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Common Garage Door Problems

Owning an automatic roller garage door is great – that is until they go wrong. It is at these times you wish that you went for a standard manual up and over garage door.

When you are in trouble with your garage door, perhaps it is stuck open, stuck closed or kind of collapsed, it is always in an evening or weekend when there is no one on the end of a phone to help you out. This can mean your car is stuck in the garage or your whole property is left unsecured which can be a huge issue.

Some roller garage doors will be fitted with a manual override motor or mechanism which may, or may not allow you to close or open the garage door dependent on where the problem lies.

Often the problem is very easy to overcome with the right help. Here are some of the most common roller garage door issue I regularly come up against, and how to solve them.

Problem 1 – Garage Door Stuck Open

This problem happens a lot and generally it is simple to resolve –  The main reason for this to occur is the garage door’s safety equipment. Often with a roller garage door, the safety system, for obvious reasons, will only be active when the door is closing. This means however,  if the safety system does have an issue, you can generally get you door open no problem,  but coming to close it is where the problem is highlighted.

Many garage doors pre 2006 will have been fitted with some kind of safety beam. Whilst the  design varies from manufacturer to manufacturer then principle is the same. There is a beam or set of beams fitted on either side of your garage door opening – these are generally around a foot up from the floor. An invisible beam, generally infra-red,  passes from one side to the other. If this beam is broken ie you are standing in the way the garage door will not close.

The most obvious reason why your garage door may be stuck open is the door thinks something is in the line of the safety beam. Check firstly that nothing is in the way of the line of the beams. If you have your car in the garage are you certain that it is in fully? Generally the beams sit slightly inside the opening so you have to ensure the boot is not breaking that beam.

Another reason these garage door beams fail is they get dirty with a build up of grime, or cobwebs appear on them. This can often result in the door thinking something is in the way. generally a damp cloth wiped over the beam or beams will solve this issue. I have always found that a damp cloth is necessary as often a build up or exhaust fumes can block the beam – a dry cloth or just wiping with your fingers is often not adequate.

It is a good idea to check with your manufacturer if there is away to bypass these beams. Often this can be a switch or bridge on the control box. handy if you accidentally knock one of the beams off with your car – saves the door being stuck open permanently!

Some garage door systems are fitted with a battery backup – it is all too easy to switch the power off to the garage door and be running the garage door on the backup system – this is fine until it runs down – check your fuse and check that someone hasn’t switched off the garage door power by accident – it is very easily done!

If you do have a battery backup system that is quite old, this can be a cause of a garage door problem. When the battery is requiring too much of the systems resources to charge it, it starts to pull down other vital parts of the system. Generally this can be easily resolved by turning the power off to your garage door, disconnecting the battery and turning the power back on with the battery disconnected. The garage door should begin to work after the second or third press of the button.

Next time I will be talking about if your garage door has come out of the guide channels or if your motor limits need resetting.

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