Can You Replace Garage Door Window Inserts? (Detailed Guide)

Can You Replace Garage Door Window Inserts

Garage door window inserts are a great addition to your home, but what do you do if they break? Can you replace garage door window inserts yourself?

Garage door window inserts are definitely replaceable, but it depends on the type of window insert you have. Some are easy to remove and replace, while others take more time and effort. It’s recommended to seek professional assistance with this.

This blog post will explore the options you have for repairing or replacing garage door window inserts as well as how to find the right window inserts for your garage door.

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Here’s a Quick Pro Tip!

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You should take a look at the All Season Weather Resistant Garage Door Hardware Kits. These make the job much easier and have a ton of great reviews!

How Much Does It Cost to Replace a Garage Door Window?

On average, you can expect to pay between $20.00 and $55.00 to replace a single garage door window pane with an additional $75.00 to $150.00 for the technician’s service charge.

This is only an average cost because window inserts come in a wide variety of styles to choose from. Window inserts can also vary in price depending upon:

  1. Size – Smaller windows are cheaper than larger ones
  2. Thickness – Thicker windows are more expensive
  3. Tint or Frost – Whether or not tinting or frosting is done to the window.

The final cost depends on the type of window that you’re needing to replace.

Before replacing the window yourself, get an estimate from your garage door repair service. Be sure to ask all the pertinent questions.

The good news is that these professionals will also be able to advise you on the best type of replacement window inserts to use depending on your budget and requirements.

What Types Of Window Inserts Are There?

There are two main types of window replacements available: Plexiglass and tempered glass. Both are shatter-resistant and strong. While Plexiglass is flexible, weather-resistant, and resists erosion, tempered glass is less expensive, provides thermal stability, and can be recycled.


Plexiglass, also referred to as acrylic, is a great glass alternative. It is a transparent thermoplastic that is shatter-resistant and durable. Plexiglass is a lightweight plastic often produced in sheet form.

It is weather-resistant, flexible, and resists erosion. It may be hard to shatter, but when it does, it will break into larger blunt-sized pieces that typically would not hurt anyone.

Plexiglass is not abrasion-resistant. If Plexiglass is rubbed by a slightly rough or sharp object, there is the possibility that it could leave imperfections.

There are some manufacturers that have an abrasion-resistant coating on their products, so be sure to ask about the product if you are interested.

Also, if you use the wrong household cleaning solution on your Plexiglass, it could cause damage to the product. If you are going to have Plexiglass in your house, you will need to purchase the appropriate cleaners.

Tempered Glass

Tempered glass is a process whereby heat application is used in order to toughen the glass making it stronger than regular glass.

Tempering causes tension on the inner surface of the glass and compression on the outer portion. When broken, this causes the tempered glass to shatter into small rounded pieces instead of jagged shards.

This glass breaks in a safe way to prevent causing injury. Tempered glass is four times stronger than regular glass and is used in areas where safety is a concern. Tempered glass is less expensive and can also be easily recycled.

Tempered glass has superb thermal stability. The glass is able to withstand the heat that is 4 times greater than standard glass.

Tempered glass can sustain temperature fluctuations of up to 250C. Tempered glass is heat resistant and provides a constant temperature throughout a room.

This should contribute to the energy efficiency of homes that have tempered glass windows.

Tempered glass cannot be cut or manipulated because the glass will shatter. Cutting, etching, drilling holes, etc. must be done to the glass before the tempering process begins.

Therefore, it is important for you to know the exact dimensions of the glass you want before placing an order for it because once it has been tempered, no alterations to the glass can be made.

Plexiglass and tempered glass are wonderful choices for your home. For some, you know exactly which one you will choose.

However, for others, deciding which one to select may be somewhat of a challenge. It all depends on your preference and budget. Review each one carefully and pick the one that offers what you are looking for.

How Do You Remove Old Garage Door Window Inserts?

It is perfectly fine for you to replace certain garage door window inserts. However, there are some window inserts that are more complex because of the way they were constructed or how the garage door was manufactured.

In this case, it is recommended that a professional garage door technician replace the window.

However, if you are still planning to replace your window insert, make sure to purchase the correct size window pane and have the necessary tools available.

Also, before doing any work on your garage door windows, it’s essential to follow safety procedures. Always wear safety glasses and gloves while you’re working on your garage door window because the glass could shatter and cause injury.

