Garage Door Maintenance Advice
If you have a garage door fitted to your property the chances are that you will pay it very little attention on a day to day basis. Only when something drastic goes wrong such as it collapsing might you consider calling out an engineer to fix the problem however by that stage it may be that damage to property has already occurred or worse still someone may have been injured as a result of the fault.
Instead why not take some preventative steps to stop it getting into a state of disrepair in the first place? Here with the help of Roller Doors Ltd, this article we will look at what you can do to keep the door running smoothly and safely therefore prolonging its lifespan, reduce the chances of injury to you and your family and ultimately help to keep your valuable property safe and secure from the hands of criminals, vandals and trespassers.
Please be aware that garage doors are a heavy and dangerous object that has the potential to cause serious harm to anyone making improper alterations. As such the following information is intended as a guide only and should not be solely relied upon for all door types. To find what maintenance recommendations the manufacturer of your garage door suggests try looking online for specific fitting instructions that relate to the model you have or call the manufacturer direct and they will be able to send the relevant documentation to you.
Garage Door Types
Depending upon the type of garage door you have will determine the type of maintenance it will require. Some designs will have more components to check than others however here we detail the 4 most popular styles in the UK.
Up & Over Doors
The main areas to look at are the overall condition of the door panel (is it rusting, are there any signs of rot, sharp edges or similar signs of deterioration in its condition etc) In addition to this you will need to check all the fixings are securely fastened and make the required adjustments if any loose nuts and bolts are found to be present. It is also recommended thatthe cables, rollers and other moving parts are checked for signs of wear and tear.
Should any damaged parts be present you will need to replace these on a like for like basis. One last area of concern is the amount of spring tension that is on the door. This can be checked by opening the door part way and seeing if it rises or falls within the opening. Too much tension and the panel will want to continue to open on its own and not enough tension will see the panel drop down when you let go of the door. If either instance is present adjustments will need to be made however this is not something a DIYer should carry out as serious injury can occur if it is not completed in the correct manner.
Side Hinged Doors
Perhaps the most traditional of all garage door designs, there really is not much that can go wrong with these models. Other than surface rust (or rot if constructed from timber) the only other components that might need to be adjusted are the hinges and lock. In terms of the hinges a little lubrication will keep the doors swinging freely whereas the lock may need a little adjustment to ensure it aligns perfectly with the receiver unit on the other leaf.
Sectional Garage Doors
Featuring the largest number of moving components of all the designs discussed here the sectional door is a bit like a giant mechano set in its construction and as a result lots of items will need checking including the fixings, signs of wear and tear and the presence of obstructions that may hinder the doors operation.
Start by working your way around the door panels and tracking mechanism looking for signs of loose fixings or missing bolts. Make the required adjustments as necessary paying particular attention to the fixing points that hold the horizontal tracks to the ceiling.
Once this have been completed check the cables are free from damage and obstructions then check the rollers are free to run up and down with the vertical tracks. At this stage if any dirt of debris is found it should be removed with a clean cloth and a little white spirit as this will allow the rollers to run smoothly across the surface of the metal.
Lastly check the spring tension is set correctly by opening the door about half way. If properly balanced the panel should remain in position. If the door lifts or drops within the opening adjustments will need to be made until such time it is properly tensioned.
Roller Garage Doors
Featuring the least amount of components a roller garage door will require minimal amounts of maintenance to keep it running safely and efficiently. Upon carrying out your inspection you should check for signs of damage to individual lath (the parts that make up the door panel) and replace where necessary.
In addition to this check all bolts and fixings are secure and clean the tracks to keep them free from debris. Other than these simple measures the only other contentious area is the spring tension. Although adjustment is pretty simple if you follow manufacturer instructions there is always the chance of injury if not done correctly so if in any doubt always leave it to the professionals.
Electric Garage Doors
Although not already mentioned if your garage door is automated you will need to carry out some further work to ensure the door is safe to operate.
Boom Operated Motors
If you have an up and over, side hinged or sectional garage door that is powered by means of a standard boom operated garage door motor then it is essential that the force limitation is set up correctly. Whilst most motors will automatically set up and adjust the sensitivity to keep the door safe to operate some older or cheaper motors need manual adjustment. To see if your door is safe, run the motor so the door is fully open, place a small object beneath the space where the door sits in the closed position then run the motor back down. If set up correctly the instance the leading edge of the door touches the obstruction the motor should automatically stop and auto reverse to free the object.
If this does not occur it would indicate a problem and in this instance refer to manufacturer installation instructions for further diagnosis.
Normally fitted to a roller door a tubular motor sits inside the barrel of the roller mechanism and basically spins to open and close the door. Due to the slim line design is it not able to detect any obstructions of its own accord and as such needs to be run in conjunction with an additional safety device such as a photo cell, light grid or wireless safety edge. Regardless of the design chosen the basic safety requirement is that it must be capable of stopping the door should an obstruction get in the way of the doors path of travel. To test the device works correctly place an object within the opening and the door should not be able to be operated. (in the case of a safety edge movement will occur until such time that contact is made with an obstruction and only then will the motor cut out).
To conclude, now we have looked at the maintenance aspects of the 4 most popular garage doors for sale in the UK you should be able to take the required preventative maintenance precautions with ease leading to safe operation of the door and a prolonged lifespan as a result.