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Fixing that Cranky Garage Door Yourself

Jul 23, 2008
Are you annoyed because the garage door isn't working? Don't head out and replace it right away. First try a few of these easy repair ideas that could possibly be all that's required to get your garage door functioning properly once more.

In most cases, minor repair jobs can save you a lot of money by not making you purchase a whole new door. Here are some things to check out first to see if your door can be repaired:

First of all, you'll want to check out the metal tracks. Most garage doors have a track system that allows the door to be lifted up and then rolled back. Make sure that the metal tracks are tightly fastened and that they are in good shape.

Tighten any bolts or nuts that appear loose or, if needed, replace some bolts. Loose bolts or nuts can cause the door to jam up when attempting to travel along the track.

Clean the rollers and tracks. Sometimes a garage door won't work as effectively if the rollers on the door or the metal tracks are full of debris. Check them out and clean them if needed.

If there appears to be a sludge-like substance, then you can try cleaning the tracks and rollers with regular household dish soap. Once the debris is cleared away and the tracks are cleaned up, the door can run smoother when you're operating it. Using lubricant oil can also enable the door to operate more smoothly.

You may also want to take a look at the springs. Many doors have tension springs on them, and you will want to make sure that these springs are in good shape. Sometimes they just need to have the tension readjusted so that they work just like they should. If you find that the tension springs are in poor condition, it is usually a lot safer to make sure they get replaced.

Checking out the pulley system associated with the springs is important as well. You'll want to make sure it's in good shape, and if not, then make sure to replace it.

If you only have one tension spring right in the middle of the track for your garage door and you think it may need replaced or fixed, make sure you get a professional to help. Since these springs are under a huge amount of tension, it can be very dangerous to try replacing or repairing these springs on your own.

Take the time to check out the hardware on the door and the track system. In some cases just a loose hinge can cause all the trouble. If there is something that needs to be tightened, do it. Also, replace hinges on the door if you think they may be the problem.

If you door opener is electric, examine the door opening apparatus. It might only require replacement batteries. If you find it must be replaced altogether, find out from the manufacturer if an alternative is to be had.

If you see that the garage door is not working right, check and see if you can do something to fix it before you go out and buy a new one. However, if you do need a new garage door, make sure to have a professional come and install it.
About the Author
Learn more about home improvement projects, contractors, stores and products by reading Paul Cameron's articles at The Home Improvement Site.
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