When you’re looking at your garage door, do you wonder if it needs some maintenance? If so, the answer is yes! Garage Doors need to be maintained just like any other part of a home.
You should clean and lubricate them periodically to keep them running smoothly. Read on for more information about how often they need maintenance and what sort of tools you’ll need to get the job done yourself. Garage Storage Solutions features an innovative wall system with heavy-duty sliding wall components such as hooks, garage shelving and stylish, durable steel cabinets designed to hold your gear securely and neatly in place.
How Long Do Garage Doors Last?
A garage door can last for several decades if you give it the proper care. Here are some factors that will help you determine a garage door’s life expectancy:
Construction quality: The installer of your garage door might have done a poor job. If the garage door contains cheap material or was installed incorrectly, it won’t last as long. Instead, consult with a trustworthy professional to install a garage door.
Inspection: Schedule an annual preventative maintenance appointment with your local garage door company.
During this appointment, a professional will inspect your garage door for broken parts. Replacing parts of the garage door — like a garage door opener or a tension spring — can prolong the life of your whole system.
Proper maintenance: You should also maintain your garage door by lubricating the moving parts with oil. Lubrication prevents rust from tainting these metallic parts.
You should also clean your Door with mild detergent and water to remove debris. Consult the manufacturer to find out how to clean your garage door’s material.
Local climate conditions: Extreme heat or cold could cause wear and tear on your garage door.
Think about how your garage door material performs in your home’s climate. For example, wooden garage doors are prone to warping in moist environments. Vinyl garage doors are also sensitive to UV lighting.
When To Replace A Garage Door
If your garage door is more than ten years old and you notice that it’s not working like it used to, you may need to replace your garage door.
You know that you need to replace a garage door if it shows any of the following signs.
Your Door Has Damage From Wear And Tear
The average garage door opens thousands of times each year. So if you’ve had your garage door for ten years, it has done a lot of work over its lifespan.
Without proper maintenance, a garage door will have damage due to wear and tear.
Here are some of the reasons why garage doors lose their strength and functionality over time:
Carrying the weight of a garage door: The springs and lifting cable of a garage door can become damaged due to holding up the garage door for so long.
When they experience excessive wear and tear, the tension springs can snap and drop the Door.
Dirt and debris inside the rollers: A noisy garage door means that there’s friction on the garage door track. Debris buildup could cause a track misalignment.
Weather damage: The wear and tear of precipitation can damage a garage door over time. Wind, rain, snow and UV rays result in rusting, warping or discolouration.
Your Door Isn’t Opening Or Closing.
The purpose of your garage door is to open so you can access your home and close it so you can have privacy.
If your garage door gives you trouble when you move it, you need to inspect it to find out what’s causing the issue.
Invest in a door that provides a smooth transition from the car to the inside of your home. You can also replace the parts of the garage door, like the garage door opener.
Here are some common garage door problems. These problems could explain why your Door might not be opening and closing:
Faulty garage door opener: Having an old garage door opener can lead to several safety hazards.
The automated reversal feature, which makes the Door reverse if a person or object is in the way, may not work correctly.
You could also leave your garage vulnerable to thieves with a faulty garage door opener. Burglars know how to override an old garage door opener system.
Besides these safety features, a new garage door opener provides quieter operation.
Broken remote control: If the remote control doesn’t work, the motor unit might have disconnected.
You could also try replacing the batteries with your remote control or standing closer to the Door. If the motor unit has burned out, you will have to get the motor to the garage door opener replaced.
Misaligned photo-eye: The photo-eye activates the automated reversal feature. The smallest obstruction, even dust, could affect the functionality of the photo-eye.
If your garage door doesn’t open and close all the way, you may need to get your photo-eye inspected and replaced.
The Door Has Obvious Signs Of Damage
You need to replace your garage door if an accident, a storm or vandalism has damaged it severely.
Here are some types of damage that a professional would need to replace:
Broken springs and lift cables: A broken tension spring can be dangerous. You will know if the tension spring isn’t working because your garage door won’t open. After extensive use, the lift cables and tension spring could snap.
