Install a Garage Door Behind or Inbetween an Opening?

When should you install the garage door in-between the garage opening and when should it be behind?

Most of the time this may well be a visual preference but as all garage doors have some kind of fixing sub frame or tracking, as in a roller door then the frame or guides have to be incorporated into the installation and when they are fitted in-between the the opening is obviously reduced by the framework but when it is fitted behind the structural opening can be maximised in width and height. For many replacement garage doors fitted the requirement is to maximise the garage opening as much as possible so quite often an old garage door is taken out from an in-between fit and the new door is installed onto the inside face to give a better drive through width and height when open.

Consideration of course must be given to what is exposed in this process, rough brickwork, concrete block previously hidden by the frame from the outside or just a very deep reveal with larger piers.

These can of course be tidied up with pointing or clad over with various materials but consideration should also be given to the door being in a position which shortens the length of the garage too. For new build garages or when a sectional or roller garage door is required the doors are mainly installed to the inside face, behind the brick piers.

Roller and Sectional doors generally require more headroom than an up and over or side hinged door type so fitting behind means the roll or tracking can be sitting behind the lintel not impeding on the headroom when the door is opened. Round the corner and sliding garage doors are a specialist ordering process with regards to sizes so always take advice directly for these doors.

Retractable Up and Over Garage Door Rear behind

Retractable garage door installed BEHIND an opening maximises
the width and height when the door is opened.

Retractable Up and Over Garage Door Rear in between

Retractable garage door installed INBETWEEN an opening means you have to
think about the overall dimensions and the drive through sizes left.

Installing a garage door behind an opening is always easier because you do not have to rely on the opening being square and the fixings are far easier to work with. The door and frame fitted in-between will inevitably need further trims and sealing to the outer frame once secured in place.


Many people make the error of omitting the sub frame from calculations in sizes required. As said already, ANY garage door has a sub frame or tracking/guide to the sides with varying headroom requirements above the top of the door panel. Some garage doors are ordered as an overall width and height but most are ordered as the internal frame size so you always have to consider the size of the framework around this sizing and be careful not to order a door at 2286mm wide to install in-between a 2286mm opening for example, as it won't work!! When fitting sectional garage doors in-between any opening the manufacturers of most sectional doors have special in-between fit kits as a sectional door is one of the doors designed primarily to fit behind so relies on the structural brickwork for securing and holding the tracks in place. When fitting in-between extra brackets are required and also various forms of frame cover profiles are sold to cloak the legs and cover up predrilled holes. A lot of sectional door manufacturers also supply the legs in white only as standard so these legs need cloaking to match coloured or woodgrain finish doors, unless you want a contrast of course.

To summarise

Always think where your new garage door is going to be fitted and never assume it will be the same place as any existing door. Whenever we ask a customer where do you want the door to be fitted there is usually a slightly blank look and an explanation has to follow the question. Maybe as all internal and entrance doors are fitted in-between no one ever thinks a garage door will be different? The problem is with many garages of course is they are simply not wide enough so the eventual drive through sizes are very important if you want to put your car away!  

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