A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Fix a Squeaky Garage Door
An estimated 721,885 motor vehicle thefts occurred in the US in 2019. Almost three in four of these were automobiles. Together, these crimes led to an estimated $6.4 billion losses.
If you have a squeaky garage door, you’re at risk of becoming part of these shocking statistics.
After all, a loud garage door can indicate misalignment or degraded components. Both can prevent you from fully closing and locking your door. Thieves, in turn, can exploit your unlocked door.
Don’t worry, though, as this guide details the steps on how to fix a squeaky garage door. What’s important is not to delay addressing those screeching sounds. Otherwise, it won’t take long before your door doesn’t close completely, or worse, lock at all.
So, ready to get your hands and garage door all greased up and smoothly-performing? Then let’s dive right into it!
Wear Personal Protective Equipment
Garage doors rely on torsion springs, with each having a spring rate of at least 100 pounds of force. Under normal opening conditions, these springs release the tension gradually. However, a malfunctioning door can pop the springs out of place.
So, just imagine how much force that spring can have if it gets detached. That’s why you should always approach your door, broken or not, with care. This is even more crucial if you’re conducting garage door repair.
With that said, make sure you wear a face mask, goggles, and gloves before fixing your noisy door. Use a sturdy platform or ladder, too, when working on the higher sections of the door.
Completely Close the Garage Door
As the garage door rolls down, listen attentively to where the loud squeaks come from. This can help you isolate the problem area, such as if the noises originate from the rollers, tracks, or chain. Pay attention to the door itself, too, as the sounds may be due to a shaking or wobbling door.
If the door doesn’t close fully, get a professional inspection as soon as possible. Your door may already be out of balance, which is dangerous since it can collapse. It’s also a security concern, as you won’t be able to engage the lock on a door that doesn’t close completely.
Tighten All Fasteners
If the ear-splitting sounds seem to come from everywhere, tighten each nut and bolt. Loose fasteners create extra space in the screw holes, so the door panels can be moving back and forth. These unnecessary movements can, in turn, be causing the racket.
Be careful not to over fasten the nuts and bolts, though, as this can enlarge the screw hole. If this happens, the bolt heads can push right through the opening and cause even more damage.
Inspect the Rollers for Damage or Misalignment
The rollers are the wheels that allow garage doors to slide up and down their tracks. You’ll find these on both sides of the door frame, running along the metal tracks. If your garage door opens sideways, the rollers will be at the top and bottom tracks.
Wear and tear, debris build-up, and corrosion can cause the rollers to squeak and wobble. If they get misaligned, your garage door will have a hard time sliding up and down or sideways, too.
If you have filthy metal rollers with unsealed bearings, you can use a brush to get rid of the dirt and grime. After this, wipe them clean with a rag. Finally, apply silicone spray oil on the rollers’ bearings.
Do the same if you have nylon garage rollers, except for the last step. Most nylon rollers don’t require oiling, just minimal cleaning and wiping.
However, if there’s too much damage, consider replacing your garage door rollers. It’s a lot safer if you get a professional to swap your old ones with new nylon or steel rollers.
Secure the Chain
The chains of chain-driven garage doors should have some slack in them to prevent early wear and tear. However, if the chain is too loose (or rusty), it can make grinding or squeaking noises. Detached chains can create slapping sounds as the chain smacks against the rollers.
So long as you can safely reach the overhead motor, chain, and header wall, you can fasten the chain. It’s best to have someone stabilize the ladder as you work on the overhead components. Your garage door manual should have instructions on how to adjust the chain tension.
Check your manual if there’s a specific kind of lubricant you should use for the chain and threads. Silicone-based lubricants usually work fine for most chain-driven doors.
Apply Lubricant on Other Moving Parts
After removing dirt, debris, and grime build-up (especially from the tracks), next up is to apply lube. Stick to non-tacky lubricants, such as specialized silicone-based products. Avoid using standard oil or grease, as these often encourage more grit and grime.
Be sure to lubricate all hinges, unsealed roller bearings, and torsion springs. Spray or apply some on the torsion bar bearings and pivot points, too.
To prevent squeaky garage doors in the future, carry out this task at least once every six months.
Test Your Door
After fastening, cleaning, and lubricating, try opening your garage door. You should no longer have creaky or squeaky garage door rollers. The entire door should be sliding up and down or sideways with ease and minimal noise.
Be sure the door is just as quiet as it closes.
If your door still makes a lot of noise, then it’s time to get the professionals involved. Some parts of the door, such as the sides that aren’t easily visible, may have developed damages. A garage door repair technician might already need to straighten out dents on a door panel.
Keep the Noise Down With This Guide on How to Fix a Squeaky Garage Door
There you have it, your comprehensive guide on how to fix a squeaky garage door. Just remember that even if these DIY fixes aren’t hard, you should still consider your skills. If you’re not that confident with your DIY abilities, then it’s best to hire a professional instead.
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