Garage Door Advice

What to Ask When Buying a New Garage Door

What to Ask When Buying a New Garage Door

Whether you are building a new home, remodeling the outside look of your home, or replacing your old garage door, installing a garage door for your Houston home is a big investment. The overall look and security depend on getting the right garage door for you and having your garage door installed properly. However, it is easy to be overwhelmed by the process of getting a new garage door to the point where you are not sure what to ask when buying a new garage door. We have been installing garage doors for Houston since 2006 and have helped hundreds of new garage door customers get the right garage door. From our experience, here are a few tips on what to ask when buying a new garage door.

Questions to Ask About the Garage Door

Garage Door Size

The size of your garage door is a crucial consideration. Before you begin shopping, measure the width and height of your garage opening. Most garage doors come in standard sizes, but if your opening is an unusual size, you may need to order a custom door. Make sure you measure both the width and height of your opening, as well as the depth of the garage to ensure you get the right size door. From there, when you talk to a garage door company, you can ask ” do you carry (insert your size) garage door?

Garage Door Materials

Garage doors are available in several materials, including steel, aluminum, wood, and fiberglass. Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to consider your needs when choosing. Steel doors are durable and low-maintenance, while wooden doors offer a natural look but require more upkeep. Fiberglass doors are lightweight and resistant to dents, while aluminum doors are affordable and rust-resistant. If you are talking with a garage door company, and if you don’t have a material picked out, it may benefit you to explain what you are looking for in a garage door.  For example, are you looking for something extra sturdy or to let natural light in?

Garage Door Costs

Keeping in line with the different types of material are garage door costs.  Some of the most affordable garage doors  8 feet by 8 feet start around $800 (25 gauge steel garage door) without installation. Instinctively from there, the better the material and the bigger the size, the higher the cost. It’s important to set a budget before you start shopping and to consider the long-term value of your investment. A high-quality, well-installed garage door can add value to your home and save you money on energy costs in the long run.

Questions to Ask A Garage Door Installation Company


One of the key things you want to find out is how is the transaction handled. If you call a garage door company and talk to their sales team, you will want to find out if there is a deposit or if all the money is paid upfront or upon completion.

Garage Door Labor and Installation.

When shopping for a garage door, it generally is better to have the garage door company install the door themselves unless you are a very handy person. That means you need to not only ask about the garage door cost, but also what the cost is to install it themselves.

 Parts and Labor Warranty.

Different garage door installation companies in Houston offer different warranties. There are some that offer a warranty just on parts, some offer parts and labor warranty. Here at Spectrum Overhead Door LLC, we offer two-year parts and labor warranty on the garage doors we install. So, when you call a garage door company, ask what are your installation and parts warranties? Also ask if there is a manufacturer warranty.

 Availability, Shipping, and Delivery.

Not all garage door companies carry garage doors in stock. Add in the fact you may want a custom garage door. So, you will want to ask, if you do not have this in stock, when can it be shipped and what are the shipping costs?

Liability insurance.

When an installation company comes to install your garage door, anything can happen, such as a slip and fall. A good garage door company will have liability coverage, so they cover the cost of any medical issues that arise from the installation instead of you. Ask, do you have liability insurance?

 Issue Resolution.

There might be an instance where the garage door installer has left, and the door comes off the hinge the next day. Or if you ordered a white aluminum garage door and come home to an almond one instead. Things happen. The good question is, how does that garage door company resolve those issues? It’s best to know beforehand. So, a good question would be, if something was not done right or I did not receive what I asked for, how do you resolve that?

Use these questions when ordering a new garage door and you should get the most out of your order from a company you can trust. If you are in the Houston area and need a new garage door, call Spectrum Overhead Door LLC at 281-748-9542 and ask us these questions. We will be delighted to answer these and any other questions you may have so you get the most out of your new garage door.

Contact Us About Your Garage Door Issues and Get a FREE Quote Today :

What is the Typical Lifespan of a Garage Door?

What is the Typical Lifespan of a Garage Door?

Garage doors are like most things in your home, they wear out and need replacement over time. A new garage door and garage door installation can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on the door. Understanding how long a garage door last can help you save money and time in the long run. That is why we wanted to provide some basic facts on how long your garage door should last and tips on increasing the lifespan of your garage door.

What Is the Typical Lifespan of a Garage Door?

