Is your garage door obnoxiously loud? Does your family wake you up when they come in late at night, or leave early in the morning? Do you worry about disturbing your neighbors with the horrible grating noise? Well you’re in luck, because these problems are fixable! Garage doors and garage door openers, like most machines, are always going to make a little bit of noise just because of the mechanical stresses of their operation. Most of this noise, however, can be reduced via proper care and a few easy upgrades. If you’ve been living with a monster of a door for years, you’d be amazed at how quiet things can really be.
Garage doors are not toys, and only an experienced technician should perform certain maintenance projects. There are, however, some things that any homeowner can do to help quiet down their garage door. Use complete caution any time that you’re working with a garage door, and leave the harder projects to a professional. Of course, if you’re not interested or comfortable in that much DIY, a reputable local garage door company will be able to help you.
There are some steps down this path that every homeowner can take. Probably the most pivotal step is all is making sure that the components are properly lubricated. There are many parts of a garage door system that rub against each other, including the rollers, hinges, and spring. These components can all be lubricated to make sure that they are not the source of your noise. To find which parts might need the extra attention, look for the tell-tale signs of wear. If there are small metal flakes near the hinge pins, for example, your hinges may be wearing down and in need of lubrication.
There are many types of lubricant that will work well on garage doors, but some common choices will do more harm than good. In particular, avoid using grease, as it will not penetrate as deeply into the components and it tends to clump with dust and dirt. There are specially-made garage door lubricants, which are inexpensive and very effective, but other lubricants intended for metal (like 10-W30 motor oil) can work as well. Wipe off any excess lubricant with a rag once you’re done applying it to the parts in question. Do not lubricate the tracks of a garage door, as that can cause the door to slip, fall, or become unbalanced. You can clean the tracks with a rag and carburetor or break cleaner – rollers should roll within the tracks, not slide. If you see the rollers sliding, they probably need a bit more lubricant.
There are two kinds of rollers on garage doors. Firstly are metal rollers, which are more old-fashioned and less expensive. Besides their price, however, metal garage door rollers have no advantage over the newer nylon versions. Metal rollers are louder, don’t last for as many cycles, and tend to break more easily, depending on what sort of bearings they have. One of the best upgrades you can have done to your garage door is the installation of new nylon rollers, if you’re still using antiquated metal versions. Never try to place the bottom rollers yourself, as the bottom brace on the door is under extreme stress and replacing these rollers can be quite dangerous. If you want a full switch, contact an expert today, as we have over thirty years of experience on all sorts of garage doors.
The next step is tightening all of the nuts and bolts around the garage door. Once you start looking, you might be surprised how much work goes into construction the garage door! Over time, the stresses of the garage door can cause nuts and bolts to loosen and slightly unwind, which can lead to rattling and increase the wear even more. All over the tracks, the brackets that hold the opener in place, the hinges between the door’s panels, the mounting hardware, the metal braces along the back of the door – all of this is bolted into place, and all of these metal contact points can be a source of noise. While adjusting these, make sure that you’re not actually loosening bolts, as that could be disastrous. Additionally, make sure not to over-tighten bolts, as this can lead to the bolts stripping and worsen the problem rather than solving it. If this all seems like too much work for you, a residential garage door repair company would be happy to help.
Next, look towards the garage door opener’s track and see if you have a chain-drive or belt-drive opener. Belt-drive openers are MUCH quieter than chain-drive, but they are more expensive. If you have a chain-drive opener it is possible to lubricate the chain to try and quiet it down a little bit. If you want to upgrade to a belt-drive today, a garage door opener installation company could quote you a price on a new opener. Either way, making sure that the belt or chain is snug can reduce quite a bit of the noise of the door’s operation. A garage door company can tighten the belt or chain for you through a simple maintenance check.
There are a few other small measures that a garage door company could take to get your door working in proper, quiet order. For example, an expert might look at your garage door opener’s mounting and identify if it is mounted securely. If the opener is not secure, it will swing back and forth while operating and is liable to make a grating noise or break. The simple installation of an additional bracket or crossbeam will usually fix this problem. Furthermore, installing noise-deadening rubber seals is a possibility. These noise insulators sit between metal components in the door’s assembly, cushioning them so that they don’t rub together. A full checkup on your garage door will fix all of the above problems, as well as maintaining your door so that it continues operating for years to come.
These steps should result in a much quieter garage door, which can be a huge quality-of-life upgrade for any homeowner tired of putting up with a cantankerous door. If you’re fed up with the clanking and clanging, follow the DIY-friendly tips covered above, and if that doesn’t do enough to solve your problem, give A Plus a call today! We have worked on everything from residential garage door repair to commercial garage door installation for over thirty years, and there is no problem we can’t handle!