What happened to the old-style swinging or sliding barn style door? Well they just are not practical in our urban environment. Swinging doors, operating like a pair of large double French doors, need room to swing. Most modern driveways are very short in the typical urban setting. If you pull into the driveway you would block the doors from swinging open. A fact of modern urban living is that few of us actually use a garage for storing our vehicles. Typically they are used as workshops or storage. In most of our current recently built urban developments, a swinging garage door is not viable. On to sliders, most of which utilize a overhead track. The tracks by necessity extend at least half the distance of the opening in a two door system. Quite frankly given the diminutive areas to either side of typical garage door, these tracks would have to extend beyond the garage wall. Not practical or aesthetically pleasing in the least.
Swing Up or Roll Up Sectional Garage Door
So we have two options, swing up and rollup garage doors. With remote garage door openers these can be opened without interference with the car just short of touching, for those who use the garage for its intended purpose; vehicle storage. Those hobbyists that use their garages as shops can utilize the full area with no vehicular interference. The only downside to rollup and swing-up doors is that when opened they cover the ceiling denying light fixture installation in the center and most desirable area of the garage. Roller and wing doors also restrict ceiling storage to the peripheral areas.
Garage Lighting & Storage Problems with Swing Up or Roll Up Doors
With remote control these overhead type doors represent an operational, if not ideal solution to securing the garage opening to the outside. However there exist some work-around solutions to alleviate the problems. Mounting ceiling flush light fixtures will provide needed illumination when the door is closed. In turn you can mount lighting to the back of the door to provide light when the door is open. As far as storage, this is best regulated to the sides and back, away from the door. It is not advisable to “hang” stuff from the door itself.
Swing open doors that utilize springs and levers to compensate for their weight are still encountered in older home construction, but have fallen into disfavor with home builders.
Garage Door Maintenance & Repair
All rollup and swing up doors require lubrication and inspection for wear and tear. Excessive wear can be dangerous leading to door failure. Some of the older swing up doors have failed to point of falling, creating a dangerous situation for the elderly and children. Most of the modern doors are covered with thin gauge metal sheeting. This thin metal is vulnerable to denting and distortions affecting their appearance. Garage doors are usually in front of the house facing the street, any blemish or damage is readily visible and affects the curb appeal of the home.