Garage Door Maintenance


Signs Your Garage Door Needs Maintenance

Signs Your Garage Door Needs Maintenance

A regular bi-annual maintenance check of your garage door system is the ideal way to spot issues before they become problems. However, Houstonians live busy lives and if the hustle and bustle of daily life isn’t enough, you have the weather here. So it’s easy to miss a time to catch issues, and even if you do regular inspections on your door, there are times it’s just going to have issues. If you know the signs that your garage door needs maintenance, you just might catch those issues early enough before they break your whole door system. Let’s go over what some of those signs could be. 

Unusual Noises 

Have you ever noticed your garage door making more noise than a room full of toddlers? Those grinding, squeaking, or snapping sounds are not just annoying—they’re a cry for help from your garage door.

Grinding or Squeaking Sounds

These usually mean that parts of your door need lubrication or that certain components are worn out and need replacing. It’s like when your car starts screeching; it’s often because something’s not quite right under the hood.

Snapping or Popping Noises

If it sounds like popcorn is being made in your garage every time the door moves, you might be dealing with spring issues. Just last week, I visited a home where the spring had snapped, and it sounded like a gunshot! It’s a safety hazard and needs immediate attention.

Opening and Closing Issues

Slow Response Time

Does your garage door have a mind of its own, taking its sweet time to open or close? This isn’t just a minor annoyance—it could indicate something more serious.

Delayed Operation

A delay between hitting the remote and your door’s action might suggest problems with the opener or signal interference. Think of it like emailing someone and waiting ages for a reply; something in the communication line is off.

Irregular Opening and Closing

If your door is playing stop-and-go more than your kids’ games, this could point to issues with alignment or an uncooperative opener. Just like when your computer starts freezing up, these little hints suggest it might be time for a check-up.

Inconsistent Movement

Jerky motions or a door that sticks are more than just irritating—they’re signs your garage door might be in distress.

Jerky Motions

This often means something is up with your door’s cables or tension springs. It’s like when you’re trying to use a saw with a dull blade; it’s going to be choppy.

Sticking When Opening or Closing

Tracks that are dirty or lacking lubrication can often cause your door to stick. It’s like trying to slide a sticky drawer open; it needs some TLC to move smoothly.

Failure to Open or Close Completely

Sometimes, the biggest sign of trouble is the most obvious—your door just won’t open or close all the way.

Sensor Issues

Dirty or misaligned sensors can often cause your door to behave erratically, thinking there’s an obstacle when there isn’t. It’s like those automatic toilets that flush before you’re ready. They think they’re helping, but they’re really not!

Visible Wear and Tear

Door Off Track

There’s almost nothing scarier in the garage door world than a door that’s come off its track. This is a major safety risk and needs to be looked at immediately.

Misalignment

If your door looks uneven or doesn’t sit flush against the ground, it’s likely off-track. This can happen from normal use over time or something hitting the door. Either way, it’s like riding a bike with a bent wheel; it just doesn’t work right.

Sagging Sections

If part of your garage door starts sagging, it can be a sign that the tension springs are not holding up. It’s similar to when your favorite old couch starts to dip; it means the springs are giving out.

Rust and Corrosion

Rust on the springs, hinges, or rollers isn’t just unsightly; it can lead to serious damage if left unchecked. It’s like letting rust get a foothold on your bike; pretty soon, it’s going to affect the ride.

When to Seek Professional Help

If you’re ever in doubt, it’s best to call in the pros. We at Spectrum Overhead Door are always here to help, whether it’s routine maintenance or emergency repairs.

Conclusion

Garage door maintenance might not be the most exciting part of homeownership, but it’s crucial for keeping everything running smoothly. Just like with any other part of your house, a little attention can go a long way. Keep an eye—and ear—out for these signs, and don’t hesitate to reach out to Spectrum Overhead Door for any concerns or garage door repair needs. Your garage door will thank you!

 

Why Your Garage Door Stops Working After a Storm

Why Your Garage Door Stops Working After a Storm

Living in Houston can be rough weather-wise. The first half of 2024 is almost gone and we have already had plenty of wind and rain storms here in Houston. One thing we always get garage door repair calls on after a storm is that their garage door has stopped working, or at least working correctly. Considering storms are a part of life in Houston, we wanted to go over different reasons why your garage door stops working after a storm. 

Electrical Issues

Power Outages and Power Surges

First up, let’s talk power. Storms can knock out power lines, and no power means no automatic garage door operation if you don’t have a battery backup system. It’s a common scenario we see here at Spectrum—once the power’s back, your door still might not work due to the outage affecting its settings or even frying the circuit board if there was a surge.

Speaking of surges, these are a real threat during storms. A power surge can quickly cook the electronic components of your garage door opener. I’ve seen many homeowners here in Houston come to us post-storm, baffled by their non-responsive garage doors, only to find out a surge zapped their opener. It’s a good idea to invest in a surge protector for the garage door opener to avoid this costly damage.

Physical Damage

Wind Damage

High winds are notorious for bending garage door tracks or loosening the tension in the springs. If your door seems off-kilter or won’t open smoothly, wind damage might be the culprit. After Hurricane Harvey, we had numerous calls about doors that simply wouldn’t operate right because the tracks were so out of alignment.

Debris Impact

From tree branches to flying garden decorations, anything picked up by the wind can be hurled against your garage door. I remember a funny yet unfortunate incident where a customer’s inflatable pool ended up squashed against their garage door, denting it severely. Always clear away potential projectiles from your yard when a storm is on the horizon!

Flood Damage

Let’s not forget about flooding, especially in our low-lying coastal areas. Water can wreak havoc on the lower sections of your garage door, and especially on the electronic components if your system isn’t elevated. Post-storm flooding is something we tackle often, helping homeowners assess and repair water damage to their garage systems.

Sensor Issues

Misalignment

Sensors are your garage door’s safety feature, stopping it from closing if something is in the way. Storms can knock these little guys out of alignment. A simple bump from debris or even heavy rain can do it. If your door isn’t closing all the way, checking the alignment of these sensors should be your first step.

Moisture and Dirt

Water and dirt can also cloud the sensors, making them think there’s always something obstructing the door. Cleaning them off with a soft cloth can often fix this issue. I’ve had a chuckle or two after clearing mud splatters off a sensor and watching a homeowner’s relief when their door starts working again.

Mechanical Failures

Corrosion and Rust

Houston’s humidity combined with storm moisture can start the rusting process on your door’s springs and hinges. Regular lubrication after a storm can go a long way in preventing this.

Component Breakdown

The mechanical strain from battling the elements can accelerate wear on your door’s rollers, cables, and springs. It’s like running a marathon in heavy rain; even the best of us would get a little worn out.

Professional Repair and Support

If the damage is beyond a simple DIY fix or if you’re unsure about what to do, it’s time to call in the pros. At Spectrum Overhead Door, we offer everything from emergency repairs to routine maintenance. Don’t risk an injury or further damage by trying to fix complex issues on your own.

Conclusion

Garage doors are often overlooked until something goes wrong. Post-storm issues can be a hassle, but understanding why they happen and how to prevent them can save you time and money. Whether it’s a minor adjustment or a major repair, we’re here to help ensure your garage door is safe and functional, no matter the weather.

 

Garage Door Repairs You May Need as a Homeowner

Garage Door Repairs You May Need as a Homeowner

If you have bought a newer home or building a home, chances are you are getting a garage. Of course with a garage comes a garage door and the system that opens the door. Like just about any other part of the home, that garage door and its moving parts are going to need repairs and maintenance down the line. So, to help you to be prepared for what you may encounter, here is a list of garage door repairs you may need as a homeowner.

Garage Door Repairs You Could Need as a Homeowner

Garage Door Spring Replacement.

If you look on the inside of your garage above your garage door, you generally find either one or two springs. Your garage door springs are what fight gravity in order for your garage door to open and close. Over their lifetime, they will extend and contract. They are rated for so many cycles, one open and close being a cycle. Depending on the use of the garage door, these will wear out at some point in time. Also, garage door springs are made from metal, usually steel. This Houston humidity can easily rust any metal. It’s best to keep them lubricated at least twice a year, but sometimes they rust regardless. If your spring looks like it has been dunked in the Gulf of Mexico, it’s best to replace the spring. Other indications your garage door spring needs to be replaced:

  • Your garage door opener won’t open the door
  • The garage door closes faster than normal when using an automatic opener
  • Your garage door is crooked when opening and closing

Garage Door Panel Replacement.

