RSI Builders can repair an existing garage door or install a new door and panels. If a garage door is damaged from a vehicle or weather damages, we have the technicians to safely install a garage door or panels, including re-connecting the garage door motor. Repairs could involve new wood framing, drywall the interior of the garage, weather striping, exterior stucco, and painting of all surfaces, including the garage door to match the HOA required colors.
All About Garage Door Maintenance
It’s easy to ignore your garage door. But it’s a bad idea, because a broken overhead door is more than a hassle. It’s a danger.
Your garage door is your home’s largest moving object, and possibly its hardest-working component. The average electric opener raises and lowers the 150- to 250-pound door more than a thousand times a year.
There are few keys to keeping your garage door in good working order. The first is to perform an annual inspection to head off problems before they start. These general maintenance steps can be done by most do-it-yourselfers, though by hiring an expert in garage door repair you’ll rest easier knowing that nothing is missed. Beyond the basic maintenance, however, you probably want to bring in a professional to perform more complicated repairs. It’s generally worth the money to hire someone you trust so you can be sure there’s nothing to worry about when your garage door repair is said and done.
Basic Garage Door Maintenance
There are a few basic maintenance tasks that you should hire out or do yourself on an annual basis. Performing these simple checks will go a long way in preventing the need for future garage door repair.
- Check the tracks for dents or other damage. You should be able to pound out minor blemishes with a rubber hammer. If there is major damage, you’ll need to have the tracks replaced altogether.
- Make sure the tracks are level and properly aligned. If they are not, loosen the mounting brackets and tap the tracks until they are plumb with each other and slanting slightly towards the back of the garage.
- Wipe out the tracks. Clean and clear all debris from the tracks. Use a large paintbrush initially to remove dust and dirt, then use a household cleaner for a deeper clean.
- Lubricate the rollers, tracks and pulleys. This can be done with special garage door lubricant sprays or powdered graphite for the tracks and pulleys, and household lubricating oil for the rollers.
- Check all nuts, bolts and fasteners. Tighten anything loose that you come across in the process.
Advanced Garage Door Maintenance
- Evaluate visually — Make sure springs aren’t rusty, broken or on the verge of breaking. (Be cautious around the springs, as they are under extreme tension. Unless you really know what you’re doing, leave repair, replacement or adjusting of springs to a pro.) Look for loose fasteners, worn tracks and hinges, frayed cables or crooked roller wheels. Some rollers need to be replaced after three or four years. Springs typically last five to 10 years, depending on the amount of usage.
- Test the automatic reversal system — Required by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission since 1991, this feature causes the door to immediately stop and return to the open position when it detects an obstruction. To test your door’s auto-stop feature, place an object, such as a cinder block, in the path of the closing door. When the door contacts the object, it should quickly reverse itself.
- Test the infrared motion system — This feature, about six inches off the ground, should — if an obstruction moves within range — cause a closing door to stop and reverse itself.
- Test the emergency manual release — This is a bright red handle that hangs from a rope. If the door were to malfunction or the system lose power during an outage, you should be able to pull the release and move the door up and down on your own. However, if the door won’t move easily, don’t force it. Call a pro instead. Likewise, call an expert if the door gets stuck in a partially open, crooked position. You don’t want the door to crash down should the spring system be unable to counterbalance the weight.
- Tighten loose bolts and lubricate moving parts — Use garage door lubricant, silicone spray or powdered graphite on rollers, hinges and springs. Every three to four years, wipe springs with motor oil. (But avoid lubricating old, rusty springs because they could break.) Wipe the door opener chain with a light oil, as spraying may make a mess.
How to lubricate a noisy garage door: The first big no-no is using WD-40 to lubricate the garage door parts. Instead, the garage door pros recommend using a lithium spray lubricant, or a silicone spray lubricant. These are the parts of the garage door that you will spray with your lithium spray lubricant: the top of the chain rail, metal rollers with ball bearings, hinges, stems, nubs, the arm bar, and the lock. These are the parts of your garage door that you will not spray with lubricant: the bottom of the chain rail, the spring, the chain, and the garage door track.
How to clean a garage door track: Please do not spray lubricant into a garage door track in the event that it seems to be sticky or noisy. The lubricant will not help your garage door track to function better. Instead, it will collect particulate matter, which will harden like cement. Instead of lubricating a garage door track, what you need to do is clean it. Simply wipe the inside of the garage door track with a damp cloth, and dry it. If you need to apply a solvent to remove sticky residue inside the garage door track, WD-40 is actually the right substance to spray on the track, as it is a grease cutter rather than a true lubricant.
How to realign garage door sensors: If your electric garage door opener sensors are not working, it could be because they have been knocked out of line and need to be realigned. Realigning garage door sensors only requires gently pushing sensors into a position in which they face each other. The sensors should have lights that blink when they are not aligned properly. Reposition the sensors so that their lights are solid, rather than blinking.
