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How to Quickly Diagnose a Faulty Garage Door

You may be starting to wonder if you’re going crazy or if someone put a black magic hex on your garage door, but either way, it’s doing a better job of being a wall than a door, a squeaky banshee rather than a smooth-opening door, or simply won’t go down at all.

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Your garage door isn’t working, but is it time to call the repairman, dig out your tools, or simply administer a quick fix? Here are a few ways to quickly diagnose your door as faulty or not:

1. Does the Transmitter Have Dead Batteries?

The biggest problems usually have the simplest of solutions, and if you installed the batteries of your transmitter on the same day you installed the garage door itself, you may have forgotten that it does indeed need updated batteries to keep working. Be sure to replace the batteries and try it again to see if it works; if not, then it’s time to upgrade the troubleshooting.

2. Is the Track On-Track?

Whether you had a rather rambunctious pool game or the rusty old things simply lost their ability to keep on rolling, if your door won’t open or close, it’s time to inspect the track itself. If it’s fallen out of alignment, then it should be easy to see and can be fixed by simply putting them back in place. If the tracks are at all bent, then you have a bigger problem and should look closer to inspect whether they’re out of shape. If they are, a hammer and some hard work should put them to rights, or an entire replacement via a repairman could be necessary.

3. Are the Photo Eyes Damaged or Blocked?

As cool as the stories of a grandmother lifting an entire garage door off her grandchild are, they’re not fun. To keep this from happening, your garage door has two photo eyes that keep the door from closing if there’s something standing in the way. They may have made a mistake in assuming something was blocking the door and kept it from closing, and in this case, it’s time to check whether there is any dirt or grime blocking their sight. If there isn’t, then you may have a faulty eye and need to replace it.

4. Is Your Transmitter on the Right Frequency?

If your garage door starts opening and closing at random times, you may think it’s time to call an exorcist. That’s still an option to keep in your side pocket, but first examine your transmitter to make sure that it’s on the right frequency. You may find yourself in a case where your neighbor is on the same frequency and accidentally (or not, if they’re the devious kind) opening your door with their own. The cause of the problem might also be simpler, such as your transmitter being weighed down by papers or another object that is activating the command by accident.

5. Are Your Tracks Blocked?

If you’re looking to stage an execution guillotine-style with your garage door, you’re in for some bad news. To keep your door from accidentally crushing something or someone, the track automatically reverses and opens the door back up if it feels any sort of resistance. This could lead it to mistaking a blockage of dirt or grime in its track as a blockage in the door and only closing half way before opening again. Be sure to inspect the track itself and see if there is anything blocking the way. If so, take some soap and hot water and clean out the tracks to put it in working order again.

6. Are Your Open-and-Close Limits Too High?

There is a special setting in your garage door that tells it how far down it should go before it will meet the ground, and this is designed to ensure even special large or small garages can have a door that does its job. If you door goes all the way down and then automatically opens again, this setting could be the culprit, making your door think it’s hitting a blockage when really it’s hitting the ground. Simply check the settings of your door and adjust the height different accordingly to fix the issue.

7. Are Your Springs Broken?

As simple as it looks for your garage door to open, and as easy as it is to manually grip the underside of the door and force it up, they’re actually incredibility heavy. Rather than the tracks themselves doing the heavy lifting, there are two thick springs that do all the work. If these springs are at all bend or broken, your door will not open and you’ll find yourself splitting a vein in your forehead trying to force it up yourself. If this is the case, you can discover the problem by examining the springs to see if they’re out of order. If they are, be sure to contact a professional, as these tightly-wound pieces of metal are extremely dangerous.

8. Does Your Automatic Door Opener Have a Lock?

If you find your automatic door opener running for a few moments but being unable to budge the door itself, you may have run into an older-style issue with these doors. The original kind had a lock set in place to help prevent accidental opening issues, and they’re relatively easy to engage without meaning to. Be sure to examine the opener themselves and see if this lock has been engaged, and if so, simply disengage it and try to open the door again.

9. Do You Have a Broken Cable?

There are a series of cables connecting the door to the springs, and if you find your garage door acting over-excited and closing too quickly with a frightening crash, you may be facing a few broken cables. This means the springs are not receiving the right message from the control system and closing too fast. If this is the case, be sure to consult a professional to handle the complicated electrical system.

Before you panic or call a professional when your garage door misbehaves, take into account these few simple problems so you can diagnose your fault door immediately.

Having garage door issues? Get in touch with New York Gates today at 718-614-0616

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