Steel vs. Aluminum Garages

Steel vs. Aluminum Garages

If you’re in the market for new garage doors, different materials offer different benefits. Some are more durable, while others are a smaller investment. Because the type of garage door you choose will impact everything from curb appeal to property value, it’s worthwhile to learn what each has to offer. 

In this comparison guide, we’ll explore the benefits of aluminum vs. steel doors so you can make an informed investment for your home. 

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Are Steel or Aluminum Garage Doors Better?

Steel is the heavier, more durable option, while aluminum is a softer, lightweight metal. Even though steel is more robust, aluminum still holds a superior strength-to-weight ratio. Both metals are on the more affordable end of the garage door material spectrum. They are both durable and work well in a variety of climates. 

Still, deciding which is best for your home depends on various factors. Each of these garage door materials has unique benefits to offer. 

Benefits of Steel Garages

Steel is an alloy of iron and carbon. It contains less than 2.00% carbon, about 1.00% magnesium and smaller amounts of silicone, oxygen, phosphorus and sulfur. Steel is an essential metal in engineering and construction. 

Steel garage doors have these benefits to offer:

  • Durable: Steel is a heavier, more robust metal that can withstand a lot of wear and tear over time.
  • Versatile: Steel garage doors come in various styles and designs and can manage all finishes. It can be shaped around glass panels or used to make sectional garage doors or even the traditional roll-up style. 
  • Recyclable: Steel production is more eco-friendly than many other materials because the metal is recyclable. 
  • Less prone to dents: Steel’s durable properties make it less likely to dent. Driving into the door will likely leave marks, but minor impacts shouldn’t affect the surface. The panel beating process also makes it possible to remove dents rather than replace the door. 
  • Low-maintenance: Pre-painted steel doesn’t require much maintenance. Spraying the door panel with a hose will keep it clean all year round.

With steel garage door selections, you can choose one to four-layer constructions. The more layers, the more durable the garage door will be. Additional layers also improve insulation.

Benefits of Aluminum Garages

Aluminum is a silvery-white metal used in residential homes, automobiles, trains and more due to its versatility and playability. It is the most widespread metal on the planet, accounting for over 8.00% of Earth’s crust

When used to craft garage doors, aluminum offers homeowners the following benefits:

Benefits of Steel Garages

  • Lightweight: Because aluminum is a lightweight metal, these garage doors are easier to install. The lighter weight also ensures the garage door opener is under less strain, so the opening system will last longer and likely require less ongoing maintenance.
  • Corrosion-resistant: Aluminum garage doors are unlikely to rust and corrode due to the metal’s natural properties. 
  • Recyclable: This metal is recyclable, making it a more eco-friendly option than some materials.
  • Low-maintenance: An aluminum garage door is effortless to maintain. You’ll only need to spray the garage door panel with a hose to keep it clean.
  • Scratch-resistant: This metal may be more prone to denting, although it is scratch-resistant. 

Aluminum garage doors offer valuable benefits and can be more versatile than steel. But when aluminum doors dents, you may need to replace it. Panel beating is not suitable because this process can cause the metal to stretch and weaken. 

Factors to Consider When Choosing a New Garage Door

Before investing in a garage door for your home, there are a few crucial factors to consider, from short- and long-term costs to property value and more. These factors will help you decide which material offers the best investment.

Short-Term and Long-Term Costs

Metal garage doors have similar price ranges, and several factors impact these prices, including size, style and finishes.

The repair costs between steel and aluminum garage doors are also similar, with aluminum repairs being slightly more affordable in general. Both types of garage doors can last up to 30 years with routine maintenance and care, although steel doors will wear down garage opener systems quicker due to their heavier weight. So, steel may come with higher long-term maintenance costs.

Curb Appeal

Both aluminum and steel garage doors are versatile options for boosting curb appeal. You can customize them with things like glass windows, different colors and finishes, hardware and insulation. However, aluminum is a lighter, more flexible metal, so customization is easier. As a result, customized aluminum garage doors are often easier to find. 

Because a new garage door boosts curb appeal and offers security and functionality, either metal can provide a 102.7% return on investment when it comes time to sell your house.

Home Security

Garage doors offer a lot in terms of home security. The garage door secures the largest entrance to your home and the most valuable space. However, steel is a superior material when choosing a garage door to enhance safety. Because aluminum is lightweight, it is easier for criminals to break through and enter your home. Steel, on the other hand, offers maximum security. 

Even so, it’s still important to be safety conscious when investing in a steel door. Installing a garage security system is wise, and upgrading the opener system is also important. Automatic garage door openers can boost safety, as the remote signals cannot be copied. Newer models send new code signals each time the door is opened or closed, making it harder for criminals to enter your home. 


When it comes to managing indoor temperatures, insulation is essential. Because steel is heavier in weight, it can offer more insulation than aluminum. Steel is also more durable against harsh weather conditions. 

Aluminum has a higher thermal conductivity than steel, meaning it will transfer heat more efficiently. Aluminum doors may improve indoor temperatures in winter by absorbing heat from the winter sun and transferring it into your home through the garage. Even so, steel is a superior choice to boost home insulation. When choosing either material, insulating your garage doors is the best way to help regulate indoor temperatures and keep utility costs low. 

Shop Quality Garage Doors from AAA Garage Doors

Shop Quality Garage Doors from AAA Garage Doors

Whether you choose lightweight aluminum or durable steel garage doors for your home, AAA Garage Doors offers a wide range of quality garage doors. But if you still aren’t sure which material is the best choice, reach out to our garage door experts at 402-307-8013. We’ll recommend the best options for your home, budget and lifestyle. 

Browse our range of garage doors and garage door openers and request an estimate online

Felipe Pinales

Reviewed By: Felipe Pinales - Felipe is Nebraska’s first IDEA-certified Master Technician. He has been employed by AAA Garage Door for 6+ years, and has had the Master Technician Certification in his sights since he began. Felipe has also passed four written examinations including Residential Installer Certification, Commercial Sectional Door Systems Technician Certification, Commercial Rolling Door Systems Technician Certification, and Rolling Steel Fire Door Technician Certification. Felipe is constantly looking for ways to improve his abilities within our industry. His goal is to become the best garage door technician possible to best assist his customers and fellow co-workers.