Why Is My Garage Door Making Noise?
A high-quality garage door will have a smooth and quiet operation, but over time, even the highest quality doors will experience wear and tear that could result in unpleasant noises. If you have a noisy garage door, try some of these garage door troubleshooting tips.
Common Garage Door Noises
Here are some typical garage door noises and what causes them:
- Banging: A banging sound means you need to replace your garage door panels, or you may need to put the garage door back on its track.
- Straining: If your door is straining to open or close, you may need to replace the motor in your garage door opener. It could also indicate you don’t have enough power in your garage.
- Rattling: A ratting noise may mean you need to tighten some loose nuts or bolts, lubricate the door’s metal moving parts or put the garage door back on its track. The door opener’s support rails or chain might be loose as well.
- Scraping: A scraping sound is more severe than banging or rattling because it means the door is scraping against your house, and it usually means your garage door is unbalanced.
- Rumbling: A rumbling sound could mean a loosened spring or coil tension. Call a professional to tighten any tension springs in your garage door system.
- Squeaking: A squeaking sound could signal a loose roller or hinge. Lubricate the rollers and tighten loose parts to get rid of the noise.
- Loud opening and closing: If your garage door makes loud noises when opening or closing, you may have poor acoustics in your garage. Install some insulation or soundproofing on the walls to keep the sound contained.
- Clinking: A clinking sound is often due to rust buildup, which causes spring coils to rub together.
- Popping: What can cause your garage door to make a popping noise? In many cases, it means one of your torsion springs has snapped. Call a professional to replace the torsion spring.
- Rubbing: Bent tracks or tracks that are too tight produce a rubbing sound. A professional would need to adjust the alignment of your garage door.
- Squealing: A squealing sound comes from inadequate lubrication. If you lubricate your moving parts and you still hear a squealing noise, call a professional. You may need to have the door reinstalled or put back in place on the track.
- Grinding: A garage door grinding noise could be from a loose roller or hinge. Try lubricating the parts to stop the grinding noise. Improper installation or a stripped out trolley may need help from a professional.
- Slapping: A loose chain could make a slapping sound against the garage door opener.
- Vibrating: If you hear a vibrating sound, tighten the loose nuts or bolts around the track. You can also try lubricating the rollers.
Causes of a Garage Door Making Noises
Inspect your garage door to find out what’s causing the noise. Here are some common problems to explain why you might have a noisy garage door:
- The garage door is old: Garage doors make more noise as they age. These sounds are usually due to old rollers that may need extra lubricant.
- The garage door has fallen off-balance: A garage door that has come off the track will be louder than normal as it opens and closes. If you hear this, call a professional garage door company to fix your door’s alignment.
- The garage door opener needs repairing or replacing: If you hear a rattling sound, you may have a problem with your garage door opener. A chain-drive opener makes more noise than a belt-drive one, but you will need to call your garage door manufacturer if the chain or belt is loose.
- The rollers have signs of wear and tear: As metal garage door openers get older, they’ll get rusty and start to make noise. Nylon rollers make less noise than steel rollers over time.
- The nuts and bolts have come loose: Loose nuts and bolts will produce a screeching sound when your garage door opens and closes.
- The hinges and rollers need lubrication: All moving parts of a garage door need lubrication to function. Lubricate your metal garage door pieces until your door is quiet again.
How to Eliminate Noise From a Garage Door
While a garage door will always make some noise, there are a few things you can try yourself to help reduce the noise if it has gotten out of hand. Just be sure to disengage the automatic setting while you’re inspecting and repairing the garage door. Keep in mind, though, that if your garage door won’t open or close, or if it has fallen off the track, you could get hurt while trying to fix it. Trust a professional to adjust your noisy door instead of repairing it yourself.
Here are some things you can do on your own to help reduce garage door noise:
- Tighten nuts and bolts: Use a wrench and a screwdriver to tighten the bolts and nuts along the track. Be careful not to make them too tight, or you could strip the lag screw holes.
- Lubricate or replace the rollers: Rusted metal garage door rollers make a vibrating sound as they move. Lubricate your rollers and surrounding hinges until the noise stops. You can use the lubricant supplied by your manufacturer or one like it.
