Just like all systems that are exposed to the outdoor environment, your garage door is exposed to the impact of the elements at all times. It is not possible to eliminate the effects of the weather and the natural UV light on the panels. However, it is possible to provide the highest possible level of protection from damage. Find out how to do this.
Choosing the Right Model
It is crucial that you base your choice of the door on the local climate and on the prevailing weather conditions in the area. Homeowners in areas which are at risk of hurricanes require wind-resistant doors. The wind load models are made to resist high winds, and are typically thicker and stronger than their traditional counterparts. Likewise, they deliver reinforced hardware components so they do not get blown off by the strong wind.
There are also special models designed for use in coastal areas that are made from vinyl, which is highly resistant to the abrasive effect of the sand and salt which are carried by the wind. In this way, the garage door panels and the entire system last longer.
Required Protective Measures
Once you have found the ideal unit, you have to take all necessary measures for the protection of the panels and the hardware. There are mainly two important steps: The first one involves the installation of a bottom seal, side seals, and top seal. The weather strips protect the door from moisture damage and provide for better insulation.
The second step involves painting the panels. You must use external-grade paint which is suitable for the respective material and which is recommended by the door's manufacturer. The paint must provide protection from UV damage as well as from moisture. Some doors already come with it, but you should make sure your model is well covered - especially if you own a classic wooden door.
The bottom line is that without proper protection garage door repair will be required much more frequently. Moisture can damage both wood and metal parts. For this reason, you have to ensure that you will provide repainting annually and replace the weather strips with new ones when they wear-out.
Lastly, it is always recommended to have your door professionally examined on annual basis, just like you do with your car.