How to Fix a Dented Garage Door
Garage doors are the face of your garage, so when they become dented, it stands out—in a bad way. There’s nothing more frustrating then having something as expensive as your garage door system get dinged up, fail to operate and hinder your daily routine.
Garage door dents happen quite frequently and lucky for you, there’s an easy fix and it doesn’t require you to be an expert around tools.
While you can pay a repair company to do the job for you, it’s worth a shot to save some money by spearheading this project yourself.
Why You Should Immediately Repair a Dented Garage Door
You may think that leaving a dent or two in your garage door won’t harm the overall system, but you might want to consider getting it fixed right away because it can definitely cause more damage.
Even cleaning your garage door and it’s track system regularly is recommended. Things like dirt, grime and debris can be the reason why the door becomes stuck, derailed from its track system or generally fails to operate correctly. Imagine what a dent can do if debris can cause failure in a garage door system?
Another factor to consider, especially if you’re considering selling your home, is that dents can lower the value of your home. Potential home buyers are always searching for homes with a polished, updated look. They are purchasing a home that is worth their money, and for them, it’s one less thing they must fix, update or upgrade themselves.
Resale value is heavily reliant on the home’s aesthetics and curb appeal, which is why it’s essential to maintain your landscaping, front door, and of course, fix those garage door dents.
Steps to Repairing Garage Door Dents
There are two popular do-it-yourself methods you can follow to repair the dents in your garage door.
For the first method, you will need to acquire:
- A wooden block
- A rubber mallet
- A putty knife
- Fine-grit sandpaper
- Patching putty material
- Primer & paint
First, before you get to work, analyze your garage door for the areas in which it has suffered damage and dents. You don’t want to go through the trouble of repairing one dent and putting your supplies away only to realize that there are several more you didn’t initially notice.
Clean the Problem Area
Your next step will be cleaning the problematic area with warm water and a mild detergent such as dish soap. Fill a bucket with lukewarm water and add one teaspoon of soap, using a sponge or microfiber cloth to remove any dirt.
Hose off the area thoroughly and allow it to dry completely, the door should be ready to go in an hour if you’re letting it air dry.
Now, get out your rubber mallet and block of wood for your next step. You are going to place the block of wood over the dent in question and use your rubber mallet to carefully tap the wood, evening out the surface of the dent.
It doesn’t have to be perfect because you still have a few more steps to go that will really smooth the area out. Just try to hammer the dent as best you can for a semi-even surface.
Smooth the Surface
Next, grab your fine-grit sandpaper. In this step, you’ll sand the area to produce a smooth, leveled area that nearly matches the rest of your garage door. The only difference between the dented area and the rest of the door is that you may be sanding it down so the door face looks a bit concaved in comparison to the surrounding surface.
It won’t look exactly like the rest of the door, but don’t worry about this issue right now as you’ll be filling in this concave spot, then priming and painting over the area to blend it in further.
Fill in the Dent
It’s time to fill in this slight dip where the dent once existed with your putty material. If your garage door is wood, then it might be easier to work with epoxy wood putty to fill in the dent. For most homeowners, however, the garage is likely made from metal, a popular material that doors these days are made from.
You can use all-purpose, general putty or opt for one that’s designed for auto body use since it deals with repairing the same type of material. Use your putty knife to apply the putty, smoothing it out as best you can.
Read the manufacturer’s instructions on the putty material to check how long the putty takes to dry completely. When the putty hardens and cures, use your sandpaper to sand the area again, ensuring that this patched area is now level to the rest of the door’s surface.
Follow up your sanding by cleaning the area, removing the debris and dirt with a wet towel, then drying the area again.
Finish Off with Paint
Your final step will be painting the door, but first you need to prime the spot so the paint will adhere. You may need to paint at least two coats so the area will unnoticeably blend with the rest of the door.
If you don’t want to use traditional paint for your door, you can always opt to use spray paint. With spray paint, it may take a few extra light coats to blend the problem spot but it does cut down on the cleanup and prep time of regular paint.
An Alternate Method to Removing Dents
The second method isn’t used as much as the first because it requires compressed air and a heat source, things that not every homeowner has ready access to.
The full list of what you need includes:
- Aluminum foil
- A heat source
- Compressed air
You’re going to begin with the same steps as the first method by washing the door with mild detergent, allowing it to dry completely. Next, take a piece of aluminum foil that is sized to fit over the dented area and place it over the dent.
Holding the aluminum foil in place, use your heat source (it can be a lighter or something similar) to apply heat against the foil for at least a minute, moving the heat source at a consistent speed over the foil to ensure even coverage.
Next, remove the aluminum foil carefully, and grab your compressed air canister, spraying air into the dent for at least half of a minute. It’s this step where you want your canister to release carbon monoxide all over the dented area or else your method won’t work.
In just about two minutes, the dent will pop back into place—if it doesn’t, try giving the process another go. Once it does, wash the area with clean water and a soft sponge. There you have it, a perfect garage door once again!
Taking Care of Your Garage Door
It doesn’t hurt to conduct an inspection and cleaning of your garage door every now and then. By taking care of dents, dirt, dust and grime you can avoid running into expensive problems and repairs down the road. If your garage door has suffered from severe dents, then it’s best to call in the experts.
Is your entire garage more of the eye soar and not just a dented door? Having a new garage built will improve and increase your home’s value and curb appeal tremendously. There’s only one garage builder that Chicagoland homeowners look to – Danley’s. Get a free quote now for your new garage.