How To Add Windows To An Existing Garage Door Panel

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Whether you're looking to brighten up your garage with a little natural sunlight or freshen up your garage door's outward appearance, adding a few windows to your existing garage door can breathe new life into your home's appearance and enhance your garage's usability. The following is a step-by-step guide for installing windows in place of your garage door panels.

Consider Window Placement First

Before you set about installing your new windows, it's a good idea to consider where you want them to be. Different placement options have their own unique benefits:

  • Adding windows to the first row of panels allows plenty of natural light to come through, plus it offers the best looks for your home. However, you might not be able to look in and out of your garage unless you happen to be very tall.
  • Adding windows to the second or third row of panels also lets in sunlight while giving you a direct view in and out of your garage. If you're concerned about privacy, you can opt for two-way mirrored glass windows that let you look out of your garage without others looking in.

In addition to natural light and privacy considerations, you should also consider the architecture of your home when deciding where to install your garage door windows. For instance, some home designs benefit best from decorative windows that are installed along the top section of the garage door.

Installing Your New Windows

Start by measuring the width and height of the panels and check these against the width and height of the windows. Make sure the dimensions of the windows aren't larger than the panel itself. Afterwards, use your pencil to mark out the dimensions of the window on the panel. Surround the marked area with masking tape.

The next step will require a jigsaw with a fresh cutting blade. Line up the jigsaw blade against the inner edge of the tape. Use your jigsaw to cut an opening along the taped perimeter. Afterwards, clean off the edges of the new opening in preparation for the new window. Before inserting your new window, spread a thin bead of waterproof caulk along the edges of the new opening.

If you're using a window panel kit, then chances are it comes in two halves. You'll have to insert the back portion of the window into the panel before inserting the front portion. As you insert the back half of the window into the opening, use a rag to clean up any excess caulk it forces out.

Once the back portion is in place, you should be able to attach the front portion of the window. Attach the front portion according to the instructions that come with your window kit. In most cases, you'll use the screws that come with your kit to secure both halves of the windows in place. After you're done, you'll need to repeat the entire process for the next panel.

Don't Forget About the Garage Door Springs

The garage door springs act as a counterbalance to your garage door's weight, allowing you (or your garage door opener, in most cases) to effortlessly open and close the garage door without facing the door's full weight. Adding new windows can also add weight to your garage door. That means your garage door springs must cope with extra weight that it wasn't designed to handle. Your garage door opener and the springs themselves may prematurely wear out and fail due to the added weight.

Fortunately, you can prevent these problems from happening by installing new springs that can handle the extra weight. This means you'll have to weigh your garage door and purchase a set of torsion or extension springs that are rated for your garage door's increased weight.

For professional help with a task like this, contact a company that specializes in garage door installation.

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9 August 2016

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