It is so easy to have happen. You hit the accelerator instead of the brake, a ball hit the door, etc. and next thing you know your garage door has a sizable dent. Sometimes those dents can affect how well your garage door rolls up or down. The panels can separate themselves causing all sorts of issues. Instead of having to replace your whole garage door, you can just replace your garage door panel, saving you money in the long run.

Garage Door Opener.

Your garage door opener is what moves your garage door to open and close. They are meant to last 10 to 15 years depending on the make and model. Yet of course, due to Houston humidity and usage, it is easy for garage door openers to wear out sooner or malfunction if not properly taken care of.

There are lots of reasons why a garage door opener may not work properly. Your limit settings may need adjusting if the door won’t shut all the way. Your laser sensors could be dirty and need cleaning or need to be realigned, or a component in the opener itself may have malfunctioned or shorted out. If your garage door opener is malfunctioning, it’s best to call a professional for garage door opener repair.

The Garage Door Is Off Track.

Sometimes a garage door will come off its tracks or become crooked. You do not want to try to force the door open or closed if this the case as you can actually make things worse. Bent tracks are a common problem with garage doors. If the bend isn’t too bad, it can be hammered out. If it has warped too badly though, you’ll need to have the track replaced. Another common reason would be the door hitting an object on one side, momentarily tilting the door, and causing one of the side cables to become misaligned. Whatever the cause is, the garage door should not be left in this position for too long as worse damage can occur. Instead, it would be best to call a professional for off-track garage door repair.

Garage Door Lubrication and Tune-Up.

One of the best ways to avoid at least some of these problems is to have your garage door system tuned up and lubricated by a professional every couple of years. Lubrication is essential to keep all moving parts of the door working as they should. This includes the chain or belt on the automatic garage door opener, the hinges, rollers, bearing plates, springs, armbar and lock, and the top of the rail. A tune-up can catch small issues with things like your springs and tracks before they become problems on their own.

Spectrum Overhead Door LLC has been in business in the Houston and surrounding area since 2006. We provide Houston area residences with award-winning garage door repairs. Call our main office at 281-748-9542  for a free quote today!

 

Sealing Gaps Along The Side of a Garage Door

Sealing Gaps Along The Side of a Garage Door

A well-sealed garage door not only improves the energy efficiency of your home but also protects your garage from pests, dust, and external weather elements. Here in the Houston area, if you don’t close these gaps, you can have numerous issues like pests or mold inside your garage from moisture getting in. Fortunately, sealing these gaps is a straightforward DIY project that can be completed in a few steps. Here’s how to ensure your garage door is as efficient and secure as possible.

Step 1: Identify the Gaps

Before you can seal any gaps, you need to identify where and how large they are. Close your garage door and inspect it from the inside during the daytime. Look for any light coming through the sides. These are the areas where air and pests can enter, and they indicate where you need to focus your sealing efforts.

Step 2: Choose the Right Sealant

There are several types of sealants available for garage doors, but the most common and effective for sealing side gaps are weatherstripping and brush seals.

  • Weatherstripping: This typically comes in a rubber or vinyl strip that can be nailed or screwed into place. It’s flexible and can easily compress to fill in the gaps.
  • Brush Seals: These consist of a row of bristles that are attached to a metal or plastic backing. The bristles conform to the surface of the wall and block out air and pests without preventing the door from moving freely.

Step 3: Clean the Area

Before applying any new sealant, make sure the area where you’ll be working is clean. Remove any dirt, debris, or old sealant from the edges of the garage door frame. This ensures that the new sealant adheres properly and provides a tight seal.

Step 4: Measure and Cut the Sealant

Measure the length of the area where you’ll be applying the sealant. Whether you’re using weatherstripping or brush seals, it’s important to measure twice to ensure accuracy. Cut your sealant material to length with scissors (for rubber or vinyl) or a hacksaw (for brush seals with metal backing).

