Complete Guide For Steel Garage Doors – Prices, Pros, Cons And Pricing Factors

Steel garage doors are available in a broad range of architectural styles, design options, and prices. They are durable, long lasting, and easy to maintain. You can even find steel garage doors that closely replicate the appearance of real wood.

In this post we provide all of the details on steel garage doors, what you can expect to get for your money, and how they compare to other garage door materials.

steel garage door

What Are the Specifics for Steel Garage Doors?

24 gauge galvanized steel is the highest grade of steel used for garage doors. With steel, the lower the gauge, the thicker the steel. Top quality doors are made with 24 or 25 gauge, builder grade doors use 25 or 26 gauge, and low-cost, low-quality doors use 27 or 28 gauge.

Steel Garage Door Construction

Steel doors are constructed in layers. A one-layer door includes only a single layer of steel, a 2-layer door has a layer of steel and a layer of vinyl-backed foam insulation on the interior, and a 3-layer door features a layer of steel on both the interior and exterior with insulation between the 2 layers of steel.

4 and 5-layer steel garage doors will have one or 2 layers of overlay on the exterior. Usually, the overlay is made of a composite material that is bonded to the steel and formed and painted to replicate the look of a wood door. These steel garage doors are known as faux-wood doors.

Steel Door Insulation

Polystyrene and polyurethane are the two most common types of insulation used in steel garage doors. Polystyrene insulation consists of solid foam boards that are glued to the back of the exterior layer of steel. In a 2-layer door, the polystyrene insulation is backed by a vinyl covering. In a 3-layer door, the insulation is covered by an additional layer of steel.

Polyurethane is only used in garage doors that include an exterior and interior layer of steel with the polyurethane insulation creating the third layer. Polyurethane insulation starts as a liquid foam that is injected between the 2 layers of steel where it expands to completely fill the space before hardening.

Both polystyrene and polyurethane insulation are available in a choice of thicknesses, typically 1 5/8” and 2”. Polystyrene insulation provides mid-range R-Values or about 5-12 and polyurethane insulation provides mid-range to very high R-Values starting at 14 and up to 20 or more. Review our garage door insulation guide for the specifics around garage door insulation.

Steel Garage Door Prices

Steel garage doors are available in a wide price range starting around $500 or less for a basic, single car door and up to $10,000 or more, for a multi-layer faux-wood steel door. Below we give you a quick look at what you get in each price range.

Low Price Range: For around $600 you can get a basic, single-car, 25 – 26-gauge steel garage door without windows or insulation.

Mid-Price Range: At the mid-level price range of $1,200 to $2,500 you can get a 24 – 25 gauge 2 or 3-layer steel garage door with either a layer of insulation or with windows. At about $2,500 you can up-grade to thicker insulation or add a row of windows.

High Price Range: Once you get to the high range of $3,000 to $4,500, you can expect a 3-layer door with polyurethane insulation, designer windows, and specialty glass. You’ll have a wider range of color choices including custom color options. If you want a good quality, faux-wood steel door you’ll be looking in the $4,000 to $6,500 price range.

Steel Garage Door Architectural Styles

You can find steel garage doors in just about any style including colonial or traditional with raised or recessed panels doors, contemporary flush panel doors with modern windows, and cottage or carriage house style garage doors that look like the doors swing open from the sides.

Manufacturers offer plenty of door panel designs and window choices allowing you to create a unique garage door with a custom look.

Steel Garage Door Features

Steel garage doors are available with a wide variety of features. Below is information on some of these features.

Manufacturer Profiles Price Range
Amarr 10 $850-$5,000
CHI 9 $1,000-$5,000
Clopay 9 $500-$6,500
Haas 6 $800-$5,000
Hormann 7 $1,000-$4,500
Overhead Door 6 $800-$4,500
Raynor 11 $550-$4,000
Wayne Dalton 12 $500-$4,000
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Door Panel Designs

All of the garage door manufacturers offer a variety of door panel designs for each of their steel garage door profiles or collections allowing you to choose the door panel design that best suits your style.

Garage door panels

Most collections are designed with a particular architectural look like traditional or carriage house, but some collections offer door designs in various styles, like the Thermacore Collection by Overhead Door.

The Thermacore Collection features 3-layer, insulated, steel garage doors with door panel designs in traditional, carriage house, and modern styles. Create your own custom look by adding windows and decorative hardware.


Garage door windows are available in nearly unlimited options from basic rectangular plain glass to windows with decorative frames like arches and glass panes with ornate mullions. There are even decorative windows that resemble leaded glass with wrought iron or brass grilles. You can find garage door windows in any architectural style.

garage door windows

Wayne Dalton’s Classic Steel Models 9100 and 9605 are polyurethane insulated doors with 5 door panel designs and with 47 window choices, a personalized look can be created.

Amarr also features some interesting modern-style window choices with their Mosaic Design windows.


