Why Buying Used Garage Doors is a Terrible Idea

Websites like Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and eBay are popular places to buy and sell used items, including used garage doors. These sites allow you to search for garage doors in your area and contact sellers directly to negotiate a price.

But should you really buy a used garage door?

In this article, we’ll discuss three reasons you shouldn’t buy used garage doors and some good alternatives. 

Let’s get started. 

Three Reasons Not to Buy Used Garage Doors

You Can’t Be Sure What Condition a Used Garage Door Is In

When purchasing a used garage door, you don’t know how it was used or what kind of wear and tear it may have sustained. 

Typically, garage doors are sold locally. So you might think you know what to ask the seller about its history. 

For example, here in Florida, we could ask how the door fared during recent hurricanes or flooding. A used garage door could have been exposed to harsh weather, causing damage, rust, or corrosion. 

Physical damage could be harder to detect. The garage door may have been involved in an accident or a minor collision, which damaged the tracks or other components.

Even if the door appears in good condition, some underlying issues may not be immediately visible. 

For example, the torsion springs may be worn out, which can cause the garage door to shift to one side when opening. Cables may be frayed or damaged, which can pose a safety risk.

Finally, you never know if a used garage door has been maintained properly. Lack of maintenance can cause minor issues to develop into bigger problems over time, decreasing the door’s lifespan. 

Moving parts like rollers and hinges may wear out faster and must be replaced sooner than expected. 

It’s important to carefully inspect the door and all its components. Try to know the potential repair or replacement cost if any issues arise. 

Investing in a new garage door with a warranty and guarantees that the door will be free of damage or wear and tear may be more cost-effective and safer in the long run.

Garage door panels

Used Garage Doors Typically Don’t Include a Warranty

Speaking of warranties, purchasing a new garage door from a manufacturer or dealer typically includes a warranty covering any defects. This warranty gives you peace of mind that you’re protected in case something goes wrong with your new garage door.

However, used garage doors don’t include warranties or guarantees. This means that if the door malfunctions or breaks down, you’ll be responsible for the cost of repairs or replacement.

Additionally, the warranty on a new garage door often covers the installation. Suppose your new garage door causes damage or injury because it’s installed incorrectly. In that case, the warranty may cover the cost of repairs or medical expenses. 

Most garage door installation companies won’t install used garage doors because there’s no manufacturer’s warranty to fall back on. That means you may be liable for any damages or injuries that result from improper installation.

Finally, most garage door manufacturers and dealers provide customer service and support when you purchase a new garage door. 

This is extremely helpful when you have questions about the door or need help troubleshooting issues. Used doors typically don’t offer access to this type of support, making it more challenging to fix any problems that come up.

Used Garage Doors: Are They Safe?

Garage doors are extremely heavy, weighing several hundred pounds. When they fall, they can cause severe injury or even death. 

Even if they don’t fail catastrophically, like the one in the video above, they can cause injuries if they’re not properly installed or maintained.

Unlike used garage doors, new doors are subject to safety and legal regulations. Manufacturers and dealers must ensure their doors are correctly installed to prevent safety hazards. 

However, you don’t have that protection when purchasing a used garage door. 

You can’t be sure it still meets safety standards. The previous owner may have made modifications or repairs that compromise the door’s safety. And they may not disclose this to you during the sale, so you may be unaware of these issues. 

Safety is a significant concern when it comes to garage doors. Purchasing a used door greatly increases the risk of accidents and injuries. 

Better Alternatives to Used Garage Doors

When purchasing a garage door, there are better alternatives to buying a used one. 

Here are some options to consider:

New Garage Doors: Although they’re more expensive than used garage doors, investing in a new garage door is always the best choice in terms of safety, reliability, and longevity. Between the manufacturer’s warranties and installation guarantees, you’re protected in case anything goes wrong with the door. 

Refurbished Garage Doors: Many manufacturers sell refurbished or sample garage doors. They’re an excellent, cost-effective alternative to buying a used door. Refurbished doors are typically restored to like-new condition and have the same warranties or guarantees as brand-new garage doors. These doors may have been previously installed or used but have been thoroughly inspected and repaired as needed.

Discounted Garage Doors: Another cost-effective option is to purchase a new garage door at a discounted price. Many manufacturers or dealers offer discounts on garage doors that are discontinued or have minor cosmetic blemishes or scratches. These doors are still new and have warranties, but they are sold at a much lower price.

There are several alternatives to purchasing a used garage door. Investing in a new garage door or opting for refurbished or discounted options can ensure a safe, reliable, long-lasting garage door that meets your needs and budget.

Man installing garage door


Where can you Buy Used Garage Doors?

You can buy used garage doors from online marketplaces such as eBay, Craigslist, or Facebook Marketplace. Local salvage yards, secondhand stores, or garage sales might also have used garage doors available. However, due to several reasons including potential damage, lack of warranty, and fitting issues, buying a used garage door may not be the best idea.

Are Refurbished Garage Doors Worth It?

Refurbished garage doors might seem like a cost-effective option, but their value largely depends on the condition, age, and the company doing the refurbishment. While you might save money initially, costs could add up with potential repairs or replacements needed later on. Furthermore, refurbished doors may not offer the same level of insulation, safety features, or aesthetics as a new door.

What is the Cheapest Garage Door to Buy?

Generally, single-layer steel doors or aluminum doors are among the cheapest options for garage doors. They are low-cost because they are less insulated and less durable than their multi-layer or wooden counterparts. However, remember that while these options may be less expensive upfront, they may not offer the same longevity, insulation, or visual appeal as more costly alternatives. Always consider your specific needs and circumstances before making a decision.

Wrapping It Up

So, is it a good idea to invest in used garage doors?

In our experience….no.

While used or refurbished garage doors might initially appear to be a cost-saving option, potential hidden damage, lack of warranty, safety risks, and possible higher long-term costs due to repairs or replacements argue against this choice.

Instead, options such as new garage doors, refurbished doors from trusted manufacturers, or discounted doors provide far greater value. These alternatives not only ensure peace of mind with warranties and customer support but also offer a secure, reliable, and long-lasting solution for your garage.

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Tim Wells

Tim Wells, the founder of Garage Transformed, has been featured in dozens of home renovation publications, including BobVila.com, Home Stratosphere, House Digest, Livingetc, and SFGate. Since 2018, he has helped over two million people transform their everyday garages into something they can be proud of. He lives in Central Florida with his wife and bulldog.