A broken tension spring creates a loud sound that you can hear from anywhere in the house. You can replace a broken tension spring, but you should be careful. Let a professional fix your broken spring to avoid further damage.
Track misalignment: A garage door that has fallen off the track will no longer function. The garage door material could rub against the way and cause it to fall out of alignment.
You will know if you have a track misalignment issue because the Door will look crooked. In addition, a track misalignment could result in the garage door ruining the siding on your house.
Dents: A dent in the garage door could prevent smooth movement along the track. It can also decrease your home’s curb appeal.
Indentations from sports equipment or harsh weather conditions could damage the space between your garage door panels and leave a gap in your garage door.
While you can repair your garage door by fixing one board, it’s better to get the whole garage door replaced.
Your Garage Door Is A Safety Hazard
For safety reasons, you should always keep your garage door closed and locked. A faulty garage door can be a safety risk to you and your family.
Here are some reasons why you might not feel safe in your garage or near your garage door:
Burglary: Intruders may try to get into your house through the garage. They may even use your tools to try to unlock the entry door, so you should always keep tools locked away.
A new garage door may have an extra lock or will be more durable than your old one.
Outdated technology: Burglars can sometimes figure out access codes to get into your garage.
You can set up a keypad that creates a random access code and sends it to your phone with new technology. That way, the password will be different every time.
A faulty photo-eye: The photo-eye keeps your family safe by ensuring that no one is in the way of the garage door.
If a small child or a pet runs under the garage door while it’s closing, the garage door will go back up. So a faulty photo-eye is a serious safety issue.
Your Energy Costs Are Increasing
Old garage doors lose their insulation over time. So if you notice an increase in your energy bills each month, you may want to invest in a new garage door.
Here are some reasons why a new garage door will improve the energy efficiency of your home:
Better insulation: If you want more insulation on your garage door, you can request it from your local garage door company. You could also invest in material that offers improved energy efficiency, like wood.
Let your HVAC take a break: The extra insulation of a new garage door can help ease the burden on your HVAC system. Also, when the temperature in the garage is comfortable, your HVAC system can take a break.
More “smart” technology: Many new garage door openers can connect to your phone, enabling you to control your garage door from anywhere in the world.
This technology saves money on energy bills because you’ll only open it when it’s necessary to do so. Smart technology can also alert you if your garage door is open when you’re not home.
Cost To Replace Garage Door
The cost of replacing a garage door ranges from a few hundred dollars to several thousand, depending on various factors. Some of the factors that will affect your costs include:
Materials: The cost to replace your garage door depends, in part, on the material you choose.
Steel and wood garage doors are the least expensive options, while fibreglass and vinyl tend to be the most costly.
Installing additional insulation to improve energy efficiency will also add to material costs. Keep in mind that some materials, such as wood, cost more to maintain over time.
Parts that need replacing: You may be able to use some features from your existing garage door to reduce your costs.
However, if you don’t know how old the parts are, you should replace them so you know they’ll function correctly.
Labour costs: While you could do it yourself, hiring a professional to replace your garage door is much more efficient.
You’ll save more time, and you’ll even save money. On the other hand, if you don’t know what you’re doing, you can make mistakes that will cost you more money in the long run.
Your estimate from the garage door company often includes the cost of labour, including removing and disposing of the old Door and installing the new one.
Labour will likely add a few hundred dollars to your costs. Some types of projects may cost more in labour, however.
For example, to upgrade to a taller garage door, the garage door company will have to remove parts of your siding to make space for this extra height.
Size: A door replacement for a two-car garage will cost more money than for a one-car garage because of the Door’s larger size.
A two-car garage door typically costs a little less than double what a one-car garage door costs.
Location: In areas with higher living costs, garage door replacement costs will likely be higher as well.
A garage door replacement can be a cost-effective project if you know where your money is going. Here are some of the benefits that make installing a new garage door worthwhile:
Higher resale value: A garage door replacement can yield a resale value of 94.5% in Washington state.
