Troubleshooting and Fixing Common Garage Door Issues

Don’t make it a habit to continue ignoring problems that you may experience with your garage door. This could cost you more than just money. When you have garage door problems, you are risking your life and that of anyone inside your car. You also risk your car being damaged by a fallen garage door. Now we realize that this may sound a little drastic, however, these are things that we see very often. This is why we encourage you to contact us at the first sign of trouble at North Glenn Garage Door Repair. However, even if you don’t call us, you should still pay close attention to how your garage door is performing so that you can address the problem on your own if it isn’t too dangerous to do. There are some things that are best handled by a qualified and trained professional. No matter how small the problem may appear to be, we assure you that the problem will get worse if you do not address it as quickly as possible.

If you have recently had a garage door installed, you should know that there may be something that was not properly installed and this could be the cause of your problem. Don’t ignore it, whatever you do. If you want to go on using your garage door like usual, you will have to address your issue. The problems that most people experience with their garage door are usually pretty common. They are things that you may be doing to contribute to the problem and may be fairly simple resolutions. Usually, this is the case with most common garage door problems. There is no question that we would love to gain your business but if there is something that you can handle on your own, we encourage you to do so. We’ll always be here when you need us. However, in the meantime, let us tell you about some of the most common garage door problems and how you can troubleshoot and resolve them (wherever possible).

  • Noises When Using Your Garage – If you begin to hear something unfamiliar when you start to open or close your garage door, you can be should definitely pay closer attention to the condition of your garage door. Noises that you hear are an indication that something is wrong. In most cases, there are parts that need to be lubricated or that are loose. Any loose parts should be tightened up. You can also lubricate the moving parts of your garage. If the problem is resolved, call on our technicians and we’ll be able to identify the problem for you in no time.
  • Door Reverses – Hit the limit switch. If you have this feature, it will be on the back of the garage door opener and will read up or down. You may need to consult the manual to determine how to reset the switch. If this doesn’t stop the door from continuing to reverse, you may also be able to use the close force feature. By turning the knob clockwise, you will be able to make the necessary adjustments.
  • Motor Keeps Running – If your door is opening and closing like it should yet the motor continues running, this could mean that your limit switch needs adjusting. You might begin to do this a little at a time and then checking to see if this turns the motor off. If it doesn’t, you’ll need to contact a service professional to evaluate the problem and stop the motor from continuing to run.
  • Don’t Won’t Close Completely – If something is blocking your garage door’s safety sensors this will prevent the door from completely closing. The sensors are meant to protect you from your door coming down on top of something or someone. You’ll have to make sure that there is nothing blocking the sensors. Dirt can also build up on the lenses. Take a soft cloth and a non-abrasive cleaner and gently clean the lenses. If you rub it too hard, you could scratch and damage the lenses. If the sensors are not aligned, this will also cause the door to stop before going any further. If you gently tap the lenses, often times you can bring them back into alignment. As long as the lights on both of them are lit, you should be good to go.
  • Garage Door is Stuck – If your garage door is stuck either open or closed, don’t panic since it can be operated manually. There is an emergency release cord attached to your garage door opener. Once you pull on this string, your door will disengage and you will be able to manually open or close the door.

If your door continues to stick, you might need to reboot the garage door opener. There is also an indicator light on your opener that alerts you to where your problem is. It might just be something as easy as changing the batteries in your transmitters or a tripped breaker. If you have been experiencing electrical issues, this is the first place we would suggest you check.

You could have worn springs. When the springs are worn, they will not be strong enough to lift your heavy door. Allow a qualified and trained expert garage door service technician to evaluate the problem for you. They know how dangerous working on garage door springs can be and in order to avoid a mishap, it is a good idea to allow them to handle the job of repairing or replacing your garage door springs.

At the end of it all, we would say, yes, go ahead and probe to see where the problem is. If the issue cannot be easily resolved, don’t hesitate to contact the services of a garage door repair service, such as North Glenn Garage Door Repair. We always tell our customers that it is best that they veer on the side of caution by contacting us to troubleshoot and fix the problem.

