Ahhh, fall – our favorite time of year. From the incredible explosion of vibrant hues, to the brisk morning air that melds with the warmth of an Arizona afternoon, no other season can compare. The fact that pumpkin spice everything, football, and hayrides are back doesn’t hurt either. Fall also means it’s time for garage door maintenance. As the holidays draw nearer, it’s only going to get busier.

Here are a few fall garage door maintenance tasks that will only take a few minutes, but save you a lot of hassle down the road:

#1. Lubricate

A small amount of lubrication can go a long way in preventing your door from waking the living dead. Use a high-quality, petroleum-based lubricant to grease the door’s springs, hinges and rollers. Although it’s essential that you thoroughly clean the tracks (a good once over with the vacuum hose should do the trick), you should refrain from lubricating them, as this can cause the door to slip.

#2. Weather Stripping

If the door’s weather stripping is cracked, brittle or simply past its prime, there’s no way it’s going to keep the cold and dampness out of your garage. Weather stripping is easy to find at most home improvement and hardware stores. To replace it, simply peel off the old material and replace it with new material, making sure to securely fasten it to the garage door by pressing firmly.

#3. Check Batteries

Your garage door opener, like many devices, requires batteries to operate. If the remote or keypad is dead, the door is not going to operate, leaving you out in the cold. Depending on usage, the flat, round battery inside your opener’s remote has an average life span of 12 months. Before your battery goes dead, open up the remote to determine the proper voltage inside, and buy a spare.

#4. Test the Door’s Balance

If your garage door is not properly balanced, the opener has to worker harder than it should, which means it won’t last long. To test the door’s balance, disable the garage door opener by pulling down on the emergency cord. With the door disconnected from the opener, open the door halfway, and then release it. The door should remain in place completely supported by its springs.

#5. Test the Auto-Reverse Feature

If the door’s opener was manufactured after January 1, 1993, the following two systems are designed to protect you and your loved ones against accidents. If the opener was manufactured before this date, or it fails either of these tests, it should be replaced by a professional garage door repair company right away.

  • The first, the auto-reverse feature is designed to prevent injury, by automatically reversing upon impact with someone or something. It is essential that you test this feature at least two times a year (once in the fall and again in the spring). Start by placing a piece of wood, like a 2×4, underneath the door. You’ll know if it is functioning correctly when the door reverses automatically after coming in contact with the object.
  • The second, the photoelectric system is designed to detect people, pets and objects moving underneath the door’s path, even if only for a second. To test this feature, activate the door and wave a broom or other inanimate object in front of one of the units (installed no more than six-inches from the ground on each side of the door). This should activate the door’s auto-reverse feature as well. If it doesn’t, you can try cleaning them, and then re-test.


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