- Lubricate or replace the torsion and extension springs: The torsion spring is above your closed garage door. The extension spring is by the tracks on each side of the door. Before using lubricant, inspect your springs to make sure they didn’t snap. If they did, call a professional to replace your springs. If not, lubricate the springs with the spray from your door’s manufacturer. Use caution when manipulating these springs. If they snap, they could be a safety hazard to you and your property.
- Inspect the garage door opener: If you’ve looked over the garage door and it’s still making noise, check the garage door opener. Follow the instruction manual for how to reduce noise from the garage door opener. A loose chain or belt could cause a rattling or slapping sound. Contact your garage door manufacturer to inspect your opener if the belt or chain is loose. If it’s intact, lubricate it with the lubricant they gave you.
- Regular maintenance checks: After doing a thorough inspection yourself, the garage door still might make noise. Call in a professional to inspect and replace any damaged parts. Schedule an appointment to have your garage door checked at least once a year to prolong its life.
Let Our Team Fix Your Noisy Garage Door
Our professionals at Olympic Garage Door are experts in garage door troubleshooting. We perform work throughout the Olympic Peninsula for residents and commercial businesses in Port Angeles, Sequim and Port Townsend. If you have concerns about your garage door, we will help you eliminate any existing noises and prevent future issues. Contact us online to request service for your noisy garage door, or call us at 360-452-3859.
How Often Do I Need to Replace My Garage Door?
You can go for years without needing to replace your garage door. Your garage door will last longer if you clean it and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for taking care of it. If you perform maintenance work at least once a year, a garage door’s lifespan can extend to up to several decades. If you’re having problems with your garage door, though, consider getting it replaced.
Inspect your garage door regularly for the following signs that you need to replace a garage door. If you need a replacement, call your local garage door company for an estimate. Use this guide to determine when and how to replace a garage door.
How Long Do Garage Doors Last?
A garage door can last for several decades if you give it the proper care. Here are some factors that will help you determine a garage door’s life expectancy:
- Construction quality: The installer of your garage door might have done a poor job. If the garage door contains cheap material or was installed incorrectly, it won’t last as long. Instead, consult with a trustworthy professional to install a garage door.
- Inspection: Schedule an annual preventative maintenance appointment with your local garage door company. During this appointment, a professional will inspect your garage door for broken parts. Replacing parts of the garage door — like a garage door opener or a tension spring — can prolong the life of your whole system.
- Proper maintenance: You should also maintain your garage door by lubricating the moving parts with oil. Lubrication prevents rust from tainting these metallic parts. You should also clean your door with mild detergent and water to remove debris. Consult the manufacturer to find out how to clean your garage door’s material.
- Local climate conditions: Extreme heat or cold could cause wear and tear on your garage door. Think about how your garage door material performs in your home’s climate. For example, wooden garage doors are prone to warping in moist environments. Vinyl garage doors are also sensitive to UV lighting.
When to Replace a Garage Door
If your garage door is more than ten years old and you notice that it’s not working like it used to, you may need to replace your garage door. You know that you need to replace a garage door if it shows any of the following signs.
1. Your Door Has Damage From Wear and Tear
The average garage door opens thousands of times each year. If you’ve had your garage door for ten years, it has done a lot of work over its lifespan. Without proper maintenance, a garage door will have damage due to wear and tear. Here are some of the reasons why garage doors lose their strength and functionality over time:
- Carrying the weight of a garage door: The springs and lifting cable of a garage door can become damaged due to holding up the garage door for so long. When they experience excessive wear and tear, the tension springs can snap and drop the door.
- Dirt and debris inside the rollers: A noisy garage door means that there’s friction on the garage door track. Debris buildup could cause a track misalignment.
- Weather damage: The wear and tear of precipitation can damage a garage door over time. Wind, rain, snow and UV rays result in rusting, warping or discoloration.
2. Your Door Isn’t Opening or Closing
The purpose of your garage door is to open so you can access your home and close so you can have privacy. If your garage door gives you trouble when you move it, you need to inspect it to find out what’s causing the issue. Invest in a door that provides a smooth transition from the car to the inside of your home. You can also replace the parts of the garage door, like the garage door opener.
