Your garage door is one of the most noticeable and most used portions of your home's exterior. When your garage door develops problems, these issues could affect your home's appearance, safety and energy efficiency.

A new garage door is a significant investment and you may wonder if you'll save money by having your existing door repaired instead. While repairs can prolong the life of many garage doors, sometimes garage door replacement is necessary.

Your door may need to be replaced if you observe any of the following eight signs.

1. Extensive Cosmetic Damage

Your garage door takes up a significant portion of your home's exterior, both visually and literally. When the door becomes damaged, the imperfections may affect the way you and your guests perceive your house as a whole.

If you are unhappy with the look of your garage door, especially if you want to increase curb appeal or resale value, consider replacing the door with a new model.

2. Frequent Breakdowns

As garage doors get older, they're more likely to experience technical problems. If you never feel sure what your garage door will do when you press the opener button, it may be time to replace the opener system or the door as a whole.

While a couple repairs are more cost-effective than replacement, if your garage door is rarely operable, you will likely save money by investing in a new door instead of paying to constantly repair an old one.

3. Holes

Many types of localized garage door damage can be covered or concealed. However, once your garage door sustains a hole all the way through the door, you should consider a replacement.

In some cases, you may be able to replace a single panel rather than the entire door. This option depends on how large the hole is and whether the damage affected the track and other components. For example, a hole caused by a vehicle accident may have warped the entire track, hinges and door, necessitating total replacement.

4. Missing Features

Modern garage door innovations can make your door safer, more functional and more convenient. Many older doors can be retrofitted to incorporate some of these features. However, not all features are compatible with all older doors.

If you're interested in a newer feature, have a garage door expert assess your door. If the features you want can't be used with your current door, you'll have to decide if you're ready to replace the door with a new one.

5. Planned Renovations

Many homeowners use their garages for tasks other than vehicle storage. If you plan to remodel your garage to turn it into a storeroom, studio or extra bedroom, you should start your renovation with the door.

The average garage door is not suited for frequent use of the garage space. There may not be enough sound or temperature insulation, especially if you want to add the garage to your living space square footage.

If you're approaching a renovation, be sure to check the local building codes in your area. You may need to build a carport or secondary garage if you intend to permanently incorporate the garage into your home’s living space.

6. Poor Insulation

Poor insulation can be a concern even if you don't plan to spend a significant amount of time in your garage. Inadequate insulation may lead to extensive heat loss or gain that may force your HVAC system to work harder to keep your home comfortable.

If you notice a draft around your garage door, you may need to upgrade to a more energy-efficient model to protect your home against unwanted heat transfer.

7. Safety Concerns

Some older garage doors simply do not offer the safety or security of newer models. If you're concerned about the safety of kids and pets in the garage area, you may need a newer garage door opener to eliminate the risk of sudden door closures.

If you're concerned about potential break-ins, you may want to invest in a reinforced or windowless garage door. This update will help you be safer in your home, and may be a necessity in some neighborhoods.

8. Warping

Even if you don't see any clear signs of irreparable damage, such as holes, your door still can be beyond repair. Warping may occur due to high winds, collisions or accidents. If your door has become warped enough to need replacement, it may not open or close easily or at all. In these cases, you will need to replace your garage door so you can have a functioning space.

If your garage door has any combination of the characteristics listed above, discuss your replacement options with a garage door expert. For repairs or replacement, trust Affordable Garage Door Repairs. We offer a variety of doors and opener systems so you're sure to find the right door to complement your home’s style and needs.