FAQs: Garage Door Rollers

Garage door rollers are one of the most important components of a successful garage door system. However, they can wear down over time and occasionally go off track. When your car wash or residential garage door starts creaking, squeaking, or resisting attempts to open or close, it's probably time to check the condition of your rollers. Whether you need to lubricate your rollers or change them entirely, North Shore Commercial Door has been in the garage door industry for decades, and we’re here to answer all garage door roller questions for businesses and homeowners alike! 

What Is a Garage Door Roller? 

Garage door rollers are small wheels or cylinders attached to the sides of a garage door’s panels that sit within the vertical tracks on each side of the door. Garage door rollers allow your door to move smoothly when it opens and closes. See our video below for a further breakdown!

What Are the Different Types of Garage Door Rollers?

There are three main types of garage door rollers, with each one offering its own benefits and drawbacks:

  1. Plastic garage door rollers are of lower quality compared to other roller styles. They get the job done fine enough but will need to be replaced every couple of years as they wear down. Unlike other rollers, they lack ball bearings, which makes them noisier than other roller options. 
  2. Steel rollers are cheaper than nylon rollers and can handle greater weight, making them an ideal option for larger garage doors. Steel rollers are incredibly durable and can have a lifespan of up to two decades. However, they are very noisy, which may not be ideal in closely packed residential areas. 
  3. Nylon garage door rollers offer top performance and functionality. They are the quietest compared to rollers made of plastic and steel and their life expectancy can range from 12 to 20 years depending on the roller’s quality. Nylon rollers are highly customizable and can be purchased with exposed ball bearings, concealed ball bearings, and no ball bearings at all. Nylon rollers also don't need frequent lubrication. This makes them highly efficient, low maintenance, and non-vibrating.

Which Type of Garage Door Roller Should You Choose? 

When deciding which type of garage door roller is best for you, consider the features you find the most valuable. Those on a budget will benefit from the cheaper cost of plastic rollers. If you have issues with salt or chemicals in the environment, use rollers that have stainless steel stems. Homeowners who prize quiet garage door operation above all else should choose rollers with ball bearings like nylon, but they do tend to be more expensive.

What Size Garage Door Rollers Do I Need? 

After choosing the style of your new roller, you’ll need to buy it in a size compatible with your garage. The most common residential garage door roller size is referred to as a “2-in diameter,” but the actual diameter is closer to 1 3/4 inches. Commercial as well as industrial garage doors typically use 2-inch or 3-inch rollers. It is also common for 3-inch rollers to be used on heavier solid wood carriage garage doors. However, these sizes are not absolute. If your garage door is a vintage fiberglass style from the 1960s or 1970s, you might have smaller rollers. 

How to Measure My Garage Door Roller's Size?

To know your roller’s exact size, measure across the roller's face as well the stem length, which is measured from the bottom of the stem to where it joins the roller. Newer stems (1980 and later) are typically 7/16 inches, which is the industry standard.

How to Maintain Garage Door Rollers? 

Like all hardware, over time it is common for rollers to become worn out, but with the proper garage door maintenance, you can keep your rollers functioning for years. To increase a garage door roller’s lifespan, lubricate open-design ball bearings every three to four months. If your rollers begin vibrating, squeaking, grinding, or locking up before then, they should be inspected, lubricated, and replaced if necessary. 

When to Replace Garage Door Rollers?

If you notice a roller is cracked or is missing material, replace it immediately. Worn or broken garage door rollers can cause damage to other components of your door, so replacing those that have signs of wear and tear is essential to preserving your investment and keeping people safe. 

What are Garage Door Track Assemblies? 

The track is what securely holds and correctly guides the garage door's rollers, and a track assembly is a complete group of compatible track parts, including the track itself and necessary mounting hardware. These parts may include sections of track, a header, various brackets, screws, and nuts that are designed to be used together.

How to Go About Garage Door Roller Replacement? 

If your rollers are damaged don’t worry, replacing garage door rollers is a fairly simple process that you can DIY with ease! Just be mindful of your surroundings, as you’re working with springs under tension and a heavy garage door. You can also hire a garage door technician to replace or install garage door rollers. 

What are the Top Garage Door Rollers?

North Shore Commercial Door offers a great variety of garage door rollers to choose from. We carry overhead door rollers, long-stem garage door rollers, and other styles. Choose rollers with 4-inch, 7-inch, or extra-long 9-inch stems. These tough, durable door rollers are designed to work with most garage doors, including those manufactured by Clopay, Overhead Door, and Northwest Door. We also carry rollers in plastic, metal, and neoprene rollers at affordable prices.

Sealed Bearing Nylon Roller 1-3/4 inch Wheel 4-inch Stem 

North Shore’s sealed-bearing nylon rollers are great for car washes! They are equipped with sealed bearings to keep out water and stop corrosion, while their nylon material provides extra protection against oxidation. The stem is 4-inches long and is rated at 100 lbs. per roller. Roller wheels are compatible with 2-inch door tracks. 

Product Highlights: 

  • Sealed Bearings Nylon Rollers 
  • 6200 shielded precision bearing 
  • Zinc plated stem 
  • Rating: 100 lbs. load at 100,000 12 ft. door cycles 


  • Length: 4-1/2 in 
  • Stem Diameter: 3/8 in
  • Wheel Diameter: 1-3/4 in
  • Stem Length: 4 in

3-Inch Wheel 7-Inch Stem Car Wash Door Nylon Rollers 

North Shore's RL371-NY-H Car wash garage door rollers are equipped with sealed bearings to keep out water and stop corrosion. The roller wheels are compatible with 2-inch door tracks and their nylon material provides extra protection against oxidation. The stainless steel stem is 7-inches long. These high-quality rollers are rated at one hundred pounds per roller. 

Product Highlights:

  • Sealed bearings 
  • Nylon rollers 
  • Stainless steel stem 
  • Rating: 100 lbs. load at 100,000 12 ft. door cycles


  • Length: 7-3/4 in
  • Stem Diameter: 3/8 in
  • Wheel Diameter: 3 in
  • Stem Length: 7 in

If these listings aren't in the size or style you need, worry not! Check out our full listing of garage door rollers here!

Do You Have Other Garage Door Roller Questions?

Please ask! Our in-house experts can help you with all of your garage door roller questions, from picking the right style to instalation tips. Get in touch with our support crew: