A frustrating scenario for any homeowner is driving home just to find that you can’t get into your garage because the garage door will not open. This would be even more frustrating to those that use their garage door as a front door. If your garage door will not open, it is possible your garage door opener motor has stopped working. Here are some ways to troubleshoot and find out if indeed your garage door motor has stopped working.
First Clue, Age.
There are several other reasons a garage door just stops opening, so you have to ask yourself, why am I thinking it’s the opener motor? One big answer could be the age of our garage door opener. After about 10 to 15 years, a garage door opener just might give out. If your opener is older than 10 years, then you can do the next steps as a process of elimination.
Check Your Garage Door Hardware.
Again, even with an older garage door opener motor, you can’t just assume that is the issue. You will want to check for other issues before concluding it’s the opener motor. Check your garage door hardware. Inspect your garage door tracks to make sure they do not have debris blocking the rollers, and that the tracks are vertically aligned as they should be. Inspect your garage door springs and make sure that they have not broken. If all checks out, open your garage door manually. To do this, disengage your garage door opener from your garage door. Pull the red release cord. The release cord should be located near the front of the door. If the garage door opens and closes manually as it should, move on to the next step.
Check Your Power.
Your garage door opener requires power to operate. Making sure your opener is getting power is the next thing to troubleshoot. This is also good to check if your opener motor has stopped working after one of our Houston famous power surges or outages. In regard to the motor, make sure it’s plugged in properly. It may be a good idea to unplug then re-plug in the opener after waiting 15 minutes, making sure the motor cools, and has not overheated. After re-plugging in the motor, use the wall switch and see if the garage opens and closes. If it does, move on to the next step.
Check Your Remote.
If your opener motor works from the wall switch, then it is possible it’s your remote, not the garage door opener. Replace the old batteries of the remote control. If after replacing the batteries it still does not work, you may need a new garage door remote.
One Last Thing, Your Sensor.
Before your run out and buy a new remote, make sure your garage door sensor is still in its correct place. Garage door sensors tend to shift away from their original position after having consistent use of the garage door to open and close.
This is Houston, where the pollen and dust can get everywhere. Inspect the garage door sensor to see if dust particles have been blocking the lenses of the sensor. Stored-up dirt around the sensor’s surroundings tends to cause a poor connection from the remote to the unit of the garage door motor. Wipe off your garage door sensor with a clean rag and then try opening and closing the garage door with your remote.
If you have followed these steps and the garage door still won’t open, it’s a good chance your garage door opener motor has stopped working. If you are in the Houston area, Spectrum Overhead Door has been repairing garage door openers and installing new garage door openers since 2006. We deliver fast friendly service, at reasonable rates. Call 281-748-9542 or if you’re on the East side of Houston 713-557-3407 for a free quote and appointment today! Same-day appointments are available.
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To many Houstonians, their garage door is an essential part of their home. Many homeowners use their garage door as the front door and entrance into their home. So when you find you can’t get the garage door to open or close as it should, it can be frustrating and a hindrance to your daily life. If your garage door will not close, that could also pose a home security risk. If that has happened to you, don’t panic. Here are some common reasons your garage door is not working properly.
Your Garage Door Safety Sensors Are Not Working Properly.
If your garage door seems to be stuck open, one reason could be your safety sensor. Garage doors have a safety sensor on both the left and right sides, and they are usually designed with a special lighting sensor. When you are closing your garage door, if the sensors show some blinking lights, it means that it is sending the wrong signal to the opener about the alignment. In order to fix the issue, you can simply push against the metal bracket, and when the lights come back to solid, the opener should work accurately.
Also, with this being Houston, and since we have a huge dust and pollen problem as well as humidity, these things may settle on the sensor due to the wind. In this case, you may need to clean the sensor to prevent the issue.
Lack of Power to Motor.
One of the more common reasons your garage door has stopped working is the lack of power to the garage door motor. Check to make sure your operator is plugged in and there is no damage to the cord. You may also want to check to make sure the breaker the garage door opener is on has not tripped. If your garage door opener does not have a built-in battery backup, it would be a good idea to get a battery backup.
Damage Due to Power Surge.
The Houston area has a history of strong storms. An unexpected power surge due to a storm could cause a surge to a shared power grid. This can sometimes cause garage door openers to malfunction and cause the issue of unexpected opening and closing. If you do not have your garage door opener on a surge protector, this could cause damage to the circuit board or the opener. This power surge possibility is another good reason to look into battery backups for your garage door opener.
If your garage door movement is not aligned and has gotten stuck, it could possibly be that your garage door track has gotten bent or misaligned. If one of them is slanted towards the garage door, causing a hindrance to the normal operation, this issue can be adjusted with the help of a screwdriver and wrench.
You Have Rusty Rollers.
If your garage door stops before touching the ground, it could be that your rollers are rusted and need to be changed. Rusted rollers create friction, which can trick the garage door and makes it believe that the door has reached the ground before it touches it.
You Have a Heavy Garage Door.
Your garage door, especially if it’s a wooden door, can get swollen and heavier over time. It is possible that it has tried to close too hard for the sensors, causing the door to go back up. This could also cause the springs to wear out sooner.