Step 5: Install the Sealant

  • For Weatherstripping:
    • If using self-adhesive weatherstripping, peel off the backing to reveal the adhesive, and carefully press it into place along the door frame, ensuring there are no wrinkles or bubbles.
    • For weatherstripping that requires nails or screws, align it along the door frame and fix it into place using a hammer or drill.
  • For Brush Seals:
    • Align the brush seal along the edge where the door meets the frame. The bristles should lightly touch the door without preventing it from moving.
    • Use screws to secure the brush seal into place. It’s often best to drill pilot holes to make this step easier and prevent damage to the frame.

Step 6: Test the Door

After installing the sealant, close and open the garage door several times to ensure the sealant isn’t hindering its movement. Check from the inside again to see if there are still any light leaks. Adjust the seal as needed if gaps are still visible.

Step 7: Maintain Regularly

Like any part of your garage door, the side seals can wear out and degrade over time. Inspect them regularly, especially before and after the harsh Houston weather seasons, and replace them as necessary to maintain their effectiveness.

Conclusion

Sealing the gaps along the side of your garage door is an effective way to enhance your home’s overall energy efficiency and prevent unwanted guests and elements from entering your garage. The process is simple enough to do on your own, but if you run into any issues or prefer professional help, Spectrum Overhead Door is always here to assist with your garage door repair needs in Houston. Proper maintenance and timely repairs will keep your garage door operating smoothly year-round. Stay tuned for more helpful tips and tricks from your local garage door experts!

 

How to Do Garage Door Roller Replacement

How to Do Garage Door Roller Replacement

If your garage door has been sounding more like a runaway train than a smooth-operating entrance to your home, it might be time to consider replacing the rollers. Over time, rollers can wear out, leading to noise, jamming, and potential damage to your garage door, including your garage door going off track. In this post, we’ll guide you through the process of replacing your garage door rollers, ensuring a quieter, smoother operation.

Understanding What Happens to Rollers Over Time

Garage door rollers consist of a wheel attached to a stem, with ball bearings allowing the wheel to rotate smoothly. However, these ball bearings can wear out over time, causing the wheel to become loose. This looseness not only increases the noise your garage door makes but also raises the risk of the roller popping out of the track. Such issues can lead to your door jamming or even causing damage to the panels. It’s generally recommended to replace your rollers every 10 to 15 years to avoid these problems.

Why Replacing Rollers Isn’t as Simple as It Seems

Many people think replacing garage door rollers is an easy DIY task—just remove some screws, replace the rollers, and you’re done, right? Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. For one, removing and reinserting screws can lead to over-tightening and loosening over time, increasing the risk of them falling out. Moreover, the bottom plate that holds the bottom roller is connected to a cable under immense tension. You mustn’t attempt to remove the screws on this piece without first unwinding the spring tension or locking it down.

Step-by-Step Guide to Replacing Your Garage Door Rollers Safely

What You’ll Need:

  • Nylon rollers
  • Channel locks
  • Flat file or screwdriver

Instructions:

  • Identify the Problematic Rollers: A loud garage door is a clear indicator. You’re aiming to replace worn-out rollers with quieter, more durable nylon rollers.
  • Creating an Opening: Count three rollers up from the bottom. Using channel locks, grip and pull outward about six inches above the third roller to create a one-inch space. This opening will allow you to remove and replace the rollers.
  • Replacing the Rollers: Lower the door until the roller aligns with the opening you’ve created. Use a flat file or a screwdriver to pry the old roller out. Replace it with a new nylon roller, and then pop it back into the track. Repeat this process for each roller, working your way up the door.
  • Adjusting the Track: After replacing the rollers, you may need to adjust the track slightly to ensure smooth operation. This doesn’t bear weight but acts as a guide for the door.

After replacing the rollers, you’ll notice a significant reduction in noise.

Cost

Replacing rollers is not only a cost-effective maintenance task but also enhances the longevity and performance of your garage door. While some companies might charge up to $200 for parts and labor, high-quality nylon rollers can be ordered from Parts 4 Garage Doors at a fraction of the cost. 