Here are some common garage door problems. These problems could explain why your door might not be opening and closing:
- Faulty garage door opener: Having an old garage door opener can lead to several safety hazards. The automated reversal feature, which makes the door reverse if a person or object is in the way, may not work correctly. You could also leave your garage vulnerable to thieves with a faulty garage door opener. Burglars know how to override an old garage door opener system. Besides these safety features, a new garage door opener provides quieter operation.
- Broken remote control: If the remote control doesn’t work, the motor unit might have disconnected. You could also try replacing the batteries to your remote control or standing closer to the door. If the motor unit has burned out, you will have to get the motor to the garage door opener replaced.
- Misaligned photo eye: The photo eye activates the automated reversal feature. The smallest obstruction, even dust, could affect the functionality of the photo eye. If your garage door doesn’t open and close all the way, you may need to get your photo eye inspected and replaced.
3. The Door Has Obvious Signs of Damage
You need to replace your garage door if an accident, a storm or vandalism has damaged it severely. Here are some types of damage that a professional would need to replace:
- Broken springs and lift cables: A broken tension spring can be dangerous. You will know if the tension spring isn’t working because your garage door won’t open. After extensive use, the lift cables and tension spring could snap. A broken tension spring creates a loud sound that you can hear from anywhere in the house. You can replace a broken tension spring, but you should be careful. Let a professional fix your broken spring to avoid further damage.
- Track misalignment: A garage door that has fallen off the track will no longer function. The material of the garage door could rub against the track and cause it to fall out of alignment. You will know if you have a track misalignment issue because the door will look crooked. A track misalignment could result in the garage door ruining the siding on your house.
- Dents: A dent in the garage door could prevent smooth movement along the track. It can also decrease your home’s curb appeal. Indentations from sports equipment or harsh weather conditions could damage the space between your panels and leave a gap in your garage door. While you can repair your garage door by fixing one board, it’s better to get the whole garage door replaced.
4. Your Garage Door Is a Safety Hazard
For safety reasons, you should always keep your garage door closed and locked. A faulty garage door can be a safety risk to you and your family. Here are some reasons why you might not feel safe in your garage or near your garage door:
- Burglary: Intruders may try to get into your house through the garage. They may even use your tools to try to unlock the entry door, so you should always keep tools locked away. A new garage door may have an extra lock or will be more durable than your old one.
- Outdated technology: Burglars can sometimes figure out access codes to get into your garage. With new technology, you can set up a keypad that creates a random access code and sends it to your phone. That way, the password will be different every time.
- A faulty photo eye: The photo eye keeps your family safe by ensuring that no one is in the way of the garage door. If a small child or a pet runs under the garage door while it’s closing, the garage door will go back up. A faulty photo eye is a serious safety issue.
5. Your Energy Costs Are Increasing
Old garage doors lose their insulation over time. If you notice an increase in your energy bills each month, you may want to invest in a new garage door. Here are some reasons why a new garage door will improve the energy-efficiency of your home:
- Better insulation: If you want more insulation on your garage door, you can request it from your local garage door company. You could also invest in material that offers improved energy efficiency, like wood.
- Let your HVAC take a break: The extra insulation of a new garage door can help ease the burden on your HVAC system. When the temperature in the garage is comfortable, your HVAC system can take a break.
- More “smart” technology: Many new garage door openers can connect to your phone, enabling you to control your garage door from anywhere in the world. This technology saves money on energy bills because you’ll only open it when it’s necessary to do so. Smart technology can also alert you if your garage door is open when you’re not home.
Cost to Replace Garage Door
The cost of replacing a garage door ranges from a few hundred dollars to several thousand, depending on various factors. Some of the factors that will affect your costs include:
- Materials: The cost to replace your garage door depends, in part, on the material you choose. Steel and wood are some of the least expensive options, while fiberglass and vinyl tend to be some of the most expensive. Installing additional insulation to improve energy efficiency will also add to material costs. Keep in mind that some materials, such as wood, cost more to maintain over time.
- Parts that need replacing: You may be able to use some parts from your existing garage door to reduce your costs. If you don’t know how old the parts are, however, you should replace them so you know they’ll function correctly.
