Throughout the winter, you may experience problems with your garage door system due to cold temperatures. Maybe your garage door is stuck, makes too much noise while operating, or has trouble opening and closing. These problems are common in the winter and are often due to one of the following issues.
Condensation on Photo Eyes
Most garage door openers operate have a set of photo eye sensors that detect any objects that are in the path of the door as it’s closing. If there is moisture in the air and the temperature drops, frozen condensation can build up on the photo eyes, causing them to stop the door from operating. If your door is reversing, not closing all the way, or not operating at all, check your photo eyes for buildup. You can fix the problem by simply wiping off and realigning the photo eyes.
Thickened or Excess Grease
Cold weather can cause the grease in your system to thicken and impair or prevent the movement of your garage door. Use a solvent to remove the old grease, and then reapply fresh lubricant (a silicone-based oil) to the moving parts of your garage door system. Make sure to apply the correct amount of lubricant in the right places, as excess grease can also cause problems. Rollers could get knocked out of alignment so they don’t run smoothly as the door opens and closes. This could lead to jamming and serious damage to your garage door system.
Contracted Metal Parts
When the temperatures get low, metal components, such as screws, springs, hinges, and rollers, can contract. This can cause your system to operate less smoothly or seize up entirely. Lubricate moving parts to alleviate this problem, but as mentioned above, be careful not to apply too much. Depending on the level of moisture in the air, you may need to reapply the lubricant multiple times over the course of the winter.
As snow, ice, and frost accumulate, they can cause the door’s weather stripping to get stuck to the ground or your door to stick to its frame. Check the perimeter and base of your garage door frame for frozen buildup. You can use salt, hot water, or even your hair dryer to help thaw problem areas. Don’t try to operate your door if it is stuck, as this can cause serious mechanical issues.
Garage door springs are essential to your door’s operation, and they last for a limited number of cycles. If not replaced soon enough, they wear out and break. Because of the stress cold weather places on your door’s metal parts, this commonly happens during the winter. If a spring breaks, contact a professional to replace it for you. Attempting to replace it yourself can result in serious injury.
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