Winter arrives soon, and even though the season comes and goes quickly in coastal Georgia, it is important to inspect and winterize your garage door before you find yourself faced with any unpleasant surprises. The whole process to winterize takes only about 30 minutes using items you already have around the house or garage.
1. Check the Battery in Your Remote Control
Depending on how many times a day you use your garage door, the normally flat round battery inside your remote control can last up to 12 months. But our suggestion? Always keep a spare one on hand or drop by one of our offices for a free one!
2. Check the Battery in the External Keypad
This 9-volt battery is located underneath the keypad cover. You may need a Phillips screwdriver to open the compartment. Since this battery is subjected to extreme temperature fluctuations, you should change it yearly.
To do this, disable your garage door opener by pulling the emergency cord. Open the garage door gently using one hand. Were you able to do it easily?
If it’s hard to open, there are several possible causes. Don’t attempt to fix it by yourself! Contact a certified garage door system technician who will identify the cause of the problem and repair it on-site. Never try to change a broken spring yourself as it is very hazardous.
4. Check the Weather-Stripping
Is the weather-stripping, also called perimeter seal, on the outer door frame working correctly without being smashed tightly against the door? If there is any damage or any hardening caused by the sun, take the time to replace it. If it’s made of PVC, apply a silicone-based lubricant.
Also, take a look at the weather-stripping at the bottom of the door. Is it worn or damaged? You can change this weather-stripping yourself or have a professional complete the job.
5. Lubricate the Metal Parts of Your Hardware
To winterize inside your garage, lubricate all the metallic parts: rollers, tracks and springs.
- Before applying, use a dry cloth to remove any remaining lubricant from years past, and most importantly, any accumulated dust.
- Use an oil-based lubricant (e.g., 10W-30 motor oil).
- Apply sparingly, wiping up the excess with a rag.
- Do not use lubricants such as WD-40, as these are actually degreasers, rather than lubricants.
- Do not use grease, especially on the tracks. The rollers should roll, rather than slide inside the track.
6. Check Your Garage Door’s Automatic Reversal Systems
There are two different methods—one mechanical and one photoelectric:
- Mechanical: Place a two-by-four on the threshold of your garage door. Press the button to close the door. When it contacts the piece of wood, the door should detect the resistance, stop and then go back up. If it doesn’t, consult the door opener maintenance manual to find the location of the button for making the necessary adjustments.
- Photoelectric: If you have this type of safety system in place (2 encased units about 4” off the ground), just stick your foot in front of the beam while the door is closing. If the door doesn’t stop and then reverse, the most common cause of the problem is that the two units are misaligned. Check and correct the alignment and then try again. If it still doesn’t work, contact a certified door professional immediately.
So, that’s it! We hope these few little tips help you winterize and avoid some big problems later.
Keep in mind that it is recommended by the International Door Association and DASMA (Doors & Access Systems Manufacturers Association) that your garage door system be serviced at least annually. Think about it: Your garage door is the largest moving mechanical part in your home and must be maintained properly.
If you don’t have the time or aren’t the DIY type, contact Overhead Door Company of Brunswick at 912-265-3355, or visit our website at www.ohdbrunswick.com. We will be glad to service your door system and can set you up on our annual planned maintenance schedule.