Your Complete Garage Remodeling Guide
Garage remodels do not get the love they deserve. After all, some of us only spend one minute a day in the garage, so why remodel? Well, there are others who use the garage for more than just storage and parking: Homeowners across America use their garages for man caves. They use it as second living rooms. Some even use them for bedrooms. No matter what the case may be, the modern day garage is more than just car storage.
As such, it’s important to know all the relevant costs, projects and features that come with a garage remodel.
Garage Remodeling Costs
Every project comes down to cost, so it only makes sense to start there. According to our garage remodeling cost estimator, the average garage remodel runs $8,582. Keep in mind, this takes the full garage into consideration. That includes the garage door, flooring, windows, and plenty of other renovations. For those remodeling one aspect of their garage, of course, expect the final price to be much less. In fact, we have even seen garage remodels cost as low as $900.
The biggest expense with garage remodels is the flooring. Chances are, your garage flooring is made of concrete, but some use brick, wood, or a combination of the two.
If you are remodeling, chances are, there is a crack or issue with the flooring. Replacing or fixing concrete flooring is not cheap. With severe damage, a concrete mason must be called. While they would certainly decrease the material costs, the overall bill will surge considering the time it takes to replace such a hard surface.
One way to offset those high costs is by hiring a concrete specialist (despite their title). Using an epoxy or polyurethane-based coating, concrete specialists can repair most cracking, flaking, stains, pitting and general wear and tear. Believe it or not, these repairs can last for years. To minimize the wear and tear on your garage floor, many homeowners add durable carpets intended for indoor and outdoor use. These carpets are not only practical, but add a visual element to an otherwise bland room.
Did you now that the garage is one of the biggest uninsulated areas of the home? Improperly insulated garage doors can vastly increase your heating and electric bills. Even worse, they can cause moisture damage once it rains or an uncomfortable setting every time you enter. Therefore, garage insulation tends to creep up with all garage remodeling projects, especially those concerning a finished garage.
When it comes to garage insulation, homeowners have two options. Foil insulation tends to look like foil, but the inside is usually laced with heavy-duty polyethylene. The polyethylene is usually used in rigid sheets that are placed inside the cavities of your garage door. Once placed onto the garage, the polyethylene expands to fit into place.
The other option is polystyrene panels, which look more like building blocks that fit right into the cavities. These panels may look more stylish on the inside of your garage and usually carry a higher R-value.
Fortunately enough, garage insulation tends to be one of the cheaper garage remodeling projects (and one of the easiest to DIY). Most insulation kits can be purchased for under $100.
Garage windows are another tiny aspect of your garage that can make a huge difference. If you plan on spending more than five minutes a day in your garage, you’re going to want some windows. Besides light, windows eliminate that feeling of a closed box.
Perhaps more importantly, if you do have windows, you must make sure they are stable enough to prevent intruders. Your windows are not only susceptible to the outside elements, but break-ins as well. Overall, if you feel any air coming through your windows, make sure your garage pro gives them a thorough look.
When it comes to design, nothing provides more a boost than the actual garage door. Not only can they match the architecture of your home, but they come in a wide range of sizes, styles, and components. Chances are, you already have a garage door, but years of opening and closing, along with general wear and tear, can bring about a fair share of issues.
In terms of costs, the average price to repair a garage door is only $202. Overhead garage doors see the most damage. In addition to the springs, other elements that need casual repairs include hinges, rollers, and the track itself. For example, debris can get caught in the track or it can dent. These are both easy fixes or about an hour’s worth of labor from a garage repair specialist. Average hourly labor is usually around $85.
On the other hand, if you are garage door is beyond repair, you will have to install a new garage door. The four main types of garage doors are:
- Wood: Wood garage doors are available in standard, mass produced varieties or custom-built to a homeowner’s specifications. The average minimum cost of a wood garage door is $1,235.
- Fiberglass: The primary draw of fiberglass garage doors, in addition to the wood-like appearance of the material, is its low cost. The average minimum cost of a fiberglass garage door is $1,157.
- Steel: Steel garage doors are a standard option for newly constructed homes as well as garage remodels and renovations. The average minimum cost of a steel garage door is $749 before professional installation.
- Aluminum: These garage doors are usually found in coastal areas where there is plenty of humidity and salt in the air. Aluminum is naturally resistant to the corrosion caused by these materials. The minimum cost of an aluminum garage door is $839.
Garage Spring Repair
Your garage spring ensures a fluid motion every time your garage opens and closes. It is the tightly wrapped spring located above your garage door when it is closed.
Unlike many other home remodeling projects, it’s very easy to tell when you need to replace your garage door spring; your overhead garage door won’t open or perhaps more obvious, the weight of the door is off. When your spring is working correctly, you should be able to manually lift the garage door very easily. Likewise, when you open it, the garage door should not move and stay where you left it. If the garage door is very heavy or it closes as soon as you let go, then you need a new spring.
There are other ways to transform the look and feel of a garage without spending thousands in the process. As my colleague pointed out in 5 Tips For DIY Garage Storage, smart garage storage can make a clustered structure feel like a whole new addition.
When it comes to garage storage, there are five tips all eager DIYers should consider:
- Store on the walls
- Install shelves or cabinets
- Build up
- Store more than just things
- Use clear containers
Garage door repairs largely depend on the task at hand. While some minor repairs run as low as a few hundred dollars, other exceed well into the thousands. Nonetheless, now that you are prepared, there should be no surprise invoices coming from your garage.