Automatic garage door openers are designed to make your life easier, saving you a great deal of effort every time you need to enter your garage. However, because they have a variety of different moving parts, general wear and tear will gradually cause your garage door opener to break down. Thankfully, there are a number of things you can do to maintain your garage door opener and extend its lifespan.
Most common problems with garage door openers can be spotted by eye. Check for any parts of your garage door system that are bent, loose, or worn down. Damaged components should be replaced or repaired as soon as possible to prevent further issues or damage from occurring. Loose brackets can be fixed by hand (usually simply by tightening the screw holding them in place) but bent or worn components will have to be removed and replaced. Contact a professional from a company like Mike's Garage Doors to ensure that the job is done right.
Apply lubricant semi-regularly to the chain, rollers, and brackets to ensure that the door will open and close smoothly, without grating and wearing away against itself. Special garage door lubricants, which also act as anti-freeze during the winter months, are available at most hardware stores.
You'll want to check the batteries in the remote control and the wall control unit to ensure that they are still charged. Some units have an indicator that will tell you when you need new batteries, but others do not. If you notice that the range of your remote control has decreased, or that the buttons on either one of the control are not as responsive as they previously were, you should replace the batteries.
Check the Auto-Reverse
Most garage door openers have a system that will stop or reverse garage door when it comes in contact with an object. Place an object between the electronic 'eyes' or sensors, and ensure that the garage door stops as soon as you start it. If you do not have these sensors, use a broom handle to apply pressure against the door as it is coming down, and it should still reverse. If it does not, you should call a professional to fix the door.
Check the Manual Release
All garage door openers can be manually dislocated from the garage door itself, allowing you to open the door by hand. This can come in handy if the opener is damaged or out of battery. Check the owner's manual to see how to release the opener – most openers will have a handle hanging down from the motor that you simply pull. If the manual release won't engage, you'll have to call a professional to have your unit serviced.