Everything You Didn’t Know (But Should) About Garage Doors on the Water

– Ariel LaBorie
Windows? Check. Flooring? Done. Drywall repairs? Got it. That garage door that was always finicky? Well…

Everything is in order at your new place along the water, except for this one thing. Beautiful sunlit views are on your horizon, landscapes of rolling waters and spacious skies, and it will all be perfect… if you could just figure out what was going on with that garage door. It’s rusted, it sticks, and sometimes, it just plain doesn’t work. It looks okay; matches your color scheme and has windows that let some light in, but its function doesn’t always pull through. You’re not really sure what went wrong, or how to fix it at all. How would one go about making decisions regarding a garage door on your waterfront property?

This leads me to what you didn’t know about caring for a garage door on the water; material matters. 

I was fortunate to interview John Barony, Director of the Door & Awning Division of Encompass Enterprises Inc.. For a house on the water, he recommends that a vinyl or aluminum door would be the way to go.

Though EDA provides steel, vinyl, wood, and aluminum garage door options, Barony suggests that residents along the Chesapeake Bay, or any sort of waterfront property, should lean towards their vinyl and aluminum counterparts, as they would hold up best to the moisture in the air. “If you are on the water, you want something that is maintenance-free,”, Barony says, “[Wood] would prematurely rot on you, and steel will rust.”. He also suggests the use of galvanized hardware and springs for places with higher humidity, as it’s much more resilient to water and the elements. An upgrade like this is an added cost but is much more durable in the long run. 

So you’ve figured out why that garage door wasn’t working out for you: it’s the wrong material. 

However… The industrial metal shine was not the look you were going for. Not to worry; there’s no need to sacrifice looks for functionality. Barony goes into detail about how Encompass can accommodate design customizations, “As far as carriage style garage doors go, there are stamped options and overlay options; [the] overlay is more authentic looking and three-dimensionally accurate, whereas the stamped version, from a street view, will look like a wooden door, but it will not feel like one.”. Overlays are compatible with steel, aluminum, wood, or vinyl doors, while stamped designs are typically reserved for steel doors only. Both of these choices are waterfront friendly and are able to withstand the elements. So, if you had your heart set on a wood door, but find your garage to be thirty feet from the Chesapeake Bay, an aluminum option with vinyl overlay would not only give you the look you were hoping for but would also hold up against the humid, brackish air. 

Encompass Door and Awning is ready and willing to go over any design ideas with you. “We go through the entire process to pick something that fits with what you’re going for. If we can’t buy it, we deal with several companies who can build it, and in some cases, we may be able to build it in-house,” Barony says. EDA is at the ready to design and assemble a garage door that is perfect for you and your home on the water, keeping safety, functionality, and fashion in mind, which means you can finally check that garage door off your to-do list. 

Thank you for reading our latest blog! We are excited to share insights and offer advice in our area of expertise. Encompass Enterprises Inc. is posting blogs and resources with the goal of keeping you informed on all things regarding new home builds and renovations. We are happy to assist with any home improvement endeavors and decision-making needs in order to make your dream project a reality. For more information on our divisions and services offered, please contact us at 443.771.2862 or [email protected]. We are dedicated to using every resource available in order to provide best-in-class service to our clients & community.