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Adjusting the Top Clearance of
Garage Doors for Low Ceilings

Our garage door rubs against the beams in our garage ceiling when we open it.  We would like to install a garage door opener, but the track would make it almost impossible!  My husband says we have to cut sections into our floor joists or cut into the door itself. This is a terrifying prospect!  Is there another way?

Low garage door ceiling clearance adaptersYou are not alone.  Many older homes have very low ceiling clearance in the garages. Rather than cutting into your structural members, notching the top of the door (which can dangerously weaken it) or destroying your concrete floor, there is an easier and less destructive solution.

There is a garage door accessory called a low clearance bracket kit or low-headroom kit. It can be used on any sectional garage door that has clearance problems due to low ceilings or obstructions, allowing the garage door opener track to be mounted much closer to the top of the garage door than is usually possible.

(Graphic supplied by AAA Door Openers, who has this product for sale online!)

The top guides (which hold the uppermost garage door rollers) are replaced with these specially designed brackets that cause the top of the top panel of the door to move inward rather than upward as the door rises.  The result is that the top panel does not rise very much as the door opens, giving quite a few inches of additional ceiling clearance.

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Jerry Alonzy, the founder of Naturalhandyman.com

Written by Jerry Alonzy

Jerry Alonzy, a.k.a. the Natural Handyman, has been an active handyman for over 30 years with experience in most areas of home repair and renovation.

As a do-it-yourself author and web developer since 1995, he has been featured in USA Today, the Today Show and on radio shows, magazines, newspapers and websites. His material appears widely on the web, but primarily on his website... The Natural Handyman. You can also find him on Google+.