Your garage door carries a lot of weight. Instead of waiting for it to breakdown, routine maintenance of your garage door can go a long way to save you money and headaches. Check out these six must-know facts about maintaining your automatic garage door.
Don't Replace Springs or Safety Cables Yourself
Check the springs to see if they have become loose, and examine cables for fraying, especially if you notice squeaking or sluggish movement. However, if you do spot a problem, do not attempt to replace springs or safety cables yourself. Contact a professional. The springs in your garage door have a lot of tension behind them. The safety cables are designed to stop them from flying off, but it's better to be safe than sorry, especially if you notice any damage to the safety cables. Damaged safety cables should be handled by a professional too because you'll have to remove the springs in order to remove the cables.
Examine and Clean the Tracks
Debris collects just about everywhere, and the tracks on which your door run are not immune. When maintaining your garage door, make sure to inspect the tracks and remove any leaves, dirt or garbage you find. If there are minor dents or dings in the track that affect the door from running smoothly, you can hammer them out with a mallet, but it is better to leave major damages to a professional, especially if the track is loose.
Replace Worn or Missing Weather-Stripping
Weather-stripping around your garage door is designed to help stop energy leaks, but overtime, this weather-stripping naturally breaks down. Inspect your weather-stripping and replace any areas that seem worn. If you have a wooden garage door, pay particularly close attention to the weather-stripping along the bottom of the door. Wooden doors are more susceptible to water than steel doors, but the weather-stripping helps protect the wood from the water. Missing or damaged stripping allows the water to chip or warp the wood.
Lubricate Moving Parts
Every moving part of your garage door should be lubricated on a regular basis. These moving parts include the rollers in the tracks, hinges, springs and bearings. If you have a chain-driven system, you'll also need to grease the chain. However, don't use grease on other moving parts as it can cause a build-up of debris. Instead, use an aerosol spray lubricate to keep them running smoothly.
A New Door May Provide More Insulation
You've replaced the weather-stripping, but your door is still leaking energy. If this is the case, it's best to just replace your garaged door with an energy-efficient door. A higher R-value can stop the flow of heat. Switching to a hollow metal garage door allows you to purchase one with additional insulation in the core. Replacing your current garage door with an energy-efficient one is particularly a good idea if you heat/cool or garage, keep valuable items in it or have bedrooms above the garage.
Test the Door Regularly
Don't just maintain your garage door: test it. You need to actually take the time to open and close the door a few times while watching how it works. During this time, listen for any strange noises, and check to see if the door is sluggish, shaking or uneven. It's best to perform this test every one or two months.
Failure to provide proper maintenance to your garage door leads to surprise expenses on major repairs. However, a little work here and there keeps it running longer. If you want to have your garage door repaired, replaced, or simply need garage door parts contact a contractor in your area today.
What kind of locks do you have on your garage door? Did you know that there are different types of locks to choose from to secure the garage door? The locks that are securing your garage door are probably overlooked - some people don't even bother locking their garage door. If you store tools, lawn care equipment and sporting goods in your garage, your garage is a target for burglary and it should be protected. Find out how I secure my garage door to ensure that the thousands of dollars worth of tools that I own are not stolen from me.