The typical lifespan of a garage door is about 15-30 years. Metal ones such as steel and aluminum usually last over 20 years. Wood can last just as long if not longer with proper care. However, how long a garage door lasts also depends on several factors though. Frequency of use, maintenance, if there were any left-over issues from installation, and environmental conditions such as humidity, wind and hot sun can all contribute to the wearing out a garage door. However, proper maintenance and regular check-ups can help extend the lifespan of a garage door.

How to Maintain and Extend the Life of Your Garage Door

You should also inspect the door for any signs of wear and tear and have any repairs done as soon as possible. Extend your garage door’s life by following a few simple maintenance tips. For example, keep an eye on the weather stripping and replace it as needed to ensure a tight seal. You don’t want water to seep into the edges of your garage door.

Look for any chips or scratches in the paint. You will want to fix those right way to prevent rust. Here in Houston, we have seen rust happen fast because of the humidity. We have a great post, How to Fix Chipped Paint on a Garage Door to help you on fixing the garage door’s paint job.

While you are looking for chips and scratches, clean your garage door. Dust and dirt can accumulate on the door over time. That crud can make it’s way into the garage door tracks and into your hinges. Clean it with a soft cloth and mild soap to keep it looking like new.

Lubricate and check your hinges to make sure they are not rusting. If any are broken, replace them immediately. If you don’t have issues, you soon will if you already have a broken hinge.

Check for other loose hardware. Check the screws, nuts, and bolts on things like your garage door track regularly to make sure they are tightened. Loose hardware can cause the door to operate poorly and increase wear and tear and shorten the lifespan of your garage door.

Another factor in the lifespan of your garage door is garage door springs Your garage door springs are what keep your garage door open and not slam down closed while they are up. The lifespan of a garage door spring is measured in garage door cycles, with the garage door going up and down one time considered a cycle. Most garage door springs are rated for about 10,000 cycles or 7-15 years. Make sure your garage door springs are lubricated twice a year, and if they look really rusty, consider replacing them before they break to prevent damage to your garage door.

One of the biggest killers of garage doors is dented panels. It should go without say that you should keep objects away from your garage door. If you do have something dent your garage door, it could be fixed with a garage door panel swap or adding strut braces. Leaving it should not be an option. A door with damaged garage door panels will often sag when the door is opened. This type of damage will get worse over time, and the door can eventually get jammed, or cause rollers to pop out of the track and damage the door further.

If your garage door is younger than 15 years old, but not sure if you should replace or repair your garage door, read How Do I Know If I Need a New Garage Door?

Your garage door should last you 15-30 years depending on the different factors and conditions we have laid out here. If you think it is time for a new garage door, call us at Spectrum Overhead Door LLC here in Houston. We have been installing garage doors in Houston since 2006. Call 281-748-9542 for a free design quote today!

Houston Garage Door Repair Customers

Houston Garage Door Repair Customers

Here at Spectrum Overhead Door LLC,  we strive to provide excellent services to each and every call. We go out of our way for our Houston garage door repair customers. We understand that, in many cases, when customers call us they are in need of help and not in the best of moods or situations. It is our job to put their mind at ease and provide them with quality service.  Here is one such case in their own works (Per Google Review).

Learned about Spectrum from a neighbor and called them about a garage door repair. They said they could have a technician out between noon and 1300 hrs. the same day!!! Sure enough Efrain the technician arrived at 1210 hrs. He analyzed the problems with the door, recommended the solutions, and provided the cost for the repair. Efrain was very professional and answered all my questions. Totally satisfied and will use them again. –  Rich Philpot

We treat every client like they are neighbors and treat them the way we want to be treated. That also means keeping the pricing reasonable and competitive.

I highly recommend Spectrum Overhead Door. I was able to quickly get an appointment. Cory arrived on time, was friendly and quickly repaired the garage door. The pricing was very reasonable. –  LaToya Stallworth

Corey did an AWESOME job on installing door opener, and also replacing the old, noisy rollers on the garage door and installing a brace to keep our door from buckling any further than it had. He was right on time, did his work very efficiently, and left the garage neat and clean. Also want to say Michael was so great answering all my questions when I initially called for service and giving guidance about what different openers offer and their quality; he was so helpful! Their $150 offer (if you go buy the opener) is fantastic. Am totally impressed with this company and how much they care about the customer. I will always use them in the future for any garage needs!” – Deborah McCabe

We strive to treat everyone that calls our business the way we would want to be treated if we called a service business.  We strive to be fast, fair, and friendly and really explain and show you what the issue is and what we did to fix the problem.

