Is Garage Door Capping a Fad or a Must Have?
Home Improvements-Interior or Exterior
Unless one has infinite resources we all have to decide what type of home improvements should be given priority. Should the kitchen or bathrooms be renovated or how about putting in the long desired hardwood flooring? This becomes even more relevant when one is contemplating selling a home and it is important to differentiate your home from similar houses on the market. Interestingly many homeowners will first look to the interior of the home and perhaps ignore the exterior. The saying “You don’t get a second chance to make a good first impression” is never truer when a prospective buyer is walking up the driveway and the first thing they notice is a garden over grown with weeds, or a garage door that is rusting, or the garage door frame has paint peeling or the wood is rotting. No matter how much you have spent on the interior improvements chances are that you have lost them at the outset and while they may still decide to buy the home it may well be at a discount.
According to Remodeling magazine garage door replacement continues to rank as one of the best investments in home improvements when ranked by highest percentage of cost recouped when the home is sold. For an average cost of $1,650 homeowners can recoup up to 91.5% of their investment and for an upscale garage door the recovery can be as high as 97.5%. Curb appeal projects can generate higher returns on investment than remodeling the inside of a home and when consideration is given to the fact that, in the Greater Toronto Area, a garage door can occupy as much as 30% of the home’s frontage replacing a garage door can make a huge impact on the value of the home. Gone are the days when garage doors were simply wood or perhaps the old one piece steel doors. Today, garage doors can be a bold fashion statement given the endless choices of colours, windows and panel designs available from different manufactures.
Home maintenance can be expensive and time consuming and any process that can reduce this would be appealing to a homeowner. The buzz word for the new millennium is “maintenance-free” and the garage door industry has been very cognizant of this growing trend as evidenced by the introduction of prefinished steel garage doors that never require any painting. The frame around the garage door becomes just as important as the door itself and simply installing a brand now garage door but not attending to the frame around the door may detract from the overall appearance of the house, especially if the frame is weathered or rotting. In line with this thinking recent years have seen the introduction of aluminum garage door capping being installed around the garage door frame. By capping the garage door frame with aluminum it will no longer be exposed to the weather thereby greatly extending its lifespan as well as adding to the curb appeal of the garage door and home. Aluminum is a very resilient material and will not rust or fade as much as other materials, and by its very nature is maintenance-free. The aluminum capping when installed in conjunction with weather-stripping will also act as a barrier against inclement weather.
Aluminum capping (also known as aluminum cladding) entails the process of cutting and bending aluminum sheeting, using a machine called a brake, and fitting this over window and garage door frames. Since window and garage door frames are more often than not made of wood they are subject to deterioration over time and require periodic sanding and painting or replacement. As opposed to this constant need to maintain the wood, aluminum capping may require nothing more than periodic cleaning with water and a mild detergent. The capping application must direct water away from the original under-lying wood material and prevent infiltration of water into the structure and this requires a highly skilled workman who is simply not masking problems rather than solving them.
As with most materials the aluminum rolls used for capping come in varied thickness and quality and care should be taken to use a heavy trim especially when working with darker colours and for south and west facing elevations. The darker colours will absorb heat and could buckle or twist out of shape under extreme heat conditions.
A question that is often asked does salt damage aluminum? This is particularly relevant in Canada where salt is often used on the driveways in the winter. All metals will corrode in the presence of salts. Though aluminum does not rust like steel does, it will develop a chalky film and pitting in the metal surface when exposed to salt for long periods. A neutral soap and water wash will help remove the oxidized film.
Garage doors are now available in a myriad of colours and so too is aluminum but bear in mind that the same paint colour, when applied to different materials, will not necessarily be an exact match. Garage doors are mainly made of steel whereas weather-strip may be vinyl or rubber and when aluminum is added into the mix homeowners may not be happy with the end result. For this reason some homeowners may elect to cap the garage door frame with a colour that more closely matches the brickwork rather than the garage door. There isn’t really a right or wrong here, after all beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Reasons to cap
- Enhance the curb appeal of your home
- Recoup most of the cost when selling your home
- Aluminum is durable and will not rust
- Factory painted Aluminum will not fade as much as other materials
- Protects the garage wooden frame from the elements
- Little to no maintenance required
Please contact Dodds today at 1877-503-6337 to get a FREE estimate. We would love to help you aluminum cap your garage door frame.