Garage door top section reinforcement should be installed on every overhead door. The top section of the garage door is under the most stress. Other sections hang down beneath it and the opener pulls against it, exerting a lot of force. Top panels are prone to cracking, splitting and bending. Here are a few ways you can prevent the top garage door panel from damage.
Install Struts or Punched Angle Iron
Bracing up the top section with slotted angle or a garage door strut can help support the top section. Use self tapping screws to fasten the strut across the panel width. Most garage doors have styles with guide holes pre-drilled as a template. All hinges and brackets go underneath the strut for a finished look. If you plan on adding more than one strut to the door, consult the manufacturer to get the correct springs. Struts and angle add weight to the door causing your current springs to be improperly calibrated.
Install Reinforcement Operator Bracket
The bracket provided with most garage doors that connects the operator arm to the door isn’t sufficient on most overhead door packages. Always install an operator reinforcement bracket to the top section of your garage door center style if you use and automatic opener. Failing to do so will result in damage to the top section through bending, cracking , splitting and the center style pulling off the door. Adjustable operator brackets are available for purchase online and are easy to install.
Purchase Double Side Steel Doors
If you have experienced damaged top panels in the past it may be best to get a double sided steel door. These doors have steel front and back sides to them. Reinforced steel on both sides makes these panels resistant to cracking, splitting and bending. While sandwich style steel doors cost more, they offer increased durability and longevity. You will still have to use an adjustable operator reinforcement bracket on these doors despite an extra side of steel.
I write tutorials about garage door repair, installation and maintenance. With over a decade of experience in the overhead door industry I’ve learned a lot and I’d like to share my knowledge with you.