image of Man fixing garage door

How to Maintain Your Garage Door

Did you know your garage door goes up and down about 1500 times a year? That’s a lot of ups and downs and a lot of wear and tear, which makes maintenance all the more important. Garage doors are expensive but they tend to last a couple of decades or more if you take care of them. Keep reading to learn some of the top tips you can use to maintain a garage door so it lasts as long as possible.

Keep an Eye and Ear on the Door

When you close and open the garage door, make sure to listen for any odd noises and to watch for any kinks in its movement. It should run fairly smoothly in its tracks. If you hear any loud grinding, scraping or banging noises, stop the garage door from moving any further and examine where the noise was coming from. Loud noises coming from a garage door often indicate worn-out parts that can easily be replaced if you replace them before they damage any other pieces. If you notice jerky movements, there’s probably an issue with one of the pulleys, cables or springs. One of these pieces is usually damaged or out of place when the door won’t go up and down smoothly.

Inspect the Clean the Tracks Regularly

Garage doors don’t require a whole lot of your attention, but you do need to clean the tracks regularly. The tracks should always appear perfectly straight and perpendicular to the floor. To clean the tracks, you’ll want to use carburetor cleaner. The goal is to remove any dirt and debris off the tracks. Just make sure you don’t use a lubricant of any kind to clean the tracks as this can cause slipperiness. When the garage door goes up and down on slippery tracks, it can dislodge the rollers.

Tighten the Door’s Hardware

Because garage doors produce a lot of vibration as they go up and down, this can result in its regular movements causing its parts to loosen over time. To ensure all bolts, rollers and hinges are tight like they should be, you can examine and tighten them with a socket wrench once every couple of months.

Inspect the Rollers

The rollers on the garage door that run along the tracks will become damaged over time by cracking or chipping. You can inspect and replace one at a time as they need it, but if more than a couple need to be replaced at any time, it’s usually best to contact a professional garage repair company to perform the task.

Always Test Safety Features

Another great way to keep the garage door working as it should is to test its safety features on a regular basis. It’s imperative to test the pressure sensor on the door as well as its photoelectric system. With both of these safety features working as they should, you will not only extend the longevity of the door but also rest easier knowing the door will freeze if something was to obstruct its path; this greatly reduces the risk of injury or damage to the object or person in the obstruction path of the door.

Benefits of a Side Mount Garage Door Opener

The traditional motorized garage door has an opener that pulls from the ceiling or wall space directly above the door. However, this has long created difficulties when it comes to space, mechanical efficiency, and even general maintenance. 

Fortunately, there is a modern solution. It’s called a jackshaft or, more descriptively, a side mount garage door opener. This design sits directly alongside your door opening near the top, using a small motor to turn a shaft that pulls up your garage door. A jackshaft doesn’t take long to install, and it can give your garage an instant upgrade. There are numerous other benefits worth considering with this type of opener: 

No Ceiling Obstruction

Traditional designs come with a box-like door opening system mounted on a trolley bar setup in the middle of your garage ceiling. In many cases, this design limits the amount of overhead space you have and can prevent you from being able to utilize overhead storage space or keep things on your vehicle roof-rack. It can also inhibit taller vehicles from parking inside the garage. A side mounted garage door opener is not just slimmer in design, but its placement on the wall alongside your garage door means a more spacious garage overall. 

A Cleaner Look

A good side mounted garage door openers offer a sleek, clean look for your garage. Whereas the traditional opener is boxy and unattractively shaped, today’s jackshaft models are sleek and can blend in with their surroundings. It’s also worth noting that it does not require rails to hang from or be mounted on, allowing for an even neater appearance along with efficient installation. In fact, swapping out your old opening system for a side mounted one normally takes under a day to do. This means you can give your garage a spacious, modern face-lift in just hours. 

Low Maintenance 

Traditional garage door openers can last for many years, but only if you take meticulous care of them. From frequent cleaning and lubricating the rails to adjusting the cables due to stretching, maintenance is often difficult and messy work. Furthermore, even proper maintenance doesn’t necessarily guarantee longevity. Frequently used garage door openers still undergo significant wear and tear on a regular basis, and cable adjustments can still result in rattling doors and those that don’t open evenly.

A side mounted garage door opener meanwhile is much more conveniently designed and can also last for many years with less maintenance. Its lack of rails mean less space to clean, while the lack of pulley cables mean no adjustments or stretching. Many jackshaft designs don’t even come with a light, so you don’t need to worry about replacing burned out bulbs over time. 

Affordability

A side mount garage door opener offers a surprisingly affordable alternative to traditional openers. While the upfront cost may be a little higher (depending on the design of the door, spacing, electrical connection, etc.), the long-term energy and mechanical efficiency can lead to big savings for years to come. 

Who is a Good Candidate for a Side Mount Garage Door Opener?

The main candidates for a jackshaft door opener are interested in saving space and maintenance time in their garage. That said, their garage meets at least minimal space requirements above the door opening for easy installation.

We invite you to reach out to us today to learn more. We install jackshafts across a wide range of model types, and we can help you find the design you need to give your garage the upgrade it deserves. 

