How to Fix Garage Door Alignment – Tips from the Pros

When a garage door is out of alignment, it can cause a ton of frustration. It can become jammed and stop working mid open or close, which is a nightmare during a time sensitive moment like when you’re going to work or taking the kids to school. Even though it is always recommended to have a professional who knows how to fix garage door alignment, it is possible to fix at home.

How to Fix Garage Door Alignment

How to Fix Garage Door Alignment

Don’t know how to fix garage door alignment? The first things to check are the garage door springs and cables, see if the obstacle is on the track, then adjust the track hardware and position of the track.

Why Does a Garage Door Get Misaligned?

A garage door can become off of it’s alignment for a few reasons. When it is used frequently and the hardware becomes worn and loosened up or if the garage door has been recently hit, the alignment can be off.

Not fixing an unaligned garage door can be dangerous in the event that the door falls of the tracks and onto someone or if it wont close and leaves your home vulnerable to a break in.

First Things to Check

Garage door springs and cables – the springs and cables that use tension to open and close the garage door can become loose, out of place, ripped or broken. These fixtures should be checked first to see if the cables can be easily moved back into place. If not, a professional can repair or place the broken or ripped cables for anywhere around $150 to $200.

Obstacle on track – The path along the track should be checked for any obstructions, dents or debris that could be causing some kind of blockage or malfunction. Debris and blockages are easy to clean out, however dents in the tracks need adjustment, which will require more muscle work (or money, if you want a specialist to fix it).

Fix a Binding Garage Door

A garage door that is bound is one that seems impossible to move out of position either up or down.

Adjusting the track hardware Check along the track to find any loosened screws that need to be tightened up. It is also possible for screws to be tightened through constant vibrations of the garage door usage. Loosen the ones that seem to be so tight that they are warping the track.  

Adjusting the Position of the TrackWith a rubber mallet, tap along the bottom of the track to get it back into position. After this, use a leveler to make sure that the track is going straight up and down.

Other Damages To Check

Rust – Due to various weather conditions, exposure to chemicals and multiple uses, a garage door can become molded, rusted or damaged to the point that the door is not operating correctly. It is best to have this replaced by a professional. Hardware like the hinges should be checked for rust and damages as well through frequent maintenance. These may be easier to fix by the owner, however it does take some muscle and maybe more than one person to handle.

Old Parts –  If the home is old and the garage hasn’t been upgraded in a very long time (if at all), then some of the parts may bee to be replaced, If more than just two fixtures are damaged beyond repair, a specialist may suggest that it is time to replace all the garage door fixtures, technology and details.

In Conclusion

If a garage door is not repaired when it is off it’s tracks and needs a realignment, the situation can become worse and possibly injure someone. It is important to either know how to fix garage door alignment, what to check for or when it is the appropriate time to call an expert to come take a look.

Garage Door Safety Tips

Did you know that there are basic garage door safety tips you can follow to keep your family safe? There are many injuries reported every year that are related to garage doors. These injuries are caused by poor installation, operation, and maintenance of these garage doors.

Garage Door Safety Tips

Garage Door Safety Tips

In order to prevent possible injury or damages, it’s important to be aware of safety measures when it comes to garage doors. To help you protect your family from these injuries, below are 7 garage door safety tips you can follow.

1. Keep Garage Door Remotes Away from Children

Kids are usually playful and they may get tempted to play near the garage door if they get access to the remote controls. Ensure your remote is locked up in places where your kids cannot access them. You should also warn them about the risks of playing with the remote controls and why they need to play away from the garage door.

2. Watch your Fingers

If your hands get caught between the garage door sections you can get injured. So teach your kids to keep their fingers and hands away from the door sections when closing it. For garage doors that are operated manually, ensure you use the lift handles when opening or closing the door. If you are fitting a new garage door, consider getting an electric garage door opener or one that has pinch protection.

3. Never go Under a Moving Garage Door

You should never, at any instance, walk or run under a closing garage door. That would be calling for trouble as you can easily get crushed! If you want to exit your home through the garage door, it’s advisable to install keypad openers. These can help you open or close the door from the outside so you won’t have to run under it. If you have kids that you think may be tempted to race under the garage door, ensure you fit sensors in your door. Sensors usually stop the door whenever someone tries to pass under it.

4. Regular Inspections

The best way to prevent potential hazards in your garage is by conducting inspections preferably after every month. You should check that all the garage door parts are working perfectly. This includes gears, cables, and sensors. Also consider doing annual maintenance. A professional technician should help you replace any worn out parts or those that are broken. This will ensure your garage door is in perfect condition and it will reduce risks of accidents.

5. Hire a Professional

You should never try to install a garage door, or even repair damaged gears or cables. While it may seem an easy job for handy homeowners, it is usually a very risky task. Garage doors are usually heavy, and the springs and cable are under extreme tension from the weight. A small mistake when handling them can easily cause severe injury and sometimes death. You should, therefore, leave this task to be handled by a qualified technician.

6. Test the Auto-reverse Sensitivity

Garage doors are created with an auto-reverse mechanism that makes the door to change direction when it comes into contact with a person or object. In case the door does not reverse when it meets an object, then its opener’s sensitivity might have been set wrongly. And this is a recipe for disaster!