- Labor costs: While you could do it yourself, hiring a professional to replace your garage door is much more efficient. You’ll save more time, and you’ll even save money. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can make mistakes that will cost you more money in the long run. Your estimate from the garage door company often includes the cost of labor, including for removing and disposing of the old door and installing the new one. Labor will likely add a few hundred dollars to your costs. Some types of projects may cost more in labor, however. To upgrade to a taller garage door, for example, the garage door company will have to remove parts of your siding to make space for this extra height.
- Size: A door replacement for a two-car garage will cost more money than for a one-car garage because of the door’s larger size. A two-car garage door typically costs a little less than double what a one-car garage door costs.
- Location: In areas with higher costs of living, garage door replacement costs will likely be higher as well.
A garage door replacement can be a cost-effective project if you know where your money is going. Here are some of the benefits that make installing a new garage door worthwhile:
- Higher resale value: A garage door replacement can yield a resale value of 94.5% in Washington state. You can get more for your house when you sell it and take advantage of the enhanced curb appeal. A garage door replacement is one of the most cost-effective remodeling projects.
- Improved appearance: You can choose the color and material of your new garage door. Select a style that complements the other elements of your interior design. If your current garage door has some dents, a new garage door will make your home look more modern.
- Improved safety: A new garage door and garage door opener will enhance the security of your home. A faulty garage door opener might not have an automatic reversal feature. Replacing the garage door will also help keep your family safe from intruders.
- Improved energy efficiency: A garage door replacement can reduce the cost of your energy bill each month. With an insulated garage door, you can more easily regulate the temperature of your garage. The insulation also keeps cold air out of the main area of the home.
- Reduce maintenance time and cost: Newer garage doors are easier to maintain. Since their parts function better, they require less maintenance and fewer repairs. You can save money over time with a new garage door.
Garage Door Replacement in the Greater Olympic Peninsula
If your garage door shows any of these signs, consider a garage door replacement. Browse through our collection of Clopay residential garage doors to find a high-quality option for your home. We also have reliable LiftMaster garage door openers.
If you live in the greater Olympic Peninsula, the professionals at Olympic Garage Door can inspect your garage door and determine if you need a garage door replacement. Visit our staffed showroom in Port Angeles to browse our inventory. You can also contact us online or call us at 360-452-3859 to request an estimate.
Common Garage Door Problems
If you’re like most homeowners, you probably take your garage door for granted. As long as it goes up and down when you need it to, you don’t think much about it.
Then one day, you walk out to the garage to leave for work.
You hit the button on the garage door opener.
You press the button again.
When your garage door doesn’t do what you want it to do, it’s easy to become frustrated. But garage door troubleshooting doesn’t have to be stressful. When you encounter problems with your garage door, it’s often one of six common automatic garage door problems. And, in many cases, there’s a simple solution. Knowing what you’re looking at can put your mind at ease and help you find a professional garage door repair company to quickly fix the problem.
Most Common Garage Door Problems
Although each door is different, there are definitely some common garage door problems that occur among homeowners everywhere. These garage door issues include:
1. Garage Door Won’t Close All the Way
Does your door go halfway down and then get stuck? Maybe your garage door only opens part way? In either case, a door that won’t go up and down as it should can be the first indication that a problem is present. Malfunctioning doors can indicate a problem with your door’s balance, the track itself, the garage door opener or even the springs attached to the door.
2. Broken or Old Springs
Your door moves up and down thanks to something called the torsion spring. If the spring breaks, then your door can’t move. If you’re home when this occurs, you’ll know the spring broke because you’ll hear a loud sound that mimics the sound of a firecracker. If you weren’t home when the spring broke, you’d still be able to identify the problem because you’ll likely be able to see the spring hanging down.
In some cases, the springs may not break, but they may become stretched out over time. When this happens, you might notice that the door doesn’t stay open or goes up and down more slowly than it should.
3. Worn Rollers and/or Bearings
If you hear a popping or squeaking sound when your door moves, then there may be a problem with the door’s rollers. The popping sound indicates that the rollers may be worn out, while the squeaking is a sign that the rollers and bearings need to be lubricated.
