Does the size of overhead door determine if its a garage?

So for an area/garage with an overhead door less than 8 feet wide, is a firewall needed? Today the house had a basement with a door that was 6ft 4in wide. In the past I’ve come across overhead doors smaller than this. So still a motorcycle or some other equipment could fit. A motorcycle could probably fit through a pedestrian door though. I cant find anything specific regarding the door size.

Look at it from this perspective…

What would the typical person use the space for?

Riding lawnmower?


Storing fuel or other flammables?

So many options that would require the same fire and vapor proofing a typical garage would need.

Make sense?

Oh… and nowadays… there’s always…



Thanks Jeffery, I basically just overthink this whenever it comes up

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My in-laws had a separated area of their attached garage that they used for their golf carts that had an O.H. door that was about 6’ x6’.

Great reply JJ

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Aside from a definite answer to this question the concept is an important one for HIs to keep in the back of their mind. That being garage v. shop. Garage has a door large enough for a vehicle (and a tank of gas) to be easily driven in. This brings up things like fire separation, sparks igniting vapors near the floor and solid fuel heat sources (wood stoves, etc.) being a problem. It’s often difficult to find any enforcement and let’s face it, most shops and outbuildings are in remote areas with little/no enforcement of rules anyway. To me it’s just good knowledge to have to pass along to my buyers and they are free to do what they want with it.

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I call those smaller doors a boat door, likely a regional thing. I recommend a fire barrier or sprinkler and tell them why. Job done.

I might even include @jjonas 's graphic :smile:

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Adding to @jjonas storing anything with a battery, including riding lawnmowers and the enclosed commuter car equivalent of a riding lawnmower:

Or the sporty version:

Thanks all!