As yet another summer passes here in Sacramento, the team at Sacs Garage Door Repair wants to remind home and business owners to perform a garage door inspection before winter arrives.
The combination of changing temperatures and rust often results in various problems with your garage door parts, so make sure to perform not only an inspection but a tune-up as well.
If you’re a DIY garage door repair kind of person, we’ve assembled the perfect preparation guide just for you.
How to Keep Your Garage Functioning Year-Round
Do you remember the last time you inspected your garage? If not, you’re likely past-due!
If you’ve never inspected your garage for damage or problems, don’t worry – it’s not difficult. Here’s a quick rundown:
2) Once your exterior panel is taken care of, let’s move inside and check out the interior garage door parts. To begin, look over all metal parts – the springs, nuts, bolts, hinges, tracks, and any other metal area. Minor rust can be cleaned with a brush or gentle solvent. If you notice any parts with significant rust, replace it immediately.
Note: garage door springs can be dangerous and should only be handled by a professional. While there are plenty of DIY guides for spring repair, we don’t recommend it. There’s only a minimal cost difference between fixing springs yourself and having a professional do it. It’s simply not worth the risk of severe injury. Plus, if you install the springs incorrectly, the whole door could come crashing down. If that happens, you’ll need to buy a new garage door.
3) Once you’ve looked over the garage door itself, make sure to check for signs of fraying garage door cables. The cables are usually connected to the spring at the top of the panel.
Garage Door Safety Inspection
Once you’ve ensured all the parts on your garage door are in good working condition, it’s time to test your garage door for safety. You see, a garage door that isn’t properly calibrated can seriously injure someone or damage property. You wouldn’t want a 400-pound door to come crashing down when you or someone else is standing next to it, would you?
Reminder: these techniques can be hazardous for someone who’s not familiar with garage door repair. If you’re not comfortable performing these safety checks, please contact a garage door technician for help.
1) Close your garage door and manually disconnect the door from the opener. There should be a manual release located somewhere between the springs and your garage door opener. Next, try to raise the door on your own. Be careful not to pinch your fingers or overstrain yourself. The door should be fairly easy to open and close and it should run smoothly across the track. If you have great difficulty here or if it keeps getting caught up on the track, then your door is unbalanced and it needs maintenance. If you continue to operate the door then your opener will likely burnout soon.
2) Now, let’s test your reversal mechanism. A safe garage door should immediately reverse upon sensing resistance. This helps protect children, pets, and anyone else who might be in the path of a closing garage door. Place a new roll of paper towels in the path of the door. Stand back and close the door. Your door should reverse immediately. If the paper towels were crushed or even if the middle cardboard cone was slightly pressed in, then your door is not safe and it requires immediate service.
Lubricating Garage Door Parts
Now that you’ve inspected your garage for damage and completed your safety inspection, you’re almost done! The only thing that’s left is to make sure the correct parts on your garage door are lubricated.
But don’t go out there and start just yet. If you’re using the wrong kind of lubricant, you could jam up the parts and damage your door. The ONLY two lubricants you should use on your garage door are white lithium grease or silicone spray. Don’t use WD-40 as it strips away lubrication and will result in metal-on-metal contact. Motor oil and other grease usually aren’t good options either as they attract dust and will eventually lead to a thick residue build-up that will impede garage door operation.
Once you’ve got the right kind of lubricant, apply it to the springs, hinges, and bearings.
And that’s it, you’re done! Make sure to repeat this process every few months for optimum garage door performance.