PROPER WEATHER SEALANT FOR YOUR GARAGE DOOR

When you think of garage door parts you most likely think of springs, openers and tracks. You might even think of safety eyes or pulleys, but do you ever think about weather sealant? North Glenn Garage Door Repair’s customers do; especially in the winter months! In actuality, garage door seals are good year-round and we are about to tell you why! Garage door sealant is a fancy word for the weather strip that runs along the bottom of your garage door. It can be used for home, industrial and business garage doors and even though weather seals are basically simple, the work they do is needed and important. So, what exactly are weather seals? Simply put, this form of sealant is a small amount of rubber or plastic that is added to the bottom of the garage door. It is inexpensive in relation to more conventional garage door parts like your torsion springs or your opener system, yet garage door seals can help lower your utility bills, and keep your garage interior more comfortable and less susceptible to insects and noise.

Why do I need a weather seal?

While the garage door itself provides the main bulk of weather sealant, there is a tiny space at the bottom where cold or hot air can get inside. This is where the weather sealant works its magic. Let’s say it is raining here in North Glenn, CO and you don’t have any sealant on your garage door. It doesn’t take long for water to run or seep under your garage door and flood your garage. If you are like many, you have other items inside your garage besides a car. These might include boxes of books or papers, clothes, magazines and other items that can be water damaged or destroyed by moisture and humidity. Mold spores can start growing and thriving in dark, moist environments and your garage with no weather sealant fits the description.

Your weather seal also acts as a cushion of sorts for your garage door. It helps soften the impact of your heavy garage door as it closes. Over time, this would have quite a jarring effect on your garage door and all of its parts if no seal was there to cushion the impact.

It gets worse!

Our North Glenn, Colorado garage door repair pros are even familiar with cases where unsealed garage doors allowed water inside the garage which then froze during the night when temperatures dropped! This not only adds danger to your situation but additional clean-up to your efforts. As noted earlier, insects and other pests can get inside your garage if sealant is not present.

Why not just make a better garage door?

We’ve heard this one a lot; why not just make a garage door that is completely flush with the ground? Make a better door and forget the need for weather seal, right? This actually makes sense, in theory at least. The truth is, your garage door would have to be perfectly even and flat on the bottom and your garage floor would have to be perfectly flat as well. No cracks, bumps or dips on either surface would be allowed in order to make this happen. Take our previous example, for instance. If you had a small crack or space under the garage door or in the floor of the garage and water leaked into it, froze and expanded, it would make the space larger and more vulnerable. This is why weather seals are made of rubber or plastic; they conform to the surface and provide much better protection than anything else.

Life span of weather sealant

Like all things involving your garage door, your weather seal has a limited life. This can vary from a few months to several years and the length of time depends on several things. Are you experiencing weather extremes? Fluctuations in temperature can cause many items to expand, contract and age. Further, going from dry to wet or from wet to frozen can also take its toll on your weather sealant. Add to all this, the fact that your seal is attached to the bottom of your garage door, and it forcefully meets the floor of your garage every time it closes, is enough to add stress and wear to your sealant.

When should you replace your weather sealant?

Even the best weather seals won’t last forever. Again, depending on weather, temperatures, use and wear, your sealant may need to be replaced sooner than later. Check for these things; leaks, lack of elasticity, sticking and chunks or pieces breaking off. Your sealant should spring back when lightly touched; if not, it is time to replace, if not soon. Keep an eye out for any gaps in the seal as this is definitely a red flag. The best way to do this is to check with the garage door closed – you should be able to see light coming from any gaps or breaks in a darkened garage. Also, sun heat can cause damage to weather sealant and just because we are in Colorado, doesn’t mean that North Glenn weather is always cold; we get our fair share of sunshine and hot days, too.

Weather sealant is vital

For something as seemingly insignificant as weather sealant, it sure does a great job of making our garages more livable and workable. The key words are “sealant” and “weather” as this product can block your garage interior from dust, heat loss in winter, water, insects, pests, ice and even fumes that may be in the area. A properly sealed garage door reduces wear and tear on the door itself as well as other connected components and even helps reduce noise pollution. Take a tip from our North Glenn, CO garage door repair pros and make sure that your weather seals are in good shape and secured properly. Not only will you enjoy a better garage interior environment but also longer and higher quality life from your other garage door components.

