The garage door can be responsible for protecting some of the most valuable or valued things in our home: woodworking workshops and other tools, motorcycles and half rebuilt cars, or maybe even just a place to store our memories, the garage is an important area of the home. Because most garage doors are so big and seem so solid, this is an area of the home that people often overlook to protect. Burglars can enter the garage just like they can any other part of the home. A few simple precautions will prohibit most burglaries to the garage from happening.
Garage doors are opened daily, and, unlike the rest of our home, when the garage door is opened anyone with a view from the street is aware of the things we keep in the garage. People often forget to close the garage door when they leave, or maybe they have a forgetful teenager to blame, either way, keeping that door closed is paramount to prevent any crimes of opportunity from taking place. Your garage door technician can install a timer that will close your garage door for you after a predetermined amount of time. This will not forgo the safety mechanism put in place on the garage door like the garage door safety sensors, which prevent any accidental closure on people or objects (assuming that the safety sensors are working correctly). The timer has an override option if you wish for the door to remain open while you work, clean, etc.
When you are going on vacation, you should unplug your garage door opener. And, with the opener unplugged, you can put a padlock on the latch or run a metal bolt through a hole in the track to ensure that the door will not be opened from the outside.
Another thing that many people forget about is the garage door opener on the visor of their vehicle. That opener is hidden behind just a pane of glass. Remember to take the opener in the house with you, especially removing it from the vehicle if you are on vacation and the vehicle is going to be parked outside of the home.
The DIY (Do It Yourself) motto of home improvement and design is catching on in popularity. With the numerous television programs that demonstrate home renovation, to the classes being offered at the big box home improvement stores, and the vast amount of content online, in both written, and cinematic form – You tube has become one of the most popular choices for both the professionals and the not-so professionals to post how-to videos. But, all of that building equipment has to go somewhere, and for those of you not willing to keep the table saw in your kitchen, it is bound to end up in a space like the garage. Garages are the best storage option in most homes, and, because of the unfinished nature of the garage, homeowners don’t mind shutting the door on a dirty garage. When the garage needs to be cleaned, the concrete pad on the floor cleans easily.
Garage workshops can be as simple as two sawhorses and a crosscut hand saw to a full mechanical and electrical woodworking shop. Either way, the tools within that shop will need to be protected. An intensive home woodworking shop may have everything from expensive motor driven saws to air circulation and dust collection. The garage door is all that stands between all of that expensive equipment and the outside. If the garage door is broken, or if the garage door isn’t equipped with the necessary safety features, those tools could be at risk.
Modern Garage door openers have helped to prevent break-ins from thieves. In the past, thieves could drive down a street pressing the button on a garage door opener, and if they drove past someone with the same garage door opener as they had, the door would open. Now, garage door transmitters are built for the opener. When the button on the transmitter is pressed, a code is sent to the garage door opener. There are over a billion codes that relay between the transmitter and the opener, so it is a low risk that someone could easily determine what code to use to open the door.
The spring on the garage door can break and, when it breaks, a professional garage door technician should be called to replace it. Garage doors use two different types of springs: tension and extension. When a garage door’s tension springs break, the process to fix the broken springs is difficult and can also be very dangerous for both the amateur and the professional. The reason the tension springs are dangerous to replace is because the springs are under constant tension. Because of the tension, if a mistake is made or if an incorrect tool is used to fix the springs, the person fixing the springs could face serious injury, possibly lose his limb or even his life.
The springs are still dangerous for a professional garage door technician to replace. When a technician replaces the broken springs, he has to assume that the tension springs will break when he unwinds them. He will need to wear a set of safety glasses and keep his clothes and body parts well away from the springs. A component of the garage door called the winding cone keeps the tension spring in place. These cones can slip or even explode into many pieces and great care should be taken to prevent possible injury.
Extension springs, are built differently then tension springs, because these springs are held into place by safety cables. These cables help to control the broken spring, but even though it is in place for a safety precaution, the springs are still held up under a tremendous amount of pressure and a professional technician should probably be called in the event that one breaks.
Diagnosing a garage door spring problem is simple: does the door open and close smoothly? If the door is not operating smoothly, it is likely the tension springs. If the door is making noise, turn off the garage door opener and try open the garage door manually. If the garage door still makes noise the problem is likely the springs. It is also possible that a noisy garage door may just need some lubricant to be applied to the springs. The average home can easily diagnose and fix these simple problems with a garage doors springs, but even the most seasoned DIY’er should probably allow a garage door technician to fix the garage door spring when it breaks..
Like any major appliance in the home the garage door and the garage door opener should be regularly maintained to prevent poor service or possible failure. To begin maintenance, tell everyone in the home your plan to work on the garage door or opener to prevent any possible injury. The first step to garage door maintenance is simple: stand inside the garage with the garage door closed; inspect the springs, rollers, pulleys and all of the mounting hardware for both the garage door and the opener. If there are any signs of damage or noticeable wear to these components, it may be time to call your garage door professional to replace the damaged or worn components (Remember garage doors are held up under a lot of tension, and a trained professional should be called to replace damaged hardware to prevent any possible injury to the homeowner).
The balance of the garage door should also be regularly checked to ensure the garage door is opening and closing with no resistance along its track. With the garage door closed, disconnect the automatic door opener, and, with the automatic door opener disconnected, lift the garage door manually into an open position. If the door moves smoothly and freely into the upward position, the door is in alignment. If, however, the door catches and drags on the rails, a trained garage door technician should properly service the door.
The garage door’s reversing mechanism – devices which have been added to all garage doors built after 1993 and are responsible for the prevention of the possible entrapment of a person under the garage door – should also be tested regularly. To test the door’s reversing mechanism, open the garage door and place a two by four on the garage floor directly in the path of the garage door. With the two by four in place, close the garage door onto it. When the garage door falls on the two by four and makes contact, the garage door should retreat back up on the track into the open position. If the door does not immediately retract, call your garage door service technician to fix the reversing mechanism.
On a final note, a small amount of lubrication can be added to all of the garage doors moving parts. Make sure that the garage door is either in a fully opened or closed position while working on the garage door, and stand clear of the garage door and all of the moving parts when the garage door is activated.
Not all garage door openers operate the same. The opener is one way for the homeowner to customize their own garage door to their needs. Bailey Garage Doors carries three types of garage door openers: Screw Drive, Chain Drive, and Belt Drive openers. Bailey Garage Doors also carries the standard models as well as the premium and high-performance models. All of our models of openers are equipped with PosiLock, which secures the door when it is down, preventing intruders from opening the garage door from the outside. And, all of our openers come with the Protector System, which projects a beam of light under the door, and if anything breaks that beam, the door will not close, preventing the door from falling on a person or object.
The screw drive opener rides on a trolley that moves up and down a steel rod. The screw drive openers operate with much less force than other models. There are many advantages to the screw drive openers, and the main advantage is its simplicity. There are very few moving parts that the homeowner will need to maintain over the life of the opener.
Chain Drive openers are the most common and oldest of the garage door openers. The opener operates the door up and down by turning a chain (similar in appearance and operation to a bicycle chain) with one end of the chain connected to a part called the J-Arm, which is attached to the garage door itself, with the other end attached to the trolley. Chain drives are also the most economical garage door opener, and, while older chain drive garage door openers were loud, newer technology has quieted the starting and stopping motion of these openers.
Belt Drives are the quietest of the openers, and they operate in the same way as the chain drive openers. Instead of the chain, a belt is used. The belt drive has a sleek appearance, and, because the belt itself is made of a fiberglass, reinforced rubber, the vibrations caused from starting and stopping the garage door is greatly reduced.
All garage doors openers have pros and cons, and a homeowner should give preference to which opener fits both his lifestyle and his style.