Steps To A Successful Garage Door Repair
Over time, a garage door can show signs of wear and tear from regular use. Often, these problems can be solved with a little maintenance and simple fixes.
Examine and lubricate tracks, rollers, and hinges twice per year to keep your door operating smoothly. Also, tighten loose hardware on brackets holding tracks and fasteners securing openers.
The most common garage door repair involves replacing the springs. You can do this yourself or hire a professional to do the work. Before beginning, you should gather your tools and supplies: 2 C-clamps to hold the door open; a set of properly sized socket wrenches for loosening or tightening set screws (cookie cutters won’t fit); a ladder, safety glasses and work gloves; and two winding bars, which can be purchased at most hardware stores.
The first step is to remove the broken spring. Then disconnect the cable from the opener and remove the pulley. Look at the end of the spring that is still attached to the track stanchion for a color spot; this will indicate whether it is left or right wind. You will also need to determine the weight of your door by using an analog bathroom scale positioned underneath the springs. Then choose replacement springs that are a good match for the height and weight of your door.
You must use caution when working with the springs, as they can break if you are not careful. To avoid injury, always clutch the ends of the bar furthest away from the cones and stand securely on a stable ladder. If the shaft is rubbing on the stationary cone or center bracket, grease it. Also lubricate the bearing in the center of the stationary cone to help prevent it from wearing out prematurely.
Weather stripping lines the bottom edges of garage doors to keep cool air in during summer and warm air in during winter. It also seals out water, debris and rodent droppings. Newer garage doors come with this basic feature, but it can wear down over time or be missing altogether.
Sold at hardware and big-box home improvement stores, rubber bottom weather stripping has a flange that slides into a channel on the door jamb. It can be trimmed with scissors and cut to size, or nailed in place. Older doors may have wood weather stripping nailed in place, or none at all.
A third type of garage door weather stripping is a clear vinyl track that snaps over jalousie louvers, forming a friction fit. It can be cut to size with a utility knife. Foam tape consists of open or closed-cell foam or EPDM rubber with a sticky back that can be cut to length and adhered where needed. It works well in irregular-sized gaps, on windows and doors, or around electrical boxes.
Interlocking metal weather stripping consists of two separate pieces along each edge that fit inside each other to form a seal. This requires professional-level cutting (rabbeting) and usually includes an installation kit with step-by-step instructions. If you have this kind of garage door weather stripping, a screwdriver, pliers or putty knife can be used to straighten bent pieces and reattach loose sections. To keep it functioning properly, regularly clean it with a multipurpose vinyl cleaner and lubricate it with a silicone-based product.
Rollers play an important part in opening and closing your garage door. They are easy to maintain and replace with the right tools. Lubricating them twice a year is also an excellent way to keep your door running smoothly.
A worn out roller can cause your garage door to become wobbly and noisy. If you notice this, it’s time to replace the roller. The process is relatively simple and can be completed in a few steps. Before you start, make sure that you have the correct size rollers. You can find the roller size by looking at the diameter of the wheel or by measuring the length of the stem that holds the wheel on. Rollers come in many sizes and materials, so be sure to select the right one for your door.
Before you begin, it’s a good idea to put on safety gear, such as gloves and eye protection. You should also remove the power cord from the opener to prevent injury. Once you’ve done this, open the garage door fully and clamp it down to the floor or use a pair of locking pliers to hold it in place.
Remove any rust from the track and check for loose bolts. You can tighten these by using a wrench. You should also examine the tracks for any dents or bent sections. Misaligned tracks will disrupt the movement of your rollers and may cause them to fall off the track. You can repair a small dent on the track by simply pressing it back into shape with a hammer.
The hinges on your garage door endure a lot of stress from repeated use. Over time, they can become loose or cracked, causing the garage door to hang unevenly. Replacing faulty hinges is an easy and inexpensive way to ensure that your garage door is functioning properly.
Prior to beginning this project, you should familiarize yourself with the specifics of your garage door. This includes knowing the type of hinge, its gauge, and if it’s a wide or narrow hinge. It’s also a good idea to review the manufacturer’s instructions for this process. Finally, it’s important to remember that safety is a priority during any home improvement projects and it’s especially crucial when working with ladders and tools. Always be sure to use proper ladder safety by maintaining three points of contact at all times, and disconnect the power to the garage door opener before commencing work.
Start the hinge replacement process by lowering your garage door and removing any screws that are holding it in place. If necessary, you may want to secure the door using safety blocks or locking pliers to prevent it from accidentally falling while you’re working.
Next, use a pencil to mark the location for your new hinge through the screw hole on its bracket. Remove the hinge, and position your level over the pencil line to make sure that it’s even. Then, drill the holes at each of the marked locations using a drill and the screws included in your kit.