Considering the heavy use that a garage door gets, you can expect it to run into a few problems along the way. While regular maintenance can help make those problems few and far between, it’s just a matter of time before your garage door starts acting up.
Some garage door problems can be fixed in a DIY manner, while some need professional garage door repair. Whether it’s a minor or a significant problem, you have to address it as soon as you can before it gets any worse.
Here are some of the most common garage door problems and how to deal with them:
The garage door won’t open or close.
So you’ve been clicking the garage door remote opener, and nothing’s happening. Before you start checking the garage door itself, check the remote and see if it’s the one causing the problem. Maybe it’s not functioning properly because of dead batteries, keypad problems, or it could be broken.
If you have checked and ruled out the remote and the garage door still won’t respond, check the garage door opener unit itself. If its lights are out, then it might be a power source disruption. The power cord may have been unplugged, or a fuse may have blown. It’s also possible that a tripped circuit breaker is causing the problem. Try resetting it and see if it works.
The garage door takes forever to open
Check the speed setting on your garage door opener. For all you know, it might be set to the lowest speed. If settings are just right, you might want to see if the rollers need to be lubricated some more. The slow opening might also be caused by dirty tracks that could use some cleaning.
It’s making unpleasant noises
When something mechanical like your garage door opener is making annoying noises, then you have a clear indication that there’s a problem with it.
When you’re hearing a lot of grinding or squeaking noises, you might want to check the rollers and see if they need lubrication. Use lithium- or silicone-based grease to solve this issue.
For rattling noises, you are going to need a wrench to tighten your garage door’s possibly loose screws and bolts that are causing all that racket.
A popping sound, however, indicates a problem that is best left to a professional for safety reasons: a torsion spring that needs to be lubricated or adjusted.
A garage door is designed to move evenly when closing or opening. If one side appears to be moving faster than the other, then something may be blocking the tracks. If that’s the case, then remove any obstruction you see there immediately.
An unevenly moving door may also be caused by a spring system with too little or too much tension, a problem that only a professional can address properly and safely.
Cracks or gaps in the door itself
It’s common for a garage door to sustain cracks over time, especially when it’s made from wood. A sealant or a waterproof filler should be enough to deal with those gaps.
The garage door reverses direction
A garage door that suddenly changes direction can be dangerous, especially to pets and children. To address this, most garage door openers have sensors on either side that prevent that from happening. So if the door reverses direction, check the sensors and see if something is obstructing them. Clean those sensors, and make sure they’re aimed perfectly at each other.
Garage door openers have metal parts, and metal can rust if exposed to air or water for an extended period. If you notice rust formation in any of your opener’s metal parts, then waste no time in removing it by cleaning the affected area and rubbing a cloth soaked in vinegar—a natural rust dissolver—on it. Sand the affected part afterward.
Remember, you should only deal with garage door problems when they’re simple enough like remote control issues or removing obstructions. When the issues are a bit more complicated, don’t hesitate to call a garage door repair specialist, who has the skills, experience, and tools necessary to fix your garage door safely.