How to reset your electric garage door opener: If your garage door closes briefly and then automatically opens, or if it stops closing before it meets the ground, your electric garage door opener needs to be reset. Although every garage door opener functions a little differently, for many garage door openers the following instructions will be applicable: Shut off the power at the breaker, or unplug the garage door opener. Wait 10 seconds, and turn the power back on. Press the down arrow button, and keep pressing it until the door has closed completely. Then hit the “set” button. Next, hit the up arrow button and hold it until the door is about six inches from the garage door opener. Hit the “set” button.
How to install garage door weather seals: Installing weather seals can help you to save energy, and can prevent moisture from entering your garage. Weather seals can also improve garage door security in a small way. The three parts of your garage door that you will need to apply weather seals to are the bottom edge of the door, on the garage door frame, and in-between garage door panels. Cut the weather strip for the bottom edge of the garage door to size, and then apply it with Liquid Nails for a super tight fit. Next, you will screw or nail in the weather strip. For the weather seals on the door frame, you’ll need to install the top (horizontal) weather seal first, then the side seals. Screw them in with self-anchoring galvanized screws. Don’t forget to caulk around the weather seals on the door frame. You’ll use small compressed foam strips to seal between garage door panels.
Garage Door Maintenance Schedule
SAFETY NOTE: To avoid injury, it’s a good idea to let everyone in your household know that you are checking the garage door and that it is not to be opened or closed by anyone until you tell them you are finished.
The following tests and related maintenance should be performed in the following order:
- Monthly visual inspection. Stand inside the garage with the garage door closed. Look over the garage door springs, cables, rollers, pulleys and mounting hardware, such as hinges, for signs of wear or damage. Look for cable wear or fraying. Is the mounting hardware becoming loose? If something doesn’t look quite right – or doesn’t sound quite right – it could be the symptom of a more serious issue. Have the garage door system inspected by a trained service technician.
- Monthly door balance test. If your door is equipped with an automatic opener system: close the door and disconnect the automatic opener. Once you are able to lift the door manually: Lift the door. It should lift smoothly with little resistance and should remain fully open. If it is difficult to open or does not remain open, the door may be out of balance and should be serviced by a trained service technician.
- Monthly reversing mechanism test (if your door is equipped with an automatic opener system). Note: garage door openers manufactured after January 1, 1993, are required by federal law to be equipped with a reversing mechanism and a photo eye or edge sensor as added measures of safety to prevent entrapment. If your system does not have these features, replacement of your automatic operating system is recommended.With the door fully open, lay a piece of wood such as a section of a 2 x 4 on the floor in the center of the garage door opening where the door would touch the floor. Push your garage door opener’s transmitter or wall button to close the door. When the door strikes the wood, the door should automatically reverse. If the door does not automatically reverse, the door should be serviced by a trained service technician.
- Monthly photo eye test (if your door is equipped with an automatic opener system). Note: garage door openers manufactured after January 1, 1993, are required by federal law to be equipped with a reversing mechanism and a photo eye or edge sensor as added measures of safety to prevent entrapment. If your system does not have these features, replacement of your automatic operating system is recommended.With the door fully open, push your garage door opener’s transmitter or wall button to close the door. Wave a long object, such as a broomstick, in front of one of the door’s photo eyes so it “breaks the beam.” The door should reverse.If it does not reverse and reopen, pull the broomstick out of the path of the closing door. Close the door. With the door in the closed position, clean the photo eyes with a soft, dry cloth. Gently adjust the photo eyes by hand if they appear to be out of alignment. Open the door and repeat the photo eye test. If the door does not reverse and reopen, the door should be serviced by a trained service technician.
- Monthly force setting test (if your door is equipped with an automatic opener system). With the door fully open, push your garage door opener’s transmitter or wall button to close the door. As the door is closing, hold up the bottom of the door with your hands outstretched and stiff. If the door does not easily reverse and continues to close, pull your hands away immediately. The closing force is excessive and the door should be serviced by a trained service technician.
- Semi-annual lubrication. Apply a small amount of spray lubricant to the door’s hinges, rollers and tracks.
(2016) Garage Door Repair and Maintenance Tips, Retrieved on June 6th, 2016 from Home Advisor website: http://www.homeadvisor.com/article.show.Garage-Door-Repair-and-Maintenance-Tips.14068.html
(2016) Maintenance Tips, Retrieved on June 6th, 2016 from Garage Door Care website: http://www.garagedoorcare.com/garage-door-operation/garage-door-maintenance.html
(2016) Garage Door Maintenance Tips, Retrieved on June 6th, 2016 from Networx website: http://www.networx.com/article/garage-door-maintenance-tips
(2014) Tips about DIY Garage Door Maintenance, Retrieved on June 6th, 2016 from Angie’s List website: https://www.angieslist.com/articles/tips-about-diy-garage-door-maintenance.htm
Have you worked with RSI Builders, Inc. in the past?
Please tell us about your experience with us.
Take our survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/9M9T62S