Understanding The Difference Between Single Panel and Sectional Garage Doors

by Loves Doors • September 01, 2021

A garage door is an integral feature of a house. It serves as a main entry and exit point for most homes and keeps vehicles safe from intruders and protected from the weather. When shopping for a new garage door, the choice is between a single panel and a sectional garage door. Single panel doors were widely popular before the introduction of sectional doors, which now make up most new installations.

Single panel and sectional garage doors have their strengths and weaknesses. In this post, we try to understand the difference between these two common garage door styles to help make a clear choice.


As the name suggests, single panel or swing garage doors come in a single, large, solid panel and swing upwards and outwards as one large unit. Most single panel doors are attached to a sturdy hinge system connected to the jamb.

Sectional garage doors consist of four to five horizontal hinged panels that bend and fold up one after the other on vertical tracks as they open and close, following a curved path. 


Single panel garage doors have the inherent vintage feel and offer higher customization options. They provide a uniform appearance and can easily be painted or stained to match the exterior. Single panel doors are best for old homes or new homeowners who love the vintage appearance. 

Sectional garage doors offer a more contemporary feel and are usually ideal for newer homes. They are versatile and can match any home design.


Though the lower availability of single-panel garage doors has led to a rise in prices, they still cost less than sectional doors made using similar materials. They also have fewer parts than the sectional garage doors, making it possible to save money with DIY installations. Single panel doors are cost-effective to maintain and repair. However, sectional doors come in a diverse price range, are more readily available, and offer more options to choose from.


A sectional garage door offers better insulation than single panel doors. A well-insulated door lowers the energy bills and keeps valuable belongings protected. However, a single panel door with lower insulation properties may suffice for a detached garage that is not often used.


Sectional garage doors are safer, more secure, and provide better protection from potential intruders than single panel doors. They have seals that keep out bugs, wind, and rain.

However, both single panel doors and sectional garage doors may cause injury if the mechanism fails. 


Homeowners want their garage doors to last for years before they need to be replaced. Sectional doors have better features and are more durable due to the thick, heavy panels. Modern single-panel doors are also long-lasting but still are no match to the durability of sectional doors.


Sectional doors are more compact and require less space to operate, while single panel doors need more room for opening and closing. Homeowners with smaller driveways and limited space should go for sectional garage doors. 

Selecting the right garage door type is essential as it impacts the overall look of the house. However, the choice largely depends on the budget, exposure to elements, and garage size. Contact a garage door installation and service company for assistance in choosing the right garage door for your needs.


Loves Garage Doors specializes in residential garage door and garage door opener repair, installation, and maintenance in Phoenix and surrounding cities. Call (602)346-9516 today!

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