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Garage Door Fences Don’t Make Good Neighbors

We can think of a few great ways to repurpose old garage doors. But what some California neighbors have done doesn’t top our list.

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Using a recycled garage door as a room divider

Salvaged garage doors can be used for many things, including makeshift dressing screens. Image: Aker Doors/KL George

Even though we applaud home owners who reuse and repurpose household items, we can’t give the thumbs up to the Elk Grove, Calif., neighbors who are using old garage doors to patch a dilapidated sound wall.

They may be gaining a little peace and quiet, but they’re losing a lot of curb appeal and hurting their own property values.

The fence, which lines homeowners’ back yards, is on private property, so city officials can’t fix it or tear it down. But they can hide the mishmash fence with a 10-foot high wall, which the city council is proposing to build.

(The city is spending $100,000 on design alone. So we hope it will be better-looking than the patchwork fence it will attempt to hide.)

But the debate over this makeshift fence got us to thinking: What are some better ways to repurpose garage doors?

We found this site that has some wonderful ideas — such as turning them into a:

  • Raised garden
  • Headboard
  • Compost pile enclosure
  • Dressing screen
  • Mini greenhouse

How would you repurpose an old garage door? What do you think of the California home owners’ makeshift fence?

lisa-kaplan-gordon Lisa Kaplan Gordon

is an avid gardener, a member of the Fairfax County Master Gardeners Association, and a builder of luxury homes in McLean, Va. She’s been a Homes editor for Gannett News Service and has reviewed home improvement products for AOL. Follow Lisa on Google+.

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