You can test for reversing sensitivity by opening your garage door and then placing an object like a broom on its way. The door should reverse when it comes into contact with the broom.

If your door doesn’t reverse you need to check your manual to guide you on how to adjust it. Alternatively, you can call your technician for assistance.

7. The Six-inch Rule

Garage door safety beams, which detect objects under the door, should be installed not upwards of six inches from the garage floor. Placing these photoelectric eyes beyond this distance may make objects under the door to go undetected by the safety beams, which can get them crushed. Also, ensure your door is installed with this safety feature.

To Summarize

You don’t have to remove your garage door in order to keep your family safe. The above garage door safety tips will keep your garage from being damaged and help you keep your family safe from injuries.

Garage Door Panel Sizes

Where do you start when contemplating how to redesign or build a detached garage? You can imagine the style and color that will correlate with that of your home. There is also the mechanics and opening systems that you will have to research to identify the best brand that fits you. While these will take some discussion with a professional or a contractor, you can start with something as basic as garage door panel sizes or what size garage door you will need to best fit your lifestyle.

Garage Door Panel Sizes

Garage Door Panel Sizes

In general, the measurements for garage door widths range from 8-to-18 feet. Customized garage doors can go up to 20+ feet to accomodate for a three or four car garage. In terms of height, garage doors will customarily be about seven feet tall and can be as high as 10 feet.

Car Garage Doors

Depending on the number of cars you own, you will also need to determine if you need one single door, two single doors, a double door or a combination of these. For homeowners who only have one car, it is only necessary to have a single door garage, which will be about 8-to-10 feet wide.

Those who are customizing their garage to fit two or more cars have many options. Garages that are holding two cars have the options of either two single garage doors that are about 10 feet each, or a wide double garage door about 16-to-18 feet. People who opt for two single garage doors generally do so for aesthetics. However, having two single garage doors can be a nuisance for two reasons. First, the extra gap between the doors will allow more cold air to enter the garage, which can damage your car when living in extremely cold weather conditions. The second reason people run into problems with two single doors is the extra motor and other accessories that are needed to be installed or purchased.

Homes with two or more cars will need a double garage door that will usually be about 18 feet wide. One wide double garage door will allow more insulation to keep the cars at a comfortable temperature. Also, with only one garage door you will just need one motor to accommodate the garage system as a whole.

RV Garage Doors

As previously mentioned, the highest a standard garage door will measure up to will be about 10 feet tall. It is possible, however, to customize a door to adjust to the height of an Recreational Vehicle (RV).

Garages that are specifically made to fit RV’s will need a garage door which is about 14 feet wide and 16 feet tall. As long as the RV doesn’t have any special customizations like a lift or any appendages that stick out too much, the standards for RV garage doors should fit perfectly.

In Conclusion

Whether you are building a detached garage from the bottom up or you plan on redesigning your current connected garage doors, the basic measurements of garage door panel sizes is a good place to start. You can measure your current garage opening yourself and get the right fitting door for you. Asking a professional on which garage door sizes and styles are best for you is always recommended.

Garage Door Problems and Solutions

Your typical garage door will endure plenty of cycles through daily use. Over time, however, it will probably need some repairs and maintenance. A little troubleshooting can go a long way in helping to maintain your door and improve its functionality. Here are a few garage door problems and solutions to consider the next time you have trouble with your garage door.

Garage Door Opener Won’t Work

This is probably one of the most common problems, and it’s something you can easily fix. For instance, drive-screw- or chain-operated garage doors that won’t work probably need some lubricant to reduce friction. Simply apply some garage door, spray lube or a silicone-based lubricant to the garage door opener, and your garage door should be back to normal in no time.

Garage Door is Stuck Open or Closed

There are several reasons why your garage door might be stuck open or closed. You want to start by making sure the batteries in your transmitter are fresh. Dead batteries will prevent your transmitter from sending a signal to your garage door to open or close. Next, make sure there’s nothing obstructing the sensors, whether on the safety sensors meant to stop the door if something is in its path or on the actual opener.

Garage Door Shimmies as it Closes

Garage Door Problems and Solutions

If your garage door has a noticeable shimmy whenever it’s opening or closing, you need to address the issue before it causes further damage. Ignoring the problem may lead to increased wear and tear which can lead to more costly repairs later.

Start by checking if there are any obstructions on the tracks, and if the tracks need to be adjusted. If you find any debris, you can clear them yourself and have your garage door opening and closing seamlessly. You also want to check for damaged springs. If the springs show signs of damage, you will have to call a professional to replace them as spring replacement is highly dangerous.

If the springs are in order, you may be facing an issue with the motor. For instance, the motor may not be opening both sides of the garage door at the same time. If this is the problem, you can count on a professional to replace the motor.

Garage Door Falls too Quickly

While automatic garage doors come pre-installed with various safety features, sometimes a malfunctioning door can be dangerous – such as cases where the door closes too quickly.

The most likely culprit is either loose springs or a broken cable. A broken cable means there isn’t enough tension to prevent the garage door from being pulled by gravity. Identify the problem by inspecting the cables when the door is closed.

Bottom Line

There are plenty of other garage door problems and solutions to repair them. It’s important to detect an issue early because it causes additional damages. It’s recommended to inspect and service your garage door annually, so you can keep your garage door in good condition all year round.