Winter is almost upon us, which means garages and garage doors are going to be cold. Doing a few maintenance chores now will keep you from having to spend too much time out there when it gets uncomfortably cold. Keeping your garage door functioning will keep your family safe and your belonging secure. Here are a few the homeowner can do for themselves.

Force Setting

While the garage door is in the process of going down, try to ‘catch it’ with your hands. If it doesn’t immediately go back up, the force setting might be too high.

Reverse setting

The reverse setting is the setting which makes the garage door fly back up when you shut it because you left the broom on the ground beneath the door or because the family cat walked beneath it. The reverse feature works in two ways. The first is by sensing something there which shouldn’t be, such as the broom on the ground. The second is by infrared sensors (two) which are placed about six inches from the bottom of the door. Those are what sense the cat when he walks beneath the closing door.

Some people use a roll of paper towels beneath the door for the reverse setting test. If the cardboard tube bends, the reverse setting needs adjustment.

Oil the moving parts

While we say ‘oil,’ what we mean is ‘lubricate,’ using lithium or silicone based spray. Start with the door closed and the automatic opener motor is disconnected

  • As you open the door, lubricate each hinge at the bend in the track as you manually raise the door. Don’t forget all the places that move: pivot points, stems, locks, and nubs, and the armbar. Then lubricate the rollers if they’re metal, and any ball bearings you can see.
    Note: Plastic ball bearings require frequent replacement but not a lubricant.

  • Lubricate the ball bearings of the pulleys.

Sealed pulleys and bearings require no grease.

  • Do not grease the chain, but do grease the top of the rail.

  • Do not grease the track.

You can clean the chain and the track with WD 40 (remembering it isn’t a lubricant, it’s a cleaner.)

  • Grease torsion springs.

These little lubricating chores should be done twice a year. Test the force and reverse settings every other month. If the door fails the tests, or if it performs oddly, screeches in spite of lubrication, seems to pause or stop-and-starts, give us a call. A garage door which is in need of repair can be dangerous to pets, automobiles, and families. We can get it working right in no time.

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