Common Garage Door Problems and Solutions
Garage doors are fairly intricate, yet common pieces of technology. Like most technology, they act up and break down every so often. Sometimes these problems are easily diagnosed and solved with at-home work by yourself, but others require a trained mechanic. In this article, we’ll cover some of the most common problems you could be having with your garage door and what you can try to fix it.
1) Dead Batteries in the Transmitter
If the batteries in your transmitter are dead, it can’t send the signal to the garage door to open. The first thing you should check if you’re garage door is struggling to open with your remote transmitter is that the transmitter on the wall inside your garage still operates correctly. If the door opens using the inside transmitter, you simply need to replace the batteries in your remote one.
This problem has the easiest solution of them all: you simply need to replace the batteries in the transmitter the same way you would your television’s remote control.
2) Sensor Eye Knocked Out of Alignment
Every garage door installed after 1993 has sensor eyes to open the garage door back up automatically if something is in its way. The first thing to check if your sensor isn’t working right is the cleanliness of the lens. They can get dirty over time, blocking the light beam; gently wipe the lens off, clearing away any dust that may have accumulated.
If that didn’t work, you need to check the alignment of the sensor eyes. The sensor eyes on either side should be fixed in the same position, pointing in the exact same direction at the same angle. When the alignment gets off, the sensors confuse each other as something in the path of the garage door and thus won’t allow the door to open. Measure the height of each sensor and use a level to determine they’re pointing at the same angle.
If after you’ve both cleaned them and ensured they’re alignment is correct, the garage door still won’t open, you need to call a professional to come and inspect and repair the garage door.
3) The Track is Out of Alignment
This could be a serious problem that poses quite a bit of danger. If you notice any gaps between the rail and the rollers or that the rails are bent, you have a problem with your alignment. The weight of the door can make this problem even worse until it becomes dangerous to even use your garage door.
There are some at-home remedies you can try if the door still moves. If you hear a rubbing or grinding noise when the garage door reaches the problem area in the track, it’s misaligned. To resolve this issue and realign the track, you need to first loosen the screws fixing the track to the frame. Next, with a rubber mallet, gently tap the track to shift it back to the proper positions, using a level to ensure its straightness and accuracy. When you finish, ensure the track is securely screwed into place so that it won’t move, causing further problems.
If the door isn’t moving at all due to the alignment problem, then you’ll need a trained professional to come and fix the problem. If it happens to be beyond repair, the professional you hire can install a new track.
4) Something Blocking the Pathway of the Door
As we said above, doors installed after 1993 come with a sensor designed to engage a reversing mechanism to prevent the door from causing damage to anything that might be in its way. If you notice that your door opens partially and then retracts, it’s likely got something in its way.
Inspect the area around the door completely to see if something is in its path, even just the slightest bit. If you can’t find anything blocking it, check to see if there’s any buildup in the tracks. It’s not a bad practice to regularly wipe down the tracks to prevent this from happening.
5) The Door is Manually Locked
If your garage door won’t open and you’ve inspected it completely, eliminating all other options, it could be manually locked. It’s common for some garage doors to come equipped with manual locks, especially older ones, to help improve security for your home. The manual lock will look like a handle or knob in the middle of your door with two horizontal bars. There should be a button around or on the handle or knob to lock the garage door from the inside.
As you can imagine, it can be incredibly easy to accidentally hit the button as you move around your garage or getting things out of your car. To manually unlock the door, all you have to do is turn the knob or handle until you hear a click, moving the horizontal bars from the edges, opening the lock.
If there’s something wrong with your garage door, check the problems we mentioned above first, before you call a repairman. You may be able to save yourself the money and fix it yourself, but if not, at least you can catch the problem early before any major and costly damage sets in. We want to remind you that you always need to remain vigilant and follow proper safety precautions; garage doors are incredibly heavy and held in place by springs and cables under a ridiculous amount of tension.