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How to Safeguard Your Garage Door

Safeguard direction. Yellow traffic sign with cloudy sky in the background.The garage door is one of the most indispensable parts of the family home and yet it’s also the most ignored when it comes to security. Due to technology, garage doors of today are more digital than ever and are so automated that it’s easy to think that it will always work.

However, it’s important for homeowners to know the basic ways they can ensure that their garage doors are working properly to avoid accidents and are doing its job in keeping it safe from intruders. Here’s a great list to take note of:

1.     Talk to the kids

The most common garage door related accidents always involve small children. Due to their naturally wandering ways, they are fascinated with the knobs and buttons of garage doors. This is why it is important for parents to really inform their children that garage doors are not play things and like knives or the kitchen, these are not part of their play area.

They can accidentally open the door and leave the home open to outsiders or worse, place themselves on the closing door and be pinned down. To avoid accidents, it is important to discipline small children and inform them of the dangers of playing with the garage door.

2.     Always test the door

At least once every month, place an object under the automatic garage door as it is closing. The sensors must be able to sense the object, stop closing, and automatically retract. This ensures that the automation capabilities of the door are working very well to prevent car destruction or anything dangerous to happen.

Changing of passwords is also recommended especially after routine maintenance checks.

3.     Do not leave the garage door remote control inside the car

Thanks to technology, drivers can basically close their garage doors from the comfort of their own cars while they focus on being on the road. However, leaving the remote control is a rookie mistake that car owners cannot afford to make. In instances of carjacking, it would be much easier for the bad guys to get a hold of the owners’ home and have access to it through the remote.

Instead, make use of one’s phone in connecting to the garage door. It’s much safer and harder to track should the car be compromised.

4.     Padlock the garage door when in vacation

It is easy to rely on technology when out for vacation for weeks at a time. But with technology also comes the hackers who can easily unlock a door. Instead, choose the old school way of locking from the inside and installing CCTV cameras and sensors to alert the owner should any intruder decide to make a move and target a house. Coordinating with the local police is also a good practice as they can help in patrolling around the area. They can also be one of the recipients of the alerts to respond to the house should the owners be on vacation.

In the end, due diligence always pays off for homeowners when it comes to their garage door.

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How to Know When to Replace Your Garage Door

Old Way or New WayA garage door is probably the most expensive item that can be found outside a person’s home, next to its intricate garden or swimming pool. Your garage door may look nondescript and forgettable, but it serves an important purpose of protecting your belongings such as cars, stocks, and other valuable items.

Although it is advisable for homeowners to care for their garage doors for as long as they can, a smart one knows when a garage door’s time is really up. Here are the signs that tell homeowners that it’s time to replace their garage door:

1.       Rust
There is no need to rush at the first little sign of rust, but when cycles between paint jobs are getting shorter and the brush strokes are getting longer, it is a sure sign of greater damage. Instead of wasting money on paint, it is better to go for a contractor to ring up a new cost estimate for a brand new garage door.

2.       Water damage
When water repetitively seeps in, it may be hard to salvage a wooden garage door. This type of damage is also one that sustains itself with a plethora of problems such as pests. Also, the water may affect the steel support that holds the door together, leading to more problems. A constantly moldy garage door means you may need to replace your garage door with a material that is resistant to moisture.

3.       Deep curves and bents
When your car hits the garage door, you may be left with a deep bent that is beyond repair. If this happens,it may be a wise decision to replace your garage door as these bents deteriorate over time. Also, the damage caused by the crash may actually be irreparable or too costly to repair.

4.       Wide gaps and spaces on the side
With years of continuous use, garage doors can become looser and soon, the gaps can be seen by the naked eye. For safety reasons, it is smarter to change garage doors altogether than have a security breach waiting to happen. Once big gaps are obvious, burglary and trespassing can be as easy as opening a can of meat—all it takes is a pair of wrench and a little effort.

Gaps also make the indoors prone to the ravages of the elements such as little wild animals (i.e. rats) and extreme cold or heat. This problem can also wreak havoc on one’s electricity bill, which is not worth the trouble versus simply replacing the garage door.

5.       Increasing bills for parts and repairs
Purchasing parts and doing minor repair from time to time does not seem to hurt, but calculating these in the long run really adds up. If the total cost of constant repair work is greater than an actual garage door, it would be more sensible to buy a new one.

When it comes to malfunctioning garage doors, repair may not always be the best solution. Consult your trusted garage door technician to determine if it will be better for you to get a replacement.

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3 Ways to Make the Garage Door Safer for the Family

iStock_000043296394_SmallOne of the greatest fears of parents is their kids getting involved in accidents. However, accidents could happen even within the premises of the home and adults are not exempted from these. As innocuous as it may seem, your garage is an accident-prone area.   Most people keep power tools and other heavy stuff in shelves of the garage and they could fall on a family member. The garage door could also be a cause of accidents if they are defective or if the owner is careless especially when it comes to repairing and maintaining your garage doors. However, there are several ways to keep the family safe from garage door mishaps.

Regular maintenance and repair

People can’t live without garage and garage doors. They keep the car safe from vandals and car thieves. However, after using it many times, some parts may malfunction and they become unpredictable and therefore dangerous.  For example, the heavy door might suddenly close on the user while he is trying to enter his garage door and cause injuries. If children play near an open garage door, they could be in danger, too. Calling for a garage door company for repair and maintenance once a year should help keep the family safe from garage door-related accidents.

Install an IP cam in front of the garage door

An IP cam is a type of security camera that can send the pictures and video it captures through the internet. This is very useful for those parents who leave their kids at home when they work.  They can check if the child strays into the garage door area and plays with the garage door remote control. They can then call neighbors or friends to ensure that their child is taken away from the garage area. In fact, modern phones can be used as IP cams with the right software programs.

