Certain types of garage door maintenance and cleaning you can do yourself. If you are performing routine garage door maintenance and cleaning, just be sure to use these handy tips that can help keep your door functioning properly and looking its best from one season to the next!
Routine Garage Door Maintenance: Testing
For starters, be sure to let everyone know that you will be working on the garage door so they don’t attempt to open it. You can also post a sign outside in case a spouse or adult child who drives forgets when they pull into the driveway.
- Visual Inspection: Visual inspections can start inside where you have the door closed and inspect the pulleys, hinges, springs and cables. Look for any signs of loose wiring or screws. Open and close the door to ensure it’s on its tracks and moving smoothly.
- Manual Lift: Try a manual lift test if your opener is on an automatic system. With the door closed, take out the automatic opener attachment and lift the door. If it lifts evenly and stays open, then it’s fine. You can then lower the door and reconnect it. If it’s tight opening or resistant and doesn’t stay open, it might not be balanced correctly and you should call a technician to have it looked at.
- Reversing Mechanism: Next, check the reversing mechanism. This is to ensure that if anything were blocking the door from closing, it would raise back up. If you have an older model that doesn’t have this feature, you may want to have it updated. If you have this mechanism, you can test it by opening the door, putting a small object in the path of the door like a tool box and then attempt to close the door. It should stop when it hits the box and automatically reverse. If it doesn’t, then you may need to call a technician.
- Eye Test: In more recent models, you can also perform a photo eye test. With the door open, take a rake or broom and hold it in your hand. Hit the button to close the door and as it’s closing, wave the rake or broom directly in front of the photo eyes. When this happens, the door should reverse. It may mean that the eye needs to be cleaned. You can always wipe it off and retest it. If it fails again, you may want to have your door opener serviced.
- Forced Closure: Lastly, test the forced closure. With the door open, as it’s starting to close, use your hands to block the door from closing. If it continues to push against you, it likely needs to be adjusted. Ideally, when it meets resistance it should automatically reverse.
Routine Garage Maintenance: Cleaning
- Wash the Doors and Windows: Wash and hose off the door surfaces of any grime, debris, leaves and dirt. If the door is steel, you can use car wax to give it a nice finish. Next, wash the windows if your garage door has windows.
- Remove Rust and Re-prime: Look for signs of rust and sand these edges down. You can always add a primer and latex paint to cover the area.
- Repaint the Door and Frames: Paint your door if it needs it. For steel doors you will need exterior latex paint. Just ensure the whole door is clean and dry before painting. You can also paint around the window frames before you finish.
- De-Clutter: It is tempting to make the garage the place where you put all the things that don’t fit inside the home or need protection that the backyard can’t provide. Eventually we store so much stuff that the garage becomes almost unusable. Garage storage can really help maximize storage space while keeping the garage floor available for use. Storage racks can be installed overhead and storage shelves can be installed on the walls for this.
If you follow these steps you should have a long-lasting garage door that looks great! If you do need garage door repair service in one of our service areas in Milwaukee or surrounding areas, we are ready to respond 7 days a week with excellent pricing and the backup of the best warranty in the business. Thanks for reading our garage door blog.