4. Obstructed Photo Eye Sensors
Photo eye sensors are installed as a safety feature to prevent your garage door from closing on top of objects or people standing in the door’s path. These sensors do a lot to protect your family and your vehicles, but if they malfunction or become blocked, they can prevent your door from closing properly.
5. Garage Door Opener Problems
Sometimes the problem may not be with your garage door. Rather, it’s with your garage door opener. There are several common garage door opener problems you may encounter. There could be a problem with the remote batteries or a problem with the opener’s transmitter. If your door won’t open at all, then it might be a sign that your garage door opener is to blame.
What’s Wrong With My Garage Door? FAQs and Answers
Garage doors can be rather predictable when it comes to their problems. Although we never recommend that you undertake major repairs on your garage door or opener, there are some simple solutions to common garage door issues that can help you troubleshoot the problem quickly.
1. Why Won’t My Garage Door Close?
One of the most common problems homeowners encounter with their garage doors is a door that’s stuck in the open position. The first thing to check when this happens is the photo eye sensors placed on either side of the garage door.
If your garage door won’t come down, take a soft, dry cloth and clean the photo sensor eye. You can also use a mild streak-free glass cleaner if it’s really dirty.
If you’ve cleaned the eyes, but the door still won’t budge, then inspect their alignment. When the sensors were initially installed, they should have been bolted into place. But if a bolt has come loose or something has knocked them out of alignment, they may not be in a position to work. If you can see that the alignment isn’t correct, gently try to bring the misaligned sensor back to its rightful place. Ideally, the two photo eye sensors should be aligned at the same angle and facing the same direction.
In some cases, if your garage door is not closing with the remote, then there may be an issue with the remote. More about that later!
2. Why Does My Garage Door Go Back Up?
The photo eye sensors we talked about in #1 can also make your garage door stop and go back up partway through closing. Why? The photo eye sensors are designed to sense objects and people in the path of the door and stop the door from closing on them. When they stop the door from continuing its downward path, they automatically send it back up. This is a valuable safety feature and also easy to correct.
If your door is only closing part of the way and then going back up, there may be something in the path of the door. In some cases, it may be obvious, such as a bike or other outdoor equipment. But, photo eye sensors are designed to be sensitive to all sorts of objects, which means that sometimes the offending object might not be so obvious. Depending on your sensors, they can also become obstructed by mud, leaves and other yard debris. Or, if there is dirt built up on the lenses, they may interpret the dirt as an object in the door’s path.
Clear all leaves, mud and other yard debris away from the threshold of your garage door. Clean the lenses as well.
If you’re sure that there’s nothing blocking your sensors, then inspect the door’s track. Sometimes, there can be buildup on the track that prevents the door from operating properly. You can clear buildup with a damp rag. It’s also a good idea to periodically wipe down your garage door’s track to prevent this issue from happening in the first place.
3. Does My Garage Door Need Repairs?
If your door is stuck in the open or closed position without a clear explanation, such as a need for new batteries in your remote transmitter or an object blocking the door’s photo eye sensors, then yes, it needs to be repaired.
Other clues that your door requires repairs include:
- Broken or stretched out torsion springs
- Unusual noises when the door goes up and down, such as screeching or squeaking
- Bent rails
- Broken cables
- Damage to the door itself, such as warping or cracks that interfere with its ability to move up and down.
If you suspect any of these problems, don’t try to repair the problem yourself. Although the thrill of DIY can be tempting, at-home garage door repair is a dangerous undertaking. Even with the best of intentions, you could accidentally injure yourself or someone else because you aren’t prepared for any and all scenarios. Resist the urge to handle the problem yourself. Call a trustworthy garage door repair company and allow them to properly diagnose and correct the problem.
4. Is My Garage Door Off-Balance?
The best way to test the balance of your garage door is to disconnect the garage door from the automatic opener. Then, manually lift the door a few feet off the ground. If the door is balanced, the springs will support it enough that it will stay in place or slowly coast back into place. If it’s off-balance, then it will quickly slide back down. Don’t go more than a few feet in the air before you let go because an unbalanced door will slide quickly, and you don’t want it crashing to the ground from a significant height.