Window Inserts That You Can Replace

Where it comes to replacing windows inserts, here are some of the common ones that you can replace:

To Replace a Window Insert That Has Trim

  1. Have someone assist you by holding the frame on the outside of the garage, while you’re working on the inner garage door.
  2. Carefully pry the trim away from the window without breaking it.
  3. Remove all the nails from the trim and window.
  4. Remove all the broken glass and sandpaper any rough edges in the window.
  5. Place the new glass pane into the window.
  6. Caulk around all sides of the glass pane.
  7. Nail the trim back into place one piece at a time.

You’re done.

Replacing a Broken Window Pane Inside the Window Insert

  1. Have someone hold the frame in place on the outside of the garage door, while you are working on the inside of the garage.
  2. Unscrew the window insert from the inner garage door.
  3. Remove retainer from the garage door.
  4. Remove the broken glass from the retainer and sandpaper any rough edges.
  5. Put the new glass pane into the retainer and add caulk around all the sides of the frame. Then place the retainer in the window opening.
  6. Screw retainer back into the garage door.
  7. Check to make sure the window insert is secure.

Replacing a New Window Insert

  1. Have someone assist you by holding the window frame on the outside of the garage while you’re working on the inside of the garage door.
  2. Unscrew the retainer from the inside of the garage door.
  3. Remove retainer from the garage door.
  4. Place a new window insert into the window opening and screw it in the garage door.
  5. Make sure the window insert is secure.

You might also enjoy our post on Where Does a Garage Floor Drain Go?

Finding Replacement Window Inserts

To find replacement window inserts for your broken garage door window, you’ll need to contact a supplier that can help you out.

It’s important to be able to provide the dimensions of your window insert before placing an order.

They’ll also need details on the thickness of your broken garage door window. Plexiglass and tempered glass are available in standard thicknesses of 1/8” and ¼”.

These are standard levels of thickness, but if you need a different measurement of thickness tell the supplier what you are looking for and he will let you know if it is available.

As mentioned earlier, this is a job best done with the help of a professional since they have all the equipment and knowledge necessary for safely removing existing window inserts as well as attaching replacement ones.

You can find local providers that can help you out by searching your city or state on Google or Yelp, or by asking friends and family members who might be able to help you find a good garage door technician.

What Size Is a Garage Door Window?

Garage door windows are available in a wide array of styles and sizes with one of the most preferred sizes being 38 7/8” x 10 1/2”. Depending on your taste and budget, you’ll have quite a selection to choose from.

Garage door windows come in virtually any size you want. Forget the traditional way of thinking about garage door windows.

If the style and size you want are not available, you will be able to create a design that is unique to your preference. Imagine the possibilities awaiting you.

Can You Replace Garage Door Panels With Windows?

You can most certainly convert your garage door panels into beautiful windows that suit your style. You can decide to change one panel or the entire garage door into windows. The choice is yours. You can lighten up your space and add a distinctive appeal to your garage.

If your garage door is in good condition and functioning properly, the windows can be cut out of the garage panel according to the design you choose.

If your garage door needs a new panel, check and see if the manufacturer of your garage door still has panels available to match your door. If he does, then you can purchase what you want and have window inserts added to the panel.

Another alternative would be to purchase a garage door fitted to your specifications.

Whatever your requirements may be, talk with the experts to get an idea of what your options are.

Keep in mind that anytime windows are added to a garage door, it could cause fluctuations in the weight of the door. This affects the garage door’s spring system.

The spring system controls the weight of the door as it opens and closes and it keeps an even balance. It will have to be replaced or adjusted for even weight distribution or it could cause damage to the door and the garage door’s automatic opener.

Garage Door Window Insert Kits

Garage door insert kits can be found online and can come with safety glass, Plexiglas, or tempered glass.

Make sure you read the manufacturer’s specifications on what kind of window your garage door is compatible with before purchasing one.

If you still have questions, then contact a professional for more information on the best type to get based on your garage door system.

Final Thoughts

It’s critical that you follow all safety precautions when replacing garage door window inserts.

This is a project that should be done with professional help and equipment to ensure maximum safety and security.

The best way to find out if your garage door will accept Plexiglas or tempered glass is by consulting a professional. Contact one today for more information on whether or not you can replace your garage door window inserts. 

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