Everything There Is to Know About Roll-Up Doors 

Everything There Is to Know About Roll-Up Doors 

You have options if you’re looking to install doors in a warehouse, garage or yard shed. Roll-up doors, also known as coiling garage doors, provide security and durability. They’re an excellent choice for various businesses and work well in both new facilities and existing buildings. 

Before you install any door, it helps to know how each style works and what kind of benefits and drawbacks you can expect. Garage Door Specialists, Inc. has more than 40 years of experience helping companies choose the right doors. When you work with us, you know you’ve made the right product choice and that a one-year warranty covers your door installation. 

Learn more about roll-up doors and their applications from the pros at Garage Door Specialists. 

What Is a Roll-Up Door and How Does it Work?

Roll-up doors are produced from sheets of metal, usually steel or aluminum. Our roll-up doors are made from 24-inch wide sheets of 26 gauge steel. The steel is roll formed with integral grooves, which creates a continuous sheet. After installation, roll-formed guides move the steel sheets vertically, opening and closing the door. 

As a roll-up door opens, the steel sheets coil around a spring-loaded shaft, rolling into a compact drum at the top of the door frame. The drum size means you don’t need much clearance to install a roll-up door. While a true zero-clearance roll-up door might not be possible, the space required at the top of the door frame is typically minimal. 

Roll-up doors are available in light-, medium- and heavy-duty models to suit various needs. An example of light-duty door use might be a yard shed roll-up door or a self-storage roll-up door. A large warehouse may need a heavy-duty model. 

To extend their life span, roll-up doors are typically painted with silicone polyester paint. You can choose various colors to complement your building’s appearance or fit your company’s branding requirements. 

What Are the Advantages of a Roll-Up Door?

A roll-up door offers multiple benefits. If you’re weighing the pros and cons of a roll-up door versus a sectional door, here are some of the advantages of choosing the roll-up variety:

  • Durability: Steel and aluminum have long life spans and can withstand years of use and abuse. Steel roll-up doors are galvanized or coated with a layer of zinc, which helps protect them from rust. The doors are also finished with long-lasting paint that protects while enhancing the door’s appearance. 
  • Enhanced security: A sheet of 26-gauge steel is thick and hard to break through, meaning a roll-up door will keep whatever is on the other side safe from harm. Roll-up doors are also better able to resist damage from vandals than sectional doors. Plus, there’s the option to add a lock to increase security.
  • Added insulation: Warehouses and garages tend not to be heated or cooled. With a roll-up door, you can choose to add a layer of foam insulation to keep the heat in during the winter and out during the summer.
  • Optional fire rating: You can install a roll-up door that’s fire resistant and will trigger at the first evidence of fire. A fire-rated door can keep flames from spreading for up to four hours. 
  • Reduced clearance requirements: Since the door rolls up into a compact drum, roll-up doors can be ideal for areas with little additional space.

What Are the Disadvantages of a Roll-Up Door?

One notable drawback of roll-up doors compared to other options is the cost. Roll-up doors have a higher price point than sectional doors, at least upfront. However, while you may pay more initially for a roll-up door, you’ll likely enjoy cost savings in the long run. These doors often need less maintenance than other styles and have the potential to outlast models with a lower purchase price.

What Are the Types of Roll-Up Doors?

Various types of roll-up doors are available. The model that’s right for you will depend on your needs:

  • Light-duty: Light-duty roll-up doors are ideal for structures that see minimal wear and tear and don’t require extensive security. For instance, you might install a light-duty door on a yard shed, storage facility or recreational garage.
  • Medium-duty: A medium-duty roll-up door can be an appropriate pick for a garage or warehouse that doesn’t see much use.
  • Heavy-duty: Heavy-duty roll-up doors are ideal for use in buildings that require extra security or are exposed to severe weather. The door’s strength allows it to withstand strong winds or security threats. A heavy-duty door can also withstand repeated, ongoing use with little signs of wear or damage.
  • Fire-rated: Fire-rated roll-up doors protect against fire damage in two ways. First, the doors are specially outfitted with sensors that enable them to detect fire — at the first sign of flames or smoke, the door rolls shut. Closing the door keeps fire from spreading from one building area to another. Fire-rated doors are also designed to withstand flame and heat damage to help keep the fire contained. 
  • Insulated: In many cases, you can add insulation to roll-up doors. Choosing a roll-up door with a layer of foam insulation helps keep your facility’s heating and cooling costs down and create a climate-controlled environment while increasing comfort inside your building. 

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Roll-Up Door?

The cost to install a roll-up door varies depending on the door type and size. We can provide you with a free estimate based on your project specifications to help you better understand what your door installation will cost. 

When evaluating the cost of a roll-up door, it helps to consider the following:

  • What’s included in the quote: When getting an estimate, find out what it includes. Are you getting a quote for the door cost alone, or does the price cover installation? 
  • Available extras: Depending on your needs, you may want to add insulation or choose a fire-rated door. 
  • The upfront cost versus ongoing maintenance needs: A roll-up door might have a higher initial price tag than another style, but it will cost you less over time. Ask about maintenance requirements before choosing a door, as one that requires a lot of upkeep and attention can be the more costly option.
  •  Longevity of the door: How long the door lasts also affects its cost. A door with a higher price tag and longer life span can be the more cost-effective option over the long term compared to a less expensive one with a shorter service life.

How Do You Maintain a Roll-Up Door?

Caring for and maintaining a roll-up door helps to prolong its life span. There are a few things you can do to keep a door in excellent condition:

  • Clean the door regularly
  • Keep the channels lubricated
  • Schedule regular inspections

If you have a fire-rated roll-up door, test it every few months to ensure that it is set properly and will deploy as intended in case of fire. 

How Do You Stay Safe When Using a Roll-Up Door?

When properly installed and maintained, a roll-up door shouldn’t present a safety hazard. The first thing to do is ensure the door is installed correctly. Hire a company with years of experience installing roll-up doors and a track record of success.

Any time that door opens, verify that it rolled up completely — a partially opened door won’t be fully secure and can roll back down. 

Remind employees not to walk under the door while it is in motion — for safety reasons, you need to wait for the door to open fully before passing through it. Similarly, ensure that people don’t run under the door while it’s closing. 

Get a Roll-Up Door from Garage Door Specialists

Garage Door Specialists offers a variety of custom roll-up doors, so you’re sure to find a model that suits your needs. We design and install roll-up doors and provide fast, reliable service and repairs to keep your entryways safe and functional. To learn more about our options, contact us today.