Not that long ago, your trusty garage door started making some pretty strange sounds. It caused some concern, but not enough to warrant really doing anything. It might be nothing – after all, the door is still working, right?
The rational part of you knows that you should do something about those noises. Chances are good that the door will eventually stop working if you don’t act, and you’ll wake up one morning to find that you can’t get your car out of the garage.
How do you actually explain those strange sounds to a garage door specialist over the phone? Isn’t it something that they should hear for themselves? How can you explain the situation well enough that a specialist can tell you whether you have a serious problem? It really comes down to the type of noise that you’re hearing. Let’s take a look at some of the strange sounds you might be hearing and what they could mean.
Booming, clunking and thumping
If you hear booming, clunking and thumping when the garage door opener is in operation, chances are good that the issue is a broken torsion spring. These sit over the door, in a double-door garage. However, it’s likely that only one spring has broken, as it’s very rare for both to break at the same time.
If you only have a single door that’s about nine feet wide and there’s a torsion spring attached above it, chances are good that your garage door opener will still be capable of opening the door, but the situation is getting dangerous.
To see if this is the problem, close the door and look at the area just above it. If one of the springs there is broken, you’ve identified the problem and you’ll need to work with a garage door specialist quickly to replace the broken spring.
If you hear a constant clinking sound when the garage door is in operation, you may have one of several different problems. In the majority of instances, it’s caused by the spring coils contacting each other. The humidity level in your garage can cause rust on the springs, and if they dry out over time, they’ll start to make this noise. Another potential issue is if one of the rollers is about to fall off.
If you hear a sharp, squeaking sound when the door is in operation, chances are good that you have a lubrication problem. The most likely culprit is the exterior frame weatherstripping and the weatherstripping located between the sections of the garage door. These are usually made of plastic, and will dry and crack over time.
Are you hearing a metallic grinding sound when the door is in operation? This could be an issue related to the belt or chain of the opener. The opener may be using too much force, and that can cause the gear pinions to skip a link in the chain. There’s also the chance that the belt or chain is too loose, and needs to be tightened.
How serious is it?
Most weird sounds caused by your garage door are serious, but not all of them. A broken spring is a very serious issue and should be addressed immediately. However, sounds caused by dried or cracked weatherstripping aren’t all that problematic.
However, whatever the problem turns out to be, don’t attempt to correct it yourself. This is particularly true about changing a broken torsion spring. The entire lifting mechanism is under extremely high tension and attempting to repair it yourself is incredibly dangerous.
With that being said, you can troubleshoot the issue on your own. Apply lubricant to some of the more problematic parts of the door. For instance, you can apply a little bit of petroleum-based lube to metal parts like rollers, hinges and springs. You can also lubricate PVC components, including the weatherstripping on and surrounding the door.
Most garage door specialists in your area will sell the right type of lubricant for your door. Of course, if you haven’t had your garage door inspected in some time, or at all, you should contact a technician who specializes in garage doors and opening systems to take a look at it.
Does my door need an actual tune up?
Yes, we highly recommend that you have your garage door “tuned up” every 18 months if the door is more than five years old. You can contact us at 1-800-780-3883 to schedule an appointment. We have built a reputation for excellence and expertise in the area, and we will proudly guarantee all of our work. Our maintenance program for residential garage doors includes a full 26-point inspection, as well as lubrication of major components and necessary adjustments. You can also get a free quote through email if you prefer.
Feel free to visit our showroom, where you can peruse new garage door options. Or, you can use our Design Centre to display what a particular garage door would look like on your home, or browse our image gallery to find inspiration.