Right now I have a tiny 8'x8' garage door that leads from my shop out into a gravel service yard. 8' wide is barely wide enough to get a pickup truck through. Forget it if you have telescoping mirrors, so it’s currently screwed shut. I’ve decided to enlarge this door so it can actually be used.

I don’t have any specific need to use this door, which is why I’m struggling with the size. Right now I use the main 14x14 door on the street for access, but I could see using this door to make the shop more flexible. Since it’s not the primary door, how much should I invest in this?

Here are the 3 options I am kicking around:

10' wide x 10' tall. This is the most economical, and also the smallest door I would consider installing. It would require the least amount of modifications, and would lose the least amount of heat (I’m well into the snow belt). Most work trailers would fit no problem, but box trucks, etc, would be too tall. This is probably more than enough door for MY use.

10' wide x 12' tall. Minimal extra modifications. Can use the same lintel as the 10x10 door. Will lose more heat, but not much more. Can accommodate taller work trucks like Topkicks, etc, as well as most smaller box trucks.


12' wide x 12' tall. Widest door I can fit between those two I-beams you see at the top of the picture. Depending on how those beams are supported (is there a hidden steel post in that wall?) this width may not be feasible. This size door would accommodate most RVs. Adds most value to building if I ever sell. Loses the most heat, and will require a larger lintel. Opening would be very close to that bathroom on the right. Seems like overkill for a secondary door.

What say you? Do I put in the largest door possible even though I don’t need it currently, or do I just put in a door that fits my current needs and at least get some use from it?

Who here has experience moving trucks, trailers, RVs, etc, through garage doors?


EDIT: Here’s a rough idea of 10x10 vs 12x12. The existing door is not centered, so I would fix that.