Help Me Understand. Why Would my Garage Door Need Service?

Until something goes wrong, one might wonder, “Why would my garage door need service?

On average, the typical Minneapolis garage door opens and closes more than a thousand times each year. This repeated motion and vibration can loosen the door’s hardware and cause serious problems. However, with regular service,  garage door problems can be kept to a minimum.


Observation is the first step in determining whether or not a garage door needs service. One should periodically open and close the door while checking to make sure it moves up and down smoothly, and that it does not make any scraping or grinding noises. The cables, pulleys and springs located on both sides of the system should appear symmetrical.


An imbalanced counterweight system can cause the opener to strain, overheat, and wear out before it should. Therefore, it is important to make sure a garage door is properly balanced. This can be determined by pulling the release handle (in most cases, a red cord) to disconnect the opener.

Once the opener has been disconnected, the door should be manually opened to the halfway point.  Failure of the door to stay up by itself indicates that the counterweight system is not balanced properly. Since the counterweight system is composed of highly compressed springs that operate under tension, the job of adjusting it should be left up to specially trained professionals who can adjust it safely.


Most garage doors have either nylon or steel rollers. These parts should be inspected approximately every six months, and on average, replaced every 5 to 7 years.  Any cracked, worn or chipped rollers should be replaced as soon as possible. A garage repair professionals can remove and reinstall the roller brackets that are not directly attached to the system of cables that operates the door.


The lubrication of all moving garage door parts can add years to the door’s seamless operation. Typically, a garage door specialist will have the best types of lubricants, such as white lithium grease or spray lubricants, to keep the door moving smoothly.


Weather-stripping is important to help keep water and snow from cold Minneapolis winters from flowing from under the door into the garage. If the stripping is cracked or brittle, it should be replaced immediately. A garage maintenance and repair specialist can supply new weather stripping and properly install it in the grooves of the door with the wide angle of the flange on the inside.

Auto-Reverse Safety Features

Garage doors commonly have both photocell and mechanical mechanisms for operation. A professional garage repair person is trained to test the mechanical feature to make sure the door will reverse directions and opens promptly when it comes into contact with any type of obstructive object. The same holds true for the door’s photoelectric system.

Newer automatic garage doors have beams on each side that, when obstructed, automatically raise the door. This means that if a pet or human being walks in front of the beam while the door is closing, the direction will reverse and the door will re-open automatically. Garage doors older than 20 years should be replaced with doors that offer this important safety feature. A professional garage maintenance specialist can test the photocell to make sure it is working properly, and that the door reverses when it is obstructed.


The exterior of the garage door should be checked regularly for any warping, rust or other signs of damage, which should be painted or repaired as needed.

Contact Us

If you live in the Minneapolis and have an automatic garage door opener, we recommend you contact us for a regular maintenance call to make sure your garage door is in proper working condition. One of our helpful associates will be happy to assist you in scheduling an appointment.