Simple Repairs To A Garage Door

If your garage door suddenly stops working, you might feel stymied. After all, when you buy a home, you do not have to go to a course on garage door repair. Still, there are a few simple troubleshooting steps that the average homeowner can and should take before calling in the professionals to make repairs. With any luck, you can repair your garage door on your own. 

Inspect the Motion Sensors

Modern garage doors will have motion sensors to prevent the door from closing on pets, cars, children, etc. You should first check to make sure that a snow shovel or other large object is not blocking the sensors. If there is no large obstruction, look for smaller obstructions such as a wad of leaves or a dust-covered cobweb. If you don't see these or other small obstructions, clean the lens of the sensor because dust on the sensor can prevent it from working properly. Finally, grab the bracket that holds the sensor is place and gently move it left, right, up, and down to see if it is out of alignment. A light should come on when the system is aligned properly, and once aligned, your door should work properly. 

Check the Rails

Malfunctioning motion sensors will prevent a door from closing. The door will open fine, and when you try to close it, it will start to close then reverse direction. If, on the other hand, your door gets jammed partway while opening or closing, your sensors are not the problem. Instead, you likely have a bent garage door rail. First, try to get your door to open all the way or close. Inspect your rails for wads of leaves or debris that could cause them to jam. If you find no such obstructions, look for bends or dents in the rails. If you find a bend, grab a block of wood and a hammer. Place the wood against the rail to distribute the blow from the hammer over a greater area and thus prevent further damage. Strike the wood with the hammer until you have removed the bend. 

If you take these two steps to troubleshoot your garage door, and you still have not solved the problem, you should call in the professionals. If you have a problem with the springs, motor, or electrical components of your door, it is best to leave the repair in the hands of a trained professional, like Doors Unlimited.