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Tips for Performing Summer Garage Door Upkeep, Part 2

In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the basics on maintaining your garage door and garage space during the summer months. This time of year offers several great opportunities for maintenance projects, plus involves a few standard areas you should be keeping up on in terms of regular upkeep during the warmest time of the year.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re happy to offer a variety of garage door repair and maintenance services to all our clients in need, including those looking for some assistance with their basic summer themes. Here are a few additional areas to consider when it comes to summer upkeep, both in terms of the garage door itself and several surrounding elements.

tips summer garage door upkeep

Insulation Themes

Some may think insulation is only a winter concern, but this simply isn’t the case at all. Insulation helps protect temperature loss on both ends of the spectrum: For both heated and cooled air within your HVAC system.

If your garage door and other areas of the garage are properly insulated for summer, you know outdoor heat will stay out and your conditioned air will stay inside. Not only is this a benefit for the actual garage space, you’ll see the trickle-down in other nearby rooms, plus in your monthly energy bill – which will be lower because your HVAC system isn’t working as hard to pump extra air into the space.

Other Cooling Considerations

There are a few other cooling themes to consider for your garage space this summer, especially if you use the area as a home office, workshop or any other space where you spend significant time. Here are a few:

  • Ventilation: Ensure the room has proper air flow and does not become too stuffy.
  • Air conditioning: For those who use the room for significant daily purposes outside storage, installing a window AC or mini-split unit goes a long way.
  • Ceiling fans: Will also assist with ventilation and air flow.
  • Lighter color: If you paint your garage door (more on this below), consider white or another light color that will reflect heat rather than absorbing it, keeping the interior cooler.

Paint and Aesthetics

Summer is also a fantastic time to consider re-painting your garage door if you’ve been putting the job off for a while. One tip before getting started: Be sure to clear the area of dirt, debris, grease and any other possible blockages.

When painting, consider colors that will both reflect heat and match well with the rest of your home. You can both protect your space and improve your home’s curb appeal in one fell swoop.

General Inspection

Finally, we strongly recommend a thorough inspection of your garage door and garage space during the summer, both on your own and from our garage door professionals. We’ll help you identify any minor issues taking place, offering simply and often cost-free repairs rather than much costlier issues cropping up later on.

For more on summer maintenance for your garage door, or to learn about any of our overhead door services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Tips for Performing Summer Garage Door Upkeep, Part 1

Summer is upon us, and many homeowners use this warm period of the year to handle some exterior maintenance projects they’ve been putting off. A great example here, and one that provides long-term value for your structure this summer and moving forward, is performing some basic maintenance on your garage door.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re happy to offer a wide range of garage door repair and upkeep services to our clients, both in residential and commercial settings. In this two-part blog series, we’ll go over several themes we’ve commonly recommended to or assisted our clients with when it comes to performing basic areas of garage door and general garage upkeep headed into the summer – areas that not only help keep the space functional and comfortable, but also aesthetically-pleasing and a positive contributor to curb appeal and home value.

tips summer garage door upkeep

Basic Washing Themes

First and foremost, especially if it hasn’t been done in a while, this is a great opportunity to give your garage door a thorough wash to remove dirt and debris from the previous year. Many people combine this job with washing a car or another vehicle – they require similar materials, and car-washing soap is generally acceptable for cleaning garages.

In fact, we generally recommend a combination of car-washing soap or dishwashing soap with warm water for this job. Mix these up in a bucket and bring a soft cloth, brush or sponge, then apply the solution to both sides of the garage door. From here, rinse both sides thoroughly with a hose. Repeat these steps if necessary for tougher areas.

Rust Removal

Another important task for garage door upkeep, particularly with practical operation in mind, is ensuring rust has been removed from any major area where it’s begun to show up. Even if you’re just dealing with tiny sections of rust, you might be shocked how quickly these can spread any begin impacting the entire system.

To avoid this, sand down any rust spots you can see at any point within the system, from hinges and connectors to rolling tracks and other metal components. Doing so quickly and immediately limits the risk of spread.

Lubrication Methods

Also important for both operation and convenience, you should be sure the required components within your garage door have been lubricated properly. You might have noticed recently if they aren’t based on loud screeching or squeaking noises during garage door operation, which signal friction between components – but over time, annoying sounds will give way to worn-down equipment and an unsafe garage door that needs to be repaired or replaced. You can avoid these hassles and costs with proper lubrication.

