It’s official: Spring is here. And that means you’ve probably got a list of chores that need tending to — things like gutter cleaning, touching up exterior paint, raking — well, you’ve got the idea. Warm weather is the perfect time for getting your home in shape, especially after the long months of cold winter weather spent huddling and cuddling indoors. But before you start checking items off that honey-do list, there’s one more item you should add to make sure your home is in good shape: garage door maintenance. It’s easy to forget about your garage door when it’s operating the way it’s supposed to; but when something goes wrong, it can wind up damaging your car or even a person, not to mention make your life a lot less convenient. Not sure where to start? Use this checklist for guidance.
Garage Door Maintenance Checklist
1. Visual inspection
Use your eyes (and ears) to look and listen for problems — unusual sounds or vibrations, “stickiness” or “skipping” during operation, and other problems while opening and closing the door, and check for gaps and unevenness when the door is in the fully opened and closed positions.
2. Tighten the hardware
Garage door hardware is sturdy, but after hundreds of openings, it can get a little loose. Grab a socket set, wrench and screwdrivers and gently tighten the bolts and screws that keep everything working smoothly.
3. Test the balance
Pull the release handle on your door to disengage the carriage and allow your door to be raised and lowered manually. Now raise it part way up and let go. A door that’s properly balanced will stay in place. If it slips down or just won’t stay open when you let go, you need to have the door professionally re-balanced to ensure smooth operation and avoid serious malfunction.
4. Test the safety reversal feature
Open the garage door part way and place a brick in the opening. Now close the door. When the door touches the brick, it should immediately reverse itself. If it doesn’t, the safety reversal feature must be repaired by a professional.
5. Inspect the rollers and the track
Make sure the tracks are clear of debris and the rollers are smooth and cylindrical, with no “flat” spots or cracks.
6. Lubricate for smooth operation
Use a spray lubricant for the springs and grease for the chain or screw that opens and closes the door.
7. Don’t mess with the cables
Yes, you can adjust them yourself, but even a small error can damage your door and cause dangerous accidents. Adjusting loose or “sticky” cables is a job best left to the pros.
8. Clean the door and check for damage
Wash with a gentle cleanser then rinse well. Look for chipped paint, warpage, damaged areas, or rust spots (on steel doors). Check the weather stripping on the bottom edge as well.
Regular garage door maintenance keeps your door working the way it’s supposed to, which makes it a worthwhile addition to your springtime checklist. All it takes is an hour or two of time this spring to avoid major problems for the rest of the year. Contact us today for assistance.