Benefits of an Insulated Garage Door

When it comes to choosing the right garage door for your home, you’ll find there are a vast number of options from which to choose. Not only do you have to think about matching the style of your home, as well as the color, but there are many materials from which these doors are made, as well as special features, such as insulation. There are many benefits to choosing an insulated garage door over one that isn’t.

Temperature Control

An insulated garage door can help you keep the temperature in your garage more consistent throughout the year. In the hot summer months, your garage won’t heat up easily. Likewise, in the winter, your garage will stay warmer, allowing you to get into a warm car every morning. Even though most homes don’t have their heating and cooling system running into their garage. However, if you have an attached garage and don’t have an insulated garage door, you could be losing energy as heat or cool air escapes your home through the garage. Garage doors are also opened and closed frequently, which can let the extreme temperatures from the outside into your home.

Additional Living Space

Not everyone uses their garage to store their vehicles, tools or lawn care equipment. If you need more living space in your home, the garage can be the perfect place to avoid having ot add onto your home. Whether you need a playroom for the kids, an art studio, a gym or any other type of room, if you renovate your garage to meet those needs, you should have an insulated garage door to help dampen the sound from outside and keep the temperature steady. Even if you choose to use the garage as a storage unit for unused items, temperature control is a valuable asset.

Noise Cancellation

Another great benefit of choosing an insulated garage door is the noise cancellation properties. Most garages let in a lot of the background noise from cars on the street, lawnmowers and more. In addition, garage doors are notorious for making a lot of noise when they open and close. However, insulated garage doors make less noise overall, allowing you to keep peace in the home, especially if you often go in and out in the early morning or late at night.

Improved Functionality

For those who choose to use their garage for something other than the traditional uses of storing cars and other outdoor items, an insulated garage door ensures the area can be used in comfort. Not only does an insulated garage door maintain the temperature more easily, bu tit also has added strength a regular garage door just doesn’t have. These doors ensure your garage is more secure and will protect everything inside from the elements more effectively. It also helps ensure your entire home is secure by reducing the risk of a break in through this pathway.

Your garage can have many uses, which is why it’s so important to choose carefully when it comes to your garage door. With all of the options availalbe, an insulated garage door is often the best choice.

Fix a Slow Opening Garage Door

You rely on your garage door opener to do a lot of work every day. Garage doors are heavy, and each time you push the button, you expect it to open like magic. Whlile a newer garage door opener will get your door open in a snap, sometimes they can slow down over time. This can be extremely frustrating, especially if you’re in a hurry. The good news is there are a few things you can do to fix this issue and ensure your garage door opener does its work more quickly again.

Proper Lubrication Could Be the Problem

In many cases, the leading cause of a garage door that opens too slowly is lubrication. Over time, the lubrication present in the system will either dry up or wear out, which means you need to replace it. Hiring a professional will ensure the job is done properly, but in many cases, you are able to fix this issue on your own without too much risk. Because lubrication is such a simple, inexpensive fix, it should be one of the first things you try before bringing in the professionals.

What Should You Lubricate

Before you get started, it’s important to make sure you know whta needs to be lubricated. The tracks, brackets and hinges are among the most common things that require you to refresh the lubrication in order to improve garage door opener performance. Once you have added new lubrication to these elements, give your garage door another try. If it opens more quickly again, congratulations, you’ve fixed the problem. If it hasn’t helped, you’ll need to move on to the next step.

Check for Speed Controls

While not an available feature on all doors, some garage door openers have settings that impact the speed at which the garage door opens. Check to see if your opener has these settings to ensure one hsan’t been changed.

Call in the Professionals

If your garage door opener doesn’t have speed settings or the lubrication didn’t work, you’ll need to call for professional help to restore the function of your opener. Working with a garage door opener can be dangerous work because of the high-tension springs and other components. It’s important for homeowners not to attempt to take care of any of these problems without assistance from trained individuals. It’s tempting to attempt to do things on your own to save money, but it’s far more important to maintain safety and ensure work is completed safely and correctly. They understand the many problems garage door openers can experience and will be able to troubleshoot the problem and make the necessary repairs more quickly, so you can get back to using your garage door without having to wait for what feels like hours for your garage door to open.

You count on your garage door to open quickly, which can lead to frustration when it begins to slow down again. While you can attempt to fix it with some lubrication or the settings of the opener itself, you may end up needing professional help to ensure the problem is handled correctly and safely. They will get your garage door opening quickly once again.

Keep Bugs and Pests Out Of Your Garage

Bugs and other pests aren’t fun in any part of your home, but they can be particularly frustrating in your garage. After all, if you’re like many people you may feel that there’s little you can do about this situation thanks to your garage’s openness to the outdoors. Insects and all kinds of other little critters seek out garages at all times of the year, but particularly during very hot or very cold temperatures as a means of shelter. 

