Modern wood garage doors are beautiful, but they do require some maintenance. Without proper care, a wooden garage door can deteriorate. Repairing or refinishing a garage door that has been neglected is often much more difficult than just keeping up with maintenance. If you’re a homeowner with a garage door made of wood, these maintenance tips can help.
To keep your door looking its best, clean it quarterly. It is best to use a tack cloth to clean the surface of the door. However, on a well-sealed door, you can also clean the wood with a damp cloth. Do not clean a door with water if the seal is wearing away because the wood will absorb the water causing it to swell.
Inspect the door once annually to look for cracks, discolorations and areas where the seal or finish has become worn. A door that has not been properly maintained can begin to rot. When this happens, the wood will become soft and easy to penetrate with a sharp tool. Poke the door along the bottom and sides. If the tool penetrates the wood, the door must be repaired before it can be refinished.
While you’re poking and inspecting the door, watch for signs of wood-eating pests. You might see small holes in the surface of the wood, tunnels of mud affixed to the outside of the door or even little tunnels eaten through the surface of the door. These are all signs of wood-eating pests.
If you notice any of these warning signs, have the property inspected by a pest professional. Always be sure to have your door treated for pests before proceeding with wood repair and refinishing.
Typically, refinishing needs to happen every three to five years to protect the wood from moisture. To refinish your wood door, start by cleaning the wood with a strong, wood-safe degreaser. Remove what hardware you can or cover the hardware around the door with painter’s tape to protect it from the stain.
Sand down the wood and clean it again to remove any shavings. Fill cracks with putty and allow it to dry and then sand down the putty until the surface of the wood is smooth.
Finally, paint the door with an exterior grade stain and sealer. Read the manufacturer’s instructions before applying. Some manufacturers will recommend that the stain and sealer only be applied when the temperature outside falls in a certain range. Often times, the manufacturer will recommend applying a certain number of quotes for optimal performance. Follow all manufacturer instructions for best results.
This may sound like a relatively simple process, but refinishing a door can be time consuming. It’s important not to skip steps just to get the job done quickly. Sealing the door is the best way to prevent the water penetration that leads to wood rot.
If you have more questions about maintaining your wood door, contact the Overhead Door company of Oklahoma City. We’re happy to help!