Do Garage Door Openers Come with Rails?

Groundbreaking innovations have facilitated easy garage door manipulation by using a best garage door opener that oversees the opening and closing of the door. What’s even better is how easy traveling through the garage door has become thanks to the brilliant remote feature. The garage door opener comprises various components responsible for the smooth movement of the door. The subject of debate, however, is, do garage door openers come with rails?

Yes. All garage door openers come with rails which count as one of the fundamental parts of a garage door opener. The garage door rail is used to adjust the distance between the door and track if it is not equivalent on either side. Besides, the garage door rails come in varying dimensions, dependent on the garage door opener.

For this and more, stick around to get acquainted with all you need to know about garage door rails! Do garage door rails get faulty? And if they do, how would you tell that they need replacement?

An image showing the Garage Door Vertical Track Replacement in a garage door

How to tell if your garage door rails need to be replaced

One of the crucial parts of a garage door that plays a pivotal role in ensuring the seamless operation of the garage door is the rail. The presence of any visible defects such as indents and dings, shaking of the garage door when in use, or a noisily operating garage door are some of the symptoms that you can use to tell if your garage door rails need to be replaced.

Sometimes, you can verify if your garage door rails have gone wrong by simply using your senses. If you identify dings, eroded rails, or indents, replacement would be necessary even to avoid causing injuries to users and property.

Explicated below in detail are some apparent signs that you can use to tell if your garage door rails need to be replaced and include;

Noisy garage door

Unusual sounds emanating from your garage doors suggest that there is an issue with your garage door rails. The rails could be the source of such sounds, especially if they have not had lubrication for a long time. You can fix noisy garage doors by greasing the rails or completely replacing them if it is a case of wear and tear.

The uneven spacing of the garage door rails

Incorrect installation of the garage door could cause an issue with the rails. A common manifestation of this sign is a door that drags itself on an uneven surface or a door that jams up when you open. Poor artistry is mainly to hold into account for this. Your garage door will require a complete overhaul executed by skilled professionals to correct this issue. To avoid such problems, you ought to choose a renowned installation company. 

Sudden improper operation of the garage door

If your garage suddenly fails to operate normally, the main suspect is the rails. It would be best to examine them for erosion that usually takes place over time because of poor maintenance practices. 

The event that most probably follows is popping out, bending, or even breakage of the linings of the garage door. A sure indication about this sign is a garage door that slips off the pathway. When this occurs, the ideal remedy is to contact the experts.

Do garage doors come with tracks?

Yes, they do! Garage door tracks are not purchased separately from the garage door. Each garage door comes inclusive of a complete array of components, including tracks and rollers. Tracks ensure smooth operation of the garage door. They are available in different sizes, depending on the relative size of the garage door. 

Most residential homes use the standard garage door with a width of about 20’ and a height of 7 feet. The corresponding tracks of these residential garage doors range from 0.055-0.075 inches thick. It is not advisable to reuse old garage tracks since every garage door is different in terms of brand and model, thus posing a safety risk to users.

However, some manufacturers have tried to incorporate an admirable trait of adjustability to make the tracks reusable. They, however, say better safe than sorry, meaning you ought to avoid reusing the ways despite having the adjustability trait.

To vastly acquaint you with credible information on tracks, how about we look at the several types of garage door tracks options.

Types of Garage Door Tracks 

Standard radius track

Topping the list is the most common garage door track, the standard radius track with a 15-inch radius. The model is perfect for most garage doors as it features the smallest headroom compared to other standard radius track options. The other options are the 20-inch radius track and 32-inch radius track. It is essential to note that the more the radius, the more the headroom needed.

Dual track

Most garage owners prefer garage door tracks with the smallest radius. The dual-track has leap-frogged most of its counterparts on the preference of use in most garages due to its reduced headroom with a radius measuring less than 12-inches. The name suggests it bears a second horizontal track used to move the door’s top part only, adding to its preference. 

Hi-lift track

The hi-lift track is an ideal preference in situations where the ceiling in the garage is taller than that in a typical home. A larger portion of the door stays vertical when the door is open, and the lesser portion of the door rests in a horizontal position.

The video below shows how to replace the vertical tracks in a garage door.

Can I replace a garage door opener unit without changing the rails?

No. You cannot reuse the rails due to their incompatibility with the new garage door openers. A common reason you might require to find yourself wanting to replace the opener is severe wear out. The best way to go around replacing a garage door opener is also changing the rails. This is recommendable because despite having garage door parts indicated to be universal, they are not always compatible with new parts.
The slight variation in length and width of different models also makes it best to change the rails when replacing the garage door opener to avoid the risk of more damage. In some years to come, optimistically, there will be openers with reusable rails, but that is not the case since despite being indicated they are universal, they are not.

Besides wear and tear, you probably need to change the garage door opener unit to optimize security and achieve silent garage door operation. In addition, besides changing the door opener unit, other parts which facilitate the opening and closing of the door for smooth operations of the unit may also need to be replaced.

How long do garage door rails last?

It is the dream of any garage owner to enjoy optimal service life from the garage door. This would even be much better if the repairing or replacement costs were very minimal. The average lifespan of a garage door rail ranges between 15-30 years, which depends on the maintenance of the rail and other components, the area climatic conditions, and the frequency of use. However, they should perform reliably for around 10 to 15 years. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the best garage door opener that is available in the market?

The Genie garage door openers are the perfect pick for most garage owners in the market. The individuals who want to take advantage of HomeLink and Car2U compatibility would go for the genie models. The Genie garage door opener also boasts immense flexibility with its remote capable of getting programmed to work with the other garage door opener types such as Liftmaster and Chamberlain, hence an ideal choice in the market. 

However, you may consider the Chamberlain MyQ Smart Garage Door Opener when installing the smart doors as it is compatible with more recent garage door systems.’

What can I do if my door won’t open all the way?

 Your door may be faulty and needs instant repair or replacement of its components. Replacing can be accomplished with the help of a technician who can perfectly diagnose the problem and give the correct solution.

My door is jammed, what could be the problem?

The cause for this is torsional springs which have broken. Replacing the springs is possibly dangerous unless you are a qualified professional. Contacting a garage door repair expert is recommended. 

How much does garage door maintenance cost? 

This is dependent on the garage door. Quotations from different companies offering maintenance services vary depending on several factors. However, the typical range is between $148 and $343, while the low-end to the high-end range is between $78 and $622. 

How long does it take to install a garage door?

Typically, installing a standard garage door takes between four and six hours, depending on the door type. Also, the experience of the professionals is a factor to consider.

Are garage door opener rails universal?

Every door comes with its own set of rails and tracks and thus is only usable on that specific door for maximum safety. Rails have never been universal.

My garage door fell for no reason. What could be the problem?

The falling of the garage door is an ordinary occurrence, especially when the rails break. What possibly led to this occurrence is extensive wear and tear of the rails, after which they bend, break and eventually come out of position.


The distinct design of garage door rails makes them sturdy components meant to last grandiosely. The topic in discussion, ‘do garage door openers come with rails,’ has now been settled since it is now certain that they come as a part of the garage door opener unit and have a central function in garage door operation. 

One thing that has markedly stood out is that whenever you replace the garage door opener unit, you need not assume it will be compatible with the existing rails. Therefore, it is best to change the rails. Primarily, the garage door opener and its various components, including rails, need proper maintenance to provide a more extended service to the owner. Nevertheless, if the need for replacement arises, avoid shortcuts at all costs to achieve desired results.

Giving a call to your nearest garage door technician is always the best way to fix your problems. Avoid the DIY route if you have no technical know-how of the same.

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