How to Replace a Garage Door Panel

How to Replace a Garage Door Panel

If you’ve ever owned a garage, you’re probably aware of the fact that it has taken a lot of damage. The door may have been hit at some point, leaving visible damage. The curb appeal and first impressions of the home can be affected by the garage door facing the street. Replacing a panel can be a do-it-yourself project.

As homeowners, we often wonder if we can make the repair or if the project is out of our skill set. The answer depends on a number of factors, including the skill and experience of the homeowner. Does the door work as it should? Should it be fixed immediately or should it be delayed? We will look at what we can, and should not, do as a do-it-yourselfer.

How do I know if a repair is needed?

The answer depends on the circumstances and the damage. If the door’s working components are intact and functioning, the repair is not likely. Minor blemish can be repaired without the need for a new panel.

A garage door panel that has a crease, major rust, or a large dent should be replaced. There will be lots of cracking, popping and binding if the door is damaged. Friction will eventually lead to failure. The suspect panel needs to be replaced if it is moving in a way that is not in line with the other panels.

Can I make my own garage door panels?

If you know how to make repairs, you can make them yourself, but you need to take care. A careless mistake could cause serious injury if you replace a garage door panel. The correct tools, safety equipment, and knowledge are needed to reduce the risk. Although the project can be done alone, it’s a good idea to get some help.

How Much Does a Garage Panel Replacement Cost?

How do you know if repairing your garage door panel is worth it? Replacing the entire garage door is more cost-effective gate repair if the door requires more than one panel.

The cost of a single car, uninsulated, aluminum door is between $400 and 1000 dollars. A replacement panel can be half the price. If a door is older, a unique design, or contains glass, the cost will be even higher. The labor cost of a professional to install a panel can easily top $500.00.

How to Replace Garage Door Bottom Panel

The more tools and assistance you have available, the better.

  • Step stool, or short ladder
  • Gloves, eye protection, and other safety equipment are necessary.
  • (Optional) Come-along (2)
  • Locking pliers (4 pr.)
  • Wrenches or socket set
  • Cordless drill or impact wrench
  • Small 2 x 4, or concrete block

A general guideline of the process is what your particular door may require.

The new panel needs to be purchased first. Large home improvement stores will not stock replacement panels, but they can often be ordered using the commercial sales desk.

You can find the manufacturer’s label on the door to find out which panel you need. It is located along the edge of the panels. Special order parts are usually non-returnable, and this is important because the panel must be an exact fit. It is not fun to own a spare panel for a door.

To find the texture and shape of your panel, take accurate measurements of the height, width, and thickness, along with a few good photos. If your local store doesn’t have a customer service desk, you can ask for it. The people that work with doors and windows all day will be able to help you pick the right panel.

Step 1. Ensure Safety

Safety is the first step. The door needs to be secured in a way that doesn’t allow forces to act on the panel. The pros use a come-along. A come-along uses a gear to compress two objects together. Four sets of locking pliers will often do the job if you don’t have this tool.

Remove the emergency release cord from the door. Lift the door a few inches off the floor and put the block under it. The space you need for the new panel is provided by this.

Step 2. Clamp Tracks

Attach one to the track below the roller and the other just above the roller on the second section. Go for the other side. The weight off of the bottom section will allow you to work safely.

It is a good idea to secure the slack you created in the cable if you have a torsion spring system. If you have a spare, you can use another one to prevent the cable from unraveling. The re-installation of the panel will be easier.

Step 3. Remove Bottom Panel

Remove the cable from the pin located on the bottom edge of the bottom panel, along with any handles or hardware not provided with the new panel, to make sure the cable is not under tension. The lag screws are on the bottom half of the hinge.

To remove the panel, be careful not to let the panel fall and hit you. A gentle push may be required. The panel can be difficult to control if you need some help. The second panel can be inspected at this time.

Step 4. Install New Panel

If you need to re- install hardware, do so. The lag screws and hinge are used to install the new panel. Remove the locking pliers from the track and gently lift the door after making sure the lifting cable has not twisted or tangled.

Remove the 2 x 4 and test the operation. If the garage door opener doesn’t work as well as it used to, your new panel might be heavier or lighter. The down force or up force knobs should be adjusted until the door opens and closes completely.

Can I Replace Just the Bottom Panel?

If you are replacing more than one panel, you should replace the entire door. You can save money by hiring a professional to install it.

  • Keep control of the door. Hire a professional if you have doubts about keeping the door stable.
  • One panel can be heavy. Get help before you start.
  • Understand the actions of the forces. If you don’t understand why you’re doing something, you should do more research.

Is it possible to replace garage door panels?

Glass windows can be replaced. You will need to remove additional panels if the windows are not in the bottom panel. You can replace this panel by following the steps described here.

The glass is broken more often than the panel itself. Replacing a broken window is more cost-effective than replacing the panel.

Be Smart and Save Money

If you want to make a garage door repair, you can do it yourself. The key to success is to understand the process thoroughly and have any tools or help you need. You can do a professional looking job if you remember to take your time and work safely.


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