Most people consider their garage doors to be the main house entrance. The door weighs about 150 pounds and it’s moved, on average, twice daily, so tear and wear are inevitable here. Having a garage has made our lives easier, but when it becomes dysfunctional, it can put us -especially kids and pets- and our belongings at risk. That’s why paying attention to the garage door maintenance will provide us with the security and convenience we need. Having a yearly maintenance routine is essential to prevent the door from wearing out and to avoid huge bills.
Some of the common problems that your garage door might face doesn’t require calling an expert to fix them. That’s why we have collected seven of the most common problems and how to fix them yourself.
1. Imbalanced Garage Door
Your door should open without one end drooping more than the other. But if you notice any asymmetry, you shouldn’t ignore it because imbalanced doors put a lot of pressure on the gears, they pose some safety concerns and can tax a garage opener. To test whether your door is opening and closing correctly, you need to disconnect the door opener and then open the garage door. If your door is out of balance, it will fall down immediately. Usually, the reason behind imbalanced garage doors is the springs. You can change them yourself or call in an expert because this task could be a bit tricky and risky. While you are at it, make sure to clean the tracks from any rust or dust.
2. Cluttered Garages
We tend to turn our garages into deposit areas with all the “just in case” stuff we keep but never use. Sometimes, we don’t even have enough room for cars (which contradicts with the main purpose for a garage), sometimes you might even find it impossible to close the garage door with all the stuff that are cluttering your garage area. This could be easily fixed with overhead garage storage racks; you can store all your seasonal items or all the stuff you keep around all year that you don’t use regularly. It’s important to reclaim your garage and start organizing today.
3. Door Opens And Closes By Itself
There might be a problem with the circuit board that’s causing your door to open and closes on its own. Sometimes the problem might be that there is something that’s interfering with the signals that are coming out of the mechanical safety feature that your door has. These two problems require an expert to fix them instead of putting your life at risk. Sometimes, you might be facing this problem because the batteries in the remote controller are dead. All that problem requires is buying new batteries.
4. The Door Is Unresponsive
Your door has an important safety feature that sends photoelectric beams to sense if there is any object underneath your garage door to stop moving as a safety measure. Sometimes when the door opener isn’t responsive, it could mean that there is something with your doors “photo eyes”. All you need to do to check if that’s the problem is checking any signs of light in this feature. If the lights are out, go to the breaker panel and switch it off and on again. This could be an indication that the motor has been disconnected, the circuit breaker was tripped, or a fuse was blown. Check the power supply and make sure that your door opener is plugged correctly.
5. Your Door Is Stuck
The iron oxidizes when it’s exposed to water or air for a long time. If you find your door stuck on its track regardless of your many tries to open it or close it, it might be that you are dealing with rusty rollers. Inspecting the rollers at least twice a year should be a part of your maintenance routine and you must change them every seven years regardless of their types. Check if your rollers are rusty and clean them along with the door tracks with vinegar or a strong cleaner to dissolve rust. If they are worn out, cracked or chipped, you must change them for your door to operate efficiently.
6. Worn Out Or Cracked Weather Sealant
This is an important part of the safety features that your door has to keep out all the damaging weather elements. Weather sealant keeps water and dust out, it minimizes air leaks and reduces street noises. While you are doing your yearly checks, you need to inspect the sealant for any cracks, gaps, or if it was broken. Changing the weather sealant is pretty easy, all you need to do is removing the old one, buying a new one, and installing it.
7. Noisy Doors
If you are dealing with grinding noise every time your door moves while noticing that it jerks in certain places, that means that you are dealing with a problem in the spring’s pulleys. It’s important to change the pulleys and the springs as soon as you notice this problem to prevent it from manifesting and growing into a bigger problem. If what you are hearing is more of squeaking noises, then the problem might be that the rollers aren’t lubricated. Movable mechanical objects need to be correctly lubricated every now and then to perform efficiently. To Lubricate the rollers, you can use any silicone or lithium-based grease and wait for a little while before you open or close your door.
Most of the problems you will face with garage doors could easily be avoided with a simple maintenance routine. Keeping our doors in a good working condition will pay off down the road. Make sure that your door is sanded, primed, and painted. Check for rust spots on metal doors, and make sure that your weather sealant is working correctly for wooden doors. Don’t forget to give your door a good wash now and then; clean the tracks, remove any rust from the rollers, and clean thoroughly the exterior part of the door to keep your house presentable.
It’s good to know that rusty rollers can be the cause of doors sticking on a regular basis. Last night I noticed that my garage door would stick halfway through opening up. I’ll have to keep this list in mind as I look around for a contractor that can fix my garage so it doesn’t stick anymore.