If you have a garage door issue, look up who you are going to call and read their reviews. In our case, we encourage you to look us up online. We have plenty of reviews and customer stories just like this one all over the internet. When you need garage door repair in the Houston area, give us a call at 281-748-9542. Most days you will speak with Michael who is now our office manager and dispatcher. He has years of in-the-field experience. When you describe the problem to Michael, in most cases he or our other experts can diagnose the issue and give you a quick quote. Give us a try, and like the people in this post, you won’t be disappointed.

Contact Us About Your Garage Door Issues and Get a FREE Quote Today :


Garage Door Safety Tips

Garage Door Safety Tips

Your garage door is an important part of the outside of your home. It serves several purposes, from boosting your curb appeal to storing your vehicles to being used as your front door. That is why it is so important to keep in mind safety when it comes to your garage door. Both safety for you and your family so you don’t get hurt and safety so no one breaks into your home through your garage are both important.  That is why we want to go over both safety tips for you and your family using the garage door and how your garage door can help keep you safe from thieves and burglars outside.

Garage Door Safety Tips For You and Your Family.

Your Children.

Children can be curious and inquisitive. Educate your children about what the garage door does, what its basic components are, and the dangers of those components. Never let them play right close to the open garage door, just in case it comes crashing down by accident. Educating your children about garage door safety, then reinforcing that education is the best defense against injured children.

Emergency Release.

Your garage door should have a red cord that you move the garage door manually. This needs to be shown to everyone in the family, and each should be shown how to use it. This could be important during a power outage or even a house fire where you need to get out through the garage and the opener is not working.

Garage Door Safety Sensors.

Your garage door has sensors that help keep your garage door from coming down on top of anything right below it.  These are called garage door safety sensors or also known as garage door photosensors. These are a very important part of your garage door system that keeps you and your family safe. The safety sensors should be within 6 inches of the ground and pointed at each other. If you find they may not be working correctly, read Troubleshooting Your Garage Door Safety Sensors.

Garage Door Maintenance and Repairs

Always keep watch on how your garage door is operating. Inspect your garage door and perform basic maintenance on your garage door twice a year. If you find an issue with your garage door, unless you are used to home maintenance, it is best to have a professional garage door expert do your garage door repairs. Parts like the garage door springs are under a lot of tension and could cause serious harm if worked on improperly.

Garage Door Saftey Tips Against Thieves and Burglars. 

Inspect your Garage Door.

From time to time you should inspect your garage door. Look for gaps between the window and the frame of your garage door. You also want to look for gaps between the garage door and the weather stripping as well. The reason you want to look for gaps is that these are places thieves can use a crowbar on your garage door or garage door window. One of the best times to inspect your garage door is when you are performing maintenance on your garage door.

Secure Your Emergency Garage Door Release.

Yes, that red cord that you can use to manually open your garage door is good to have in case your opener quits. Yet left dangling free, a  thief can use it against you as well. A thief can reach that cord from the outside and lift that garage door. There is a quick fix for this that still allows you to be able to use It in case of an emergency. Secure the cord with zip ties. If an emergency comes up where you need to use the cord, you can cut or break the zip ties.

Never Leave Your Garage Door Open.

This sounds like common sense and in truth, it is. Yet in our busy lives, especially here in the Houston area, it is easier said than done. It is actually one of the top ways a burglar gets into the garage. That is because it is the path of least resistance if someone is looking for garages and homes to break into. If you have a habit of leaving the garage door open, there are apps that can help to remind you your garage door is open. We suggest the MyQ app that works with most garage door openers. It lets you close your garage door from wherever you are, and lets you know when the last time it was open and for how long.

Consider Frosting or Covering Your Garage Door Windows.

If someone is snooping around looking for something worth breaking into a garage for, it is hard to do that if they cannot see through the window of your garage. You can cover your windows by using curtains, frosting your windows or even use tinting. You also get the benefit of helping your energy cost as well by controlling how much light comes through your garage door window. Covering your garage door windows is something that has multiple benefits.

Installing Motion Activated Lights.

