When it comes to designing a custom garage door for your Denver-area home, there are a lot of factors that go into the final product — more than you might think. Factors like:

  • Price
  • Design
  • Durability
  • Insulation
  • Curb appeal
  • Maintenance
  • Longevity
  • And more

However, one of the most important elements of a custom garage door? The material it’s made from. That’s because the material of your garage door impacts virtually every other aspect of your garage door, helping bring your vision to life.

So, which material should you choose? Which one is best for your budget and home? We’re breaking down the different types of materials for custom garage doors — and the pros and cons of each — so you can start designing your dream door. 


First up: steel, which is one of the most common materials used for custom garage doors. You can think of steel garage doors as the more traditional kind with multiple panels.

Some of the benefits of steel garage doors include:

Some of the cons of steel garage doors include:

  • More susceptible to damage — like dents, dings, and chips — from cars, toys, and severe weather
  • Can easily rust and corrode in high humidity


Fiberglass is often overlooked for custom garage door materials but can provide some seriously impressive results. That’s because fiberglass garage doors can mimic the look of other materials without the added costs and maintenance. Let’s break down some of the additional pros and cons of fiberglass:


  • Less susceptible to dents, cracks, and rust
  • Doesn’t shrink or warp in humid climates
  • More economical than other materials
  • Semi-transparent, allowing natural light in your garage


  • Not ideal for those who live in windy areas
  • Can be noisy
  • Cracks and breaks can’t be repaired individually and typically require an entire garage door replacement


If you want a custom garage door that is sure to stand out on your block, you should consider aluminum as your main material. Best for a modern, contemporary, or non-traditional look, aluminum garage doors provide a lot of design options in the form of paneling, finishes, transparency, and colors. If you want to go for a bold look (or show off your car collection), you can also swap out aluminum panels for translucent glass ones.

Some of the pros of aluminum garage doors include:

  • Tons of customizable options
  • Allows lots of natural light into your garage
  • More resistant to rust
  • Fairly low-maintenance

Some cons of aluminum garage doors to consider:

  • Limited insulation options (low R-values)
  • Not as durable as other materials; more susceptible to damage
  • Potential privacy issues (depending on how transparent your panels are)


Vinyl is another great material option for your custom garage door, as it’s fairly cost-effective and great for those with a lower budget. Although vinyl garage doors aren’t quite as customizable as other materials, the end results can still look stylish and boost your home’s curb appeal.

Benefits of vinyl garage doors:

  • Resistant to rust, dents, breaks, and splintering
  • Don’t require a lot of maintenance
  • Tolerant of hot and cold temperatures, making them ideal for homes in any climate
  • Contain UV resistance

Downsides of vinyl garage doors:

  • Limited color options
  • Not able to change the color of your garage door
  • Material isn’t naturally insulating

Faux Wood (Wood Composite)

Faux wood garage doors — also called wood composite — are built to look like real wood. However, they’re typically made with other materials like steel, aluminum, or fiberglass with overlays of faux wood.


  • Easy maintenance
  • Less susceptible to moisture and humidity damage
  • Less costly than real wood garage doors


  • Less authentic-looking than real wood
  • More costly than other traditional garage door materials

Real Wood

Garage doors built with real wood are often deemed the most appealing for any home. It’s not only attractive, but it’s an incredibly durable material that can last for years to come — with proper maintenance, of course.

Benefits of custom wood garage doors:

  • Eco-friendly
  • Variety of wood types to fit different budgets
  • Incredibly durable and resistant to dents
  • Tons of customization options (including designs, windows, panels, stains, and colors)
  • Entirely unique to your home
  • Provides insulation

Downsides of real wood garage doors:

  • Can be more costly
  • Require regular maintenance to prevent rotting, chipping, and warping
  • It likely needs repainting or refinishing every few years

Start designing your custom garage door today

Custom garage doors are one of the best ways to boost your home’s curb appeal, get a solid return on investment, and create something truly unique to your home. But with so many options out there, it can be hard to know where to start. That’s where American Garage Door comes in.

Our experts can help you select the perfect material for your custom garage door, keeping in mind everything else that matters to you — from budget and design to installation and maintenance. 

Ready to design your custom garage door? Get started with American Garage Door now