DIY Methods and Safety for Minor Garage Door Dent Repairs

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to offer not only a wide array of garage door repair and related services, but also support to handy, DIY home and building owners. While there are certain significant garage door repair areas you should never attempt on your own unless you have professional training, there are other minor upkeep and maintenance themes most home or building owners can easily handle on their own without risking safety or garage door quality.

One good example that rides both sides of this fence is the presence of minor dents in your garage door. There are a couple repair methods handy individuals are often able to complete simply and easily on their own to remedy these dents – but also other situations where this job should be left to the pros for both safety and practical reasons. Let’s go over the viable repair methods at your disposal, plus situations where you should swallow your pride and let our team of garage door repair technicians handle the issue for you.

safety garage door dent repairs

Wooden Block Method

For this method, you’ll need a wooden block, a rubber mallet, a putty knife, some sandpaper, as well as patching material, paint and primer in the proper colors to match the garage door. You’ll also require warm water and detergent. You’ll take the following steps:

  • Wash the dented area with warm water and detergent, then let it completely air dry.
  • Place the wood block over the dent and tap it with the mallet to even the dent.
  • Sand the area to smooth it out.
  • Use the patching material to cover the dented area, evening things out with the putty knife.
  • Let things dry, then sand the area down to smoothness again.
  • Apply primer and paint as normal.

Aluminum Foil Method

In this case, you’ll also require warm water and detergent. The other tools needed will be a heat source, aluminum foil and a source of compressed air. Take these steps:

  • Wash the area with water and detergent and let it dry fully.
  • Place a strip of aluminum foil completely over the dent.
  • Use the heat source to evenly heat the foil.
  • After about one minute, remove the foil and spray the dent with compressed air, upside-down, for about 30 seconds.

When to Call the Pros

If you’ve attempted one or both of the above methods without success, including trying multiple times for stubborn dents, it’s time to call our team. In addition, we strongly recommend against attempting either of the methods we’ve gone over here if you’re the least bit hesitant or inexperienced with any of the required components, such as compressed air or patching materials. If there’s even a shred of doubt that you can complete the job safely and without creating further damage, simply put the tools down and call our garage door repair pros, who will handle the issue hassle-free and for an affordable cost.

For more on any of our garage door repair services, from dents to numerous other areas, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Garage Door Opener Horsepower Importance and Settings

When most of us hear the term horsepower, we tend to associate it with cars, trucks and other motor vehicles. Did you know, though, that horsepower is also an important factor when it comes to the power and capability of your garage door?

At Overhead Door Company, we offer a wide variety of products for your garage doors, including numerous residential and commercial garage door operators (also called openers). These openers are the primary area where horsepower plays a role in your garage’s basic operations, with a few common horsepower settings available in common garage door openers today. Let’s take a look at some of the frequent settings you might consider for your new garage door opener, plus some key factors that play a role in this choice.

garage door opener horsepower

Garage Opener Horsepower Ranges

There are several different motor sizes and horsepower capacities used for garage door openers today. When it comes to residential garage door systems, the most common horsepower settings are as follows:

  • 1/3 HP (horsepower): Best for lighter steel doors and single-car garages, the 1/3 HP door format is made to be able to lift any door where the weight is evenly distributed. However, it may struggle with uneven distributions, and even for optimal setups will need to be replaced regularly.
  • 1/2 HP: This is likely the most common and popular option for residential garage doors, suitable for both single- and double-door situations between eight and 12 feet in width. 1/2 HP options work for both steel and other materials, including aluminum and composites.
  • 3/4 HP: For larger and heavier doors, including those made from wood, the 3/4 HP option is usually the way to go. It also tends to require less long-term maintenance.

Important Factors to Consider

Now, the horsepower alone isn’t the only factor you should be considering when selecting a new garage opener and motor. Here are some others that will help you determine your needs for horsepower and other areas:

  • Size and weight: The simplest factor here is the size and weight of the garage door the opener will be used for. The material used in construction will play a big role here, often serving as the primary factor in horsepower selection due to its large impact on weight.
  • Lifespan: While you may be tempted to go for cheaper models that are on-sale or otherwise discounted, be aware that these tend to fail and require replacement sooner than more durable options.
  • Other components: In cases where the proper motor is selected, you will have no concerns regarding other garage door components. When the wrong opener horsepower is used, on the other hand, the risks of strain and damage to other components goes way up.

