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How to Prepare Your Garage Door for Seasonal Changes

Garage Maintenance Check

How to Prepare Your Garage Door for Seasonal Changes

May 29, 2024

As temperatures begin to fluctuate with the changing seasons, preparing your garage maintenance to handle these variations becomes a priority. An area often overlooked is the humble garage door. This area can be a significant source of energy loss and a potential point of failure when not properly maintained. 

In this guide, we'll explore the steps you should follow to ensure your garage door is ready to face the seasonal shifts. We aim to help you keep your garage secure and efficient all year round.

Conduct a Visual Inspection

The first step in preparing your garage door for seasonal changes is a simple visual inspection. Look for signs of wear and tear such as rust, cracks, and damages to the door itself, as well as the hardware including springs, cables, and rollers. Any damage can hinder the door's operation and compromise its insulation properties.

Check the Weatherstripping

Weatherstripping around the garage door seals the gap between the door and the ground, preventing drafts and water from entering the garage. Over time, the seal can become cracked or brittle, especially after a hot summer or a cold winter. Replace worn weatherstripping to maintain a consistent temperature and prevent moisture damage inside the garage.

Garage Maintenance Worker

Tighten Up Hardware

The vibration and movement of a garage door can loosen hardware over time. Twice a year, take the time to inspect and tighten all bolts and brackets holding the door and the garage door opener in place. A well-fastened door ensures safer operation and reduces the chances of malfunctions due to loose components.

Lubricate Moving Parts for Garage Maintenance

Regular lubrication of your garage door's moving parts is essential for smooth operation. Always use a garage door-specific lubricant, avoiding WD-40, as it can attract dirt and debris. Focus on hinges, rollers, tracks, and springs. Proper lubrication reduces stress on the door opener and extends the life of the door.

Inspect and Adjust Springs

Garage door springs are under a significant amount of tension and can wear out or lose tension over time. If the door isn't opening smoothly or seems out of balance, it may be time to adjust or replace the springs. Because of the dangers involved in handling high-tension springs, this is a task best left to professionals.

Test the Garage Door Balance

An unbalanced garage door puts undue strain on the opener and can be dangerous. To test the balance, disconnect the opener by pulling the release handle (usually a red cord) and manually lift the door halfway. A well-balanced door will stay in place, while an imbalanced one will fall or rise. If it's not balanced, call a technician.

Check the Auto-Reverse Features

Modern garage doors include safety features that reverse the door if it encounters an obstruction. Test this by placing a block of wood on the ground in the path of the door. When the door hits the block, it should reverse direction. If it doesn’t, it’s time to call a technician to adjust this critical safety feature.

Consider Insulation

Garage door insulation is crucial, especially in areas with extreme temperatures. Insulation kits are available for many types of garage doors and can be a worthwhile investment. Adding insulation helps maintain temperature, reduces noise, and can save on energy costs.

Clean and Paint the Door

Seasonal preparations are also a great time to clean the garage door. Dirt and debris can cause scratches and wear on the door’s paint, which in turn can lead to rust. Wash the door with a mild detergent and rinse well. If the paint is peeling or faded, consider repainting the door to protect it from the elements.

Examine the Door Opener

Don't overlook the opener – it's the workhorse of the garage door system. Check the manufacturer's guide for maintenance tips specific to your model. Replace batteries in remotes, clear the tracks of debris, and if the opener is old or showing signs of strain, consider an upgrade to a newer, more efficient model.

Prepare for Emergencies

Ensure you know how to manually open your garage door in case of a power outage or other emergencies. The interior should have a bypass that allows for manual operation. Test this feature to make sure you can operate it if the need arises.

Season-Specific Tips

Each season brings its specific challenges, from freezing cold to sweltering heat, each affecting your garage door's performance in unique ways. Below are season-specific tips that will help you ensure your garage door remains functional, secure, and efficient, no matter what the weather forecast may bring.

Preparing for Winter

  • Ensure all moving parts are lubricated before temperatures drop, as the cold can make the metal contract and moving parts can stick.
  • Look for drafts or cold spots around the door and add weatherstripping or insulation as needed to keep the chill out.

Preparing for Summer

  • Summer can bring intense heat and sunlight that can fade your door's paint and dry out wooden doors. Keep the door clean and consider a fresh coat of paint if it's showing signs of wear.
  • Be mindful of the potential for insect infestation, particularly in wood doors, and treat any issues early.
A Garage Maintenance

The Value of Professional Garage Door Service

Maintaining your garage door is vital for your home's overall functionality and safety. While many aspects of garage door maintenance can be handled through a diligent DIY approach, certain tasks are best left to professional garage door services. 

Recognizing when to call in the experts can save you both time and potential risk, ensuring that your garage door operates smoothly and safely throughout the seasons. Here's how a professional service can be invaluable:

Why Professional Services?

Engaging professional garage door services is not just about fixing problems as they arise. This is a proactive approach to ensure the safety, efficiency, and longevity of one of your home's most significant moving parts. Here are the critical benefits professional services offer, highlighting why, for certain tasks and scenarios, calling the experts is the best course of action.

Safety

Garage doors are heavy and operate under high tension, especially the springs. Mishandling these components can lead to severe injury or property damage. Professionals have the training, experience, and tools to perform maintenance and repairs safely.

Expertise

A professional technician can diagnose issues that might not be immediately obvious to the untrained eye. They can provide a comprehensive inspection and identify parts that are worn or at risk of failure, which could save you from future malfunctions and costly emergency repairs.

Warranty

Professional repairs often come with a warranty, giving you peace of mind that if something goes wrong with the repair, you're covered.

Longevity

Proper maintenance by experienced technicians can extend the life of your garage door system, preventing wear and tear that could result in needing an entirely new door sooner than you would have otherwise.

When to Call Professional Garage Door Services

Regular monitoring and minor maintenance of your garage door can often be managed on your own. However, there are certain circumstances where the expertise and tools of a professional service become essential. 

Knowing when to enlist the help of a professional can save time, ensure safety, and prolong the life of your garage door. Here are scenarios where professional intervention is advised:

Annual Inspection and Maintenance

Having a professional service your garage door annually is a proactive step that can detect and address potential issues before they become major problems.

Spring Replacement or Repair

Due to the high tension they're under, fixing or replacing springs can be dangerous. Rely on professionals to handle this task safely.

Door Replacement or Major Repairs

Whether due to aesthetic upgrades or functional needs, replacing your garage door or performing significant repairs should be managed by a professional to ensure correct installation and operation.

Opener Installation or Repair

Garage door openers have complex mechanisms and require expertise for proper installation and repair. Professionals ensure that the installation is carried out correctly and that all the safety features are functioning properly.

Unusual Noises or Operation Issues

If your garage door is making strange noises or not operating smoothly, it could be a sign of an issue that requires professional attention. Trying to fix it yourself might cause more damage.

Professional Garage Maintenance

Conclusion

Maintaining your garage door is key to your home's security, energy efficiency, and curb appeal. With seasonal changes, proactive care is crucial to avoid costly repairs. 

Trust in Right Choice Doors to ensure your garage stays in top condition with their professional services. Regular maintenance, supported by their expertise, not only preserves your garage door but also enhances your daily life by guaranteeing its reliable operation in any weather.

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