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Garages are more than just places to park our cars. A lot of us store expensive hobby gear, tools, camping gear, and a lot more in our garages. So, when we tell you that we understand how frustrating and worrisome it can be when you have a garage door that won’t close, you know we completely get you.
There are quite a few reasons why your garage door won’t close, and in most cases, you can get it to work properly without having to call a professional technician. We’re going to take you through some easy DIY garage door repair tricks, so you can get your garage door to work properly by yourself.
Causes and fixes
Your sensors may be faulty
If your garage door won’t shut all the way, the problem may be with the door sensors. One of the safety features on garage doors is the safety lasers, also called photo eye sensors, mounted near the tracks on the floor.
The purpose of these is to prevent the door from closing in case there are obstructions, such as pets or small children. However, if these sensors become dirty, they may send the door opener’s control panel a false signal that prevents the door from opening or closing properly.
All you need to do to fix this is to simply wipe the sensors with a soft cloth, taking care to not scratch the surface.
Another reason why you can’t close your garage door is that the sensors may not be aligned properly, because of which, even if the sensors blink properly, they may not be able to sense the signal being sent. This can easily be fixed by simply realigning the sensors.
Damage to the tracks and rollers
If the problem doesn’t lie with the sensors, then the tracks and rollers of your garage door may be why the door will not open and close properly.
One reason could be a build-up of dust and other debris which could be physically obstructing the door from closing. Even damaged rollers and bent tracks can have a similar effect on garage doors.
While dust and debris can be easily cleaned, bent tracks can be beaten back into shape using a hammer, or bent back into shape using clamps.
A great garage door maintenance tip is to also periodically grease the rollers with silicone-based grease or with white lithium. That way, there will be little or no friction whenever your garage door closes.
Check the remote control
Sometimes, the reasons for a garage door not closing or opening properly could be something as mundane as dead remote control batteries. However, if the door still doesn’t work properly after you replace the batteries, it is possible that your garage door’s memory has been erased by a power surge.
To reset the memory, remove the light flap at the back of the garage door opener. There, you will find a button that reads “learn.” Keep the button pressed until a light flashes, and then press the correlating button on the remote. This should reset the opener and get the remote working once again.
The problem may be the limited screws
Garage door openers have limit screws that tell the door how far it has to travel to shut properly, also called travel limits. If none of the above causes are why the door isn’t gliding properly, you may need to adjust the limit screws.
Once again, open the light cover at the back of the door opener. You will find two adjustment screws, one labeled “up” and the other “down” used to adjust limit settings. Adjust the down screw in quarter turns using a flat screwdriver, and check how far down the door goes with each turn until it closes completely.
Check the owner’s manual
Some models of garage doors blink a certain number of times and then stop before repeating the same thing again. This is the door trying to tell you what is wrong with it, and the solution is in the owner’s manual.
Check the owner’s manual and see what corresponds to the number of times the door light blinks, and you will have solved why the door does not close properly. If you have misplaced the owner’s manual, look for a downloadable version on the internet, or contact the manufacturer.
When you should call a professional technician
If none of these approaches work and your garage door still remains half closed or closes only in small increments, it is time to call upon a professional garage door technician. Also, keep in mind to stay away from torsion springs and bolts that are red in color. These are high tension springs and bolts, and without adequate knowledge and experience, you could cause serious injuries.
Always stick to a maintenance schedule
The ideal maintenance schedule is for you to service your garage door twice a year. Stick to this schedule and you ought to have no complaints other than regular wear and tear.