How to Clad a Garage Door with Wood

Cladding a garage door with wood is a great way to enhance the look of your home and increase its curb appeal. It is also a cost-effective way to update an old or unsightly garage door.

As someone who has done this project before, I can attest to the fact that it is a relatively simple DIY project that can be completed in just a few hours.

Before starting the project, it is important to choose the right type of wood for your garage door. Cedar, redwood, and cypress are popular choices because they are naturally resistant to rot and decay.

You should also consider the climate in your area and choose a wood that can withstand the elements.

Once you have chosen your wood, you will need to measure your garage door and cut the wood to size.

Cladding your garage door with wood can be done in a few easy steps. You will need to attach the wood to the garage door using screws or nails, and then sand and paint or stain the wood to protect it from the elements.

With a little bit of effort, you can transform the look of your garage door and add value to your home.

Understanding Wood Cladding

When it comes to cladding a garage door with wood, it is important to understand what wood cladding is and how it works.

Wood cladding is a process that involves covering a surface with wooden boards or panels to create a decorative finish. It is a popular technique used in home renovation and improvement projects, and it can be used to enhance the appearance of garage doors.

There are several benefits to using wood cladding for garage doors. First, it is a natural and sustainable material that can add warmth and character to a home’s exterior.

Additionally, wood cladding is versatile and can be customized to match the style and design of any home.

To clad a garage door with wood, you will need to gather the necessary materials, including plywood, wooden boards, a nail gun or screws, sandpaper, paint or stain, and primer (optional).

Once you have the materials, you can begin the process of cladding your garage door with wood.

It is important to note that wood cladding requires proper maintenance to ensure its longevity. This includes regular cleaning, sealing, and staining to protect the wood from weather damage and rot.

With proper care and maintenance, wood cladding can last for many years and enhance the beauty and value of a home.

Choosing the Right Wood

When cladding a garage door with wood, choosing the right type of wood is key to ensuring a long-lasting and visually appealing result. Here are some factors to consider when selecting the right wood:


The durability of the wood you choose is crucial. You want a wood that can withstand harsh weather conditions, such as rain, snow, and extreme heat. Some of the most durable woods for outdoor use include cedar, redwood, and cypress.


The appearance of the wood is also important. You want a wood that looks good and complements the overall look of your home.

Cedar, for example, has a natural reddish-brown color and a distinctive grain pattern that makes it a popular choice for cladding garage doors.


The cost of the wood is another factor to consider. Some types of wood, such as cedar, can be more expensive than others.

However, it’s important to remember that investing in a high-quality wood can save you money in the long run by reducing the need for frequent repairs and replacements.


If sustainability is important to you, consider using wood that is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).

FSC-certified wood comes from responsibly managed forests and is a more environmentally friendly option.

Preparing the Garage Door

Before you begin cladding your garage door with wood, you need to prepare the door surface. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Clean the garage door: Before you start cladding, it is essential to clean the garage door surface thoroughly.

    You can use a pressure washer or a garden hose to clean the door. Make sure you remove all the dirt, dust, and debris from the surface.

  2. Remove any hardware: If your garage door has any hardware, such as handles, locks, or hinges, you need to remove them before cladding.

    Use a screwdriver to remove the hardware and keep them safe for later use.

  3. Sand the surface: Once the door is clean and dry, you need to sand the surface to create a rough texture.

    Sanding helps the wood adhere to the door surface better. You can use sandpaper or an electric sander to sand the surface.

  4. Apply primer: Applying a primer to the garage door surface is optional, but it can help protect the door from moisture and other elements.

    You can use a paintbrush or a roller to apply the primer evenly on the surface.

  5. Measure and cut the wood: Now that the door surface is ready, you can start measuring and cutting the wood.

    Make sure you measure the door surface accurately and cut the wood to the right size. You can use a circular saw or a jigsaw to cut the wood.

Installing the Wood Cladding

Measuring and Cutting

Before installing the wood cladding, I need to measure the garage door panels carefully.

I will use a measuring tape to measure the length and width of each panel. Once I have the measurements, I will transfer them to the plywood sheets that I will use for the cladding.

I will use a jigsaw or power saw to cut the plywood sheets to the correct size.

It is important to cut the plywood sheets slightly larger than needed so that there is enough material to cover the entire surface.

Attaching the Wood

To attach the wood cladding to the garage door panels, I will apply adhesive to the panel and attach the lumber boards one at a time.

I will align the lumber boards properly and screw them into the panel. I will repeat the same process for the other lumber boards and panels.

It is important to use a strong adhesive that will hold the wood cladding firmly in place. I will also use screws to secure the wood cladding to the garage door panels.

Maintaining Your Wood Clad Garage Door

As a proud owner of a wood clad garage door, it is important to maintain it properly to ensure it lasts for years to come. Here are some tips on how to maintain your wood clad garage door:

Regular Cleaning

Dust and dirt can accumulate on the surface of your wood clad garage door over time, making it look dull and unappealing.

To keep it looking its best, it is important to clean it regularly.

Simply dip a cloth in hot, soapy water and gently rub the cloth up and down the surface of the door, on both sides. This should pick up all the dust and dirt that may be collecting on the wood. You can do this on a monthly basis or whenever you see dirt buildup.

Protecting from the Elements

Wood is a natural material that can be susceptible to damage from the elements.

To protect your wood clad garage door from the elements, it is important to apply a protective sealant or coating.

This will help to prevent the wood from warping, cracking, or fading due to exposure to sunlight, rain, or snow.

Repairing Damage

If your wood clad garage door gets scratched or damaged, it is important to repair it as soon as possible to prevent further damage.

Small scratches or chips can be filled in with wood filler and sanded down to match the surrounding wood. Larger damage may require replacing the affected section of wood.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

When cladding a garage door with wood, there are several mistakes that one should avoid to ensure a successful project. Here are some of the most common mistakes to avoid:

1. Poor Planning

One of the most common mistakes people make when cladding their garage doors with wood is poor planning.

It is essential to take the time to plan the project, including the design, materials, and tools required. Failure to plan can lead to costly mistakes and delays.

2. Incorrect Measurements

Incorrect measurements can lead to poorly fitting wood panels, which can affect the overall appearance and functionality of the garage door.

It is essential to take accurate measurements and double-check them before cutting the wood panels.

3. Using the Wrong Type of Wood

Using the wrong type of wood can affect the durability and appearance of the garage door.

It is essential to choose a wood species that is suitable for exterior use and can withstand the elements. Cedar, redwood, and mahogany are popular choices for cladding garage doors.

4. Poor Quality Wood Panels

Using poor quality wood panels can affect the overall appearance of the garage door.

It is essential to choose high-quality wood panels that are free from knots, cracks, and other defects.

5. Inadequate Preparation

Inadequate preparation can affect the adhesion of the wood panels to the garage door.

It is essential to prepare the garage door surface properly by sanding, cleaning, and priming it before attaching the wood panels.

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