You can get more for your house when you sell it and take advantage of the enhanced curb appeal. A garage door replacement is one of the most cost-effective remodelling projects.
Improved appearance: You can choose the colour and material of your new garage door. Select a style that complements the other elements of your interior design.
If your current garage door has some dents, a new garage door will make your home look more modern.
Improved safety: A new garage door and garage door opener will enhance the security of your home.
A faulty garage door opener might not have an automatic reversal feature. Replacing the garage door will also help keep your family safe from intruders.
Improved energy efficiency: A garage door replacement can reduce the cost of your energy bill each month.
With an insulated garage door, you can more easily regulate the temperature of your garage. The insulation also keeps cold air out of the main area of the home.
Reduce maintenance time and cost: Newer garage doors are easier to maintain. Since their parts function better, they require less maintenance and fewer repairs. As a result, you can save money over time with a new garage door. Garage Storage Solutions features an innovative wall storage system with heavy-duty sliding wall components such as hooks, garage shelving and stylish, durable steel cabinets designed to hold your gear securely and neatly in place.
How To Extend The Life Of Your Garage Door
Watch And Listen To The Door While It’s Moving
You can check your garage door yourself by listening to the Door when it is opening and closing.
A functioning garage door moves smoothly and without much noise. However, if your garage door makes scraping or grinding movements and catches on its tracks, there could be an issue.
Check to be sure the bolts and roller brackets are not loose. You can tighten open hardware with a socket wrench.
The average garage door goes up and down about 1,000 times every year, and the repeated motion and vibration can jar hardware out of place.
Check To Make Sure The Door Is Balanced
First, disconnect the opener from the garage door, then manually move the Door up and down halfway. The Door should stay in place. If the Door moves on its own, the garage door is not balanced.
Unfortunately, most homeowners won’t be able to fix this themselves. Instead, a professional garage door specialist would be trained in how to balance the Door properly.
Replace The Batteries In The Remote Regularly
Most of us open and close our garage doors multiple times a day. Therefore, it’s important to replace the batteries on your remote so you’re not stuck outside hitting a button that does not work.
The manual for your remote should tell you how often to replace the batteries.
Replace The Weather Seal
A garage door usually has a rubber weather seal on the bottom of the Door. Please make sure it’s not cracked or causing the Door to jam. You may have to adjust it or replace it entirely.
Lubricate The Moving Parts
Lubricating the springs and the chain can help the moving parts operate smoothly when the Door closes and opens.
For the springs, use a rag to apply spray lubricant. These are the parts that move your Door every time you press the remote. You can also loosen plastic hinges with silicone spray.
Check The Cables And Springs
On Sectional/ Panel doors, the cables and springs are the parts that lift the Door using a pulley mechanism. Check to make sure they are not damaged.
If you notice the signs of wear or fraying due to friction, this is another repair most homeowners can’t safely do without training. High tension cables can seriously injure you; it’s always better to call a professional rather than try doing it yourself.
Test The Auto-reverse Safety Feature
Every modern garage door has two safety features to keep a door from coming down on top of people living in the home or their pets – a mechanical safety and a photo beam.
You can test the mechanical safety feature by putting a piece of wood or a brick under the garage door and closing the Door.
The Door should automatically go back up once it touches the object. If it doesn’t, you will have to adjust the downforce control limit, which should be listed in the instructions in the opener’s manual.
You can check the second safety feature, the photocell with photo-eye sensors, by placing an object within the path of the beam quickly after closing the Door. If the Door stops closing, the sensor is working.
If it doesn’t, clean the sensors with a damp cotton ball and try again.
Steel doors may get rusty over time. First, find the rusty spots, then sand, prime, and paint over them. Wooden doors may crack over time and need repainting to protect the wood from the weather.
Clean The Tracks
A garage door specialist would be able to recommend a cleaner for the tracks. But, remember, don’t lubricate the trails or use an all-purpose cleaner because this can affect the Door’s balance.