Your Garage Door Springs May Have Given Out.
As just mentioned, it is possible that a heavy door, rust, or even just time may have done your garage door springs in. Your garage door springs are designed to counterbalance the weight of the door making the door almost weightless for both manual and opener operation. If the spring(s) is broken the door will become extremely heavy and difficult to open. This can lead to garage door opener motor damage as well.
Your Garage Door Opener Has Worn Out.
Though we would love for things to last forever, after about 10 to 15 years, a garage door opener just might give out. In this case, it might be best to just replace the garage door opener due to advancements in garage door technology that allows for features like garage door monitoring, and a quieter opener.
If you live in the Houston area and your garage door is not working, it could be one of these common problems. Now, truthfully you could try to chase down what is causing the problem and fix it yourself. However, that can take time and comes with the risk of making costly mistakes. Spectrum Overhead Door has been repairing garage doors in Houston since 2006 with award-winning service. We believe in fast, friendly service and reasonable pricing. Call for a free quote at 281-748-9542 or if you live in East Houston 713-557-3407.
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Houston is a wet, humid climate. That can take a toll on parts of your home. One part of your home you may not think about is your garage door and garage door system. Your garage door and garage door parts are made of metal that can rust in the Houston weather. Even if you have a wooden garage door, you still have metal parts like garage door springs and hinges. If you are not careful, garage door rust can be a silent killer.
Your Garage Door.
If you have a steel garage door, any exposed metal of the garage door can rust. That is why it is best to check your garage door twice a year to make sure there are no chips or cracks on the outer paint coating. If you find that your paint has chipped or peeled away from your garage door, read How to Fix Chipped Paint on a Garage Door.
If your garage door has panels, it most likely has hinges. If not lubricated, these hinges can also rust. If the rust gets too bad, the hinges will break, causing all sorts of problems, like your door, not opening and closing. We also suggest lubricating your hinges twice a year with garage door lubricant.
Garage Door Springs.
Your garage door springs are made from steel as well and are exposed to the Houston weather. Rust on your garage door springs can cause the springs to either seize up or break, resulting in your garage door not opening or closing properly. If your garage door springs break due to rust, it can also put a strain on your garage door opener motor, causing it to wear out faster and possibly malfunction. We suggest, like the other parts mentioned, lubricate your garage door springs twice a year.
Garage Door Tracks.
Your tracks are also made from metal that can rust. Though less talked about than springs or hinges, if your tracks get rusted to the point the metal has corroded away in spots, your rollers can jump the garage door tracks, jamming your garage door. It is best to wipe them down twice a year and inspect them for rust. Do not grease the tracks. Greasing or lubricating the tracks attracts dirt and dust and that buildup will keep the door from operating smoothly.
Garage Door Rollers.
Garage door rollers can be made from three different types of material: plastic, metal, and nylon. Nylon garage door rollers are the ones we recommend as they have sealed ball bearings. Combine that with the fact you don’t have metal rolling on metal tracks, they are the quietest of the three. If you have metal rollers, you are going to want to lubricate them twice a year. Lubricate steel rollers by applying white lithium grease to the ball bearings, which are found at the innermost part of the roller, where it meets the shaft.
Garage Door Opener Chain and Rail.
If your garage door opener is chain-driven, that can rust too and need lubrication. Use a garage door lubrication and spray the chain twice a year. Your garage door opener also uses a metal rail. Use a lithium-based grease on the upper side of the rail from end to end by hand. Wipe off any excess from the sides of the rail with a rag.
Houston is known for its humid climate. That humid climate can cause rust on any of the metal parts of a garage door or garage door system made from or has steel. Proper lubrication and coverage of your garage door should help protect you from garage door rust. If you find the rust is there and has caused issues where you need garage door repair, Spectrum Overhead Door LLC has been providing garage door repair to Houston since 2006. Call us today and experience the award-winning service we have provided to hundreds of clients over the years. Call 281-748-9542 or if located in East Houston 713-557-3407 to schedule your appointment today!
If you have lived in your home for a while here in Houston, you know that the weather can be brutal to the outside of your home, including your garage door. Your garage door probably gets regularly used ( most Houstonians anyway) which means the door takes on daily wear as well as any accidental bumps and dings along the way. After some years, you may be asking yourself, should I replace my garage door?
When it comes to deciding should you replace your garage door, there are some things to consider.
- Age: Generally Replace After 10-15 Years.
- Cosmetic Damage: How bad is the damage like chipped paint or cracked panel.
- Structural Damage: If it has a bad warp to the door, it’s time to replace it.
- Functionality and Cost: If the door is too slow or not opening all the way, does the cost of repair get higher than replacing it?
- Energy Efficiency: One way to save money on energy bills is to install garage doors with insulation.
Considerations in Replacing Your Old Garage Door
Age Of the Garage Door
Like anything else, things wear down and get more costly the older they get. This is also the case for garage doors. 1-2 years old are usually covered under warranty. Almost nothing usually breaks down within the first 5 years. From 10-15 years, parts can start to wear down. When approaching 15 years and older, the springs and parts can get harder to find and more expensive. When it starts to seem like it will cost more to repair than to replace your garage door, the best thing to do is just to go ahead and replace it.
