When something in your house needs minor repairs, chances are your resident DIY enthusiast runs for their toolbox to fix the problem. However, trying to fix your own garage door can be very dangerous. Aside from a few very minor repairs, DIY garage door work is simply not worth the risk.
Your garage door is a surprisingly dangerous appliance if not functioning correctly. Even professional repair technicians have to handle the job with care. While performing the repairs yourself may seem tempting, there are quite a few reasons why you may just make things worse.
You Can’t Control a Broken Garage Door Motor
Remember those safety stickers on your door that warn you that the motor could crush you? Safety sensors are there to protect you from the motor. But what happens if those sensors stop working or the motor ignores them? Your already very strong motor could cause serious damage if you can’t stop it. Insulation can only make the door heavier and more dangerous. When the garage door is already malfunctioning, you can’t control what will happen or the damage your door could cause.
Parts Aren’t Readily Available
For an electrical or plumbing project, almost everything you need is in the hardware store. Garage door supplies are harder to find for anyone who isn’t a professional technician. And considering the damage your door could do if anything stopped working or wasn’t repaired properly, you can’t afford to substitute with makeshift motor parts.
Pro Tip: DIY is often promoted as a cheaper way to get repairs done. The truth, however, is that you can often end up spending more on DIY supplies than on professional work. Save yourself time and money with an experienced technician.
Springs Can Seriously Injure You
Garage door springs are massive coils of metal under tremendous pressure as they raise and lower the door. Even professionals have to be careful to not let the springs snap loose. A broken spring can cause serious damage to your garage or, worse, serious injury to you or a loved one. Avoid this risk entirely by skipping the DIY and calling in a professional to fix a broken spring.
Guarantee of Quality Repairs
A certified technician has spent years training and studying garage door mechanics. They can easily bring your door back to functioning safely and save you money and time while they’re at it. Don’t be tempted to attempt DIY and potentially make things worse.
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In a perfect scenario, your garage door should last you as long as 10 years. Unfortunately, garage doors break down over time like anything else, and will sometimes need replacing. Keep an eye on your garage door for these indications that it’s time for a new one.
Know What to Look For
Your garage door may need replacing for several different reasons, but these are the most common causes. If you notice any of these issues appearing or worsening with time, give our replacement service a call.
- Loud noises
- Delayed response
- Old motor
Maybe you forgot to open the garage door before backing your car out, or severe weather made your house take a beating. If your garage door is sporting a broken panel, warping, or other damage, it’s probably time for a replacement.
Few things are worse than water getting into your garage and damaging your stored belongings. You may not see the leak, but you’ll see the damage it can cause. Keep an eye on your garage after a rainstorm to make sure no water gets in. If you have a leaking problem, you probably need a new door.
3) Loud Noises
A loud door motor can be more than an irritant. Sometimes, a loud motor indicates that the aging machinery is grinding on other pieces and straining the motor overall. If that annoying sound becomes too much to bear, ask an expert if you need a replacement.
4) Delayed Response
It’s perfectly normal for your garage door to take a second or two to respond when you press the button. However, if the delay lasts any longer, there could be a problem. Don’t wait for your door to stop opening altogether–get the damaged pieces replaced quickly.
Pro Tip: A delayed response could mean that something is blocking your garage door’s safety sensors. Make sure the sensors are clear before you try again. If the problem persists, it’s time to call a professional for repairs.
5) Old Motor
The older your garage door motor is, the more likely it is to begin having trouble. On rare occasions, an older motor that seems just fine will suddenly break down entirely, leaving you with a door stuck shut. If you know your motor is approaching 10 years or more, start looking for a replacement.
Upgrading Your Garage Door
Your garage door is an often-neglected but important part of your house. At the first indication of trouble, consider calling one of our certified technicians to talk about a replacement. Don’t let this important feature fail you.
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Think of everything in your house that could use repairs or an upgrade. Most likely, you didn’t think about your garage door. Remember that your garage door requires maintenance and attention as much as any other appliance you own, if not more since a broken garage door can be dangerous. Does your garage door need a full replacement?
When Should You Replace Your Garage Door?
Like any part of your house, your garage door wears with use and will require regular maintenance. However, unlike many parts of your house, a malfunctioning garage door can prove dangerous to repair yourself or to ignore for too long. In many cases, it’s simpler to replace the entire system. Keep an eye out for several key factors that can tell you when it’s time to replace your garage door.
- Shaking or lots of noise
- Safety sensors malfunctioning
- Gaps or broken panels
- Warping or off-balance
- Higher energy costs
1) Shaking or Lots of Noise
If your garage door vibrates or the motor creaks loudly, that could indicate a potentially serious problem. For example, aging garage door springs produce a lot of noise when the motor runs and can be hazardous to replace on their own. Besides, a loud garage door gets annoying. Excessive noise may be telling you it’s time to replace the entire motor.
Pro Tip: A loud garage door may result from a safety issue or just a poorly designed motor. Let an expert take a look at it and determine if the noise indicates a problem.
2) Safety Sensors Malfunctioning
This is unquestionably the most critical feature to keep an eye on. Your garage door’s safety sensors prevent objects, pets, or people from being crushed by the motor. If they stop working or work only sporadically, your garage door poses a danger to yourself and others. Depending on your system, this problem could also affect your ability to use a remote opener. Have an expert look at your garage door sensors and determine how best to fix the problem.
3) Gaps or Broken Panels
Garage door panels can break and allow thieves or pests into your garage. Depending on the damage, this particular repair may not require replacing your entire door. A single damaged panel can be patched or replaced without disturbing the rest of the system. However, don’t hesitate to replace your entire door if multiple panels start breaking. A full upgrade will likely be faster and cheaper than constantly patching up gaps.
4) Warping or Off-Balance
You may notice your garage door leaning to one side or bending in a seemingly unnatural way. This could mean either some important cables are wearing down, or the motor is no longer strong enough to properly move the door. Either way, this is a problem. If your door can’t close properly, you could end up with more gaps and potential security risks.
5) Higher Energy Costs
Keep an eye on your energy bill. Are you suddenly paying a lot more than in previous months? Your garage door’s insulation may be failing or falling apart, letting energy leak out of your house.
Once again, this doesn’t have to be a complicated repair. If nothing else is damaged, replacing the insulation should fix your problem. But be prepared for a full replacement if the problem goes deeper.
How old is your garage door? Old age alone could be wearing the mechanisms down. You may be tempted to just replace the most worn-looking motor components, but putting a brand new part in an old machine can just make the situation worse. If your garage door has been running for 10 or more years, it may be time to upgrade before any major problems happen.
Increase Your Curb Appeal
Having a functional garage door adds as much curb appeal as having a nice-looking door. Whether you end up repairing or replacing your garage door, keeping yourself up to date will increase your home’s value and your own personal assurance.
Join the conversation to speak with our garage door experts about the signs that indicate you may need a new garage door.