How To Measure The Radius Of Your Garage Door

Need help determining the track radius of your garage door? Watch the video below to learn how to measure the radius of your garage door quickly and easily!

Whether you need to change a garage door, install a new one, or upgrade it, you definitely should know the parameters of the space available in your house. This measurement will limit your options and let you focus on the search for the garage doors that are suitable for your building.

You can follow easy steps to measure your garage door, and all you need is a tape measure.

  • Step 1: Measure the width and height of your garage door. If you have an existing garage door, you can measure the height from the radius track to the lowest point or nearest obstruction.
  • Step 2: Measure the sides of your garage door, which shouldn't be shorter than 3.5" on each side, in order to install a vertical track and torsion springs of the garage door. A torsion spring is a spring that lets the garage door rotate.
  • Step 3: Measure the headroom of your garage door. You can measure it from the top of the door to the ceiling.
  • Step 4: Measure the depth of the garage. You need to check the distance between the garage door opening to the back wall of your garage.

Note that if you plan to install an automatic garage door, you might require additional space for the backroom, sides, and headroom. The correct measurement will help you choose the garage door that will fit your house.

Quick Tips For Measuring Your Garage Door Radius

Here are some quick tips for determining the track radius of your garage door: 

  • Nearly ALL residential garage doors have a track radius of either 12" or 15"
  • A 12" radius has a sharper track curve and opens lower
  • Anything shorter than 91 inches is a 12" track radius
  • Anything between 91 & 93 inches is a 15" track radius

The track radius is extremely important in determining what type of springs you need for your door, especially when you need to find garage door springs by weight.

What to Remember Before You Measure a Garage Door

When measuring the door height and width, it is most accurate to do it from inside the garage. Look out for a door jamb and other obstructions that shouldn't be included to your measurement. Depending on your building, your walls or ceiling can be uneven, and, as a result, you will have to fix that in order to fit the garage door properly.

When measuring headroom, you need to make sure nothing is blocking in between the ceiling and the top of the door. However, if you do have some overhead storage boxes, rafters, or any other obstacles, you should measure the distance between them and the top of the garage door. Depending on the door, the headroom required parameters can be slightly different.

The sides don't have to be too big; only a few inches are required for the proper installation of a door track.

When estimating the depth from the garage door to the back of the garage, you need to make sure that the door can fully slide under the ceiling.

Garage Door Track

Before you purchase a garage door track, make sure to double-check the parameters, as it is complicated to make changes to the track if it doesn't fit well.

  • Standard Lift Track: The standard lift track is the most common one. Once you measured the radius track, you should know that for a 12" radius, the headroom required is 13" while for a 1 15" radius, the headroom required is 16".
  • Low Headroom Double Track: The low headroom track needs less room. The double door track requires a headroom of a minimum of 10". This type of track is suitable for garage doors that have a big top part.
  • Low Headroom Rear Torsion: This type of garage door track is different by having a rear torsion spring that is very strong and can last a long time, too. The headroom should be at least 6.5".
  • Low Headroom Extension Springs: This type of track has extension springs, and it is perfect for headroom of a minimum of 6.5".
  • High Lift Track: The high lift track is perfect for garage doors with a high ceiling. This type has a more vertical track than horizontal, and the bigger part of a garage door stays in a vertical position when open.
  • Vertical Lift Track: In order to have a vertical lift track, the ceiling should be double the size of your door opening. This track can only be used with a jackshaft garage door opener.
  • Room Pitch Track: This track follows the roof, curving the door accordingly.

Remember that if you plan to install a motor door opener, you will require more space than for an opener without a motor.

Garage Door Opener

There are many types of garage door openers, and they all vary in the way they operate. However, all of them are designed only to open your garage door. If your door opener has broken down, you can always replace it with a new one. Here is the list of various garage door openers:

  • Chain Drive: This garage door opener can lift with the heaviest doors and can last a long time if well-maintained. The price is very affordable, too; however, this door opener makes a lot of noise and can be disturbing at late hours.
  • Belt Drive: Unlike the previous type, a belt drive doors opener is best to be installed if you value silence and tranquillity, be it morning or night. The noise reduction comes at a high price, and not every garage door can work with this type of opening system.
  • Screw Drive: This type of doors opener is less noisy than a chain drive but requires good and regular maintenance.
  • Jackshaft: Similarly to a belt drive opening system, a jackshaft makes little noise, and some newer versions can be connected with your smartphone device.

Regardless of what you choose, all of the doors openers work for the same purpose but slightly differently. You don't need to have lots of headroom clearance to install a new opener.

Installing a New Garage Door

If you are not entirely sure how to install a new garage door, it is best to hire a professional. If you decide to do it yourself, there are some useful installation tips to remember.

  • Make sure to buy the parts that fit the garage door and tracks. If needed, replace all the old parts (like torsion springs, for example).
  • Invest in purchasing a garage tool kit for future maintenance.
  • If you replace an old garage door, it is recommended to replace a track as well. It is especially vital if the new door is heavier than the previous one.
  • If you install a new door yourself, it is safer to attach safety cables in case the springs break.
  • Always follow the instruction and do not improvise when installing a garage door.

How to Keep Your Garage Door in Good Condition?

In order for a garage door and its components to operate without breaking, it is necessary to maintain them in good condition regularly. For your garage door to be opening fast and smoothly, make sure to tighten the bolts, brackets, and other hardware. If you notice something came loose, take care of it immediately. You should clean the tracks from leaves and dirt and lubricate the parts like rollers for better door opening.


Before changing a garage door or its separate components, it is important to measure everything correctly to avoid problems when installing a new part. Once you have the parameters ready, it will be easier for you to narrow the search and find what really fits your building or an existing garage door.

Measure the width, height, and other parameters carefully and write them down because, otherwise, you will choose a product from a wrong list of garage doors that do not suit your building. Nobody wants to be left with a garage door opening system that does not fit and cannot be installed!

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