As fall finally paints your city in warm autumn hues, it’s time to enjoy this beautiful season with all things fun. However, the arrival of fall also means that winter will follow in a few months, which is important for homeowners to be prepared about.
As a homeowner, it’s time to prepare your home from the harsh winter months. From trimming trees to repairing the air conditioners, there’s a lot that goes into preparing for the winter months. However, most often homeowners tend to overlook garage door maintenance–a broken garage door won’t just cause inconvenience but can also cost a lot of money. That’s why it’s important to fix your garage door or replace it when required. Thankfully, there are many reputable stores, such as OKDiscountGarageDoor.com, that’ll serve as a one-stop-shop for all your garage door woes.
A broken garage door can cause several damages to your home’s interiors since it lets the harsh winter air seep in. That’s why it’s important to maintain your garage door by cleaning it, lubricating it, and tightening the hardware for it to properly function.
In this article, we’ll discuss some tips that can help you maintain your garage door, especially during the coming winter season.
How Does The Winter Season Affect your Garage Door?
To start with, the metal parts of your garage door, like springs and screws, tend to shrink during the winter months. This has a direct impact on the functioning of your door and can disrupt the smooth opening and closing process. Shrunken springs and screws also impact your garage door’s durability.
Without proper maintenance, your garage door may not open due to deep freeze. This can greatly impact your living space during the winter months. If your door isn’t properly sealed or insulated, it can leave your living space exposed to the harsh winter air, leading to a cold, damp space in the middle of the winter months. Coping with the harsh weather conditions, your indoor heating will also have to work overtime, leading to sky-rocketing electricity bills.
Tips For Garage Door Maintenance
Although the winter months are rough, you can avoid several winter-related hassles just by taking some preventive measures. Make sure that your garage door is well-prepared for the coming winter season by following these garage door maintenance tips:
- Start With A Visual Inspection
Stand outside your garage door and look at it carefully; look for any visual signs of damage to the springs, pulleys, cables, rollers, and hardware.
You can start by opening and closing your garage door a few times and try to listen to any creaking sounds. If you notice some damage or can hear some unusual sounds, it’s time to call a professional to have your garage maintained.
A professional will inspect your garage door and will be able to optimally guide you and tell you if the garage door needs repair or replacement.
- Clean Your Garage Door
After inspecting your garage door, clean all the dirt and grime. Over time, the rollers and the track of your garage door can accumulate dust. During the winter months, the moisture trapped in the dust freezes, thus, causing problems with the opening and closing of the garage door.
That’s why it’s important to clean off all the dirt from the track and rollers before winter sets in.
- Lubricate Your Garage Door’s Moving Parts
Lubricating the moving parts of your garage door is an essential step and should be done regularly to ensure that your garage door functions smoothly. You can do this simply by applying a spray lubricant to the door’s springs, rails, hinges, and bearings. Ideally, use a silicone-based lubricant that’s designed for garage doors.
Alternatively, you can also use standard engine oil as a lubricant. Make sure to thoroughly wipe all the excess oil after applying the lubricant.
- Check The Door Sealant
Your garage door sealant plays an important role in insulating your home in harsh weather conditions. Cracks in the sealant can become an outlet for the heat to escape, leading to cold interiors in the winter months. The harsh winter can also cause your door’s weather strips to get frozen and stuck to the pavement. This is especially true if the weather stripping has cracks. To ensure that you don’t face this issue, wipe the weather stripping clean and dry it out before winter sets in.
The easiest way to check if your garage door’s weatherstripping is in good condition is to check it in the dark. If you can see light coming through cracks, it’s time to repair or replace your garage door’s sealant.
- Replace The Weather Stripping
If you find too many cracks or damages on your garage door’s weatherstrip, replace it immediately. This will help you avoid the hassles of poor insulation during harsh winter months.
You can replace it by removing the damaged parts and replacing them with new weather stripping. Conveniently, weatherstripping is easily available in most garage stores.
- Fix The Hardware
With regular usage, the bolts and hinges of your garage door may start to loosen up. Constant opening and closing of the garage door for months to years can also cause some parts to wear out and fall off. This can lead to major issues if left unchecked.
That’s why it’s important to regularly tighten the bolts and hinges of your garage door. Tightening the brackets and bolts will ensure that your door functions smoothly.
- Check The Rollers
The more you use your garage door, the quicker they wear out of your garage door rollers will be. Irrespective of the material you use, your rollers should be checked regularly and should be replaced when damaged.
Rollers that are chipped or have cracks should be immediately replaced. You can easily replace and reinstall rollers that aren’t attached to the cable system.
- Check The Cable System
Faults in the cable system can be easily detected by checking for loose wires or broken cables. Also, check for damage near the roller brackets.
