Porch Deck and Patio

Porch, Deck + Patio

Outdoor Projects

How to Install a Garage Door

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BLACK+DECKER B+D Contributor 120 Projects

Your sectional garage door will bear the brunt of everything Mother Nature and an active household throws at it—seasonal temperature swings, moisture, blistering sunlight, and the occasional misfired half-court jump shot. If that isn’t enough, the average sectional garage door cycles up and down at least four times per day, which totals up to around 1,300 or more uses every year. For all of these reasons, it pays to install a high-quality door on your new garage so you can enjoy a long service life from it.

These days, you don’t have to settle for a drab, flat-panel door. Door manufacturers provide many options for cladding colors, panel texture and layout, exterior hardware, and window styles. Today’s state-of-the-art garage doors also benefit from improved material construction, more sophisticated safety features, and enhanced energy efficiency. When you order your new door, double-check your garage’s rough opening and minimum ceiling height to be sure the new door will fit the space properly.

Installing a sectional garage door is easier than you might think, and manufacturers make the process quite accessible for average do-it-yourselfers. With a helper or two, you should have little difficulty installing a new garage door in a single day. The job is really no more complex than other window and door replacements if you work carefully and exercise good judgment. Garage door kits come with all the necessary hardware and detailed step-by-step instructions. Since garage door styles vary, the installation process for your new door may differ from the photo sequence you see here, so always defer to the manufacturer’s instructions. This will ensure the door is installed correctly and the manufacturer will honor the product warranty.


  1. HI05691001RET Measure for the door. Measure the width of the header, the headroom clearance to the rafter collar ties (or bottom truss chords), and the inside opening of the doorway. Check these measurements against the minimum requirements outlined in the instruction manual that comes with your sectional garage door

  2. HI05691002RET Assemble door tracks. Working on the floor, lay out and assemble the vertical tracks, jamb brackets, and flag angle hardware. Install the door bottom seal and the roller and hinge hardware on the bottom door section.

  3. HI05691003RET Install the first section. Set the bottom door section into position against the side jambs, and adjust it left or right until the side jambs overlap it evenly. Check the top of the door section for level. Place shims beneath the door to level it, if necessary. Have a helper hold the door section in place against the jambs until it is secured in the tracks.

  4. HI05691004RET Attach the tracks. Slip a vertical track over the door section rollers and against the side jamb. Adjust it for plumb, then fasten the jamb brackets to the side jamb blocking with lag screws. Carefully measure, mark, and install the other vertical track as well

  5. HI05691005RET Attach the lift cables. Depending on your door design, you may need to attach lift cables to the bottom door section at this time. Follow the instructions that come with your door to connect these cables correctly.

  6. HI05691006RET Install the door hinges. Fasten the end and intermediate hinges to the bottom door section, and then install roller brackets and hinges on the other door sections. Attach hinges to the top edges of each door section only. This way you’ll be able to stack one section on top of the next during assembly.

  7. HI05691007Add next sections. Slip the next door section into place in the door tracks and on top of the first section. Connect the bottom hinges (already attached to the first section) to the second door section. Repeat the process until you have stacked and installed all but the top door section.

  8. HI0550gar13The top door section may require additional bracing, special top roller brackets, and a bracket for securing a garage door opener. Install these parts now following the door manufacturer’s instructions.

  9. HI05691009

    Install the top section. Set the top door section in place and fasten it to the hinges on the section below it. Support the door section temporarily with a few 16d nails driven into the door header blocking and bent down at an angle.

  10. HI05691011 Complete track installation. Fasten the horizontal door tracks to the flag angle brackets on top of the vertical track sections. Temporarily suspend the back ends of the tracks with rope so they are level.

  11. HI05691010 Install rear hanger brackets. This step will vary among door opener brands. Check your door instruction manual for the correct location of rear hanger brackets that will hold the horizontal door tracks in position. Measure, cut, and fasten sections of perforated angle iron together with bolts, washers, and nuts to form two Y-shaped door track brackets. Fasten the brackets to the collar tie or bottom truss chord with lag screws and washers following the door manufacturer’s recommendations.

  12. HI05691012 Attach the extension springs. The door opener here features a pair of smaller springs that run parallel to the horizontal door tracks, not parallel to the door header as larger torsion springs are installed. The springs are attached to cables that attach to the rear door hanger brackets.

  13. HI05691013Test to make sure the door tracks properly. Raise it about halfway first. You’ll need at least one helper here. Slide a sturdy support underneath the door bottom to hold the door and then inspect to make sure the rollers are tracking and the tracks are parallel

  14. HI05691014Attach the spring cables. The door should be fully raised and held in place with C-clamps tightened onto the tracks to prevent it from slipping down. The tension in the springs should be relieved. The cables in this case are tied off onto a 3-hole clip that is then hooked onto the horizontal angle bracket near the front of the tracks.

  15. HI05691015 Attach the doorstop molding. Measure, cut, and nail sections of doorstop molding to the door jambs on the outside of the door to seal out weather. A rolled vinyl doorstop may come with your door kit. If not, use strips of 1 × 2 treated wood or cedar for this purpose.

  16. Install a garage door opener.