a simple bench in minutes with a single segment and metal hairpin legs that is sleek and minimal enough for even the most contemporary-styled interiors. 

7. Room divider

The configuration of many segmented garage doors makes them very easy to transform into stylish wooden room dividers perfect for creating zones in open-concept spaces. They are also great for providing privacy from neighbors outdoors when placed on a porch or patio. Disassemble the individual planks and add some hinges between panels for a screen scaled for rooms with higher ceilings or cut them down to your desired height. Leave them in their original finish for a rustic and salvaged look or add some paint, fabric, or peel-and-stick wallpaper for additional visual interest. 

8. Sliding barn door

One great way to make use of the entire garage door framework is to upcycle the metal track system. Usually a mechanism of wheels on a stainless steel or aluminum track, these metal pieces can be harvested into the perfect apparatus for hanging a sliding barn door anywhere in your home. Just attach the sliding frame to the space above the door, then add the smaller wheels that travel at the top of the door and a larger set of wheels along the bottom.

9. DIY greenhouse

Paneled garage doors work perfectly to build the sides of a small greenhouse or potting shed. Just replace the wood panels with glass ones and attach the sides together with large screws or hinges to form a box structure. Finish it off by adding a lightweight corrugated plastic roof on top that allows sun in. While any old doors and windows are an ingenious DIY for creating these sorts of outdoor structures, garage doors are far larger, so you will need fewer doors and windows overall. For a fun, whimsical look, use a mix of garage and other kinds of doors. 

10. Wall art or decor

Garage doors with glass panels or intricately carved recesses are beautiful on their own, making them great for serving as artwork or decor. Refinish them completely for a natural wood piece or add some paint. Use them to fill up a wall and add architectural interest above a sofa, bed, or other larger piece of furniture. The recesses or glass panels are perfect for holding smaller works of art. For a fun evolving art wall in a kid's room or nursery, add some chalkboard paint to the panels.

11. Corner shelves

Two vertical or horizontal panels from an old garage door can be fashioned into a cute shelf unit by adding some hinges and small triangular shelves between them. Create brackets from small wood pieces and slide the shelves in or attach them with wood glue and nails. These skinny shelves are perfect for small spaces or tight corners, where they can hold items like plants, decor, and bathroom essentials compactly and stylishly. This DIY also works well with other kinds of doors for a wider set of shelves using the same approach. 

12. Interior doors

Old garage doors make great upcycled ways of closing off cabinets, closets, or alcoves. Use hinged doors as is inside or divide a vertical sliding door into segments. The large wood planks can be cut down to size, sanded, and refilled to create beautiful French-style or hinged doors at a much cheaper price point than buying new doors. Because they start out quite long, they are also great for rooms with high ceilings and frames that would normally require custom-made doors. You can even add additional details like wood panels, wood appliques, or metal accents to make them even more unique.