If you're like many homeowners, the desire to do some spring cleaning in your house will eventually lead you to the garage. Once you get there, don't stop with clearing away the junk that you're storing where your car should be or straightening up loose tools and cleaning supplies – take the time to do some spring maintenance on your garage door as well. Your garage door performs an important function all year long, and once-a-year maintenance is not too much to ask to keep it in working order. Here are some things that you can do to make sure that your garage door stays in top condition.
Test the Balance
A garage door that's improperly balanced will put additional strain on the garage door opener. That will reduce the lifespan of your garage door opener, and you'll have to pay to replace it sooner. You can test the balance by disconnecting the door from the opener. Usually, you can do this by pulling the red emergency release cord that connects the two.
Once you've disconnected the door from the opener, manually raise the garage door to the halfway point. It should stay right where you put it. If it doesn't stay still, it means that your springs are imbalanced or loose and need to be adjusted or replaced. Garage door springs are under a lot of pressure, and attempting to adjust them yourself can result in serious injury. If you believe your door is unbalanced, it's time to call in a garage door repair professional to fix or replace the springs. If the door is balanced correctly, you can move on to the next task.
Inspect the Rollers
Your garage door rollers are the things that make the garage door go up and down smoothly. You may be able to tell that you have a problem with them without even looking at them – if your garage door is making loud, squeaky sounds, that's a good sign that your rollers are worn out. Even if you don't hear a problem, though, it's a good idea to take a look at them to check for chips, cracks, or other signs of wear.
If the rollers are squeaky or worn-looking, don't worry – you can replace these yourself, and it won't even cost you that much. You can buy either metal or nylon rollers. The nylon rollers tend to be quieter, and you can get them for around $8. Before you start working, put the garage door up, use C-clamps to lock it into place, turn off the garage door opener, and disconnect the door from the opener. This way, you can be sure that the door won't close on your fingers. Once the door is safely in place, all that you need to do is remove the bracket holding the old roller in place, slide in the new roller, and replace the bracket.
Lubricate the Moving Parts
The way that a garage door works is pretty simple – it uses a system of cables, springs, and rollers to move the door up and down. If any one of those moving parts gets stuck, you'll have problems with the door. That's why you should lubricate all of the moving parts periodically. Check with your garage door professional to find out which spray lubricant is best suited for your door.
You'll need to spray the door hinges, the garage door track, and the bearing brackets in addition to the rollers, springs, and cables. If you have a chain drive or screw drive garage door, the chain or screw should be lubricated with white lithium grease.
Garage door maintenance is pretty simple, and it should fit easily into your spring cleaning routine. A quiet garage door that's working correctly is the perfect complement to a newly cleaned garage. For more information on keeping your garage door maintained, check out a company like Crawford Door Company.