Steel Garage Door Rust Removing and How to Prevent It


    Newly installed garage doors can last anywhere from 5 to 50 years. It could be dent, damaged, broken and completely rusted. Different material types of doors have pros and cons with specific damage possibilities and expected lifespan.

    On average steel garage door rust appears within first 10-15 years of use under normal conditions. With better work quality and continues maintenance rust time can be extended for up to 30 years and even more in rare cases.

    Although steel door is on top of most secure and most expensive, it’s main weakness is potential rusting in time. It’s actually enviable, and only thing home owners can do is make it last longer.

    Regular MaintenancePoor Maintenance
    Great Quality Manufacturer20-25 years10-15 years
    Poor Quality Manufacturer10-15 years 5 years
    Rust appearance time chart for garage doors

    In other words most of it depends on actual material and how good you take care of garage steel door before and after rust shows.

    How to Remove Rust from Garage Door?

    This day will come when your awesome looking steel door starts to show rust on edges. The best thing home owners can do is to stay alarm and know how to remove garage door rust and keep it from happening again for many years ahead.

    Here are the steps to deal with rust:

    • Remove Bits of Rust
    • Fill Holes
    • Clean and Wash
    • Apply Paint

    Professional rust removers will charge a lot of money to fix this problem, but we can teach anyone to do it fast and without spending too much.

    Remove Bits of Rust – after identifying actual rust and making sure its not just pieces of dirt it is important to remove it right away. Otherwise rust will spread rapidly.

    Vinegar is known to be the best solution to get rid of rust. Chemical reaction helps to dissolve it fast.

    After removing all visible bits of rust, use metal scrubs and other tools to cut all the way to cut all weak or loose metal.

    Fill Holes – when first step is completed properly, you will be left with few holes in garage door. Don’t be afraid – it is part of the plan.

    Local hardware and auto body shop sell steel/metal fillers in tubes or small buckets. Apply to infill each hole carefully and sand to make perfectly smooth surface.

    Clean and Wash – let the filler dry for at least half a day. Scrub the paint around each hole for 1-2 inches in all directions.

    Rinse garage door with hose and wipe using regular cloth. Removing all bits of dust and small pieces of debris is critical before painting. Painting over bits of dirt and clogs of old paint is not the best practice.

    Apply Paint – Do not forget to prime entire door before starting to paint. Take your time and cover every square inch. You want the result to look perfect, without lines or shiny spots.

    Spray gun is probably the best tool for garage door painting. Ask hardware store for specific paint that is used only for metal or steel applications.

    What Causes Rust on Garage Door to Appear Sooner

    Corrosion is a chemical reaction which is known as oxidation. Metal reacts with oxygen and starts to rust. Factory paint and seals have been used to slow down the process.

    It coats metal and prevents from direct contact with oxygen. Several additional factors can cause rust to appear sooner.

    • Weather
    • Salt
    • Garage Door Materials
    • Paint work
    • Fixing Deficiency
    • Maintenance

    Further we want to explain how and what increases the chance of rust on garage door. If any of our readers wants to add comments or more points, please contact our team via email.

    Weather – as we all know steel stays in better condition with controlled environment. Unfortunately people cannot control weather and only adapt to it.

    States and countries with more rapid rain and snow during seasons have lifespan of garage doors way smaller due to corrosion. Water resistant paint and solutions can help prevent that.

    High humidity is another factor to speed up rusting, because technically water just stays in the air.

    Salt – places where salt is used for ice prevention are specifically dangerous for garage doors and rust occurrence.

    Small pieced of ice and even ice dust can escalate corrosion. If not take care, garage steel door can get bits of rust at the end of the season.

    Occasionally wash it and wipe of dirt with salt from garage door and there should be no problems.

    Garage Door Materials – although we are talking about one type of material garage door is made of, there are different methods of manufacturing used.

    Good quality of steel with additional chemicals for rust proofing serves much longer than unknown supplier product without warranty.

    Ask supplier or manufacturer for process of steel, additional methods of protection and warranty for garage doors you purchase.

    Paint work – similar to steel material, paint on top is important factor that protects from rust. It should completely cover steel door to avoid direct contact with oxygen and moisture.

    Commercial painting of products like garage door is completely different from man painted items. Large spray machines are used to cover it from all sides.

    Another method of commercial painting process is to place items in large containers with paint to coat it equally from every corner.

    Fixing Deficiency – removing first spots of rust, or leaving it to its own faith is going to make a difference in garage door lifespan too.

    If you don’t want to deal with it, hire a handyman or professionals that remove rust from garage doors every day. In long run it will still save you money and unnecessary problems will go away.

    Maintenance – Simple steps of care that we have listed above can help garage door last 50% longer and save lots of money for buying new door sooner.

    Wash it together with windows, lawn cutting or any other exterior work of the house. This way there will be a reminder to actually do it.

    Nothing special is required for washing it – just water hose and dry cloth.

    How to Prevent Rust on Garage Doors

    Everyone wants to exploit their purchase to the max. With garage doors it can expand lifespan for as long as possible.

    Remodel On Point wanted to give 5 tips on how to avoid or prevent rust on installed steel garage doors.

    • Get different type of door
    • Get quality manufacturer
    • Keep cleaning
    • Get rid of water
    • Fix and repaint in time

    Simple care can make steel garage door last much longer. Knowing and performing several recommended things few times a month can increase the lifespan of steel for over 50%.

    Steel garage door is a luxury item compared to products made with other materials. It costs a lot to buy and install beforehand. Therefor it requires care and maintenance to keep looking good for many years.

    Remodel On Point can recommend great manufacturers and installation teams for any type of garage door.

    Steven H.
    Steven H.
    General Contractor and Home Builder with over 20 years of experience. Write and Edit educational posts for several Remodeling Blogs. Specialize in trade management and technical construction details.

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