HOW TO FIND THE RIGHT SPRING SYSTEM FOR YOUR GARAGE DOOR

Normally, we don’t really think about our garage door, but the fact is, the garage door is a big part of your home’s overall curb appeal. An unappealing garage door, or one that is obviously in decline, will make your property look below par, so it will decrease in value. Particularly if you use your garage as a shop, office, or spare room you should pay more attention to maintaining it. Start with an outstanding-quality garage door that’s tough and long-lasting. Your garage door is really the largest working appliance of your household, so it’s crucial to keep it in tiptop condition. When you decide to buy an entirely new garage door, it’s important to do your research so that you can formulate the perfect combination of resilience, price, looks, and acceptable maintenance requirements.

Which is Better: An Extension Spring System for Your Garage Door? Or a Garage Door with Torsion Springs?

Extension Springs

Extension springs are very reasonably priced, and the standard garage door spring system. Extension springs are the most common, and often found in older homes. They stretch, or extend, which is why they’re called extension springs. They stretch as the garage door shuts, and loosen as it opens. Your garage door’s spring system likely already has extension springs ~ coiled springs installed on either side of the garage door horizontal track ~ if you have a lighter-weight garage door. They’re mounted on both sides of the garage door, attaching at one end to the track supports and to the tracks at the other end via cables.

Extension spring systems are a bit tricky to balance, particularly if you replace only one spring at a time. In an extension spring system, the cables attach to the bottom bracket on the garage door’s bottom panel. A series of pulleys attach to the springs and to the track, with adjustment clips to balance the garage door. Normally there’s a second cable on each side, which attaches to the track. It runs through the center of the extension spring and then attaches to the track support brackets.

Extension springs, when they fail, can be very dangerous. One common reason that garage doors with extension springs go on the blink is that the pulleys get worn out. The ball bearings break down, which causes the pulley to scrape up against the track angle; or, the rivets malfunction, the pulley splits, and then the door cable sticks. If you don’t maintain extension springs properly, they can actually go straight through the wall! They can cause serious injury, and even death. That’s why, for exceptional quality, extension springs must come with a safety containment cable system, spanning the entire length of the spring and preventing loose ends from causing any damage or injury.

Torsion Springs

Torsion springs use torque to open your garage door. Torsion springs slowly twist and coil on the shaft whenever force is applied by hand or by the garage door motor. They’re available in a wide variety of options, of various lengths and sizes, made according to the garage door’s height, weight, and track radius, as well as additional specifications. In a torsion spring system, spring bars ~ or “torsion tubes” ~ are mounted on the header on the inside of the garage door opening, each with a center bracket keeping the spring in place. There’s a drum at each end of the torsion tube. Cables attach to the bottom bracket on each side of the garage door, and then go up the height of the door and wind around the drums as the door opens, and unwind as the door shuts. The torsion springs provide the force to open and shut the door. The drums and cable and do the lifting.

Some garage doors work well with only one torsion spring, while other doors require two or more springs. This depends on the garage door’s weight. A two-spring system gives you a more balanced lifting garage door. Smaller, lightweight doors of single-car garages usually require only one spring.

A torsion spring system for your garage door that’s well-designed will correctly counterbalance your garage door with the utmost safety and equilibrium. If you have a heavier and/or wider garage door, you ought to have torsion springs. They’re placed along the wall directly above the garage door opening. These include a shaft, spring, and drum assembly. The torsion springs themselves are mounted on the shaft, which acts as a containment system. Corrosion-resistant galvanized torsion springs are thought by most garage door repair professionals to be superior to all other types of springs, and certainly more attractive and longer lasting than oil-tempered springs.

Torsion springs should be installed only by an eminently qualified garage door professional. Even standard extension springs can be a challenge to work with, so you’ll need to know what you’re doing. If you have the wherewithal, tools, and experience to install them by yourself, then proceed carefully, closely following the instructions in the installation manual. Injuries often happen when an unqualified person tries to remove or adjust the bottom bracket of the garage door, which connects the lifting cables to the spring system. This bracket is under a huge amount of pressure. If it ever gets loose, it can separate from the garage door’s general structure and cause injuries or property damage.

Even though they’re more expensive, most garage door expert technicians recommend a torsion spring garage door system because it’s state-of-the-art, and far safer. Torsion springs are easier to adjust, and thus balancing the door is easier to do.

This is just an overview. Considering your budget, taste, and property requirements, how do you decide what’s ideal for you? It’s important to hire a reliable local garage door repair company you know you can count on. If you’re anywhere in Northglenn, Colorado, consider a reputable company such as Northglenn Garage Door Repair, where the mobile garage door technicians on staff are glad to provide you with a free consultation.