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Thursday, September 21, 2023

How to Prepare Your Garage Door for Winters

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Winter will soon be upon us. And if you’re like most people, you’ll want to take every proactive measure to endure the season’s icy chill. These may include investing in warm clothing, sealing wall cracks in your home to keep the draughts out, and being extra vigilant while venturing outdoors, among other strategies.

For many homeowners, much winter preparation entails fixing the garage door before the season rolls in.

But just how do you prepare your garage door for winter?

Well, that question shall be the focus of this article. Read below as we unpack the tips for overwintering your garage door.

How Might Winter Weather Hurt Your Garage Door?

Every smart homeowner appreciates the significance of seasonal garage door preparation. That’s because each season impacts your garage door in some way. However, winter’s chilly conditions are known to wreak the most havoc, not only on garage doors but the property as a whole.

Below are the various ways winter may affect your garage door;

1. Contraction of Metallic Components

Most garage doors are made of metal, and metal is notorious for contracting in cold weather. The resultant contraction might cause your garage door’s springs and all metallic components to become jammed and immobile.

Note that wood also contracts upon exposure to icy conditions. So, frame contraction is problematic for both metallic and wooden garage doors.

Even worse is that garage doors with wooden panels are susceptible to moisture retention. If the conference wasn’t adequately weatherproofed, the wooden material may absorb the water and expand, causing the door to freeze shut.

2. Stiffening of Rubber Components

Winter can cause the rubber and vinyl parts of your garage door to become brittle and lose their elasticity. The components may consequently harden and crack.

Depending on the type of rubber used, the material might not return to its original shape even when the season passes.

3. Allowing Cold into Your House

Insulation gaps in your garage door can easily let the icy air seep into the garage. And because many garages are connected to the house, this can alter the temperature of your living or working space.

More cold air seeping into your house means your heaters will run exceedingly longer than they should as you strive to make your indoor space more comfortable.  This could ultimately drive up your energy bills.

4.  Fogging Of Sensors

Many garage doors today come with safety sensors, which keep the door from closing if it perceives an obstacle in the way. That’s pretty much the same technology used in escalators.

Winter’s snowy conditions can make the sensors fog over. This causes the sensors to mimic an obstacle, thereby usually preventing the garage door from closing.

The accumulation of snow or ice around the bottom of the garage door could have similar effects.

5. Financial Implications

All the above-listed issues can translate into hefty repair and replacement costs. Note that the average garage door repair cost is between $150 and $375.

This might not seem too expensive to some homeowners if the repairs are fairly infrequent. But failing to overwinter your garage door could double or even triple the figures.

Tips for Overwintering Your Garage Door

·Thoroughly Inspect Your Garage Door Before Winter Rolls In

Garage door inspection should be a routine procedure. However, the exercise is essential when winter beckons. The idea is to examine all parts of your garage door so you can take preventive measures to avert the above-listed problems.

Start by inspecting the garage door panel and tracks. Gently open and shut the door, carefully paying attention to the following;

  1. Any sounds the door makes mid-closing
  2. Whether the door gets caught in particular spots
  3. Whether there’s abnormal resistance when you try to open or shut the door

Some of these issues can be fixed by simple interventions like lubrication. But for more severe cases, your best bet is to call a professional garage door technician for help.

Once you’re done inspecting the garage door panel and tracks, proceed to the safety sensors. Establish that the sensors are working correctly and that there are no broken parts.

One clear sign of a faulty garage door sensor is if the door keeps pausing as it opens or shuts. Seek professional help immediately if you notice this during your inspection.

The last component to inspect is the weatherstripping. This mainly entails checking for gaps and cracks in the garage door that could let in draught or vermin from the outside.

To detect even the tiniest cracks, shut yourself inside the garage during the day or outside at night and inspect the panel for any spots where light shines through.

·Lubricate All Moving Parts

Most of the moving components of a garage door are made of metal. That makes them more susceptible to rust and corrosion. It also predisposes them to freeze during winter weather.

The most effective solution here would be to oil or lubricate all moving parts. Pay special attention to the springs, rollers, and hinges.

Remember that not every lubricant will do. Experts recommend using a fresh, non-silicone lubricant as it’s unlikely to affect the adhesion of the moving metal parts. It’s also best to avoid sticky grease as it may gather debris, which impairs the seamless movement of the mobile components.

·         Weatherstrip and Insulate Your Garage Door

The best way to address cracks and holes in a garage door is to weatherstrip them.

Weatherstripping a garage door mainly involves sealing gaps in the panel. However, you could also extend this to the walls and floor.

There are different weatherstripping materials to choose from, including polyvinyl chloride (PVC) vinyl and rubber. If you are unsure what material to use, call for professional help.

As you weatherstrip your garage door, also consider adding extra insulation. This will help keep the garage warm through winter, preventing damage to sensitive fixtures like water pipes.

· Maintain Your Garage Door

As already hinted, many garage door repairs can be avoided by undertaking the routine maintenance.

There’s no standard rule on how frequently garage doors must be maintained. However, thorough servicing twice – thrice a year can help detect and fix problems before they slip out of hand.

For instance, regular maintenance may help uncover worn-out components. You can then have these parts repaired or replaced in time for winter.

Wrap Up

You can implement numerous tips to prepare your garage door for winter. All in all, remember that prevention is critical.

While your garage door will always need overwintering, regular maintenance can make a huge difference in keeping the door in crisp working condition.

Author Bio

A professionally trained electrician, Rebecca has spent the last decade reading and writing romance novels giving her characters a palpable spark! She also loves to write in her free time and her recent articles on Elite Garage Door & Gate Repair.

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