An overhead garage door is one of the most-used items on a home, yet we pay very little attention to it until it begins to have problems.
There are several maintenance tasks you can do to keep the garage door operating smoothly. At least once a year, lubricate the rollers and tracks with WD-40, lightly spraying the center of each roller and the inside of the tracks. If you have an automatic garage door opener, regularly change the batteries on the remote and outdoor keypad, and be sure to replace any burnt out bulbs on the garage door opener power head that lights the interior of your garage.
Check the automatic garage door opener for proper sensor operation. Raise and lower the door, and as it’s going down, roll a large ball under the door. The door should automatically rise back up. If not, the sensor needs to be adjust by a professional.
If the overhead door just doesn’t move as smooth and swiftly as it once did, it can be one of two issues: the automatic opener or the springs. To determine if it’s the electric opener, simply disconnect the opener mechanism from the door. If the door glides smoothly in manual mode, then the problem is with the automatic opener. Consult the owner’s manual or call a qualified company to assist.
If you determine that the automatic opener is good then it’s a problem with the door itself. If you struggle to lift the door, then springs are most likely the culprit.
A simple test can reveal what’s wrong with the springs. Place your overhead garage door in the half open position, and ideally, it will stay there. But rather than hold that position, if the door continues on up, the springs may be too tight; if it slams to the ground instead, the springs are too loose, broken or worn out.
Springs can be adjusted or replaced but DO NOT try do this yourself. The springs of a closed garage door have over 100 pounds of kinetic energy waiting to be unleashed. Mess with them and it’s an accident waiting to happen. Only trained overhead door professionals should touch the springs of your garage door.
Be sure to take a look at the condition of the surface of garage door. Metal doors with a factory finish are much like caring for a car – wash it on a regular basis, and keep an eye out for scratches, dings or blemishes that could invite rust. For wood doors, look for soft spots, blistering or peeling paint which indicate water damage and repair or repaint as needed. Also take a look at your wood door when it is fully open and horizontal with the garage ceiling; if you see it sagging in the middle, it needs to be reinforced or replaced.
Hinges, lock bars, and tracks can all contribute to a sluggish garage door, so it’s a safe and wise move to let professionals assess the situation. If you are experiencing any operational or surface finish problems with your overhead garage door – or are ready for a new one to update the look of your garage – let a Mosby Building Arts Home Consultant asses your garage door and help get it back on track! Call the office at 314.909.1800 or contact them here.