One of the most common types of damage for garage door units is a cracked panel. If it’s just one panel that is damaged, you could just repair the garage door panel instead of buying a new door. However, if it’s more than one panel then it may be worth investing in a new door.
Another issue is chipped paint and fading. Fading does not interfere with the normal functioning of your garage door unit, it just affects the appeal and appearance. Chipped paint however, could expose the metal underneath and allow the door to rust. The prime reasons behind cosmetic damage are aging, adverse weather conditions, and the occasional impact on the garage door. In general, this type of damage can be repaired at a low cost, but as stated before, if your garage door is inching its way to 15 years of its life or more, your Houston garage door experts here at Spectrum Overhead recommend replacing the garage door. It just makes sense as you are probably going to have to replace the door anyways soon, and you do not want twice the cost.
The most common example of structural damage is a warped door, and in most cases, it is caused by extreme temperature or severe weather conditions like Houston summers. With your garage door warping, your door may perform it’s operating normally. Depending on how bad the warpage is, it could be better to find a replacement for this unit. One replaces the old wooden door with the latest steel door models; they are designed to prevent the rusting issue. However, if you are still in love with the wooden look, it is better to look for composite doors that have steel cores and wooden overlays.
In case if your garage door is making too much noise or operating slowly than its usual speed, the decision about whether to replace your garage door will depend on the level of the problem. In case if the problem can be solved with repair by investing a reasonable amount, it is better to choose that; however, if the cost of repair goes beyond the threshold, you can go ahead with the replacement. The professionals at Houston Garage Door repair company can help you make a better decision about it.
Your garage is one big space that can be a barrier between your home and that Houston, TX heat. Yet if you have an older, non-insulated garage door, or cracks in the door, garage door window or weather stripping, more of that hot air is getting into your garage and making your AC work harder to cool your home. This is especially important if you happen to have a bedroom or other room above your garage. Builders of many older homes were more aggressive in installing insulation within the shared wall between a garage and the rest of the house, but not the ceiling – especially above a garage. If you are looking at ways to cut your energy costs, replacing your old garage door with an energy-efficient door, you will immediately discover that your room above the garage is far more comfortable in both the hottest and coldest months.
If you are in the Houston or surrounding area, we provide a free consultation and estimate on door installation or garage door repair. Spectrum Overhead Door has been providing the Houston area with award-winning garage door installation service since 2006. Call 281-748-9542 or our East Houston office 713-557-3407 to schedule an appointment today!
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With a tropical storm that just hit the Houston area, it is just another reminder of how turbulent our weather can be and how vulnerable homes are in the Houston area. When a storm comes through the Houston area, many homeowners remember to check their siding, windows, and roof after the storm. Yet checking your garage door for storm damage is just as important and not as often thought of.
Check for Dents
Tropical storms and hurricane winds can blow debris into your garage door. The same can be said for the smaller storms Houston seems to get as well. Now, if your garage door looks like your car went through it, it’s obvious you have problems, but don’t dismiss checking your garage door just because the dents aren’t so obvious. Garage door panel damage can cause all sorts of problems, later on, even the smaller dents. Ignoring garage door panel damage can make the door resistant to closing over time and forcing the garage door closed can make the rollers come out of the track.
If the dents are minor, you can use a garage door strut brace to shore up your garage door. The trick is to make sure you catch the damage early enough.
Scratches and Exposed Metal
Along with checking for dents, you want to check for scratches and chipped paint that exposes the metal underneath. Catching these early is important. If they’re left alone, the more likely water, and thus rust, will eat away at the exposed metal.
Check Your Weather Seal
All the wind and rain can give your weather seal a beating. Many times, your weather seal can dry out in the hot sun right after a storm and cause it to weaken and crack. If your weather seal prevented water from getting into your garage from the tropical or other storms, you will want to check it again to make sure it did not take damage, check for any cracking, or for if it is falling off. This will help in prevention from future storms.
A Word About Prevention.
This is Houston, storms occur fairly often here, which means both tropical and non-tropical in nature. So just because you might have escaped without damage this time, unless you are prepared, the next major storm you might not be so lucky. Always keep your trees and bushes well-trimmed to avoid unexpected projectiles from hitting your garage door as well as the rest of your home. If your garage door does sustain any damage, take care of it well before the next major storm. If your garage door sustained only small damage this last storm (like hurricane Nicholas), you don’t want to wait to get it fixed. More damage could cause the garage door to fail completely and force you to replace your garage door. If your garage door sustained major damage, it might be best to go ahead and replace the garage door before the next major storm. Consider getting a wind-rated garage door that is tested to stand up to the damage a hurricane can throw at it.
If your garage door sustains damage in a storm here in the Houston area, Spectrum Overhead Door LLC can deliver fast, friendly service to you in the way that is the most helpful to you. If you have only suffered minor panel damage, we can replace the garage door panel instead of the whole door, saving you money. Call us at 281-748-9542 or if in East Houston 713-557-3407 to schedule your free quote today!