Conclusion

Replacing your garage door rollers is a straightforward process that can lead to a quieter, more efficient garage door. By following the steps outlined above, you can ensure a safe replacement and enjoy the smooth operation of your garage door for years to come. Remember, maintenance is the key to preventing costly repairs down the line, and something as simple as replacing worn-out rollers can make a significant difference.

 If you’re not comfortable performing this task yourself or encounter complications, don’t hesitate to call the professionals at Spectrum Overhead Door. Our team of experts is ready to help with all your garage door needs in Houston.

Remember, regular maintenance is key to extending the life of your garage door and its components. Stay tuned to our blog for more tips and tricks on keeping your garage door in top condition. Stay safe and happy DIYing!

What Causes Garage Door Hinges to Break

What Causes Garage Door Hinges to Break

Broken garage door hinges can cause your garage door to completely fail and go off-track. In many cases, this is a preventable issue. Knowing what causes broken garage door hinges can help homeowners prevent the problem and help them keep their garage door in working order, saving money in garage door repairs. That is why we are going to go into what causes hinge failures, offer maintenance tips, and provide professional advice on how to address these problems.

Reasons for Garage Door Hinge Failure

Wear and Tear

The most common cause of garage door hinge failure is simple wear and tear. Garage doors are frequently used, with many households opening and closing them multiple times a day. This constant motion puts a lot of stress on the hinges, causing them to wear out over time. The wear and tear process is accelerated if the door is not regularly maintained, such as lubricating the hinges to reduce friction. Regular inspection and maintenance can help identify early signs of wear and tear, allowing for timely replacements before any significant damage occurs.

Improper Installation

Improper installation of garage doors or hinges can lead to premature failure. If the hinges are not aligned correctly, it can cause uneven weight distribution across the door, leading to increased stress on certain hinges. This imbalance can result in those hinges breaking much sooner than expected. Ensuring that your garage door is installed by a professional with experience in the correct placement and installation of hinges is essential for preventing such issues.

Corrosion and Rust

Houston’s humid climate can contribute to the corrosion and rusting of metal components, including garage door hinges. Corrosion weakens the metal, making the hinges brittle and more prone to breaking. To combat this, it is advisable to use corrosion-resistant hinges or apply protective coatings. Regular cleaning and lubrication can also help protect hinges from moisture and prevent rust.

Accidents and Force

Accidental impacts, such as hitting the garage door with a vehicle or a heavy object striking the door, can cause immediate damage to the hinges. Forceful impacts can bend or break hinges, leading to the door malfunctioning. While accidents are sometimes unavoidable, ensuring that the garage area is clear of obstacles and using caution when operating vehicles near the door can minimize the risk.

Material and Quality of Hinges

The material and quality of the hinges play a significant role in their durability. Lower quality or inadequate hinges may not withstand the weight of the door or the strain of regular operation, leading to early failure. Investing in high-quality, durable hinges from reputable manufacturers is crucial for the longevity of your garage door. Spectrum Overhead Door always recommends using the best materials available within your budget.

Maintenance Tips

To prevent hinge failure, regular maintenance is key. Here are some tips to keep your garage door hinges in top condition:

  • Lubricate regularly: Apply a silicone-based lubricant to the hinges at least twice a year to reduce friction and wear.
  • Inspect frequently: Check your garage door hinges for signs of wear, corrosion, or damage regularly. Early detection can prevent more serious issues.
  • Clean the hinges: Keep the hinges free of dirt and debris that can cause abrasion and wear.
  • Hire professionals for installation and repairs: To ensure proper installation and handling of any repairs, always seek the expertise of professional garage door technicians.

Conclusion

Understanding the causes of garage door hinge failure is essential for any homeowner. Wear and tear, improper installation, corrosion and rust, accidents, and the use of low-quality materials are common culprits. Regular maintenance, including lubrication, inspection, and professional installation, can significantly extend the life of your garage door hinges. At Spectrum Overhead Door, we are committed to providing the highest quality repair and installation services in Houston. By following these guidelines, you can ensure the durability and proper functioning of your garage door for years to come.

 

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