Steel garage door manufacturers also offer a selection of glass choices including clear, frosted, tinted, mirrored, thermal, and safety glass.

Colors and Finishes

different colors and finishes of garage door

Steel garage doors also offer a range of finishes choices from standard paint colors to custom paint colors. Many manufacturers offer wood-tone finishes that are developed to replicate the color and graining of various wood species like Mahogany, Cedar, Walnut, and Oak. The wood-look finishes are typically used on steel faux-wood garage doors.

Steel Garage Door Manufacturers

Since steel doors are the biggest seller in the garage door market, most companies that make garage doors, make steel doors. Below are some of the most well-known manufacturers with brief descriptions of their steel garage doors collections.


Amarr Garage Doors

Amarr makes 10 steel garage door collections including their value profiles, Lincoln and Hillcrest. The Carriage Court profile is a 4-layer, faux-wood, carriage house style door with composite overlay.

CHI Overhead Doors

CHI garage doors

CHI offers 8 steel collections including the 3 contemporary collections, Planks, Sterling, and Skyline Flush. These are 1, 2, or 3-layer doors with R-Values up to 17.54. The Planks profile is available in realistic wood-tone finishes, and the Sterling features frameless glass panels running the width of the door.


Cloplay Garage Doors

You’ll find a good selection of Clopay steel garage doors in 1,2, and 3 layers, and at all price points. The Clopay premium Canyon Ridge collection features 4 and 5-layer faux wood doors with insulation choices like this Canyon Ridge Carriage House profile.


Raynor Garage Doors

From the budget-friendly TradeMark profile, starting at about $550, to the luxury, faux-wood profile, Eden Cost, starting at about $3,500, Raynor offers a full selection of steel garage doors in every price range.

Wayne Dalton

Wayne Dalton makes 12 profiles of steel garage doors in many architectural styles including Traditional, Colonial, Carriage House, and Contemporary in budget, mid-range, and premium price ranges. You’ll find a large selection of door panel designs and window options to choose from.

Other major manufacturers of steel garage doors include Hormann, Haas, and The Overhead Door Company.

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Steel Garage Doors Pros and Cons

Pros of Steel Garage Doors

Durable – Steel garage doors are one of the most durable doors available. They are resistant to water, rot, and insects and are an excellent choice for most climates.

Easy to Maintain – Periodically inspecting the door for rust and treating it are basically all that is necessary.

Wide Price Range – There is a steel garage door that will meet every budget and price range.

Variety – Because steel garage doors are available in so many styles, they can complement the architecture and curb appeal on every home.

Customizable– There are so many design options available with steel garage doors a buyer can easily create a very unique and personalized door.

Eco-Friendly – A steel garage door can be recycled and, most likely, a new steel garage door is made of recycled materials.

Cons Of Steel Garage Doors

Can Dent – Low quality steel garage doors are prone to dings and dents. Higher quality doors with insulation are not as likely to dent.

Can Rust – Steel garage doors can rust and are probably not the best choice for coastal climates with salty air.

Poor Insulator – Steel, in itself, has no insulating ability, so you will need an insulated steel garage door if you want to keep your garage warm in the winter and cool in the summer.


How Long Do Steel Garage Doors Last?

A steel garage door will last 20-25 years on average, but 30 or 40 years with proper maintenance.

How Do Steel Garage Doors Compare to Other Garage Door Materials?

Steel doors are one of the most durable and longest lasting garage door materials available. They are extremely versatile, come in a wide range of colors and styles, and are easy to maintain.

The chart below compares steel garage doors to those made from other materials:

A Comparison of Steel With Wood and Vinyl Garage Doors

Material Steel Faux-Wood Wood Vinyl
Cost Range $500 – $4,000 $2,000-$6,000 $1,000-$6,500 $900-$5,000
Average Cost $1,800-$2,500 $2,500-$3,200 $3,000-$4,000 $1,800-$2,800
Durability Excellent Excellent Average Excellent
Lifespan/Years* 20-40 12-40 15-35 25-35
Maintenance Low Low High Low
Pros Strong Looks like wood Warm, attractive Won’t dent
Cons Can dent and rust Finish may chip Damaged by moisture Brittle in cold climates
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A Comparison of Steel With Fiberglass and Aluminum Garage Doors

Material Fiberglass Aluminum Aluminum & Glass
Cost Range $1,200-$4,000 $1,200-$5,000 $3,500-$7,000
Average Cost $1,800-$2,200 $2,500-$3,000 $4,500-$5,500
Durability Excellent Excellent Average
Lifespan/Years* 20-40 20-30 12-20
Maintenance Low Low Average
Pros Can look like wood Rust resistant Clean, contemporary
Cons Brittle in cold climates Dents easily Glass may break

* Lifespan depends on door quality and proper maintenance.

More Garage Door Prices for Popular Materials

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