building a custom garage door

What Wood Makes a Quality Garage or Entry Door?

October 13, 2021

When considering cedar for construction or various woodcraft projects, you must keep in mind that there is a wide variety of grades, and not all of them are created equal. The grade of cedar wood you use when building a custom garage door significantly impacts its quality.  

Specific standards have been put in place to ensure consistency in grading red cedar when it is manufactured, bought, and sold. The most critical thing that should be kept in mind is that the higher the grade, the better the quality. 

Here are the various Western red cedar grades available on the market. 

Clear Grade Cedar

Clear grade Cedar is the highest grade with its superior quality and minimal imperfections. This Western Red Cedar grade has outstanding durability and is ideal for wood garage doors. It is usually taken from mature trees and carefully selected to ensure that it is of the highest quality. There are various subgrades with varying features and qualities. 

The clear, vertical grain is the highest subgrade in this grade that has growth rings which are parallel to each other on the face of the board. This wood is sawed to achieve that look. You will also notice that the pieces of the clear, vertical grain tend to have excellent dimensional stability and the ability to hold wood finishes quite well. 

Clear heart comprises of heartwood, which is clear with minimal imperfections that don’t detract from its appearance. This subgrade is ready to accept stain or paint. 

A clear is a fine appearance grade whose pieces are usually graded from the surface and sold with a specific percentage of B grade. A clear may have a few pin knots and sound tight knots. 

The other subgrades within the clear grade cedar category include the C&B clear, No 2 & better, D & better clear, and rustic clear. 

Cambek uses Clear Grade Western Red Cedar in all its custom cedar doors. 

Eco Grade Cedar

Eco grade cedar is quality timber that offers excellent value for your money. Although this grade may have a few knots and blemishes, it is more than 70% clear. The eco grade cedar is suitable for wood garage doors and entry doors. It is also ideal for all cladding purposes since it is durable and offers an incredible appearance. Some manufacturers provide standard eco grade cedar while others usually produce customized profiles for specific needs. 

Knotty Grade Cedar

Just like the clear grade cedar, knotty western red cedar can be divided into various subgrades depending on quality and appearance. Select knotty has knots and a wide range of natural features that define its visual characteristics. However, all knots are tight and sound. 

Quality knotty is similar to select knotty but contains a few scattered blemishes on its surface. The grain may also be massively raised. There is also the custom knotty that is usually customized to meet specific needs. This is something that is common in large timbers for outdoor structures and the decking market. The boards of custom knotty often provide a good appearance with limited holes. 


Cambek chooses the best clear grade western red cedar for all its doors. We work with only the best materials to handcraft the best products.

Get in Touch with Cambek

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.