As with a lot of equipment and tools, garage doors are not something to think about until they stop working. If they break down, you may not be able to find the best course of action to fix the problem. Many parts are easy to swap out, while others require a little more time, knowledge, and effort. Being able to repair your garage yourself can save you a lot of money. There are three main points for any garage door repair: the appropriate tools, repair instructions, and the correct garage parts.
Which garage parts you should replace yourself and which ones you should leave to a professional depends on your level of comfort with this particular project. The following information will give you an idea of the most common garage door parts that can fail and what a replacement means.
Replacement of garage parts
Understanding how your garage door works is a good idea for you. It helps you identify potential problems before they occur and determine the cause of any malfunction. Maintenance of garage doors alone can prevent major repairs and keep your door running smoothly. You can also save a lot of money on repair costs later. Garage doors have many moving parts. Tasks like replacing missing garage door screws or old hinges should be easy and straightforward for you. Others, like those described below, are more complex.
Before doing any of these repairs, there are detailed how-to videos to help you understand the exact processes that you should be performing. Also, search DIY garage door parts online to find the best price. Many hardware stores may not have the parts you need for your particular garage door. Finding a reputable online dealer can go a long way in gaining access to the parts you need to keep your garage door running.
One of the most likely parts of the garage door is the tension springs. That's because they do most of the heavy lifting. They build up tension when the door closes and then use that energy to open the door. In general, you can expect extension springs to last between 10,000 and 20,000 cycles before needing to be replaced.
You can replace this nib yourself but want to know the correct steps. When wound up, these parts can become dangerous projectiles. If the door is not installed correctly, it will not open or close as intended, which could damage other parts or your home's infrastructure.
There are many different types of extension springs so make sure you are purchasing the correct type and size for your door. Depending on the size and design of your door, it can have more than one tension spring. When replacing garage door tension springs, be sure to check the condition of the rod to which the springs are attached and the brackets that hold it in place. These can wear out over time and are inexpensive to replace. It may be worth swapping these out while you swap out the mainspring.
Garage door opener
Motors that operate the automatic garage door opener usually last a long time, but occasionally need to be replaced. This could be a lot easier than you think, especially if you are just swapping out the motor. As with many other garage parts, one of the most important things is to make sure you choose the correct size motor to operate your door. Most are available in ½, ¾, and 1+ hp engines. The amount of power you need depends on the size and material of your door (for example, wood is much heavier than vinyl or aluminum).
If you don't need to replace the mounting brackets, carriage, or drive chain for your opener, turn off the motors and reconnect the parts. When you install these new components, make sure that they are all compatible with each other. Also, keep in mind that the first time you install an auto opener, you will need to run electrical cables through the ceiling of your garage.
Automatic reverse sensors
All automatic garage doors sold in the United States must have reverse sensors. These are mounted on both sides of the door near the floor. They indicate whether something is blocking the door when it is being lowered and, if so, instruct the motor to reverse the door. While the brackets and sensors themselves are fairly easy to install, you need to make sure that they are properly aligned and functioning. If you change the wiring for the sensors, a certain electrical know-how is required.
Other garage door parts such as rails, rollers, cables, or the door itself may need to be replaced. Garage doors can weigh several hundred pounds. When replacing any parts that help hang the door, make sure you take every precaution to ensure it does not fall. It's always a good idea to secure your door with brackets and supports to make sure it doesn't fall. In most cases, you should make sure that you lower the garage door to reduce the risk of it tipping over.
Get your garage door working
Now that you have an idea of what garage parts you will likely need to replace, it's time to decide whether you want to comfortably do the job yourself. There are many great options online to get the right parts and instructions on how to install them.
When in doubt, don't take any chances. Hire a professional to make sure the parts are replaced correctly so you can be sure that your door is working as intended.
We hope this information has been useful to you. Also check out some of our other posts on home improvement projects. We have everything from equipment repair to woodworking and roofing.