Your garage door is the largest and heaviest moving system in your home. Therefore, it should have safety features that prevent it from closing on a person or a pet or crushing something important.
However, not all garage doors have these features. Garage door safety features were not a requirement on garage door openers until the early 1990s, so if your garage opener was installed before 1991, there's a good chance it lacks modern safety features.
Even if your garage door safety features are in place, they can malfunction if they're not properly maintained. Testing your garage door safety from time to time is important. Best of all, safety testing can be done by you, no garage door contractor needed.
1. Test the Auto-Reverse Function
The automatic reverse function stops your garage door in the event that it meets with resistance in its path. To test the auto-reverse function, place an object like a brick in the path of the garage door. Close the door from an open position. When the garage door meets the brick, it should reverse automatically and open again. If it does not open when it touches the stack of bricks, have your garage door tested by a repair person.
2. Test the Photoelectric Eye
The photoelectric eye is a feature on your garage door, found just 6 inches off the ground at either side of the garage door opening. The photoelectric eye senses motion. An invisible laser beam connects the two eyes. When something crosses the path of the photoelectric eye, the laser beam is broken.
This triggers a response from the closing garage door. When this happens, the garage door should reverse course and open again. If something is obstructing the laser when the garage door is in an open position, the garage door should do nothing when you push the button to close it.
To test the photoelectric eye, stand near the path of your closing garage door, with a broom handle in your hands. Wave the broom handle in the path of the door as the garage door is closing. When the broom handle breaks the laser between the photoelectric eyes, the door should reverse course.
Photoelectric eyes can get dirty, which can cause the safety feature to malfunction. If your garage door photoelectric eye does not seem to be working, wipe it down with a microfiber cloth and try again. If this still doesn't work, call a repair person.
Concerned About Garage Door Safety? Contact Overhead Door Company of Oklahoma City
Garage doors have been the cause of serious accidents in the past, which is why garage door safety is so important. Keeping your modern garage door safety features working properly can help make your garage safer. If your door does not have these features, contact Overhead Door Company of Oklahoma City to discuss the replacement of your garage door opener or potential replacement of your entire garage door.