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How To Lubricate A Garage Door

January 9th, 2024 | 3 min read

By Chris Henningsen

Lubricating a squeaky garage door opener

Does your garage door squeak when you open or close it?

A squeaky garage door is uncomfortable and indicates compromised components. Over time, parts rubbing against the garage door track (or against one other) during operation can cause garage doors to become clunky and loud.

Proper maintenance and lubrication can prevent squeaky garage doors from breaking down completely. In addition, you may minimize noise by lubricating your garage door every six months while extending its lifespan.

With the appropriate tools and supplies, anyone can come to know how to lubricate a garage door and other parts. And if you are beginning to wonder how to lubricate a garage door properly, simply follow the steps below.

Step 1: Cut the power and close your garage.

The automated door in your garage should be closed first using the door opener. Then, check that the door is completely closed on manual garages.  Add something in regards to taking the vehicles out to keep the lubrication off the cars while testing the garage door after lubrication if performed.

To keep everyone safe when cleaning, you should also turn off the power to an automated door.    This is especially true if you plan on getting your hands close to any of the moving parts.  You can turn the power off by simply unplugging the power cord but if that proves to be difficult you can also flip the breaker that is specific to your opener’s outlet.

Step 2: Wipe down the door tracks.

Your door may squeak more than usual if there is a buildup of junk in your garage door tracks. Although you do not need to lubricate them, wiping down your tracks will ensure your garage door operates smoothly. To begin cleaning the tracks, use a moist cloth.

Apply an automotive brake cleaner to remove stubborn dirt lodged in the tracks. Hard-to-reach places and the top of the tracks can be cleaned using your vacuum, broom, or duster.

Step 3: Grease all of the garage door's moving parts.

All of the following door components must be lubricated using a lithium-based lubricant and not Wd-40 as Wd-40 can actually do more harm than good to some of the components:

  • Garage door springs: Look for the springs at the top of your garage door using a step ladder. The springs are often located in the center of the top bar, between the end-bearing plates. Before lubricating the springs, ensure they are working properly since a technician must immediately replace any broken or bent springs. Torsion springs are naturally lubricated so you don’t need a lot of lubricant and just a few passes from one end to the other applying the lubricant on just the steel coils will suffice.
  • The j-arm or armbar does not move if the two pieces are secured together properly so no it doesn’t require lubrication. There’s really no way to lubricate where the end is mounted to the door or the carriage (on the rail). I know it shows the armbar being lubricated in a wikihow article but that’s incorrect.
  • Bearing plates: The metal plates on either side of the bar holding the garage door spring are known as the end-bearing plates. Since there is the most friction there, it would be ideal if you lubricate them and the wheels that protrude against them.
  • Top of the rail: The rail runs from the motor to the wall mounted directly above the garage door to which the armbar is attached.
  • Chain: The chain, which has a protective coating on top, is likewise held by the top rail. As a result, you do not need to lubricate the chain as much because the coating already lubricates it.
  • Rollers: You may discard the step ladder as it is unlikely that you will need it. Continue by lubricating the area between the hinges and the roller stems. Lubricate the rollers using a spray attachment to allow you to get to hard to reach areas. After that, you may use a cloth to remove any extra.
  • Lock: The center slat of your garage door could be secured with a lock and lock bar, depending on the model. Apply grease to the inner keyhole of the lock using the same spray attachment. The lubricant will keep the lock from locking up and rusting over time.
  • Hinge: The garage door’s hinges are the metal components that regulate the distance between each slat. Spray a little bit of lubricant on each side of the hinge where it pivots as this is where you have metal-to-metal contact.

These garage door components may squeak, so ensure they are all properly greased. Additionally, poorly lubricated parts degrade over time more quickly than unlubricated ones.

Step 4: Spread the grease on all garage door components.

You may reconnect the power supply once you have lubricated every garage door component (especially if you have an automated door). After that, check to see if you have completely greased all the parts by opening and closing the door several times.

Step 5: Check if your door is working and quieter.

Call a professional if you have thoroughly lubricated every component, but your garage door still makes noises despite everything. Any creaking that persists indicates a different issue with your garage door that requires professional service.

Check that there is no component misalignment, even if your garage door is no longer squeaky. Your garage door, for instance, has two little black components at the bottom that serve as motion sensors. Your newly lubricated garage door will not open or close properly if these sensors are misaligned, filthy, or out of place.

What if Lubricating the Garage Door Fails?

You might have to replace a garage door component if lubricating does nothing to stop the noise problem. But if you are not sure you can manage it, it is best to leave this task to qualified professionals.

Contact us if you need the help of an experienced garage door repair technician!