A garage door is a simple machine with very simple functions. Its purpose is to allow you to keep your car sheltered inside instead of being exposed to the outdoor elements or in sitting in your driveway.
While the main function of the garage door is to open and close, plenty of mechanics are involved to make things work properly. For example, there is a lot more going on when you simply press the remote control to open the door. When pressed, a small electrical circuit is triggered that must be working properly for it to open or shut the door.
What would you do if your car was outside and the door would not open to let you in? Or worse, your car is inside the garage and the door won’t open to let you get outside? You would find yourself in a tough situation in this case. To ease your mind, below are some of the warning signs that indicate you may have a faulty door in need of a good garage door repair.
Garage Door Broken Springs
While every garage door is vulnerable to deterioration, the springs that keep the door suspended in the air allow the garage door to function properly. There are two springs on top of the garage door that work together ensuring the weight of the door can easily be lifted without any problem. Consequently, using the door over and over is going to put wear and tear on the springs, allowing them to weaken from the continual tension.
More concerning is that one spring becomes damaged and forces the entire load of the door on the other spring. This occurs often when you only raise the garage door partially open instead of all the way open. Although some feel that it is saving time to drive in with the door partially open, it is wearing your garage door springs down in the long run.
Garage door broken springs are very dangerous and a major concern because the door may not operate properly. All the weight of the door depends on those springs, just as the weight of your vehicle depends on having a good suspension on it for safe driving.
Garage door broken springs, regardless of how hard you try, will not allow you to open or shut the garage door. When this happens, you must call a professional garage door repairman to repair the springs on the door. Trying to repair the problem on your own may lead to worse problems, such as loss of your life, personal property, or even a loss of limb. Finding parts to repair the garage door can be fairly simple, but making mistakes due to lack of knowledge repairing it can cause major problems.
If you have a wooden garage door, prevention of decay is imperative. Nice wooden doors will do the job protecting your home and vehicle from the elements the same way metal doors do, but they do become distressed by the elements. Weather can weaken the stability of the garage door due to the changes in temperatures and weather conditions over time. If not taken care of, wooden doors can quickly rot or become deteriorated due to termites.
If you notice holes or cracks in the garage door, consider it internally damaged. You might not notice as much damage from the outside, but the wood inside can become soft and weak due to humidity, rain, and cold weather.
Even if the outside paint job looks great, wood internally can become soggy and spongy due to termite infestations or water damage. You might not notice much of a problem until you see the garage door sagging. Once the door begins to sag, it can scrape the ground and become less responsive to the door controls.
Once wooden doors have deteriorated through humidity or weather, mold infestations can occur. Mold can quickly spread throughout the inside and outside of the door if not cautious. You would know this if you see dark, foul smelling patches on the outside of the doors and walls.
If your door is compromised by any of the above causes, you should call a garage door professional to fix the door. If by chance you discover a termite infestation, a professional exterminator should also be contacted before the door is considered a complete loss.
Unwarranted Noises and Sounds
This should be more of a no-brainer, but if you hear unusual sounds or noises coming from the garage door, it needs inspection as soon as possible. Loud and unusual noises may be caused by continuous wear and tear, and the garage door might need a simple repair or maintenance performed. In many cases, it can be something as easy as needing some lubrication or grease. Grease and lubricants permit the metal pieces to work smoothly together without friction. Without the grease, the metal pieces rub together causing grinding and damage. The stress due to the grinding can be the whirring or loud noises coming from the door.
As soon as you see or hear something strange going on with the garage door, it is wise to call a garage door professional to come out and inspect the door. Some of these issues are quickly remedied with a handy set of tools and a quick service call to fix and keep your garage door in good working order. Letting these issues linger on can cause more damage and money in the long run.
Fixing Garage Doors
If you live in an older home, you might have an older model of garage door that needs repairing with a fixed code or key. You might also have a lot of interior and external damage on an older door due to vehicle bumps or children’s toys running into it.
An older, damaged garage door is not aesthetically pleasing and can lower the value of your home. This is a good reason to consider upgrading and replacing the old garage door for something new. Older garage doors, much like old technology, are more difficult to diagnose and repair. Parts are harder to locate. Doors that are old and require a code or key to open them are no longer being sold, and modern homes are equipped with upgraded door openers that work with a handy garage door remote.
There are a few things you can do to check your garage door before calling for repairs.
Inspecting the Cables
First, the cables that run on the inside of the garage door need inspecting. If you see frayed or broken cables or worn out spots of cable hanging down, call a garage door repair professional to look at the door. Any of these issues can cause the door to quickly break, and this could lead to fatal accidents or injuries to anyone or anything around the door.
Inspecting the Rollers
The rollers are an important function of the garage door. When looking for a faulty roller, check that they are smooth and quiet. If they make noises that sound like they are grinding or strained, they might simply need a bit of lubrication. Remember, it is not advised you try to repair a broken roller on your own, but immediately call a garage door professional if you see no improvement after greasing the rollers. Remember, any grinding or strange noises do mean that something is wrong.
Inspecting the Hinges
Check out the hinges on the door and see if anything is dented, cracked, or broken. If so, it does need immediate replacement. Having a faulty hinge on the door is dangerous. Good hinges ensure the door will be held in place and that it functions smoothly. A broken hinge, or even a dented hinge, can majorly affect the functionality of door movement. Broken and dented hinges also create a lot of pressure on the door, which could end up causing more problems. Broken hinges need an immediate repair before things get worse and the costs of repairs rise. Waiting too late could mean an entire new garage door. There are a few other things you can check if your garage door is not responding properly.
Handheld Remote Problems
There could be something wrong with your remote control or the control panel that executes the orders from the handheld remote. This could possibly be the case if there is a slight delay after pushing the button from the remote until the time the door opens. Typically, the garage door immediately begins opening once the button is pushed. Additionally, the door should close immediately without a delay in action. If there is a delay that becomes longer and longer, it is best to call a garage door profession to come out and inspect the door.
Additionally, if there is no response from the handheld remote and you have already replaced the batteries, something else is going on. There are several reasons for the disconnect, but a major cause is a poor connection between the remote and the control panel. First, make sure nothing is blocking the garage door that would keep it from closing. Next, see if there is a problem with the remote or the control panel. If the problem is just the remote, a quick replacement can fix the problem immediately.
Almost all doors operate on a track system. The door operates between the tracks around both sides of the door. If the door comes off the tracks, it will cause problems. This normally only happens if the door is damaged or poorly maintained. A garage door repairman should come out and see if the door can be repaired by lining it back up on the tracks properly.
Now that you know a little more about fixing garage doors and the problems that might occur, it is probably a wise idea to have a professional come out if you notice any of these signs or problems occurring on your door. A garage door repair can be a simple repair if it is taken care of as soon as a problem begins. Delaying repairs can make the problem worse and end up costing more money. If you suspect problems with your garage door, call a garage door professional today to alleviate any personal or property damage and to keep your garage door in good working condition.