Garage doors, much like many other modern amenities, are a fantastic addition to everyday life—that is, as long as they’re functioning properly. When your garage door needs repair, it’s easy to reach out to the company that seems most available. Unfortunately, it’s often in that time of urgency that scammers are likely to strike.

The best time to search for a reputable overhead door representative is before an emergency situation occurs. To set yourself up for success in regard to the maintenance and repair of your garage door, here are a few helpful pointers.

1. Familiarize yourself with the basic mechanics of your garage door.

Scammers prey on a lack of knowledge and can often propose unnecessary replacements which can double or even triple the cost of repairs. Not sure where to start? Browse through our Basic Anatomy of a Garage Door Parts 1 and 2 for an overview of your garage door’s guts. Knowing what kind of help you need (and what help you don’t) is the first step to finding the right repair company.

2. Research reputable companies in your area.

Online reviews are helpful but are sometimes more accurate when produced by a third-party organization. Consider looking at remarks on Google Places, HomeAdvisor, and Angie’s List. Friends, family, and neighbors are also great resources to utilize when starting your hunt.

3. Plan ahead and have a reputable service contact before your garage door needs immediate service.

When possible, call multiple companies in order to compare service quotes. Be aware of the cost of a new garage door for your home, and don’t accept repairs that would “total” or exceed the cost to replace it. Consider these other tips on spotting a scammer.

There are always situations that arise without warning, and in those last-minute scenarios, here are a few ways to safe-guard against potential fraudulent workers:

4. Check for standard industry benchmarks that serve as indicators of a legitimate business.

  • Company logo
  • Working and updated website
  • Permanent address
  • Professional phone line (not a personal cell phone number)
  • Rating by the Better Business Bureau
  • Membership to DASMA or IDA

If a business is missing one of the above criteria, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is fraudulent, but the checklist can certainly serve as a continuum in terms of trustworthiness (i.e. a business with all six of these criteria is likely to provide fair, reliable service). 

5. Obtain at least two quotes before accepting service.

Comparing two different industry quotes will help you to determine the reasonable expenditure for your specific repair. Just as you probably wouldn’t buy a car from a dealership without comparing pricing with others that are similar, you don’t want to sign off on the first garage door repair offer you receive. Though you may be in a time crunch at this point, keep in mind that a second phone call could potentially save you hundreds or more on your repair.

6. Document all transactions.

Make sure, if you decide to accept the service, that there is written documentation of all services to be provided. Never pay a repairperson directly; always pay the company, and be wary if you are asked to pay in cash upfront.

It’s in times of urgency that homeowners become most susceptible to scammers. Prepare yourself ahead of time so you can rest assured you’ve selected the best possible company in your area and that when trouble arises, you will be treated fairly and within reason. Just as you probably have a plan in case of a power outage or a tornado, it’s best to have a plan for when your garage door inevitably needs repair.

When in a pinch, you can always call WD Door. With more than 25 years in the business, our goal is to offer you the best customer service across the state of Iowa. We’re committed to providing the highest quality service for each of our customers, whether we’re repairing, maintaining, or installing your garage door.

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