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Benefits of a Smart Garage Door Opener

In the year 2020 and beyond, numerous smart home themes and products are growing significantly in popularity. And while many of the most well-known items here are home assistants and various entertainment-related areas, there are also numerous other practical themes covered – including garage doors and their openers.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to offer a wide range of garage door services, from garage door repair to expertise on any of the latest garage door products you’re considering. This includes smart garage door openers, which are generally powered by Wi-Fi and connect to not only the rest of the setup, but also your smartphone and other devices that can be accessed from anywhere. Here’s a quick primer on the benefits of a smart garage opener for your home.

benefits smart garage door opener

Simple Convenience

First and foremost, the convenience offered by this device is leaps and bounds above your previous garage door operations. Because this device connects to any of your phone, tablet, laptop or others, it can be operated from anywhere.

Did one of the kids forget their opener while driving to school? No problem, they can call you and have you open the door for them from work. What if a service provider or one of our technicians needs to come by for a garage door appointment, but no one is home? Again, this is a simple push of a button with a smart garage door opener.

Safety and Security

For many, however, the most important reason they move to a smart garage door opener is for security. This kind of device is the ultimate insurance policy against forgetting to close the garage door when you leave for the day – you can check it at any time to see if the door is open or closed.

Smart garage door openers will go even further, too. You can set up basic notifications for anytime the garage door is opened or closed, allowing you to note if it’s being used at a strange time. There are even specific notifications for if someone gains access to the home via illegal means.

Scheduling Allowance

And finally, for those who are often out and about, the ability to schedule various themes within your smart garage door opening system is vital. Consider a company like Amazon, which in many cities allows an option where you sync your deliveries with your online account – and when you have a package delivered, the smart garage opener will automatically open the door so the package can be placed inside rather than sitting on the porch for hours. There are also simple capabilities for syncing your opener with garage door lights.

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

Garage Door Service Frequency Recommendations

Like many other high-value elements on a given home property that also undergo regular wear-and-tear, maintenance is an important factor for garage doors. From the doors themselves to various components such as tracks, rollers, hinges and more, wear-down and damage over time may take place, but strong upkeep will prevent these minor issues from growing into larger ones that threaten both safety and financial areas.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to offer quality garage door preventive maintenance for all our clients. No matter your door type or material, we’re familiar with it and know exactly where to look to identify minor issues you may not have caught on your own. One common question we get within this realm: How often should a garage door receive service or upkeep? Our standard answer: It depends on a few factors, most importantly the current state of the door. Here’s a primer on the variables you can use to determine how often garage door service is needed, plus why it matters.

garage door service frequency

Why Garage Door Service Matters

Garage door service is vital for its ability to extend your door’s lifespan. If you leave your garage door alone without a single bit of maintenance over the course of multiple years, the chances of it developing long-term issues skyrocket – as does your risk of a major expense here.

With proper regular service, however, these concerns aren’t present. Smaller issues can be quickly identified and remedied for low or even no cost, rather than waiting until they spiral out of control and impact the entire system. You’ll completely avoid emergency service needs of any kind.

Homeowner Checks

In many cases, periodic homeowner checks – we recommend inspecting the garage once every couple months, or more often if it’s older – will easily help you identify signs that service is needed. A couple areas you can check on without any risk to safety or door quality:

  • Eye function: The garage door eye is the sensor that tells the opener if something is in the way of the door opening or closing. Try placing a broom or some other item in front of it and then pressing the button – if the door stops, no problem. If not, this is a safety issue and you should contact our team for service immediately.
  • Alignment: Unhook your opener and raise the door up and down by hand. If this is very difficult and the weight is very high, you could have an alignment problem.

Professional Service

In other cases, however, signs that service is required might not be visible to the untrained eye. This is why yearly (or more frequent) garage door service from our professionals is so important: We can check for all these areas, from broken springs or rollers to cable issues, sectional or panel concerns, problems with the opener or remote and much more. During each yearly appointment, we’ll also recommend service frequency moving forward.

