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Garage Door Maintenance Tips And Hacks

January 9th, 2024 | 4 min read

By Chris Henningsen

Well-maintained garage doors last years longer

Your garage door is the largest moving object in your home and is repeatedly utilized daily and in all weather conditions. It is essential for the safety of you and your loved one’s, as well as the safety of your property, that you keep your garage door well-maintained.  Keeping your garage door well maintained will help keep your door running smoothly and quietly while providing security.

Sadly, skipping out on routine garage door maintenance can result in costly repairs, damages, and sometimes even accidents.

This article will guide you through several garage door maintenance tips and hacks to keep your garage door running properly, efficiently, and safely. From routine inspections to lubrication and cleaning, these procedures can keep your garage door in excellent working order for years to come.

Maintenance Prep

The best method to make sure your garage gets the most use out of its door is to do a full visual inspection and tune-up. Still, accidents may happen when you carry out routine maintenance on your garage door. So, the following four considerations should be made before dealing with your door:

  1. Unplug your door opener and put any controls aside so your door will not be triggered to activate.  If you can’t reach the cord in the ceiling you might flip the correct breaker or simply make sure everyone with access knows not to operate the door.
  2. Remove anything you don’t want to get lubricant on out of the garage such as cars or motorcycles.  Depending on the type of lubricant you use it may drip a little on the ground as the door goes up and down once you’ve completed the tune-up.
  3. Do not mess with the overhead torsion springs. If you change the tension on these springs while doing maintenance, you risk seriously endangering yourself and your house. To fix this portion of your door, always hire an expert.

To prioritize your safety, keep these maintenance prep tips in mind as you start looking over your garage door and review the best preventive maintenance list on garage doors.

Garage Door Maintenance Tips and Hacks

1. Ensure that the tracks are clear

Check the door’s tracks on either side to ensure they are free of dirt and corrosion. We often see customers try to use some type of grease on their tracks but that’s the worst thing you can do because the grease will attract dirt and debris which will then get all over your garage door rollers.  If cleaning your tracks with a cloth by itself won’t work you can always spray some WD-40 onto cloth and use that to wipe down the tracks.

2. Observe the door's operation

It’s a good idea to run your garage door every once in a while and look for things that may seem out of the ordinary.  Do you see daylight coming through areas where you’ve not noticed it before?  Do you hear any sounds such as scraping of metal on metal or any kind of grinding noise?  These things are not normal and could be an indication that the bottom rubber may need replacing or you may just need to lubricate critical areas of the door.

3. Tighten loose screws, bolts, and brackets

The movement of a typical garage door year-round can cause the nuts, bolts and screws to vibrate loose.  It’s a good idea to go over these things with a screwdriver or socket to ensure that everything is nice and tight and that nothing is missing.  We also recommend checking the lags that secure the track bracket to the wall because this area is prone to vibration as well.

4. Lubricate the moving parts

Here at Gator Garage Door Repair we recommend our customer lubricate certain areas of their garage door and garage door opener at least twice a year.  You typically want to concentrate on areas where there’s metal-to-metal contact such as between the rollers and hinges and the corners of all the hinges as well.  We also recommend you make several passes with a can of lubricant on your torsion springs as well as the bearings located at both ends of the torsion tube.  As far as the opener goes you can focus your attention on the area where the trolley runs on the opener rail to help it keep it running smoothly and quietly.

5. Inspect the rollers

The garage door rollers should be inspected at least twice a year while lubricating metal-on-metal areas.  During your inspection you’re looking to see if the rollers are still firmly attached to the stem, if the actual portion of the roller itself is still fully intact and whether or not the roller is free from dirt and debris.  If you find that the rollers need to be replaced we recommend calling a Service Professional but if you think you’re up to the task feel free but for your safety avoid removing the bottom roller brackets on each side of the door. These are connected to the lift cables, which are under high tension.

6. Examine the auto-reverse function

Automatic garage door openers have an auto-reverse mechanism that should be tested periodically.  Putting a 2’ x 4’ wooden block on the floor in the door’s passage will allow you to test the reversing system.. During the test the door will come down and touch the block and should start to reverse direction once approximately 30 pounds of force is applied.  To test the photoelectric system with eye sensors on both sides, lower your door and pass your leg in the door’s path. The door should now change direction and ascend.

7. Replace or repair any weatherstripping

The door’s bottom rubber weatherstripping aids in keeping out the cold, water, grime, and dust. To ensure it is in good condition, inspect it twice a year. For wooden garage doors, the weatherstripping is often nailed in place so the nails would have to be removed along with the seal and then replaced.  For more common metal garage doors you’ll have to slide the old bottom rubber out and slide the new one back in.  You can often find the bottom seal for wooden doors in hardware stores but the kind you typically find on metal doors may have to be purchased online or from a garage door company.

8. Inspect and refinish the garage door

Pay attention to the door. If the door is made of steel, look for rust or areas that may be exposed to the elements.  This typically occurs when the bottom rubber is missing, damaged or dry rot and will need to be replaced. If you have a wooden door you’ll want to look for signs of water damage to the wood such as rot, chipping or warping.  If the wood is damaged it may need to be repaired or replaced. It is especially important to apply a waterproof sealant to the outside of your wooden garage door approximately every other year to both protect the wood and maintain the doors warranty.

Get Professional Maintenance Services with Gator Garage Door Services

Unless you are an expert yourself, you may need help learning how to maintain your garage door properly from time to time. That is why it is always best to be careful about garage door mechanics and routine maintenance. But do not fret any longer! Gator Garage Door Repair is here to help.

Our local garage door experts have actively performed professional services for several years, including comprehensive inspections, hardware repair, and routine maintenance. In addition, we offer specialized services catered to residential and commercial clients with the right capacity and resources to manage small and big projects.