Just because your door is not operating properly, does not always mean that it’s time to get a new garage door. However, it’s important that you address any issues that arise with your door as soon as you notice it. Your garage door is the largest moving part of your home. That’s why it’s critical that it is working properly and safely at all times. You may think, “As long as my door is opening and closing, it doesn’t matter if it’s making a lot of noise.” This is the case for many homeowners, yet it can leave your family prone to several hazardous risks:
Garage door springs are under immense amounts of tension.
One of the most common problems for garage doors are issues with the torsion springs, or counterweight system, for raising and lowering the door. It is critical that you replace your garage door springs if they are in need of an adjustment or broken.
Consider the fact that a 16 foot door (2 car garage), can weigh at least 260 lb. The tension that these springs are under is immense. This is where the danger lies. If your door’s automatic reversing safety system (see below) does not work correctly, this can cause serious accidents because a huge weight could fall down.
However, if your garage door spring is working properly, the door will only represent a weight up to 10 lb. You should be able to lift your door with just one hand if the springs are working properly. If you are not able to do this, contact us immediately for a garage door spring repair. We HIGHLY advise against doing this repair yourself – the high tension of the springs can be dangerous! The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission says that about 30,000 injuries linked to garage doors every year in the US – mainly due to homeowners trying to repair their own garage door broken springs. Without proper training and equipment, you can be seriously injured.
The typical lifespan for springs is around 10,000 cycles (around seven years), and you’d be surprised how many homeowners go much longer than that before replacing these components. Our basic springs typically last 10-20,000 cycles. However, we do offer springs that are guaranteed to last a lifetime.
Cables are key to keeping your springs operating!
Your entire door system transfers the weight of the door through the cables and springs. Cables are essentially an extension of your garage door springs. The springs’ tension is applied to the bottom of the door and is transferred through the cables. Without the cables – your door will not function. Usually as your cables being to wear and weaken, your spring is not far behind. The first sign that your cables are damaged is signs of fraying. This will lead to them breaking and the door will fall down. This means that anything under your door could be seriously damaged. If this happens, your door is likely to be damaged beyond repair. You should regularly check your garage door cables for frays and repair them immediately.
Loose screws on your hinges are another big problem!
If your garage door is very squeaky and noisy when it moves, you need to check the hardware on your door’s hinges. Be sure to check these and tighten as needed. The first sign of issues with your hinges if often a wobbly or missing screw. These screws become loose because the metal hinge or steel on the door has started to deteriorate. Should a hinge break or wear out it becomes nearly impossible for your garage door to open properly. The typical lifespan of a heavy steel hinge is about 10-15 years. Those hinges that are made of a lighter gauge (usually 16- or 18-gauge) may be cheaper in the beginning but will not hold up as long. We use hinges that are made of a heavy duty 14-gauge steel.
If your hinges are worn or broken, you need to get this issue fixed immediately. Don’t try to operate your door until the problem is fixed. Broken hinges can damage your door’s track or door panels. The longer you wait to repair your garage door, the more likely the damage will worsen and the costs will begin to drastically increase or even require you to purchase an entirely new door. It’s important that you inspect your hinges at least once or twice a year for indications or wear or breakage as well as lubricating them regularly.
Rollers should be rolling smoothly.
On the garage door, the rollers should roll – not slide. Common signs that your rollers are worn include noticing that your garage door is vibrating more than normal when it’s opening or that it is very noisy. If your rollers are constantly popping out of track or making noise, they need to be replaced. Some rollers have ball bearings, some do not. The difference? Rollers without ball bearings are essentially just a washer pressed onto a steel rod or stem. These rollers require a lot of maintenance, such as being lubricated 3-4 times a year, and will only last for a few years.
Rollers with steel ball bearings however, are quite the opposite. We offer a sealed nylon roller that has 13 steel ball bearings in them and are maintenance free. The sealed nylon protects these rollers from dirt and prevents premature deterioration. These nylon rollers are much quieter, requires no maintenance, and will last much longer than rollers without ball bearings. These doors will actually outlast your garage door itself! Contact us to have this issue resolved right away if they are off the shaft.
Test your garage door automatic reverse.
Newer garage door opening systems have an automatic reversal system, which is a very important safety tool. These react to anything running under the door when it is in motion by automatically reversing its path. This keeps kids, pets, and belongings safe.
Improperly operating auto-reverse mechanisms have cause many serious injuries. As we mentioned above, garage doors are under an immense about of tension and weigh a lot. The CPSC recommends testing your reversing mechanism every month. If this mechanism fails, disconnect your opener until it is repaired. Safety sensors are also a vital part of your auto reverse system. Most of the time you can adjust these on your own if they’re out of alignment.
We strongly recommend changing your garage door opener if your current one was made before 1993. If you need help adjusting, repairing, or replacing any part of your automatic reversal system – give us a call.
Get advice from Absolute on where to start.
There are many possibilities that can lead to a garage door not working properly. You should not ignore any problems that you notice with your garage doors, even if it is just noisy. In our experience, a small problem will always grow into a much larger issue. A properly maintained garage door can keep your home and guests safe from several dangerous situations. Starting a garage door repair now can save you from very costly repairs down the road.
If you think that your garage door may have a problem, give us a call at 502-561-8444. We will come to your house to give you a free repair estimate and walk you through all of the services we offer. It’s our goal to make your garage as safe as possible, all while providing the best garage door repair service in Louisville, Elizabethtown, and Southern Indiana.