Make sure that you don’t repair it yourself since these cables have electrical power running through them, which can even kill a person if handled incorrectly. That’s why it’s best to leave the repair of the cable system to professionals.
- Check Your Door’s Balance
If your garage door is off-balance, it’ll not only impact the way your door opens, but it’ll also reduce the longevity of your door as there will be more stress on the opener.
To check your door’s balance, disconnect the opener with the help of the release handle. This will cause the door to open halfway. It’s out of balance if it closes completely or opens fully. If it closes completely, it means that there’s not enough tension in the springs. Lastly, if it completely opens, it means there’s excessive tension on the springs.
If your garage door is off-balance, its best to call for professional help instead of readjusting the springs by yourself since this can be dangerous. Also, sometimes, an unbalanced garage door can point towards another serious issue. When you get it checked by a professional, they can do a thorough check to ensure that your garage door is safe for use and functioning well.
- Check The Safety Features
If the safety sensors of your garage door won’t work properly, it can lead to dangerous situations. To avoid accidents, such as your garage door closing on someone, it’s important to check the safety features occasionally.
You can check the safety sensor beams of your garage door by pressing the open button and then sliding something through the door. If the door doesn’t automatically reverse when something is passed through it, it means it’s not working.
Call a professional service immediately to check and repair your garage door’s safety sensors.
- Clean The Sensors
Most garage doors today come with safety sensors that prevent the door from shutting on objects or people. Garage door sensors are an essential safety feature especially for homes with small children. However, the sensors tend to lose their effectiveness when they’re blocked with dirt.
By regularly cleaning the lens of your sensors, you can ensure that the safety feature of your garage door functions optimally. For the proper functioning of the safety sensors, also make sure that the base of the door is free from any dirt, debris, snow, or leaves.
- Clean The Surface Of Your Garage Door Regularly
The build-up of dirt and grime on your garage door’s surface won’t only damage the surface of the door, but it’ll also impact its lifespan. To keep it clean, simply scrub it with soap and wash it off with water. If you notice any paint chipping from your garage door, this may be the ideal time to apply a fresh coat of paint.
With several paint options in the market, repainting your garage door with weatherproof paint coats can add additional protection to your garage door from the harsh weather conditions. Additionally, a fresh coat of paint for your garage door can add freshness to your home’s exterior and also improve its curb appeal.
- Organize Your Garage
Once the summer months are over, it’s time to re-organize your garage and bring out all the winter essentials, like snow shovels and snow blowers.
As you inspect and repair your garage door for the coming winter season, don’t forget to tidy up your garage and keep the winter essentials out. You don’t want to be stuck with a closed garage door with mounts of snow piled up.
Use a snow shovel to get rid of the snow pile on harsh winter days.
Benefits Of Garage Door Maintenance
Here are a few benefits of regularly maintaining your garage door.
- Cost-Effective: Getting regular tune-up for your garage door will ensure that it remains well maintained, saving you money for hefty repairs.
Since new garage door installments and repairing significant damages can be expensive, simple checkups and occasional maintenance will save up on heavy costs.
- Home Security: A broken garage door can give thieves and robbers unwanted access to your house. Other than your car, there are many valuable things that you may have stored there. Leaving it broken can put you at risk of getting robbed.
- Improves Your Home’s Curb Appeal: One of the biggest issues with a worn-out garage door is that it’s very visible. You can easily notice the hanging wires or the chipped paint, making your home’s exterior look worn-out, too.
On the other hand, a well-maintained and polished garage door can make your home look brighter and will increase its curb appeal.
- Improves Your Home’s Value: A well-maintained garage door can add value to your home. As buyers mostly go by their first impression of the property, your garage door plays an important role in ensuring that the first impression of your home exterior is a good one.
A damaged garage door can make buyers back out or ask for a discount on the asking price.
As fall sets in, it’s time to prep your garage door for the coming winter season. This season is ideal for checking and repairing your garage door for the harsh winter months.
Garage door maintenance done now will ensure that your door’s insulation is functioning optimally to keep out the chill. Maintaining the garage door springs, rollers, and other hinges by oiling them well ensures that the garage door smoothly opens and closes.
Calling a professional service for regular garage door maintenance is not only cost-effective but the professional will thoroughly check your garage door and inform you about any major repair required. Though small maintenance tasks, like changing the weather stripping or roller brackets, can be done by yourself, don’t attempt to take on major repair tasks like fixing your garage door’s balance or the safety features. These tasks are dangerous and require expert hands to handle them.
Finally, practicing regular garage door maintenance will ensure its smooth functioning and increase the longevity of your door, giving you peace of mind and assurance that you and your family are safe and secure in the winter months.