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Single or double: how to pick the right garage door size

If you’re going through the exciting process of building a garage for your home, you’ll know there are lots of decisions to make. To help with one small but significant decision, we’ve listed everything you need to know when choosing between single or double garage doors.

What size are single and double garage doors?

Residential garage doors vary, but as a general guide, a single garage door size is 8 by 7 feet and a double garage door size is 16 by 7 feet.

Most manufacturers make a range of sizes, including narrower, taller, and wider options, to cater to different doorways and use cases. To see what sizes C.H.I. makes, check out our garage door size chart.

Should you go for a single or double garage door?

If you’re going to work with an architect on your garage project, they’ll support you by recommending a design, number of doors, and producing drawings with door dimensions for your builders. Discuss your garage door style or manufacturer preferences and ask to see drawings with different door options.

If you’re not working with an architect, here are some key considerations to make your decision-making easier.

Budget and site size

Consider how much garage space you need against the size of your plot and your budget. Bigger doesn't always mean better! Just because you have the space to build a big garage doesn’t mean you should if you’re not going to use the space. If you decide to build a small garage, a single garage door is likely the best size for you and is the most cost-effective option, but if you’re building a large garage, two single garage doors or one double garage door might be more appropriate.


Your residential garage door should be proportionate to the size of your garage. If you’re building a garage that’s 20 feet wide, a single garage door will look out of place. Similarly, if you’re building a taller-than-average garage, you might need a door that’s taller than 7 feet.

Energy efficiency

Smaller doors allow for less heat transfer. For example, if you have a double garage but opt for two single garage doors rather than one double garage door, you can reduce heat loss by opening just one door. Whichever garage door size you choose, it’s also worth considering insulation options to maximize energy efficiency.


What do you want to store in your garage? How much space do you need? For example, if you have a large vehicle or enjoy sports like kayaking or paddleboarding, a double garage door will give you more flexibility to access and move your belongings around.

Local building codes

Your garage construction project must meet local building standards. This includes requirements related to wind load, clearances and dimensions, fire resistance, energy efficiency, and more. Before you start work, make sure your final build will meet all standards expected of you. Residential construction costs are skyrocketing, so being prepared will help you avoid spending extra money to rectify problems.

Design and aesthetics

After practical considerations, the choice between a single or double size garage door comes down to personal taste. Both come in a variety of styles and colors to meet the aesthetic vision for your home, so it’s just a case of choosing what you prefer and what will fit with any future plans for the exterior of your home. If you need help deciding, try a visualization tool that lets you see what different doors will look like on your home.


Benefits and drawbacks

A single garage door

Single garage doors are cost-effective, efficient for small spaces, and limit heat loss from your garage. The only limitation is that the width of the door can impact what you can easily get in and out of the garage, so large cars or sporting equipment may not fit.


Two single garage doors

Having two or more single garage doors gives you better accessibility and flexibility. You can open one door at a time to access what you need and reduce heat loss in the process.

But installing two single doors can be more expensive than a single or double door, and you’ll have two doors to maintain. If you want your door to open at the touch of a button, you’ll also need to invest in two door openers.

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A double garage door

The biggest benefit of having a double garage door is the large opening for easy access and flexibility to store larger items in your garage. It can also be a desirable feature for potential buyers if you’re thinking of selling your home.

Double doors are generally more expensive than single doors. They need more powerful electric openers because they’re heavier than a single garage door. And having a large door means more heat loss to your garage when it’s open.

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A garage door for every home

Whether you decide to go for a single garage door size, a double garage door size, or a custom garage door size, make sure you weigh up what’s going to work best for you and how you want to use your garage. Make sure the garage door size will suit your needs and tie in nicely with the style of your home. If you need support choosing a size or style, or simply have a few questions about residential garage doors in general, one of our local dealers will be happy to help.



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