Top 10 Tips to Prepare Your Garage Door for Winter in Central Pennsylvania

As the grasp of winter begins to wrap around Central Pennsylvania, taking a few steps to winterize your garage door will benefit you tremendously. If you have some free time during the weekend, here are 10 winter maintenance tips for you to try.

1. Closely Observe Your Garage Door’s Functionality

Garage doors will cycle thousands of times during their lifespan, and it’s easy to tune yours out when you use it every day. However, small differences in how it looks and sounds when opening can tip you off to possible issues.

If you want to take a vital preventative step, open and close your door a few times and scrutinize its behavior. Do you see any hitches or hiccups in its movement? Do you hear any squealing or grinding noises? Take notes of anything amiss, then consult with an expert to learn more.

2. Lubricate the Moving Parts

Your garage door can complete thousands of cycles only if its components sit in good shape. To keep operations running smoothly and breakdown-free, purchase some spray lubricant and coat the springs, tracks, rollers and other moving parts.

3. Ensure Sensors Are Functioning Properly

It’s required by law that every garage door opener comes equipped with an auto-reverse safety feature to prevent the door from closing on possible obstructions. You either have a mechanical option, which engages when the door hits something while closing, or a photoelectric option, which uses a laser tripwire to detect possible hazards.

To test the former, place a block of wood underneath the door and wait for the two to make contact. To test the photoelectric eyes, activate your door and pass a rod or pole near the sensor.

4. Check the Seal at the Bottom of the Door

If you want to get cold air, snow and ice out of your garage, inspect the weather stripping located at the bottom of the door. Cracked, ripped or warped stripping can create openings for the elements, and you should act to replace it if there’s moderate-to-severe damage.

Check with the door’s manufacturer to ensure you receive the correct fit.

5. Test the Door’s Balance

An improperly balanced door can force your garage door opener to work harder, shortening the entire system’s lifespan. To check your door’s balance, disconnect the opener from the door via the release handle and manually move the door halfway up. If it remains relatively stable with little movement, the door is okay. However, if it falls or rolls up too quickly, your torsion springs likely need to be adjusted.

Garage door spring adjustments can be dangerous to those who aren’t too familiar with the technology, so we recommend contacting your local garage door repair specialist to have them take a look.

6. Inspect the Door’s Cables

Door cables sit under extremely high tension, and, like springs, you should not handle them unless you’re experienced. Rather than detaching them or pulling at them, look for broken strands or damage near the bottom roller bracket.

7. Check the Door Itself

Depending on the material your door is made of, it can be more susceptible to damage and grime buildup — especially during repeated harsh winter conditions. Carefully check over wood doors for chipping and warping, and check steel for dents and rust.

Clean your door with a mild, all-purpose cleaner or a soap-based solution to keep it clean and prevent corrosion.

8. Replace Batteries in Garage Door Opener Remote

Excessive cold causes batteries to expel their charge quicker, which can put your garage door remote at risk of dying if you leave it in the car. To ensure you have enough juice for the winter months, replace the batteries.

9. Insulate Your Door

Garage doors serve as a sound barrier against wind and cold, but prolonged periods of bitter chill — which PA is famous for — can creep through most models via conduction across the surface. If it doesn’t come equipped with insulation, you may be able to install your own by placing foam board in the door’s recesses between the frames.

10. Organize the Garage’s Contents

When that March or April snowstorm blows through your area, you’ll want to have your tools and accessories at the ready to deal with snow drifts and ice that collect on or against your garage door.

Contact Jarusewki’s for Winter Garage Door Maintenance

If you want some additional help with completing garage door maintenance and repairs, Jarusewski’s will help to complete your winter preparations. We service a large swathe of central Pennsylvania, including Carlisle, Mt. Holly, Mechanicsburg, Aspers, Boiling Springs, and more.

Contact us today to discuss the services we offer!

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