skip to main content

How To Install Wood Panels On Garage Doors

Considering an update for your home’s exterior? Something with a bit of pizazz that won’t break the bank? Customizing your garage doors with real wood is a great choice. There are plenty of design options for a look to fit your style. From rustic to contemporary, as simple or detailed as you want, including horizontal, vertical, diagonal, and chevron patterns.

install wood panels on garage doors

It’s a project well worth the effort. Wood paneled garage doors add curb appeal and value to your home.

install garage door wood panels

What Wood Should I Use and How Much Do I Need?

We suggest cedar tongue and groove for durability and longevity. 

To determine how much wood you need, measure the length and the height of the garage door, inside the trim, and multiply the numbers together. This is the square footage you need to cover. Your wood vendor should be able to tell you how many planks you’ll need to purchase, based on the width and length of the boards you’re choosing. Don’t forget to purchase a couple extra boards just in case of errors.

If you’ve got overage from a previously purchased wood siding package, you may have all you need stacked in the garage, just waiting for the right project!

Can I Put The Wood Planks On My Existing Garage Doors?

We recommend foam-interior, aluminum garage doors because they are light-weight. All-wood doors tend to be too heavy once you add the wood panels.

You can use your existing garage doors as long as they won’t be too heavy once you add the wood planks.  Don’t forget, you’ll have to re-install your tracks to accommodate the new thickness of your door panels.

I’m Ready To Install Wood Panels On My Garage Doors.

What’s Next?

As with all projects, read through the entire instructions before beginning the project. And always, measure twice to cut once!

1. Prepping the Garage Door

install garage door wood panels

Lay out the garage door sections on a flat surface, on saw horses, in the order they will be installed, as illustrated in the above image. Most garage doors have 3-5 sections. Number the side edges and the back of each section to ensure they will be installed in the correct order.

Line up your garage door sections perfectly, as there is no possibility of re-aligning once you attach the wood planks. 

2. Cutting and Weatherizing the Wood Planks

Cut the lengths of wood to match the height (inside the trim) of the garage door.

Clear coating, staining, or priming and painting, to weatherize the wood and/or preserve the wood tone, should be done before you install the planks. This allows you to coat the front, back, top and bottom edges, and ends, giving you the best moisture protection. (For painted boards apply the prime coat on the whole board and the paint coat on the exposed side only.)

3. Gluing the Wood Planks

You’ll be gluing the planks vertically from the bottom of the bottom garage door panel to the top of the top door panel. Glue each plank of wood with heavy duty liquid nails (purchased at home improvement stores in the caulk-like tubes and dispensed with a caulk gun). 

Only apply glue on the back of each wood plank and the garage door, not in between the tongue and groove slots. As you lay each piece of wood, add clamps at the edges to keep pressure on the glued surfaces.

 4. Curing Your New Garage Door Panels

install wood panels on garage doors

After all the wood planks have been glued in place, use scrap wood to apply pressure over the entire door during the drying and curing process to get a tight bond and keep all wood panels flat and straight, as illustrated in the above image. 

Notice the use of a long board against the ceiling, to apply pressure along the center of the door, and the clamps along all edges.

Allow to cure for 24 hours to 48 hours, depending on temperature and humidity.

 5. Hinge-line Cuts

Use a chalk line to mark the horizontal cut lines where the door sections hinge together. You will need a perfectly straight line; again, there is no room for error.

Using a fine-edge electric saw, set to the depth of the wood, carefully cut along your chalk line, as illustrated in the above image.

You may want to take a few minutes to dab some finish on all of the newly cut surfaces for moisture protection, allowing it to dry before installation. 

6. Installing the New Panels

installing wood panel garage doors

The final step is the installation of the garage door sections, as illustrated in the image above.

Don’t forget, the garage door track will need to be set back whatever distance is necessary to accommodate for the extra depth of the new wood facing. It is important that you do not have the garage door tracks installed before adding the wood panels, as the door thickness is changing and will not fit properly if the original doors were installed before adding the wood paneling.

Beautifully Finished Custom Wood Panel Garage Doors

wood panel garage door pics

The wood paneled garage doors of the finished project, pictured above, enhance the linear lines of the building, giving it fantastic visual appeal and add real value to the property. 

Until Next Time, Wood Lovers

A big Thank You to a valued customer for documenting their project and providing photos.

We’d love to hear about your wood projects. Write to us using the form on our contact page.

Need to know Guides
Wood Lover's University
A comprehensive education for wood lovers of all types

Homeowners, protect your heart and wallet. Architects, desig...

Wood Siding Installation Tips
Common Sense Wood Siding Seasoning, Storage and Installation Tips for Do It Yourself Homeowner and Builder

It's not rocket science but it has to be done right. Our DIY...

Field or Factory?
When does it make sense to Factory Finish?

A FACTORY FINISH ensures a lasting, higher quality job than ...

Signup to our newsletter

Don't miss out on expert tips & design inspo!

Latest Blogs
We deliver everywhere

National Shipping and Delivery

We carry products from suppliers located all across the country so each delivery will be calculated based on location of customer, location of product manufacturer and weight of total shipment. See Areas we ship to and Delivery Information.

International Shipping and Delivery

Buffalo Lumber offers full 20 and 40 foot container quotes internationally. Europe, Asia, Africa - anywhere a container will go we can get it there. We can only quote full 20 and 40 foot containers - smaller shipments would be customer arranged.

Buffalo Lumber Company, Inc., Lumber - Retail, Woodbury, TN BUFFALO LUMBER  on HOUZZ

Making mistakes - Fixing something that goes wrong costs 10 times more than it does to do the job right in the first place. Consult with a Buffalo Lumber Milling Expert today.

We can help - Call Buffalo