Don’t Close the Garage Door on Maintenance

By Joanne Loos Posted in: ImproveThe Fix is In

You use it almost every day, sometimes several times. It is the largest moving part in your home, and responsible for some 20,000 emergency-room visits every year, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Your garage door requires regular maintenance, just like any other part of your home. Parts can wear, and potential safety hazards arise. If you schedule regular maintenance, you can avoid these dangers — and save money in the long run. A well-maintained garage door could last several decades.

To start, the experts at Servco Raynor Overhead Doors recommend an annual preventative maintenance. Take a good look at the entire system. Lubricate all moving parts, such as hinges, chain drive, rollers and springs, and tighten all bolts and screws. Inspect limit switches, the gear drive, cables, track alignment, spring tension and operator and safety eyes (sensors located near the bottom of the door track).

Look for signs of wear, and repair broken parts immediately. If you are handy, you may be able to handle most of the minor repairs. For more complicated tasks, consider hiring a qualified garage-door service technician. A garage door can weigh anywhere from 105 to 350 pounds, and usually comes loaded with high-tension springs. If handled improperly, these parts can cause extremely severe injuries.

Another important part of the checklist: Clean doors regularly. Hawaii’s salty air increases chances for corrosion, especially on hardware, so do this at least four times per year. Use a mild detergent with a soft brush, and avoid abrasive cleaners.

You should also keep an eye on the area where the door meets the ground. If there is something there, sweep it away. Even the smallest items, such as leaves or twigs, might prevent the door from creating a solid seal with the ground. This could affect the alignment of the garage door in the long run by throwing off the weight distribution.

Remember, your garage door often serves as your main access point to your home. With proper maintenance it shouldn’t pose safety hazards, and it can last for many years to come.