Catch These Problems Before Your Garage Door Fails Completely
Your garage door is a complicated array of cables, pulleys, and springs configured to make the heavy garage door easy to open and close. When adjusted properly, you can lift a solid wooden garage door by yourself. When things break, that door won’t budge. Any problems should be worked on by a garage door repair company because of the hazards caused by the high-tension springs. You can still inspect the system regularly and call when you find a problem. Here is what to look at and the problems you might find.
The Heart of the Garage Door Mechanism
At least two high-tension springs are used to counterbalance the weight of the garage door. When working correctly, these springs allow you to open and close the garage door manually, even though it may weigh hundreds of pounds. When the springs become old and lose their strength, or if one breaks, the door will be too heavy to lift by you or the garage door opener.
Inspecting the Garage Door Springs
- Look for the two springs near the ceiling.
- One end of each spring will be connected to a bracket mounted on the ceiling. Check that the connection is not bent or showing signs of pulling away from the bracket.
- The other end of each spring connects to a pulley through which runs a braided metal cable. Check the connection to the pulley to make sure nothing is bent or stretched. Make sure the pulley is not broken.
- Look for any signs of fraying on the metal cable going through the pulley.
- When the garage door is up, the springs should also have tension. If they sag, they may be old and losing their strength.
- Look for a braided metal cable running through the center of each spring. One end of this cable connects to the ceiling bracket and the other to a metal rail at the top of the garage door. This is a safety cable and needs to be there to prevent the springs from flying through the garage should they break.
If you see any signs of sagging springs, frayed cables, broken pulleys, bent connectors or missing safety cables, contact your garage door specialist to fix the problem.
Inspecting the Garage Door
- Look at the rollers on the edge of the garage door. These should roll freely and sit in the metal rail that extends from the garage floor up and over the ceiling.
- Note any rollers that are frozen or out of the rail. These can cause the garage door to jam when going up or coming down. You can try lubricating the rollers with silicone spray if they stick.
- Rollers that won’t stay in the track may mean the roller needs to be replaced, or the track is bent.
- Spray a little silicone lubricant on the garage door hinges if they appear corroded.
If you find any problems during your inspection, have them repaired immediately. Because of the force of the garage door springs, any problems can quickly cause a failure resulting in bent springs, broken cables or twisted metal rails.