Garage Door Safety

I was going to start this post with a quiz asking what the largest moving object in your home is but seeing the title of this post I’m guessing few of you wouldn’t be able to figure it out.

Before 1993, however, when congress passed a law that required all garage door openers to have a sensor to keep the door from closing when it detected anything in the way, many children (not to mention pets) ended up getting injured and killed, crushed by garage doors.

As great as this legislation was, it is still necessary to make sure that it is functioning correctly in order to avoid the same kind of accident today. Here are a few safety tips concerning your garage door:

1. Keep all moving parts like the rollers, hinges and wheels oiled. Your garage door should open and close smoothly.

2. Check all screws and bolts periodically to make sure they are tightened. Screws can slowly work loose and cause the track to work away from the ceiling or wall. Screws that aren’t tightened can also obstruct the wheels and hinges causing damage to your garage door opener and/or to the garage door itself.

3. Make sure that your garage door is adjusted well so that the balance is correct. Houses can settle over time, shifting slightly; humidity and temperature can also affect the door and the frame. To check the balance, release the mechanism and lift the garage door manually. It should lift fairly easily and the opening should be even across the bottom. The door should not start to close when you left go of it.

4. Check your sensor by holding your hand in front of it and trying to close the door with the remote. The door should not move.

5. Put an object that’s about 1 1/2″ tall on the ground at the point where the door impacts the floor. Again, try to close the door. It should reverse as soon as it makes contact with the object.

If any problem is detected, fix it or call your local garage door company for maintenance and repair.

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