There is an old saying that states: If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it. This is not always the best advice, though. After all, we might continue to use something that makes some odd noises simply because it still operates like normal. This is not a good idea when it comes to things like cars, and like garage doors.
Instead, it is a good idea to get a tune-up or repair when new and unusual sounds emanate from something as serious as the garage door. So, if all of your neighbors can hear your garage door opening and closing, or it seems to be getting louder and louder with each click of the remote, it is a good idea to address the causes of that noisy door.
Start with Lubrication
One of the simplest remedies to a noisy door is to be sure that it is properly lubricated. In fact, to extend the life of your garage door system, you must do lubrication on a regular basis. When a system is first installed all of the moving parts are lubricated with materials that will last 12 to 15 months.
After that, and like any household equipment frequently used in an array of environmental conditions, re-lubricating those same moving parts, principally the metal components, is crucial.
Of course, there is the question of “What lubricant should be used?” And that is actually a simple one to answer because the right lubricant is one that most of us keep in our garages at all times – motor oil, like that used for your car, lawnmower, snowmobile, etc.
Now, you should also ask “What shouldn’t be used?” After all, the wrong compound can cause sliding rather than rolling, and that can lead to serious problems. This means that the classic toolbox degreaser, WD‑40 should NOT be used, nor should automobile grease. Both of these are going to allow rolling parts to slide, and this can damage or destroy the system.
Where do you apply the motor oil? It belongs on the hinges, rollers and lift springs, and should be used in moderation. In fact, you can wipe it on to the springs and use a clean cloth to remove excess from all areas you have applied the oil. Keep in mind that excess amounts can end up dripping on the floor and vehicles parked in the garage.
How often is it needed? Most homeowners can benefit from doing this at the end of the fall season and beginning of the following spring. It is also good to consider lubricating weatherstripping to keep it flexible. This is especially true if it is PVC. For this, you’ll use a silicone-based lubricant to do the job, and you can take a few minutes to also apply it to other exterior doors around the home. If you paid and expert to do the job, they would also use these 2 types of lubricants for your garage door.
Next, Tighten All Screws and Bolt
Envision the movement and wear and tear the garage door faces. Because of this, all of its fasteners (bolts and screws) can loosen and shake. To eliminate odd sounds, you may need to tighten or re-tighten the many different hinges, screws and bolts. Check the hinge screws, the bolts at the ends of the tracks, and anything that connects the system to the ceiling – including all brackets. If there is any movement when the door is opening or closing, figure out where it is and tighten everything.
Consider Replacing Rollers
A common source of noise is the metal rollers that are not always easy to detect as the issue. You need to watch them and note if the rods holding the rollers are attached and if the rollers are rolling rather than sliding. A bit of lubrication can help, but if the rollers seem to be failing, it could be time to swap out the old ones with new nylon rollers. There are two kinds: black nylon rollers without ball bearings and 11‑ball bearing steel rollers covered in white nylon. For a 9′ x 7′ door, the black work well, while a double, 16′ garage door, will do best with the white rollers.
Maybe It’s Time for a New Opener
Last, but not least, is the fact that your opener may be the problem. The systems can be very noisy if components are not adjusted or even if the system has not been maintained since installation. The systems that are less than seven years old don’t often need upkeep, oil or lubrication. Yet, they can run into trouble with the chain or belt drive loosening. Check to see if the system uses a chain or chain-cable combination on the trolley that pulls the garage door. Is the track for the opener made in 3 sections, held together with bolts that always need to be tightened? These can be a source of noise, too.
You’ll always want to read the maintenance guide provided to you, but if your system dates to a time more than seven years ago (if you are unsure of its age, just look at the motor housing beneath the light cover. The year of manufacturer is often indicated somewhere in that area) it may need more than maintenance. Any system older than 15 years should be replaced. This is not for noise but for safety reasons and to enjoy the many advances in technology since that time.
If a new door opener is needed, look for a ½ HP model with a metal-reinforced rubber belt drive and a one-piece track. This is lowest maintenance and quietest system. Of course, other options to consider when getting an estimate from a garage door professional include noise reduction features. For instance, if there is a room above the garage, you can attach the door opener and its track system to the ceiling by using rubber noise isolators that can reduce noise transmission considerably.
If You Just Want an Expert to Step In
If you don’t have time for figuring out the issues, just contact experts. We are garage door specialists and you can contact us toll-free! We can provide you with a 28‑point tune-up on your garage door and ensure it operates quietly and safely. If you need a replacement, we are glad to advise you and explain the best choices based on your needs and budget. We can also send you a quotation by email and invite you to visit our showroom. You might want to use our Design Centre to test different styles on your home, or view the image gallery to for inspiration.