For more on horsepower for your garage opener and why it’s important, or to learn about any of our garage door repair or other services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Garage Door Cleaning Tips and Importance, Part 1

While most home and business owners do a good job staying diligent on garage door repair and upkeep needs, one area that can get less attention is garage door cleanliness. While it may not seem as pressing an issue as ensuring springs or rollers are in good shape, keeping your garage door and its components clean can have more of an impact on their quality and lifespan than you might think – and, of course, this makes a difference for aesthetic appeal as well.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re here to help with every area of garage door maintenance, from garage door repair to cleaning tips and many areas in between. We’ve helped numerous home and business owners maintain their garage doors and get the absolute most out of them in terms of lifespan, aesthetics and many other factors. In this two-part blog series, we’ll go over why a clean garage door matters, plus some basic tips on cleaning frequency, materials required and the steps you should take.

garage door cleaning tips

Benefits of a Clean Garage Door

For starters, the benefits of a clean garage door go beyond simple aesthetic pleasures. While these areas do matter, particularly for home curb appeal for those who may be looking to sell in the near future, cleanliness actually has an impact on garage door operation and lifespan.

The primary area here is prevention of rust, which can crop up over time due to salt or other debris attaching to the door. Rust will wear down your door much faster than normal, plus may impact areas like rollers or springs and make them less efficient, leading to a need for garage door repairs or even a full replacement of the garage door.

Garage Door Cleaning Frequency

Okay, so cleaning your garage door is important. But how often does this need to be done?

Generally speaking, we recommend cleaning the garage door at least twice per year, or once every six months. Many choose to do this during the spring and fall periods, transitions between the major summer and winter seasons that offer a great opportunity to do some cleaning.

However, if you live in an area that’s exposed to significant elements – or if your garage door undergoes more use than most – we recommend cleaning it more often. Especially if you notice significant dirt, grime or especially rust, you should clean immediately.

Materials Required

Here are some of the tools or materials you’ll need to clean your garage door:

  • Bucket filled with hot water
  • Hose attached to a working water connection
  • Soft rag for drying
  • Gentle soap
  • Optional: Wax or lubricant if you choose to apply these as part of the process
  • Rubber gloves and clothes you don’t mind getting a bit of grime on

In part two of this series, we’ll go over the steps to follow when cleaning and some other basic tips. To learn more about this or any of our commercial or residential garage door repair services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Benefits Associated With Proper Garage Door Insulation

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to offer a wide range of services when it comes to commercial and residential garage door repair and maintenance. We’ll assist you with everything from minor damage to major issues, ensuring your garage space is both protected and comfortable throughout the year.

One of the primary areas we’ll look at during an inspection or maintenance appointment, particularly as it relates to that comfort element, is your garage door’s insulation – or lack thereof. Not all garage doors come with insulation, and many homeowners aren’t even aware of whether or not their garage door is insulated. If yours is not, here are several factors that might convince you to consider an insulated option moving forward.

benefits garage door insulation

Temperature Control

The primary benefit of insulation in a garage door is temperature control. Insulation keeps the temperature steadier and more consistent throughout the year – it keeps cool air in during the summer, and warm air in during the winter. This reduces any strain on your HVAC system that might come up when extreme temperatures from the garage waft into the home space as a whole.

If your door is not insulated, however, you risk both an uncomfortable garage space and rising energy bills. An extremely hot or cold garage will transfer some of that temperature to the rest of the house, making it tougher for your furnace or air conditioner to properly regulate temperature.

Noise Control

Those who have dealt with a noisy, annoying garage door in the past know just how frustrating it can be, but did you realize insulation actually plays a role here? While other factors like rollers and track quality are also important, an insulated door is a bit heavier and quieter when it moves up and down.

In addition, insulation also blocks out significant amounts of noise from outside the garage space. For those who spend significant time in the garage, whether for crafts, auto repairs or any other purpose, being able to work without distractions from outside noise is highly valuable.

Vital for Living Spaces

In some homes, homeowners have chosen to convert part or all of their garage space into a living area. This could refer to a full-on bedroom, or it could just be a TV room, a man-cave or some other kind of setup. In any of these cases, garage door insulation is an absolute necessity – without it, this area regularly would not be comfortable enough to spend time in. Not only will it be more comfortable with insulation, you will be able to store any items that can’t be exposed to severe temperatures.

