Tag Archives: overhead door installation

Overhead Door Install Without Concrete Floor

Overhead Door Install Without a Concrete Floor
Reader WILLIE in SHELBYVILLE writes:

“ I am building a pole barn and I am not going to pour concrete on the floor just a rock base and I am going to install an overhead door. My question is what do I need to stop the door from coming out of the track at the bottom when closed?”

Mike the Pole Barn Guru responds:
While you may not intend to ever pour a concrete floor in your building, there is a better than good chance at some point in time this will change. Maybe for you, perhaps for a future owner. For this reason, overhead doors should always be placed to allow for a nominal four inch thick concrete floor – with bottom of door up 3-1/2 inches from the bottom of pressure preservative treated splash plank.

If this is not done, and a concrete slab on grade is to be added later, your overhead door will need to be taken out. Overhead door and top jambs will need to be raised by 3-1/2 inches – entailing cutting this off bottom of all steel siding panels above door opening. Side jambs will need to be lengthened at top, probably causing more steel jamb trim to have to be obtained.

This results in an issue with sealing overhead door bottom, to prevent your neighbor’s cat from living inside of your building. I have had clients solve this gap challenge in many ways, all resulting in a bump or hump across door opening. Most usually it is done by creating a gravel berm.

I also deferred to Hansen Pole Buildings’ overhead door expert, Rick Ochs. In his past life, Rick operated an overhead door sales and installation company.
Rick’s answer:

If I understand correctly:
There is a threshold at door opening. His rock base is lower than that imaginary line from jamb to jamb. He doesn’t want the rollers to fall out of the bottom of the track when the door goes down.

When my crews would install overhead doors without any flooring or concrete in place, they would mount a 2x to the inside face of the overhead door posts with the top edge at threshold height. The outer corners of the overhead door would then rest on that until concrete was poured. Some customers would temporarily build up the threshold with aggregate, but this rock gets pushed around and has to be built up continually.

Where the red is butted to the inside face of posts:

Basements, Foundations, and OHD Back-Hangs!

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Is it possible to have a full basement with a residential build? What would a basement do to overall cost percentage wise? NATHAN in OAK LAWN

cutting stairsDEAR NATHAN: It is very possible to have a full basement beneath a post frame home. According to www.HomeAdvisor.com installing an unfinished basement will cost from $10-$25 per square foot. With this alone in mind, it makes it less expensive to have a larger footprint on a single level, than to build over a basement. There also becomes the issue of accessibility – going up and down stairs becomes tedious for the able bodied and prohibitive for those with disabilities.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Thinking about a pole barn home in Michigan. Can you bury wood poles for foundation or do the wood poles need to go above grade on concrete foundation or piers. Thanks. TIM in MARION


DEAR TIM: Post frame (pole barn) homes do not have to be constructed on a continuous concrete foundation or on piers. The properly pressure preservative treated columns are more than adequate to support your new home.


DEAR POLE BARN GURU: When installing ceiling liner panels in a pole barn….. there are 2 14’x14’ garage doors. Where the bracing for the garage door track are screwed to the bottom side of the trusses, can I lower those braces, install the metal (3/4” ag panel) then put those braces back up in the same spot with the track being 3/4” lower than they were originally? JUSTIN IN GREENFIELD

DEAR JUSTIN: If you attach the angle irons in the flats of the liner panels, then the track will be at the very same height. Attachment through the ribs of the steel would not be recommended as the fasteners will have flexibility between the top of the rib and the underlying trusses. This could result in several problems – slots forming in the liner panels as well as the possibility of the track developing enough movement so as to cause the door to come out of the track and land on the floor.


Dear Pole Barn Guru: How Do I Make a Garage Door Opener Fit?

Welcome to Ask the Pole Barn Guru – where you can ask questions about building topics, with answers posted on Mondays.  With many questions to answer, please be patient to watch for yours to come up on a future Monday segment.  If you want a quick answer, please be sure to answer with a “reply-able” email address.

Email all questions to: PoleBarnGuru@HansenPoleBuildings.com

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am having a new 10 foot eave height pole barn constructed. For whatever reason 9×9 overhead doors were ordered instead of 9×8 doors and now we are running into problems installing garage door Openers.  The builder rigged something in get the doors to fit, but now the openers can’t be installed.  Got any ideas on what to do? WILD IN WYOMING

DEAR WILD: Too bad whomever was doing inventory did not notify the supplier of an incorrect dimension of doors being received, but this is construction and things DO happen. When one considers the thousands of people who touch the pieces before they are delivered, as well as thousands of components required to construct even a basic building, it is amazing anything ever gets built!

Without having to tear everything or anything apart, the best solution is probably to use a jackshaft garage door opener. The general consensus is those who have them, prefer them to the more common rear mounted openers, for ease of operation, as well as being very quiet.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: We are constructing a Hansen Pole Building kit package. The plans show the height from grade to the bottom of the top overhead door jamb and door header assembly as 14’ 2-1/2”?? we’ve built off the plans and know we have an issue with only having a 14′ door.  I now have a 2-1/2″ opening at the top of the door.??  What’s your thoughts.?? We can stack some 2×4’s but then I need some metal trim to finish out fascia.?? Please reply with your thoughts. NUMBED IN NEBRASKA

DEAR NUMBED: The 14’ 2-1/2” height is correct for a raised panel type door. The bottom of the door is to be set 3-1/2” above grade, to allow for a future nominal four inch thick concrete slab floor to be poured. Once you use this point to start from, you will find the door ends up installed with a nice one inch overlap at the top and sides of the finished opening, to assist in providing a weather tight seal.

In the event a concrete floor is not immediately poured, there are several options – the easiest of which is to place a gravel “berm” across the opening, which the door can seal against when closed.

You may never plan on a floor being poured, but the next person to own the building may very well have different ideas, and a door installed to fit down tight to grade, would pose nothing but problems later on, as the entire door would need to be removed, raised up 3-1/2” and then reinstalled.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU:  Why are they called “pole” barns? TALL IN TEXAS

DEAR TALL: Technically “pole barns” are actually “post frame” buildings. The term “pole” barn comes from the vertical members which were first used many years ago to support this style of construction – old utility (power) poles.

This is no longer done – instead columns which are square or rectangular are used, and pressure preservative treated for in-ground structural use so they will last….much longer than you and I will be alive!

To read more about the history of pole and post frame buildings: