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Adding Windows to an Existing Garage Door

Our customer Melody just bought her first home. She is loving home ownership!

However, once she lived in the home for a few months and started working out in the garage, she noticed she was lacking natural light in the garage. It was frequently dark in the garage and she was craving some more light. 

She didn’t have the budget to replace the garage door completely. Her garage door was also in really good shape, so replacing it would be a waste of money and material. 

She gave us a call to see what options she might have to adding some natural light to her garage. 

Adding Windows to an Existing Garage Door

We gave Melody the great news that we could easily order a top panel for her garage door with windows, so she could get the natural light she wants without the expense of a total garage door replacement. 

We put the order in for the upper panel and it arrived the same week. As long as your current garage door is still being manufactured, it’s never a problem to get a new panel for your garage door.

Whether you want to add windows like Melody or you have damage or a dent in a panel, replacing a panel or two is a very easy project, and always more affordable than replacing the entire door. It can also customize the look of your garage door!

Melody is very happy with her new panel and all the natural light she gets now into her garage!

adding windows to an existing garage door

Now all Melody needs to do is paint the panel to match the rest of the door or repaint the entire door to get a new look.

Painting your garage door is also a great, and inexpensive way, to upgrade the curb appeal of your home.

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A Guide to Repairing Garage Door Windows

garage_door_window_panelsIf you have a panelized garage door with some windows in it, there’s a possibility of having a window break at some point. Fortunately these windows are easy to repair and if you’re just a little bit handy, you can do this yourself.  Just carry out the following simple steps for repairing two types of garage door window.

Tools You Will Need

A few simple tools are all you need to carry out these repairs, along with a replacement window of course. Here’s the list of tools and materials:

  • Power drill
  • 1/8-inch drill bit
  • Screwdriver
  • Some plywood or other thin wood strips
  • Some masking tape
  • Some all-weather caulking
  • Putty knife
  • Wood chisel
  • Work gloves

Repairing a Window in a Frame

Some garage door windows consist of glass or Plexiglas encased in a frame. Here are the steps for repairing this type of window.

1) Undo and take out the screws from the outer side of the frame.

2) Have someone push the window towards you from the other side of the door so you can remove it.

3) Place the replacement window and frame on a sheet of plywood or some wood strips on the ground with the outside(the wider side) of the frame face up.

4) There will be a template provided with the new window. Place this template on the frame of the new window and line-up the guide marks with the window frame edges.

5) Fasten the template to the replacement window with some lengths of masking tape.

6) Using the drill and 1/8-inch bit, drill holes through the frame using the template as a guide.

7) Fit the window into the opening with the wide side facing outward and the edges with rubber seals facing inward.

8) Fasten the frame to the garage door with screws through the holes you drilled.

Replacing Window Inserts

The second type of window is made up of glass or Plexiglas inserts which fit into the framework of the garage door. The following steps explain how to replace this type of window in your garage door.

1) You will see some small tabs holding the insert in place in the frame. Alternatively the insert may be held in place with wood stops. If the window has tabs, carefully straighten them with your putty knife. If the window has wood stops, pry them gently away from the window opening using the tip of the wood chisel.

2) Wearing your gloves, cut away the caulking bead at the edges of the window opening with a sharp utility knife.

3) Remove the Plexiglas or glass from the window opening.

4) Use the end of your wood chisel to scrape off any caulking which remains at the window opening.

5) Run a regular bead of fresh caulking along each edge of the window opening.

6) Gently push the new Plexiglas or glass panel into the window opening.

7) Use your fingers to bend the tabs back against the front of the panel. If wood stops are used in place of tabs, run another bead of all-weather caulking around the external edges of the window opening and refit the wood stops.

That’s all there is to it. Of course if you really don’t fancy doing this task yourself, a local garage door installation and repair expert will be able to replace the glass for you.

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