Though it bids you goodbye when you leave and welcomes you when you return, you probably don’t give much thought to your automatic garage door opener, but it is probably the largest and heaviest piece of moving equipment in your home. Its proper maintenance is essential to the safety of your family, smooth operation, keeping your garage energy efficient, and the lifespan of the door.
Automatic garage door care and maintenance tips: As simple as 1, 2, 3…
◦ Clean the door. Once a year, clean the exterior of your garage door with detergent, water, and a soft sponge or cloth. Rinse it completely with a hose. Doors in saltier, coastal regions should be washed more frequently. Wooden doors may require additional care if paint or stain is worn.
◦ Clean the tracks. Protecting your hands with gloves, clean the horizontally and vertically mounted tracks of your automatic garage door using brake parts cleaner and a rag.
◦ Prep. Move cars out of the garage and clear items away from the tracks before performing garage door maintenance.
◦ Visually inspect components. Ensure all cables, brackets, hinges, rollers, springs, and tracks are in good condition and not worn or frayed. Make sure both sides of the system are symmetrical.
◦ Listen. Is the door movement smooth or jerky? Quiet or loud?
◦ Note the springs. Your springs balance the weight of your garage door. Common types include torsion and extension springs. WARNING!! They are under high tension, and pose significant threat of severe injury or death in the event this hardware is mishandled. They can be identified by red colored bolts or a nearby safety tag and should only be adjusted by a professional technician.
◦ Check the door balance. Unplug the automatic garage door opener to cut off power, then disengage the door from the opener (usually by pulling the red cord with the handle). Raise the door to waist level. Slowly release your hold. If the door raises or lowers, it is not balanced properly and needs to be adjusted by a professional.
◦ Test auto-reverse safety features. Safety features should be tested every few months, and every time repairs or adjustments are made. If features are not functioning properly, immediately disconnect the door and operate it manually until repairs can be made.
▪ Mechanical: Place a brick or piece of wood on the ground in the path of the door. The door should reverse immediately on contact.
▪ Photocell: Attempt to close the garage door, but wave your foot or leg in the door's path. The door should immediately reverse.
▪ Force test: Hold up the bottom of the door as it tries to close. If it doesn’t reverse immediately, the force is excessive and in need of adjustment.
▪ No safety features? Your opener is more than 20 years old, and in need of immediate replacement to prevent serious injury and property damage.
◦ Lubricate. Lubricate all hinges, springs and bearings with a non-silicon based spray lubricant. CAUTION: It’s okay to lubricate metal rollers, however you NEVER want to lubricate nylon rollers or tracks!
◦ Tighten bolts. These secure components of your garage door to each other, and to your home’s structure.
◦ Schedule. Scheduling annual professional garage door maintenance is a simple and inexpensive way to ensure the safety of your family and the lifespan of your garage door system.
◦ Be watchful. Always keep children, pets, and your fingers away from door joints and moving parts when your automatic garage door is in operation.
Automatic garage door have you all bent out of shape? Contact R&S Erection of Concord today to schedule your annual professional garage door maintenance inspection today!