Lighting that turns on when someone approaches your driveway and garage door is convenient for you and provides an added layer of safety in case someone is prowling around. No thief wants the light shined on them when they want to break in.

Get a Garage Door Opener That Has a Built-In Video Camera.

LiftMaster has now come out with The Smart Garage Camera™. The built-in Wi-Fi® allows for smartphone control with myQ® App bypassing the need to buy a separate camera. This camera enables you to see what’s happening in the garage and has two-way communication, so you chat with someone in the garage. The camera will automatically start recording when your garage door has been opened or moved.

Install an Alarm System on Your Garage Door.

Just like there are magnetic alarm systems that detect motion on windows, there are alarm systems that do the same for garage doors. For many, simply mount the sensor to the inside of an overhead door near its bottom and then pair the sensor. This will deter a thief if they try to open your garage by sounding an alarm if they try to lift the armed garage door.

Use a Side Lock.

If you are going away for a longer period of time such as a vacation or business trip, consider installing a manual side lock. This type of lock cannot be unlocked with a remote and requires you to manually unlock with your key in hand.

Hide Your Garage Door Remote.

When you park your car for work or shopping, do not leave your remote visible where a thief can look in and see it. If they see it, it is possible they will want to break into the car and grab the remote. They can take one look at an insurance slip sitting in the glove box to find out exactly where you live. From there, it’s just as simple as going to your home while you are not there and letting themselves into your garage.

Change Your Code.

If you have used the same code for a while, a thief might be able to ferret out what that code is by the wear patterns on the buttons. Or it might be possible someone might have seen you put in the code. As a general practice, it is good to change your garage door opener code on a regular basis. We suggest about every 6 months.

Find your garage door or garage door opener has been compromised or damaged? Spectrum Overhead Door LLC has been serving the Houston area since 2006 with exceptional garage door repair service. We have satisfied hundreds of customers by building long-term relationships and treating each customer with dignity and respect while giving great service. Call 281-748-9542 to get a FREE QUOTE on your garage door repair needs today!

Contact Us About Your Garage Door Issues and Get a FREE Quote Today :

What to Do LiftMaster Error Code 4-6

What to Do LiftMaster Error Code 4-6

LiftMaster garage door openers are a brand many garage door techs and homeowners here in Houston swear by and for good reason. The garage door opener brand is one of the most reliable on the market. However, even the most reliable pieces of machinery break down. That includes LiftMaster garage door openers. If your garage door will not open all the way, sometimes your garage door opener pad will show “Error code 4-2 excessive opening force detected” to indicate that an obstruction, binding, or a sticking door was detected. This doesn’t mean your garage door opener is about break or needs to be replaced. There are several causes for this error, and not all have to do with the garage door opener itself.   We are going to go over what a LiftMaster error code 4-6 means and some common ways to fix the error.

Common Fixes for LiftMaster error code 4-6

Check The Alignment

Often, a 4-6 error code can point to an alignment problem with the sensors. Garage door sensors are 2 small little devices with lenses on the front that are positioned about 6 inches off the ground on either side of the garage door track. Measure from the ground to the garage door safety sensor on both sides and make sure they are at the same height. Also, measure from the wall the track connects to, and make sure the distance away from the wall is the same. An adjustment can be made by loosening the butterfly nut, redirecting, and then re-tightening securely.

Check for Obstacles

One thing to check for when troubleshooting the Liftmaster Error Code 4-6 is obstacles. Make sure that nothing is blocking the path of the garage door opener, as this can prevent it from functioning properly. Clear away any boxes, bikes, or other objects that might be in the way and see if that fixes the problem. Getting rid of these hindrances between the conveyance and delivery units should be adequate to make a more efficient connection amid your garage sensors.

Make Sure Your Sensors Are Clean

The garage door opener must be able to sense when something is in the way of the door to prevent injuries. Make sure that neither sensor is blocking and that they are both clean. If you have checked all these things and are still receiving the error code, please get in touch with customer service for further assistance.

 Adjust the Force Settings On the Opener

The force settings tell the opener how much power to use, and if they are set too low, the opener will not be able to open the door. To adjust the force settings, press and simultaneously hold the “up” and “down” buttons on the opener. The force setting will cycle through the three options: light, medium, and heavy. Choose the setting that best matches your door. If you still see Error Code 4-6 after adjusting the force setting, you will need to replace the batteries in the opener.