Wash Your Garage Door
Finally, garage doors need to be washed periodically with an all-purpose cleaner. You can do this at the same time you’re washing your car on the weekend or doing yard maintenance.
We recommend that you clean your Door with a wet rag once a month but more often if you have a beachfront property.
However, don’t clean the automatic opener, which usually voids the warranty and puts you at risk of being electrocuted.
However, there are some things you can’t do at home. You should also never under any circumstance try to repair the spring by yourself as well as the pulley. Overhead door spring accidents have been known to cause serious or fatal injuries.
Signs You Need a Garage Door Repair Service
Door Opening Unexpectedly
Sometimes when you close the Door, it can bounce back up off the ground; if this happens, try to avoid using the Door as the motor, and other issues may need looking at.
So, for the safety of the people and pets in your home, you should stop using the Door immediately and schedule a garage door service as soon as possible to resolve the issue. Also, do not forget to inform everyone with access to the Door about the problem.
Unresponsive Garage Door Opener
One of the most common components in your garage door that may need repairs is the opener.
There could be many reasons why this part is unresponsive. If the Door doesn’t move, call a professional technician to inspect if any of the components have been damaged or misplaced.
Inconsistent Movement In The Opener’s Responses
Sometimes, the problem is not as evident as the Door failing to close or open. Instead, you may start to notice that it takes multiple attempts before the Door shuts or opens; this could be something as simple as the tension of the springs or something much more.
So, if you notice that your garage door is performing poorly, ask a professional service technician to inspect it right away.
Intermittent Door Opener Response
Aside from the two signs we already mentioned, an intermittent response to the controls is another symptom of a failing garage door.
Over time, the issue can become worse and might become a big problem in most cases; such a problem requires a battery change in your remotes or a new logic board or even an opener replacement.
Random Pauses In The Motions Of The Door
Most automatic garage doors have sensors that detect if anything is blocking the way of the panel. So, you do not have to worry about the Door slamming against your pet or child darting through the opening while it is moving.
But also the problem could be a tension in your springs. So, if you notice that your garage door is performing poorly, ask a professional service technician to inspect it right away.
In general, modern garage door systems have cables that help the Door go up and down; over time, they become weak and can even break; one way you can tell is you may start to see the misalignment on the bottom of your Door to the floor.
If so, call a garage door technical as your cables will need replacing. You must avoid replacing the lines yourself as such a task comes with high risks of damages and injuries.
Door Starts To Vibrate During Operation
When the garage door has dirty, warped, or obstructed tracks, it will start to shake while it is moving. The Door excessively vibrates because of worn out parts in the lifting system.
In most cases, this issue will lead to more severe problems, such as the unexpected Door NOT closing.
Of course, it is only natural for your garage door to make some sound when moving. However, the noise should easily fade into the background.
So, if you start to notice a developing and persistent noise that is out of the ordinary, it is likely that your garage door will need repairs. There can be a couple of problems that may cause excessive noise:
In the worst cases, the garage door has a damaged motor. Unfortunately, at least at one point within the lifetime of a garage door, its opener motor will inevitably fail.
A professional technician may be able to fix it. However, in some cases, the only option is to replace the motor altogether.
If the garage door technician determines that there is nothing wrong with the motor, then it is likely that you only need to lubricate parts of the Door. However, amateurs can indeed perform some basic lubrication.
However, it would help if you remembered that springs go through immense tension. Therefore, you should never attempt to fix or replace the springs on your own.
If your garage door is warped, it is possibly out of balance due to a vehicle impact. A professional garage door technician should be able to diagnose and resolve this issue to prevent further damages.
Visible Damages On The Hinges, Wheels Or End Bearings
Watch out for these signs:
- Cracks in the hinges
- Wheels lose
- End bearings are noisy
If any of these visible damages are present on the springs, then it is likely that they have compromised integrity. It can be extremely dangerous to replace these yourself. So, it is best to have a professional inspect them from time to time to prevent accidents. A storage solution from Garage Storage Solutions can transform your garage into a social focal point for visitors with a modern look.