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When it comes to choosing the right type of garage door for your home, it’s important to consider all the options available. One popular option is the side-hinged garage door, which is also known as a swing garage door. This type of door opens outwards, similar to how a regular door operates. In this blog post, we’ll explore the pros and cons of side-hinged garage doors, so you can determine if it’s the right choice for your home.

Definition of Side-Hinged Garage Doors Side-hinged garage doors are typically made up of two separate doors that open outwards, similar to a set of French doors. They can be operated manually or with an automatic opener. The doors are usually held in place with locking bars or bolts, which provide additional security.

Brief History of Side-Hinged Garage Doors Side-hinged garage doors have been around for a long time and was once the most common type of garage door. They were commonly found on carriage houses and barns and were often made from wood. As technology advanced, other types of garage doors such as sectional and roller doors became more popular due to their ease of use and added convenience.

Pros of Side-Hinged Garage Doors

  1. Traditional Design One of the most significant advantages of side-hinged garage doors is their classic and traditional design. They add a timeless and elegant look to any home and can increase the curb appeal of your property.
  2. Easy to Operate Manually Side-hinged garage doors are easy to operate manually. They require no complicated mechanisms or electronic components, making them less likely to break down or require maintenance.
  3. Can be Opened Partially for Ventilation Side-hinged garage doors can be opened partially, which is an excellent feature for those who want to ventilate their garage or workspace. This makes them popular for hobbyists, woodworkers, and mechanics who spend a lot of time in their garages.
  4. No Ceiling Tracks Required Unlike other types of garage doors, side-hinged doors do not require ceiling tracks. This means they are easier to install and can save you money on installation costs.
  5. Can be Made from a Variety of Materials Side-hinged garage doors can be made from various materials including wood, steel, and fibreglass. This means you can choose a material that best suits your needs and budget.

Cons of Side-Hinged Garage Doors

While side-hinged garage doors offer several advantages, they also have some disadvantages that should be considered before making a purchase. Here are some of the cons of side-hinged garage doors:

  1. Swing out can be obstructive: Side-hinged garage doors swing outwards when opened, which can be obstructive if there are any obstacles in the path of the door. This can be a problem if the garage is located in a tight space or near a busy street.
  2. Limited width: Side-hinged garage doors come in a range of widths, but they are generally narrower than other types of garage doors. This can be a problem if you have a larger vehicle or need to store wider items in your garage.
  3. Not suitable for automation: Side-hinged garage doors are not suitable for automation. If you want the convenience of an automatic garage door opener, you will need to choose a different type of garage door.
  4. Require space in front of the garage: Side-hinged garage doors require space in front of the garage to open fully. If you have a short driveway or limited space in front of your garage, this may not be a practical option.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Side-Hinged Garage Doors

When choosing a side-hinged garage door, there are several factors to consider to ensure you make the right choice for your needs. Here are some of the factors to consider:

  1. Material options: Side-hinged garage doors can be made from various materials, including wood, steel, and aluminum. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to consider your needs and budget when choosing a material.
  2. Security features: A garage door is often a point of entry for burglars, so it’s important to choose a side-hinged garage door that comes with robust security features. Look for doors with sturdy locks and hinges, and consider adding additional security measures such as a burglar alarm.
  3. Insulation options: If you plan to use your garage as a workspace or living area, it’s important to choose a side-hinged garage door with good insulation. Insulated doors will help to keep your garage warm in the winter and cool in the summer, making it a more comfortable space to spend time in.
  4. Maintenance requirements: Different materials and finishes will require different levels of maintenance. Consider the amount of time and effort you are willing to spend maintaining your garage door when choosing a material and finish.


In conclusion, side-hinged garage doors have their own set of advantages and disadvantages. They are a popular choice for homeowners who prioritize traditional design and manual operation. However, swing out can be obstructive and the limited width can be a concern for larger vehicles.

When choosing side-hinged garage doors, it is important to consider factors such as material options, security features, insulation options, and maintenance requirements. It is also important to assess your personal needs and preferences before making a decision.

Overall, side-hinged garage doors are a viable option for those who prioritize a traditional look and manual operation. However, those who have limited space or are looking for automation may want to consider other options. As with any home improvement project, it is important to do your research and consult with professionals to make the best decision for your specific situation.

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