5. Do I Need a New Garage Door?
If it’s maintained properly, the average garage door can last as long as 30 years. This means keeping the door and the tracks cleaned and free from dirt and debris. It also means addressing any dents, cracks or other issues in a timely fashion. If your door is nearing the 30-year mark, then it’s a good idea to have a professional garage door company perform maintenance on the door. They can alert you to any issues they find and also give you a heads up if they suspect your door will need to be replaced soon.
In some cases, your door may still be in good working order but be contributing to higher-than-necessary energy costs. This may be the case if your door isn’t insulated. In some cases, you may save money in the long run by replacing your older door with a newer, insulated model. When combined with other energy-saving measures, an insulated garage door can lower your energy costs and keep your home’s interior at a more comfortable temperature throughout the year.
In some cases, garage doors just don’t make it that long. The material they’re constructed from, frequency of use and the weather in your area are all big factors in determining the lifespan of your door. In general, it might be time for a new garage door if:
- Your garage door has cracks or dents that can’t be repaired and get worse each year.
- You find yourself putting a garage door repair company on speed dial because your garage door malfunctions a lot.
- Your door’s appearance is outdated.
- Your garage door predates certain important safety features, such as photo eye sensors.
Another great reason to replace your garage door is to improve your home’s curb appeal. Replacing the garage door is a budget-friendly way to make major exterior improvements to your home. This can be especially important if you’re preparing to sell your home because, on average, replacing your garage door has a 98.3 percent or higher return on investment. In other words, you get back almost everything you paid for it when it’s time to sell your home.
6. Why Is My Garage Door Opener Not Working?
If your door won’t open, and you’re sure it’s not the door itself, then the first thing you need to do is check the batteries in your remote. In many cases, the batteries may just need to be replaced.
In some cases, the opener may not work if you’ve tried to activate it with the remote when you’re too far away from your garage. Depending on the remote you’re using, you may have to actually be in front of your driveway before it activates the opener.
If you’re sure it’s not the remote, then take a look at the antenna on your garage door opener. It should be hanging down from the motor with nothing blocking it. Also, inspect it to make sure it hasn’t been damaged in some way.
If none of these common garage door opener problems appear to be the culprit, then you can reset the transmitter. Consult your owner’s manual for this.
If your garage door opener is older, you may also want to schedule maintenance with a professional garage door repair technician. They can identify any issues you might have missed or tell you if it’s time for a replacement.
Professional Garage Door Service and Repair
When it comes to garage door repair, it’s important to leave it to the professionals. It can be dangerous to address these issues on your own. You can inadvertently put your life or the life of someone else in jeopardy when you begin to work with a heavy garage door. Although you may find a lot of information online about DIY garage door repair, when it comes to garage doors, we recommend that you leave it to the professionals.
Besides that, professional garage door repair can also be a big timesaver. When you hire a professional to complete the work, they can identify the problem and have your door functioning again in a fraction of the time it would take you to troubleshoot and fix the problem.
Garage Door Issues? Let Olympic Garage Door Help
If you’re like the majority of Americans, your garage door is your primary entrance and exit into your home. If it’s not working properly, it can turn your whole day upside down. But finding a solution doesn’t have to be stressful. Serving local communities including Port Angeles, Sequim, and Port Townsend, Olympic Garage Door prides itself on offering high-quality service for garage doors and openers of all kinds.
If you’re in the market for a new garage door, we’ve got that covered too. We have the Olympic Penninsula’s largest selection of contemporary and classic garage doors and accessories, and our experienced sales representatives can help you select the right door for your home and your budget.
Don’t let a troublesome garage door get in your way. Contact Olympic Garage Door today.
How to Open a Garage Door Without Power
Coming home to a non-functioning garage door can be incredibly frustrating. Whether it’s a dead battery in your remote or a power outage, you should know how to open and shut your garage door manually. You don’t want your vehicle to get stuck in the garage, unable to leave, while you wait for a maintenance specialist. To open the door successfully, you’ll need to know the common causes, standard procedures and safety tips to open a garage door on your own.
Electric Garage Door Stopped Working
If you find you can’t open your garage door from the outside, you’ll need to figure out what is causing the issues. Before you try to open it manually, run through the common reasons why a garage door stops working to make sure you can safely open it on your own.