For more on how often you should service your garage door and why this is important, or to learn about any of our garage door repair or related services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Steps for Properly Measuring a Garage Door, Part 2

In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the basics on how to get started with measuring your garage door. Whether for an upcoming garage door replacement, repairs of some kind or any other need, being able to perform this basic task can be very helpful in a few different situations.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to provide a wide variety of garage door repair and related services, including assisting clients with simple tasks like measuring their garage door – and actually performing them in some cases. For cases where any of our services may require the basic measurement of your door or the available space in the area, part two of our series will go over the final steps to making these measurements, plus some other notes to consider while doing so.

steps measuring garage door

Step 4: Ceiling Openings

As we went over in part one, you’ll have already measured your door opening’s width, height and end openings. The next step is to measure ceiling openings, or the space between the top of the door opening and the lowest point of the ceiling in the garage – also called headroom in some cases.

This measurement will require a stepstool or stepladder that’s secure. Simply measure the precise distance between the highest point of the door opening and the lowest point in the ceiling – if your ceiling has any obstructions that will interfere with the door while operating, you should use the lowest point of the obstruction for your measurement.

Step 5: Rear Obstructions

Finally, you must measure the distance from the garage opening to the very back, or rear, of the garage space. There must be significant space here depending on the sort of door you’re looking to install – over four feet, in fact, if an electric opener is being installed.

Like with the previous measurement, be careful to note obstructions. If such an obstruction exists well before the back of the garage, it should count as the measurement area as long as you’re sure it will impact the door’s operation.

Other Notes

A few other important themes to take note of while performing basic garage measurements:

  • If any stairs or lights are blocking garage operation areas, note this
  • Ensure electrical outlets are present and working for door opener use
  • Confirm condition of wood jambs, header and floor level
  • Be careful to note and potentially measure any pipes, ducts or other obstructions above the door space that might impede the door’s ability to operate normally

For more on measuring a garage door and door space for any reason, or to learn about any of our garage door repairs or other garage door services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Steps for Properly Measuring a Garage Door, Part 1

There are several cases where you may need to measure your current garage door for one purpose or another, and knowing how to do so properly is valuable for home and building owners. Whether for a new garage door replacement, an aesthetic upgrade or even certain repair or upkeep needs, there may come a time where measuring the door’s dimensions is necessary.

At Overhead Door Company, we’re proud to offer a huge variety of garage door repair and upkeep services, including assisting clients with any needs that may arise – such as the need to measure their door. While this process is not difficult at all, it does contain a few important variables to be aware of. This two-part blog will go over everything you need to know about measuring your garage door in the proper order.

steps measuring garage door

Step 1: Width

The first step is to measure door width, which should be done at the widest point available in the door. Begin by measuring from the middle of the left side of the finished opening all the way across to the right side, measuring in feet and inches.

In some cases, wider doors might require you bring in a second person to help you hold a tape-measure, or purchase a digital tape measure. While measuring width, look for any possible issues like jambs that aren’t square.

Step 2: Height

Next up is the height of the door, which again should be measured using the highest possible point on the door. Measuring in feet and inches, you should first ensure the floor is completely level before you begin measuring to avoid any inaccuracies, as well as the finished opening at the top.

As with the width measurement, keep an eye out for any other problems. Uneven floors are one, but others may include concerns with opening diameter.

Step 3: End Openings

Another important measurement area here is the width of the areas beside the door openings on each end of the garage. These areas are vital because there must be adequate space on each side of a given garage area to allow for the installation of the track.

The absolute minimum distance required on each side for vertical tracks will be roughly 3.75 inches, but the requirement is often much larger than this. For double-car garage doors, for instance, the requirement for space on each side of the opening can range up to 10 inches based on the use of a center post.

For more on measuring your garage door for any reason, be it a replacement or any other need, or to learn about any of our garage door services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

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 Doors and Garage Pest Prevention Methods

While the primary purposes of any garage door are generally security, vehicle protection and related areas, there are also several secondary roles and benefits to consider. One good example here: Preventing the potential entrance of infiltration of the garage space by various insects and other pest types that might view this as an ideal nesting spot.

At Overhead Door Company, our garage door repair services include a wide variety of areas, from primary functions like security and protection to other themes like temperature control, humidity concerns and, yes, pest prevention. Today’s blog will go over a few of the pests that are most common in garage spaces, particularly in the upcoming spring and summer season, plus what you can do to stop pests of any kind from entering your garage.

garage doors pest prevention

Common Pests in Garages

In many cases, pests outside your home will seek shelter in the garage for a few reasons. The first is because, especially in homes without proper garage door care, it’s often the easiest area to enter. In addition, it often provides sources of moisture, nesting opportunities and even opportunities for food in many cases.

Some of the pest types that tend to be found in garages can include:

  • Flies
  • Crickets
  • Spiders
  • Silverfish
  • Ants
  • Cockroaches
  • Moths
  • Birds
  • Mice

Basic Prevention Tips

Here are some general tips to keeping pests from entering your garage space:

  • Remove existing pests: Pests already present in the garage space are one of the single biggest causes of expanding infestations. Many pests flock to larger congregations of their own species, particularly insect types. Before you begin other remedies, ensure all current pests are removed, including contacting an exterminator if needed.
  • Cleaning: Take the time to regularly clean the garage, including sweeping, removing debris and properly storing items in boxes or shelves. This removes hiding spots and nesting locations for many pests. In addition, remove any unsealed food and try to limit any standing water sources, which many pests are attracted to.
  • Find cracks: Inspect the garage door itself plus walls, foundation, ceilings and any other material areas for cracks or gaps that might be allowing pests in, and seal these with caulk. This also includes the weather stripping section of your garage door, which seals the door to the ground and stops smaller, ground-bound pests from simply making their way in underneath gaps in this space.
  • Find cracks: Inspect the garage door itself plus walls, foundation, ceilings and any other material areas for cracks or gaps that might be allowing pests in, and seal these with caulk. This also includes the weather stripping section of your garage door, which seals the door to the ground and stops smaller, ground-bound pests from simply making their way in underneath gaps in this space.

For more on preventing pests from entering through your garage door, or to learn about any of our garage door services, speak to the staff at Overhead Door Company today.

Garage Door Cleaning Tips and Importance, Part 2

In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the importance and preparation steps for cleaning your garage door. Garage door cleaning is vital not only for aesthetics and curb appeal, but also for preventing rust and limiting certain operational issue risks from arising in your garage door.

At Overhead Door Company, our garage door repair services include a wide variety of expertise areas, one of which is offering basic tips or recommendations on how to clean a particular door properly. Through part one, we covered obtaining the proper materials and equipment – now let’s go over some simple steps for the actual cleaning itself, plus some common garage door cleaning mistakes to avoid as you move through this process.

garage door cleaning tips importance

Basic Cleaning Steps

Assuming a standard garage door setup, here are the simple steps to cleaning your door once you have your tools on hand:

  • Fill your bucket with hot water and mix it with a gentle soap or cleaning solution you’ve decided on.
  • Either while or after you create this mixture, wet down the entire surface of the garage door with your hose.
  • Once the entire garage door is wet, use your soft rag or bristle brush to begin scrubbing the door with the cleaning solution. We recommend moving top to bottom to allow water to drop to lower areas without impacting cleanliness. Ensure you also cover behind the stop molding on the sides and top of the garage door.
  • When finished with a given section, use the hose to rinse it off.
  • Move to subsequent sections and repeat this process until finished.

Cleaning Windows

If your garage door has windows included, cleaning methods for these are exactly the same as any other window in your home. We recommend gentle cleaners that do not risk major chemical buildup. Take care around seals or weather stripping so you do not create any leaks or cracks.

Mistakes to Avoid

A few common mistakes we’ve seen homeowners make while cleaning their garage doors that you should generally avoid unless it’s specifically recommended for your door by one of our team members:

  • Don’t use a pressure-washer, even if you have significant dirt or grime, as it might damage paint or even the actual door panels themselves.
  • Never utilize bleach as a mixture with your cleaning solution, as it can damage doors.
  • Do not use abrasive sponges or various scouring products that can impact the quality of the finish of the garage door, often a major value area.

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