For more on the benefits of insulation in the garage door, or to learn about any of our garage door services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Primer on Garage Door Opener Options and Add-Ons

When it comes to any good garage door system, a vital component to consider is the garage door opener, also called a door operator. This item is in charge of triggering opening and closing, and modern technology has brought about several convenience options that make it more valuable than ever.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to offer a wide range of commercial and residential garage door operators for any garage door type you’re looking at. In today’s blog, let’s go over a few of the common options and add-ons available for garage door openers, plus which you might consider based on your needs.

garage door opener options add-ons

Chain Drive Vs. Belt Drive

Firstly, you’ll have a choice in most cases between a chain drive and a belt drive for your operator. Here are some basics on each:

  • Chain drive: The most common and classic door opener style is the chain drive, which as the name suggests features actual chains to help connect components and run the door. Chain drives are the more affordable option, though they are also a bit louder than belt drives.
  • Belt drives: Instead of a chain, belt drives use a rubber belt for connections and opening or closing. They come with less sound and lower maintenance needs, but this tends to make them a bit more expensive up front. However, they also usually come with longer manufacturer warranties.

Wall Button Options

In many cases, home or business owners will want an outdoor keypad that allows them to enter the garage by pushing in a code using the buttons on the pad. This connects to a wall button system, which locks outside radio signals so no one can steal your password.

In addition, wall buttons are available with a timer and a motion sensor. This allows you to set your garage door to open and close itself automatically, with no need for a remote opener.

Battery Backup

If you live in an area that regularly loses power, or even if you just want to take basic precautions, consider an opener with a battery backup system. This will allow you to open and close the garage door even if your power is out.

LED Lighting

For those who want a daylight-like feel in their garage, even during the evenings, consider LED lighting options that come with your opener.

Smart Technology

Finally, did you realize that many modern garage door openers can be connected to using Wi-Fi connections? This allows you to control door opening and closing from your smartphone, meaning even if you forgot to close it one morning, you can do so from miles away without having to drive yourself back home.

For more on choosing the right garage door opener, or to learn about any of our garage door repair or other services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Causes and Solutions for Slow-Opening Garage Doors

During our garage door repair and inspection services for both residential and commercial garage doors, we at Overhead Door Company are asked a number of frequent questions by our clients. One of the most common: Why is my garage door opening or closing (or both) too slowly?

In many cases, garage doors opening too slowly are due to basic wear-and-tear that take place over time, with relatively simple fixes possible. In others, the issues may relate to previous door settings or related concerns. Let’s take a look at how long your garage door should generally take to open and close, some causes and possible solutions if it’s moving too slowly, and how regular garage door service reduces these and other risks.
causes solutions slow garage doors

General Opening and Closing Timing

The average time period for a garage door to open or close is between 12 and 15 seconds in most cases, though there are exceptions if your garage door is particularly heavy or made of certain materials. Your door should be able to fully complete its cycle within this span of time. If you find it’s taking 20 seconds or longer on opening or closing cycles, it’s time to investigate why this might be happening.

Causes and Solutions for Slow Doors

The single most common cause of a garage door that won’t open or close quickly enough: Improper lubrication. Garage doors involve several connected components, many of which create friction when they move in concert with one another – lubricant is vital in these areas for limiting this friction and allowing smooth operation between parts.

If the garage’s lubrication has worn down, however, several processes within opening or closing can slow down. In similar circumstances, pulleys may become worn down based on daily use, and torsion springs can lose tension, leading to slower operation. Finally, you may even notice specific blockages on the door track that are slowing things down.

In other situations, certain garage door models come with previously-set speed setting controls. If your door is one of these, ensure your speed settings themselves aren’t the reason why the garage door is operating too slowly.

Benefits of Regular Service

If none of the above issues seem to be present, it’s time to call our professionals to assess the issue. This relates directly back to the benefits of regular garage door inspection and upkeep from our team – we’ll identify these kinds of issues before you even notice them taking place, handling items like lubrication or worn-down part replacement before the garage even begins to noticeably slow down. This kind of preventive maintenance is vital for keeping your door in great shape and your costs down.