Keep the remote way up

Children love to play. Everything they can get their hands on could be a toy for them including garage door remotes. That is why it is very important for parents to keep the remote beyond the reach of children or better yet bring it with them when they leave the house.

Motion sensors

Motion sensors help keep people safe when accidentally closing the garage door and there is a child under it. The sensor will detect if there is a child or a person under the door and it will send the command to the door to go back up. Some technologies use infrared beams. When the infrared beams are cut off because a person passes under the garage door, the door will not close down.

Everyone is afraid to hear the news that a family member was involved in an accident.  Parents can do a lot to make their home, particularly their garage doors safer by following the tips provided above.  There are many other ways  to  keep family members safe from garage door accidents but these are some of the most effective and low cost ones.  Of course, proper maintenance tops the list.

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How to Make Your Automatic Garage Door Last a Long Time by Tuning

Yellow hardhat and leather glovesThough they look sturdy, garage doors are the implements in people’s house that are most often subjected to wear and tear. Unlike the other doors in the house, garage doors are opened and closed often, using delicate mechanisms that can get broken after frequent use. For this reason, garage owners should keep their doors well maintained to avoid the cost of repair. Garage door owners can do part of the maintenance work by themselves. All they need are the right tools and some free time.

Safety instructions when doing garage door maintenance:

  • Always  unplug the automatic door opener to avoid accidental activation
  • To keep the door open while you work, make sure to clamp locking pliers onto the roller tract under the rollers.
  • When the door spring is in tension, leave the lift cable alone, never remove it to avoid injury because the spring can snap and injure.
  • Don’t replace the tension spring. Only garage door professionals should handle that.

Inspect your garage door

Check for loose nuts and bolts and tighten them. Since the garage door is always moving, nuts and bolts specially those bolts keeping the rails to the support bracket.  Checking and tightening the roller brackets is also necessary to keep the door working properly.   The reason garage door hardware loosens is the constant motion of the door when opened and closed.

Also, inspect the rollers and lift cable for wear and tear but because those parts are under high tension, leave the replacing and repairing to professional garage repair people.

Lubricate the chain or the screw of the opener

To keep the garage door operating smoothly and quietly, the opener screw or chain should be lubricated with white lithium grease once a year or as often as needed.  Because lubricants help lower the friction on the opener chain and screw whenever the garage door is opened, lubrication will also help protect the parts from wear and tear. There are spray-on versions for the lithium grease lubricant that are easier to use.

Lubricate the spring

To keep the spring from corroding, garage door owners can spray them with a lubricant/cleaner, which can be bought from hardware stores.  If corrosion is already eating the metal, it is best to call professionals to replace it.  Again, non-professionals should not try to remove or replace the garage door spring.

Check the garage door seals and replace if necessary

The weather stripping or astragal of the garage door keeps cold and small insects from entering the garage, but they can easily wear and can also get damaged by mice. Replacing them is easy and not dangerous.  Garage door owners should make sure that the materials used are the right size for their garage door. They can also measure the damaged weather seal and take the measurements to the shop to ensure they get the right one.  Many companies offering garage door repair also sell these parts.

Only experienced professionals can perform complete maintenance of garage doors, repairs and replacements. However, as owners,it is your responsibility to do basic care for your garage door to prolong its lifespan and maximize your investment.

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Three Reasons Why Doing Your Own Garage Repair Is Not Advisable

bigstock-Girl-Opens-Old-Garage-21316331Broken garage doors are a source of great stress to their owner. Some of the symptoms of a malfunctioning garage doors are weird sounds produced while opening and closing them. Sometimes, they fail to open completely, if at all. It is human nature for owners to fix their broken garage doors themselves. However, experts contend that this is not a good idea.

When garage doors begin to show signs of malfunctioning, it is more advisable to let garage repair specialists take care of the problem. Here are three reasons why.

Save your money

The garage door has complicated mechanisms. If you lose one gear, the whole mechanism fails.  Garage door repair specialists have the proper know-how in repairing a failing door. They know what they are doing, so they don’t end damaging the door more. Owners do not necessarily have that knowledge. If a garage owner tries to fix his garage door, he may unintentionally cause more damage. By the time he decides to contact a person to repair his garage door, the damage he caused may cost him ten times more than if he called a technician right away. In addition, if the garage owner gets injured trying to fix his own garage door, it will also cost him money for hospital bills.

Save yourself from injury

Not only are garage door mechanisms complicated, tinkering with them without the right skills and knowledge could lead to serious injury. Take for example the garage door spring. When that powerful metallic spring snaps and hits someone’s face, it could crack skulls. This unfortunate incident could be easily averted if the owner does not try to repair the garage door himself. As has already been previously mentioned, only professional garage, door technicians are qualified to make repairs for a garage door. They know how it works so they can avoid accidents.

Save time

When they try to fix their own door, it usually takes garage door owners days, week, or even months to finish it—sometimes it won’t get fixed at all. They would be wasting a lot of time that they could spend with their loved ones. Garage door specialists can fix garage doors in a day or two because they are knowledgeable in that field. Once they are done, the door can function again flawlessly.  Time saved!

Although it is tempting for owners to fix their broken garage doors by themselves, it is always advisable to let professionals solve that problem. They are better equipped with knowledge and the right tools to repair garage door in a safe and efficient manner. By choosing to call them right away at early signs of garage door problems, homeowners could save money, time, and most importantly themselves.

When a person is sick the best person to call the doctor. When a building is wobbly, call a carpenter. When a garage door is having problems, the best action is to call a garage door professional.

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