Help Me Choose! Vinyl vs. Fibreglass Garage Doors

For many years, homeowners who purchased garage doors were limited to wood and steel models. Today, however, there are a couple new contenders on the residential scene: vinyl and fibreglass garage doors. 

In this article, our team of garage door experts at Creative Door Services give you a full rundown on vinyl and fibreglass garage doors. We compare and contrast to help you make an informed choice about whether one or the other would be the right fit for your home and your lifestyle!


What are vinyl and fibreglass, exactly?

Vinyl is a type of plastic, made of ethylene and chlorine. When these two substances are combined, they form polyvinyl chloride (PVC) — or, for short, vinyl. Vinyl is an extremely durable plastic and is also 100% recyclable. 

Fibreglass, on the other hand, is made up of thin strands of glass that were woven or compressed together. Fibreglass garage doors are made from numerous extra-fine sheets of glass compressed into a solid material. But don’t let the word “glass” and its association with fragility fool you: fibreglass is extremely durable, and there’s no risk of it shattering. It’s also highly lightweight and versatile. 

Both vinyl and fibreglass garage doors are built upon durable steel frames and include polyurethane insulation in their core. 

Now let’s explore what these two garage door materials have to offer.



Durability and upkeep

Vinyl and fibreglass are made to withstand the elements. They’re highly resistant to cracks, dents, and rust. Both are especially well suited to coastal regions, as they won’t be damaged by salt air, sand, or high winds. This quality is comparable to wood garage doors, on the other hand, which may develop rot in such climates, and certain steel doors may rust. 

Fibreglass is scratch-resistant, and vinyl is scratch-proof. This is because vinyl garage doors are one colour all the way through, so scratches don’t show up. On the flip-side, fibreglass can be repainted, so any blemishes may be covered up with a fresh coat. 

However, note that extreme cold can be a problem for vinyl and fibreglass doors, as these materials can become brittle and crack in frigid temperatures if forcefully impacted. 

Since both doors are resistant to damage, they require minimal upkeep. Typically, you just need to hose them down every so often. To prevent fading, fibreglass doors require a top clear coat every one to three years, depending on sun exposure. Vinyl doors won’t fade.



Quality of insulation

Neither vinyl nor fibreglass are an inherently insulating material, but most vinyl and fibreglass garage doors are well insulated thanks to being packed with polyurethane insulation. The vinyl garage doors we carry at Creative Door, including Wayne Dalton’s Model 8700 Specialty Vinyl Garage Door, have an R-value of 11.75, which indicates a high level of thermal efficiency.

The fibreglass garage doors we carry, including Wayne Dalton’s Model 8680 Designer Fibreglass Garage Door, have an R-value of 7.6. 

Speak with one of our local garage door experts across Canada to find out if these levels of insulation will be suitable for your home. 

If you want a garage door with higher levels of insulation, for example, if your garage doubles as a living space, you may be better off with a wood or steel garage door with a higher R-value.



Appearance and craftsmanship

Depending on the style of your home and your aesthetic preferences, you may find yourself drawn to the look of either of these garage door materials. Much like steel, vinyl has a clean, simple look that suits the style of most homes, and it can be customized with a variety of panel and window designs. However, note that vinyl tends to offer a limited number of colour options, and, as mentioned, it can’t be repainted. That said, the finishes available on the Model 8700 Vinyl Garage Door are classic and elegant and designed to complement a wide range of home styles. These are Glacier White, Adobe Cream, Monterey Sand, and Cape Cod Gray

Alternatively, fibreglass garage doors can be manufactured to perfectly simulate woodgrain. The Model 8680 Fibreglass Garage Door has a warm and elegant woodgrain finish, and it has a wide range of customization options. You can choose between myriad panel designs, window designs, decorative hardware pieces and 10 elegant colours, including natural ak, Honduran mahogany, cherry, green, and grey. 

While fibreglass doors like the Model 8680 resemble high-end wood garage doors in appearance, fibreglass is more long-lasting, requires much less upkeep, and will never be subject to rot or pest damage. So, if you love the natural look of wood but live in a region that’s unsuited to the material (such as on the coast), fibreglass is an ideal option. 

For more information about these garage door types, consult the knowledgeable team at Creative Door Services. You can also use the Wayne Dalton Design Centre on our site to see how a fibreglass or vinyl garage door would look on your home.


Quality Vinyl and Fibreglass Garage Doors in Western Canada

Are you considering a new vinyl or fibreglass garage door for your home? Consult the Creative Door Services for more information about Wayne Dalton’s Model 8700 Vinyl Garage Doors and Model 8680 Fibreglass Garage Doors, or contact our team for additional information and expert advice across Canada! 

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