Check Door Balance

If your garage door is off balance, it will make the door hard to close, therefore possibly causing your error code. We talk about how to check your balance in 10 Tips for Garage Door maintenance. To check your garage door’s balance you’ll have to disconnect your garage door from your opener and check how well the door rests on its own. Run the door up and down a few times to make sure it moves easily within it’s the track. With your garage door moving smoothly in the tracks, run it up about halfway and let go. Does it hover in place, fall to the floor, or move upward? More than a little movement means your door is out of balance and the torsion spring (also known as a tension spring) may need to be adjusted or replaced.

 Check the Power Supply

One possible reason for receiving the Liftmaster Error Code 4-6 is an issue with the power supply. Check to ensure that the power cord is plugged into a working outlet and that the circuit breaker has not been tripped. If the power cord is plugged in and the circuit breaker is fine, try plugging the Liftmaster into a different outlet to see if that solves the problem. To authenticate this issue with your unit, use a multimeter and confirm the power flow in the outlet. If the LED bulb on the garage door opener is not lit, this is also an indication that the unit may lack power. If you still receive the error code after checking the power supply, move on to the next step.

If you have done all these steps, still have issues, or don’t have time to investigate the issues, you can all Spectrum Overhead Door LLC if you are in the Houston area. We have been repairing garage doors in Houston since 2006 with multiple service awards for excellence. Call 281-748-9542 to schedule your appointment.


How Do I Know If I Need a New Garage Door?

How Do I Know If I Need a New Garage Door?

Garage doors are an integral part of the home. For some homes, the door takes up a sizable portion of one part of the home’s exterior side. And even though garage door maintenance and repair can extend the life of your garage door, there will come a time when you ask yourself how do I know if I need a new garage door?

Average Lifespan of a Garage Door

The average lifespan of a garage door can vary greatly but usually fall between 15-30 years. Well-maintained aluminum garage doors can have lifespans of up to 30 years. Steel garage doors that are well maintained can also last 30 years. If you find yourself considering a new garage door, one of the first things to look at is age. If it’s over 30 years and has other issues, it’s probably best to replace the garage door.


Your garage door panels can be dented from all sorts of impacts, from a vehicle bumping the door to a tree limb to a basketball. There are two kinds of panel dents, cosmetic and structural. If your dent is more in the middle of the panel, way from the edges of each panel touch, then it is a cosmetic dent and it’s possible to fix that on your own. If the panel dent Is near the edge of the panel, that is a structural dent. Those can affect the way your garage door opens and closes. If you have one panel that is dented, you might be able to just replace that panel instead of the whole garage door. However, if two or more panels are damaged structurally, it might make sense just to replace the whole garage door. If you have had several cosmetic dents, these over the years can add up, weakening your garage door and dropping your home’s value at the same time.

Your Garage Door is Noisy

It is normal for garage doors to start making a bit more noise over time. Your door can creak and crack and groan open and closed. With some regular maintenance, this usually goes way. However, the older the garage door gets, the more it’s possible you are not going to stop the noise. If it has gotten to the point where it is really bothersome, then it’s time to consider a new garage door.

Broken Garage Door Parts

There are times that parts on your garage door are going to break, that includes rollers, hinges, handles and cables. This again kind of goes back to the age of your garage door. If it’s a newer installation, you probably should just replace the parts and you should be fine. However, older doors may have repeated parts breaking or being damaged. That is probably a sign you need a new garage door.


If you have an older garage door or a lightweight one where you are worried about someone breaking into your garage, it might be time to think of a new garage door. Older garage doors don’t have the high level of security that we see on new models today. Construction methods, materials, and features have evolved over time resulting in garage doors that have more security.

Change in Home Design

If you are looking to remodel your home to update the look or drive up its curb appeal, a new garage door can go a long way in helping you with that. There are many new styles and designs that have come out in just the last 5 years that could make your home look stunning.

Sometimes the answer the question of getting a new garage door is a simple one to answer, and sometimes it is not. If you live in the Houston area, Spectrum Overhead Door LLC has been installing new garage doors since 2006. We have won multiple awards in service because we believe every customer should be treated with dignity and respect. If you are on the fence about either getting a new garage door or repairing your garage door, contact us and we can set you up with a  free consultation.

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Garage Door Advice