Garage Doors and Terminology
If you’re looking at new garage doors, some of the terms used to describe the types of garage doors and the associated parts and accessories may be unfamiliar to you. Thanks to the folks at Clopay Garage Doors, we’ve put together a glossary of terms to help you.
As always, you can count on Affordable Garage Doors for all of your garage door repair
and garage door installation
needs. And of course we also repair and install garage door openers.
Support member used to fasten torsion spring assembly of a vertical lift door to the wall above the door opening.
Adjusting Cone (Winding Sleeve, Winding Cone)
Part that fits into torsion spring permitting winding and tension adjustment.
A method of fastening vertical track to a doorjamb using a fully adjustable continuos angle.
Weather-strip attached to the bottom of the door to seal it against the floor.
The distance from the door opening into the building to the first obstruction at the required headroom.
Additional spring provided to compensate for weakened counterbalance. (Usually an extension spring.)
Bottom Fixture (Bottom Corner Bracket)
A structural support located on the bottom section, which holds track rollers and provides for attachment of the lifting cables on the sectional doors.
Method of fastening vertical track to a doorjamb using jamb brackets.
A manufactured device used to secure two pieces of cable to each other. Size of clamp is determined by the cable diameter.
Grooved drums fitted on torsion spring shaft onto which lifting cable is wound when door is opened.
Cable Safety Device
A safety bottom fixture specifically designed to prevent a door from falling in the event of cable breakage.
Carriage House Garage Doors
Designed to look like traditional carriage house doors that swing open, these garage doors go up and down like traditional garage doors.
A lightweight extruded aluminum post/track assembly which substitutes for door jamb in multiple door installations where a clear span is required. Can be released and carried from opening.
Flat hinge located on all intermediate stiles to allow for section break as door operates.
Center Lift Cable
An additional lifting cable attached to the exterior of the door to provide support for extra wide or heavy doors.
Center Stile/Stile/Mullion/ Mutt
Vertical members of a door section which provide structural rigidity and location for center hinge attachment.
Refers to sprocket or pocket wheel attached to shaft with chain operation giving varying mechanical advantage in various ratios.
Special horizontal track with more than one radius used in specialty applications.
See Bottom Fixture
Refers to design of door mechanisms using weights instead of springs to counterbalance door weight.
One full opening and closing operation of a sectional garage door.
Door and Access System Manufacturing Association. International manufacturing trade association with 5 divisions: residential & commercial sectional doors; rolling doors; operator & electronics; specialty; and association division.
A static applied load. A load without movement.
Double Car (DC)
Door section width > 10′ 1″.
Double Low Headroom Track
Special horizontal track with a pair of tracks used to reduce the high point of travel of the top section of a door to permit installation in a low headroom application.
Double torsion spring shaft used when additional space is required to accommodate counterbalance spring wire.
A combination of two torsion springs of different diameters telescoped within common spring plugs.
Edge Hinge (Roller Hinge)
Graduated hinge, which is attached to end stile of the door sections to carry track rollers and allows for section breaks as a garage door operates.
Interlock to prevent door operation by electric motor under specific circumstances.
Electric Opener (Garage Door Opener)
Electric motorized device to control door cycling.
Stile located at each end of a door section, which provides for attachment of edge hinges. These stiles carry the total section load and should be of superior strength to provide structural integrity.
Counterbalance springs, which provide lifting power by stretching. Generally mounted above horizontal tracks.
Keyed lock, which can be operated on exterior of the door.
A metal ring or cap that is affixed to a cable so as to form a bottom or loop on the end of the cable.
Garage Door Openers
Garage Door Construction
How a door is made, whether of steel, insulation, wood, etc.
Design of tapered vertical track and a graduated height of edge hinges, which assure a weathertight, fit between door and jamb.
The distance above the top of the door opening to the nearest obstruction.
Special plate attached to front of horizontal tracks for limited sideroom application.
Weather-stripping which fastens to the top of the door to seal the door along the top of the opening.
See Lift Clearance
High Cycle Springs
Special counterbalance springs with increased cycle lift capability for high usage doors.
Horizontal Track Assembly
An assembly made up of a piece of track and which can be reinforced with a piece of angle that is used to both guide and support the door in the horizontal position.
IDA International Door Association
The dealer/installer trade association.
A horizontal track that follows the slope or slant of a building roof line.
Spring loaded, sliding deadbolt lock operated only from interior of the door.
Insulated Garage Doors
Garage doors with insulation built in during door construction. This increases the energy efficiency of the door and your home.
Electric operator which mounts on the wall or ceiling and directly drives torsion spring shaft.
Jamb Angle (Jamb Bracket)
“L” shaped bracket used to fasten vertical tracks to doorjambs.
Weather-stripping attached to doorjambs to help seal door along the jambs.
Weather-stripping attached to door section meeting edges to seal door between sections.
Condition where door sections lap the door opening one inch on each jamb.
A force applied from or toward the side.
The distance above the top of the door opening to the centerline of the horizontal track. This term is often confused with the term “headroom.”
Term for windows in sectional garage doors.
Hardware accessories to provide for door installation with minimum headroom conditions. Usually less than 16″ headroom.
A report of document that describes the composition of a material.
A report or document from the producing mill that provides all pertinent data relative to the composition, structure, heat, etc. of a given material.
A slender dividing bar fixed or removable between two doors. Usually designed to carry wind load and not vertical load.
Hardware standard to provide for door installation with standard headroom conditions. Usually 16″ to 24″ of headroom.