For more on the causes and solutions for garage doors opening too slowly, or to learn about any of our garage door repair services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Choosing Between Garage Door Repair and Replacement

At Overhead Door Company, our top priority at all times is maintaining your garage quality and safety in a cost-effective way. While garage door repair is our specialty, we won’t recommend any kind of repairs unless they’re absolutely necessary – and on the other side of this equation, we won’t push repairs on you when the more prudent move is replacing the garage door altogether.

This is a common theme when it comes to garage door issues: To repair or replace? There are plenty of situations where either side is the correct call, and this depends on the age of the door, the severity of the issue and a few other factors. Here are some broad damage types to  consider, plus some basic factors in whether you should be looking at repairs or replacement for your garage door.

choosing garage door repair replacement

Aesthetic Damage

The simplest and most common form of garage door damage is simple cosmetic concerns, from chipped paint or cracked panels to fading colors or small dents. These kinds of damage, often caused by natural wear-and-tear or some harsh weather, generally do not affect the way the door works, but merely how it looks.

If your door is on the newer side and is experiencing this sort of damage, repair is usually the way to go – it’s low-cost and not something you should have to do repeatedly. If the garage door is over 10 years old, on the other hand, you might want to consider replacement based on elements like curb appeal and long-term value. This is an area where the precise cost of repairs will play a big role in your final decision, and our pros are happy to guide you in the right direction.

Structural Damage

In other cases, damage to a garage door is structural in nature. Examples here include bending, warping or major dents that actively impede the door’s ability to open or close properly.

While repairs are absolutely possible for these issues on newer doors, this is often a moot point for one simple reason: These issues are far less common on newer doors, and far more frequently-seen on older models that are already nearing the end of their lifespan. In these cases, replacement with a modern alternative can be the way to go.

Functional Issues

Finally, if the door’s issues cause it to be stuck or undergo other functional issues, the decision comes down to the precise nature of the issue. Is the door opening and closing extremely loudly? This is often due to a friction or lubrication issue that can be resolved easily without replacement, as is the repair of a single component like a torsion spring that might have gone faulty while the rest of the door is in great shape. If multiple areas are an issue or cannot be repaired, however, replacement could be necessary.

For more on choosing between garage door repair and replacement, or to learn about any of our garage door services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Simple Tricks for Improving Garage Door Security

While they have several separate purposes in today’s day and age, the top overall goal of any garage door and system is simple: To keep the building and its occupants secure and protected. Even as convenience and technology have made their way into the garage door world, this singular purpose remains at the top of the list.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re here to help keep your garage door safe and secure through our garage door repair and other high-quality services. We’re also happy to offer several tips and areas of expertise when it comes to the kinds of things you can be doing to increase and maintain your own garage’s security. Here are a few primary areas to consider.

improving garage door security

Keep it Closed!

The simplest task here, but one many home and building owners seem to forget about regularly: Keep the door closed! A garage door can’t provide you with optimal security if it’s not even in the proper position.

Leaving your garage door open leaves your space wide open for would-be thieves or burglars. If you’re the sort who regularly forgets to close yours when leaving the home, consider installing a Wi-Fi-enabled garage door that allows you to check whether it’s closed from anywhere, plus close it if needed.

Code Changes

If you have a garage door with a numbered code for opening, be sure you change this code on a regular basis – at least once every six months, if not more often. Also be protective of this code, never giving it to anyone but the people who live in the space.

Door Inspections

Another regular task should be inspecting you garage door, something we’re happy to help with as well as needed. You’re looking for anything that might detract from overall door security: Cracked windows, for instance, or gaps in weather-stripping that might allow for easy access.

Even if an issue looks small, know that thieves might target it to try and break in. Two important times for these kinds of inspections: When changing from cold weather to warm and vice versa, as these are periods where temperature changes might cause some small issues.

Lighting and Locks

Two additional security measures you might consider installing:

  • Side locks: A manual garage door side lock is perfect for use when you’re away for a long time. It requires manual unlocking, making it that much tougher for anyone to access the space while you’re gone.
  • Lighting: Many homeowners install motion-activated floodlights around the garage door area, meaning anyone trying to break in will be illuminated and often deterred.

Opener Protection

Finally, if you ever park outside the home, we highly recommend hiding your garage opener or even removing it from the vehicle. Many unsavory folks will break into cars to find garage openers, then use other personal information found in the car (like your insurance info) to obtain your address and potentially break in.

For more on how to keep your garage door safe and secure at all times, or to learn about any of our garage door repairs or services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.