See some of the most common examples below.
- The photo eye is damaged or dirty: Many garage doors have a photo eye that rests about four to six inches off the ground. It sends a laser across the garage that stops the garage door from closing if something gets in the way of the laser beam. If a cord to the photo eye is cut or damaged, it might be affecting it. Additionally, the eye could have dirt or dust on it that you should clean.
- Broken torsion springs: One of the most common sources of a garage door needing repair is a spring breaking. You’ll often hear a loud snap or something that resembles a firecracker going off when the spring breaks. If a spring breaks, you should wait for a professional to repair it, and you should not try to open the garage door on your own.
- Snapped cable: When a torsion spring breaks, the garage door cable will often snap off with it. A snapped cable can do damage to anything in its way. This sort of problem will require an in-depth, professional repair job. As with the scenario of broken torsion springs, you should not try to open the garage manually, as it could be dangerous.
- Disconnect switch: A garage door opener will almost always come with a disconnect switch that lets you open the door manually. If you’ve accidentally activated the switch, the motor will disconnect, so you’ll want to check if this is the case before you try to open the door manually.
- Disrupted power source: Occasionally, the problem is not with the door, but with the power source connected to the door. Make sure you have your garage door opener plugged into a working outlet. You’ll also want to check your GFCI, fuse and circuit breaker.
- Malfunctioning remote control: Sometimes, there is a problem with the remote control. The issue might be that you’re out of range, or the battery could be dead. Also, you may need to reprogram the remote. Check to see if the antenna on the garage’s motor has gotten damaged or if something could be blocking it.
- Sensitivity adjustment: Regardless of how long you’ve had your garage door, the sensitivity may be set too low or high. A sensitivity that is not set correctly will leave the garage door unable to open.
- Door not on its track: A door needs to be on track to slide properly. Check to see the door rolls smoothly on the metal track. You should also look for any alterations along the track, like bumps, obstacles or gaps. To fix this, you’ll need to loosen the screws for the tracks, tap the track into the right position, then re-tighten the previously loosened screws.
- Locked door: Occasionally, a garage door that isn’t working will come down to a problem with the user. A garage door can be locked, so you’ll want to see if someone has accidentally engaged a lock mechanism.
- Unseen obstacles: If you have trouble closing your garage door, it may be due to something on the tracks or in the way of the laser. Look for any obstacles and wipe down the track to dislodge any dirt or debris that might be in the way.
Can You Open a Garage Door Without Electricity?
If you can’t figure out why your garage door is not working after a power outage, you can still open it without electricity. Knowing how to open your garage door manually will come in handy any time the power goes out or something malfunctions. To open up a garage door on your own, you’ll need to take the necessary precautions, undo some pins and lift the door from the ground, to name only a few of the actions needed.
People can generally complete this job on their own, but if the garage door is heavy, you may want to bring someone along to assist you as you pull the gate up. Safety should always be your top priority, so you don’t hurt your back trying to lift the garage door.
Learning the proper steps to open your garage door manually will be a big help, as you’ll want to be able to get your car out of the garage to get to work. On the flip side, if the power’s out due to inclement weather, you’ll want to get your vehicle inside to protect it, so it’s crucial you know how to manually open a garage door when the power is out.
Steps to Open Your Garage Door With No Power
If you need to know how to open a garage door without power, you’ll want to follow the below steps to give yourself access to the garage again.
- To begin the process, you’ll first need to make sure all the springs or cables are intact, along with ensuring there hasn’t been any damage to the rest of the garage door system. If the garage door is damaged, you might end up harming it more in the process. Along with damaging the garage, a broken cable or spring could hurt you. If you do find any issues with the garage door, it will be best to call a professional to make the repairs or open the garage.
- Once you’ve verified there are no problems that require a more in-depth repair, you’ll want to find the emergency cord. This cord usually comes with a red handle attached to it and will hang from the center of the garage door mechanism. If there’s not a red cord, but there is a cord hanging from the center of the garage door mechanism, it’s likely the emergency cord. You may need a ladder to reach it, as well.