One Piece Door
Also known as Shin-busters. A garage door that operates as one-piece, rather than a door made of multiple sections.
Open Back Door
Hollow door with no insulation or back.
Area of the garage exterior where a garage door will hang for closure.
Distance from garage floor to the top of an opening.
Distance between left and right jambs of an opening.
Opener / Operator
A device used to control the up and down motion of a door.
Bottom fixture with an arm that bends around vertical track to receive lifting cables. Generally used with low headroom hardware.
The area between stiles in a door section. The “look” of a door is considered the “panel style.”
Entry person door which is built-in to a sectional door.
Complete weatherstripping package for sectional doors consisting of astragal, jamb seal and header seal.
A wheel or drum machined in a way to receive the individual links of a chain. Used to transmit direct power.
Push Down Spring Bumper
Spring-activated push rods mounted on horizontal tracks to force door down during closing portion of door cycle. Generally used with jackshaft type operator or manual chain hoist with standard lift.
A force generated from the center of an object toward the outside.
Steel and nylon, usually with ball-bearing wheels that allow sections to roll freely along door tracks.
R-value is a measurement of thermal efficiency of a garage door, or how well the garage door insulates. The higher the R-value, the increased thermal efficiency of a garage door. Be aware that manufacturer’s R-value calculations may vary. To compare R-value, make sure manufacturers follow the DASMA (Door and Access Systems Manufacturers Association) guidelines by stating Calculated door section R-value is in accordance with DASMA TDS-163
Triple-Layer: Steel + Insulation + Steel Interior. Classica 3000, Heritage 3000, Stratford 3000 and Olympus (residential) and Models 2700, 1380, 1350, & 1000 (commercial).
Individual components of a garage door. Garage doors are made up of multiple sections to fill the appropriate height of a garage opening. 7′ tall doors are typically comprised of 4 sections spanning the width of an opening. 7′ tall doors in the Amarr Classica Collection are made with 3 sections to provide a more vertical, authentic carriage house door look.
A free rolling, cylindrical, ball bearing that is used to guide the torsion shaft, maintain alignment, and reduce friction.
A pulley with a ball bearing built into it that is designed to handle a cable and used to control the movement of the cables employed in door counter balance system.
Side Bearing Plate (End Bearing Plate)
A bracket that attaches to the horizontal supports and possibly the wall to provide a bearing surface for the torsion shaft near the ends.
Distance from each doorjamb to the nearest obstruction.
Single Car (SC)
Door section width < 10′
Hardware used to make up door counter-balance assembly.
Small spring-cushioned bumper attached to horizontal track to stop door at full open position.
Spring Pad (Center Bearing Plate)
Plate or bracket which is located on the wall above door opening to receive torsion spring assembly support brackets.
The sleeves or cones that are used to adapt the torsion springs to the torsion shaft. Torsion springs usually have two fittings or cones. One is a stationary sleeve or spring retainer, while the second piece is an adjusting cone or winding sleeve.
Stationary Sleeves (Spring Retainers)
Part that fits into the end of a torsion spring permitting the spring to be anchored to the spring anchor plate.
Steel gauge is the thickness of the steel material used in garage doors. The lower the steel gauge number the thicker the steel. Real steel gauge is the true thickness of the steel material. Nominal steel gauge is the average thickness of the steel material used in production due to a plus/minus tolerance level. Real steel gauge is the minimum gauge of steel material used in production.
Vertical members of a door section which provide structural rigidity and a location for hinge attachment. Generic term.
Support stiffener used to increase wind load capacities of a door, as well as reduce deflection of a door section in the horizontal position.
An extruded aluminum post which substitutes for doorjambs in multiple door installations where a clear span is required. Operated by a hand winch or electric operator, it swings up parallel to header.
Tapered Vertical Track
Refers to the graduated spacing of the vertical track away from the jamb permitting weather-tight closing of door against jamb.
Adjustable brackets, which usually carry track rollers, mounted on the top corners of the top section of the sectional door.
The shaft of a torsion spring assembly, which transmits lifting power of the torsion springs to cable drums and lifting cables.
Counterbalance springs which provide balancing power by winding and unwinding through door cycle.
Channel shaped metal bars that guide rollers on sectional garage doors.
Traditional Garage Doors
Steel panel garage doors, available in a number of panel designs, window options and base colors.
The arc of travel or sweep of the top section as the door is raised from closed to open position.
Electric operator, which mounts above the door in the horizontal position and lifts door by pulling, and pushing the top section. Specifically designed for normal headroom and low headroom doors.
Support stiffener used to increase wind load capacities of a door as well as reduce deflection of the door sections in the horizontal position.
Upper Vertical Track
Horizontal track assembly on a vertical lift door.
Refers to a hardware design that causes doors to open vertically, no horizontal tracks required. This hardware is normally operated with spring counterbalance, but also possible with weight counterbalance.
Track assembly mounted to door opening jambs to guide and support a sectional door in the “closed” or “vertical” position.
The amount of force (in PSF) exerted by the wind along the face of the door as it stands in the opening. Click here
to learn more about Amarr’s Wind Load Garage doors.
Winding Sleeve (Adjusting Cone)
Part that fits into torsion spring permitting winding and tension adjustment.
Affordable Garage Doors recommends Clopay Garage Doors,
and we are an authorized dealer in the Annapolis area, including Anne Arundel County, Calvert County and Prince George’s County.
Call Affordable Garage Doors at 410-867-1112 today for installation and repair of garage doors as well as garage door opener repair.