But you don’t have to just learn to live with it. There are actually a variety of measures you can take to both remove pests from your garage and help prevent new ones from entering. Here’s a quick guide:

Keep Your Garage Clean

One of the most important things you can do in keeping your garage bug-free is to keep the space clean. This is a great time to go through items and get rid of things you don’t use. Reducing the amount of loose items in your garage will take away shelter spots for pests, and they are less likely to hang out in there when they don’t have places to hide. Likewise, it’s a good idea to avoid storing any food in there that isn’t inside a fridge, cooler or other sealed container. 

Use Smart Storage Solutions

Pets tend to find their way inside cardboard boxes all too easily, so it’s a good idea to start storing your items in plastic storage containers. These will also help reduce clutter and take away places for insects and bugs to hide. Building shelves and keeping storage elevated will also help in reducing accessible hideaways, and it will also help you keep the space clean. 

Patch Up Cracks

While many pests enter through your garage door opening itself, it’s very possible that they are getting in through other means. After cleaning your garage, inspect carefully for any cracks, holes or gaps along the walls, the garage door or even the foundation itself. Be sure to check the ceiling and around any windows as well. In most cases, you can fill up any holes or cracks with silicone caulk, though more serious damage may require professional attention. 

Consider Traps

More serious bug problems may warrant the use of traps alongside the perimeters of your garage, including near any potential entryways. Just be sure not to set them anywhere that you (or anyone else) may accidentally step on them. You may also want to consider spraying pesticides along walls and windowsills. Keep in mind that if you are experiencing different kinds of pests (say, silverfish and mice), you may need to employ different kinds of traps at once. 

Update Your Garage Door

The average garage door does not offer much protection against pests (or even human intruders, for that matter). It’s worthwhile looking into one that’s more secure, especially if you still have the original one your house came with or one that is decades old. There are a lot of different garage doors available today, and many have tighter seals and thicker barriers against bugs, insects, and small animals. You can even have one custom-fitted to your home to ensure there are no gaps when it is shut. 

If you don’t want a totally new door, it’s still a good idea to have your current door looked at. Small areas of wear and tear can be fixed up, while weather stripping can be replaced. 

5 Arizona Garage Door Safety Tips

Even though modern garage doors are significantly more secure and efficient than those clanky death traps of the past, it’s still important to take precautions. After all, your garage door is still one of the largest and heaviest moving components of your home! And according to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, approximately 30,000 injuries result from accidents involving garage doors each year. A staggering number of the victims are children. 

So, there’s no better time than the present to assess your door and see if you are in need of Phoenix garage door repair. But even with a door that seems to be functioning well on the surface, there are various safety measure you should take. Here are the top five garage door safety tips every homeowner needs to know:

1. Make Sure the Safety Sensors are Working Properly

If you have an electronic garage door (which you do unless the house/door are very old), then it most likely has safety sensors. Though almost unnoticeable, these little sensors are typically located at least six inches above the ground on either side of the door opening. When working properly, they stop the door from closing the moment movement is detected underneath. Additionally, all garage doors manufactured after 1991 have what’s known as an “auto reverse” mechanism, that makes the door stop and immediately start reversing its motion the moment it touches something in its path. 

Of course, like most pieces of equipment, these sensors can wear out over time and lose their ability to sense movement as readily (or not at all). It is important to check them frequently and repair or replace them as needed. 

2. Inspect the Cables and Springs

Just like sensors, your garage door’s springs and cables will wear out over time. If you notice any squeaking, rattling, or jerking movement (or lack of movement at all), be sure to take a look. Even if everything looks fine on the surface, it’s a good idea to have a professional inspect the door to see if anything needs to be repaired or replaced. Even old garage doors should always operate smoothly, so be sure to take a look if it is not.

It’s worth noting here that whenever a spring is replaced on one side of the door, the other side’s spring should be replaced as well even if it appears to be in good condition. This will help ensure that there are no unsafe discrepancies. 

3. Never Put a New Door on an Old Track

Some people try to save money and cut corners by installing new garage doors on older pre-existing tracks. However, this is just asking for trouble down the line. Doors and tracks are built to go together, so you should always install them together to ensure the perfect (and safe) fit. 

4. Don’t Share Passwords and Keep Remotes in Safe Places

It’s crucial that you keep both your garage door password / key code and your remote controls secure. Doing so will not only help prevent unwanted entries / break-ins, but it will also help prevent people from tampering with your door settings. And of course, always make sure that the remotes and key pad is out of reach of young children. 

5. Teach Family Members How to Operate the Door Safely

Kids in particular often become fascinated with the movement of garage doors. Sadly, this is why so many children are involved in garage door accidents every year. This is also why it is so important for them (and every member of your family) to learn to operate the garage door carefully and safely. Even if the door has caution sensors that detect movement below them, nobody should be standing in or near the door’s path when it is being opened or shut. Make sure everyone realizes the door is in no way a toy.  Live in the Phoenix metro area and want to learn more about garage door safety, or are you in need of a new garage door or service? It’s always best to go with the professionals to make sure the job is done correctly. Call the pros at Lincoln today at 602-955-4144. Or, stop by our Tempe location to chat with us in person. We’ve been providing quality Phoenix garage door repair for years, and we want to help every resident avoid accidents. Your garage door should be a welcome, useful part of your home. Let’s make sure it’s safe!