Garage doors are a major convenience to homeowners. If your garage door is not working, though, it can also be the source of a massive amount of frustration. Though it might look like a relatively simple operation, there are actually dozens of different potential reasons for why your door isn't opening and closing as it should. Here are some of the most common for you to investigate.
First, Check the Door
Before you start working on your garage door, the first thing you should do is unplug the power source to prevent it from operating while you're working on it. Once it's unplugged, pull the emergency release handle on the garage door and make sure the door goes up and down as it should. If you hear grinding noises or if it's not rolling smoothly, the door itself may be warped or, more commonly, the tracks and rollers may be out of alignment. When those are off balance, it can signal resistance to the opener and cause it to reverse course as part of its safety measures.
Next, Check the Sensors
Another part of the safety mechanisms inside nearly all modern garage doors is sensors that are located on the floor underneath the garage door. These photoelectric sensors can determine when something is in the path and cause the door to open back up if so. Sometimes the sensors can be out of alignment, or there might be a piece of dirt or debris attached to the cover or floating in the path of the sensors. Check to make sure the lights are aligned and that the sensors are clean.
Then, Check the Tracks
As mentioned above, the slightest bit of resistance can make the opener reverse course. If the tracks are not out of alignment and the door is still in good shape, squeeze some lubricant that is rated for garage door usage (i.e. heavier usage than normal) on the tracks. Regular maintenance like that can go a long way in ensuring that your garage doors operate at peak efficiency.
Finally, Check the Electronics
Replace the batteries in the remotes for your garage door opener and see if it starts operating as normal again. That's the easy fix; if it's still not working properly, you might have a faulty circuit board in the opener itself. Though this isn't technically hard to replace, it can be challenging for most homeowners who aren't used to doing many DIY-type projects. If you're unsure about how to change it, or if you just don't want the hassle of a repair job, call someone who repairs garage doors to help.
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