- You’ll want to pull the cord until the lever locks into a down position. It will cause the release lever to disengage from the carriage of the garage door opener. By releasing the lever, you’ll now be able to move the garage door without any electrical assistance.
- With the lever released, lift the garage door. Bring the door back to its end, where the door is fully open and you can no longer move it back away from the entrance. You don’t want to close the door and have it fall on your vehicle or yourself, so making sure it’s all the way back is essential.
- If the garage door does not lift easily from the ground, you’ll want to have a professional examine it to see if there’s any damage that could represent safety risks. A smooth opening will indicate the springs are balanced correctly, and you can be confident you aren’t harming your garage door by manually opening it.
- Once the door is completely open, you can drive your vehicle in or out of the garage, whichever suits your needs. You can then close the door in the same way you opened it.
- If you want to secure your garage, you’ll need to re-engage the lever after you leave. To do this, you’ll need to use a long stick, like the end of a broom, to push the level upward. You can also climb a ladder and press it up. Along with these methods, you can also ensure the mechanism re-engages by pulling the cord towards the door motor. You’ll need to pull the release cord until you hear the mechanism click in place.
- Whenever you leave your home without your garage door working, you’ll want to ensure you have another way to enter your home. It can be more challenging to open the door from the outside, so you’ll want an alternate entrance. After the work you put into opening it manually, you don’t want to have to end up calling a locksmith to help you enter your home.
Alternative Methods for Opening a Garage
If for some reason your garage door won’t open even with the emergency release cord, you’ll need to go through a detailed process.
- First, find the door opener carriage assembly, then remove the cotter and clevis pins from it. You may need a ladder to reach them safely.
- By removing the pins, you’ll now be able to lift the door, as it’s disconnected from the garage door mechanism.
- If you can’t reach the door opener carriage assembly, you can go to the door arm bracket attached to the door by removing the cotter and clevis pins.
- Like removing the pins from the door opener carriage assembly, the door will now be separate from the garage door mechanism, and you’ll be able to lift it manually. If you take it from the door opener carriage assembly, you’ll want to be careful with the door arm as you lower it to ensure you don’t damage it.
How to Safely Open Your Garage Door Manually
Along with the above steps, there are a few safety precautions you should follow to ensure you stay safe while you manually open the garage door.
1. Disconnect Power Cord
Even if your power is out, you should still disconnect the power cord from your garage door opener. Take this step before you do anything else to open the door manually. It’s essential to ensure no power is running into the opener that could harm you while you attempt to remove anything from the garage door’s mechanisms.
2. Don’t Operate a Damaged Garage Door
If your garage door no longer opens due to damage, you will not want to try to open it by yourself. In this case, you’ll need to call a professional to assist you. For instance, if your garage door has glass windows that have shattered, you won’t want to open the door even if it is fully functional, since broken glass could fall on you or your vehicle.
3. Read the Manual
Your owner’s manual might contain some crucial information about operating your garage door manually. While some general steps apply to most garage doors, you should still check to see if your door differs from the norm.
By looking at the manual, you might discover removing a part could harm your garage door or cause an issue that could make you and your family less safe. Understanding the traits of your garage door will help you stay safe and protect your investment.
4. Don’t Ever Fix Cables or Springs by Yourself
While it’s not dangerous to remove the cotter or clevis pin from your garage door, you should not attempt to fix any cables or springs by yourself. A mishandled cable could come snapping back at you, causing severe harm to you or anyone else in the garage.
Along with any physical harm that could come your way, an improperly installed cable or spring could stress other parts of the garage door. As a result of this stress, the garage door might have issues opening and closing. To avoid causing further damage than a broken cable, you’ll want to call in the professionals to fix the door the right way.
Want to Upgrade or Install a Garage Door?
At Olympic Garage Door, we regularly serve homes and businesses throughout the Olympic Peninsula. Due to this experience, we know just how crucial a functional and attractive garage door is to any building. We also understand that even though you should know how to open the garage manually, a fault in a company’s products should never be the reason you need to. That’s why we offer only the highest-quality garage door systems on the market.
If you’re interested in speaking with one of our trusted representatives about your needs, give us a call or send us a message. Along with speaking to a representative, you can schedule service easily through our online form.