A garage door that won't open or won't close is a huge problem. Many people store valuable items in their garages that could be stolen when the door won't shut. You may also feel less secure in your home when you don't have the added level of security of a locked garage door. A door that is stuck shut can be even worse, as you may have a vehicle inside it that you need access to. If your door is stuck open or shut, then follow these tips for finding the cause of this major problem and deciding whether you can tackle the repair yourself or need to seek help from a garage door repair professional.
1. Figure out if Your Garage Door Opener is to Blame
Before you begin worrying that your garage itself needs repair, figure out if it is actually your electronic garage door opener that is acting up. If your remote is not working, then try to open the garage by pressing the manual button you should have inside your garage. If that works, then your problem is likely your garage door remote, and the first thing you should do is check the batteries to make sure they are still holding a proper charge.
If you have a spare pair of new remote batteries handy, then pop them in and see if your remote begins working. If it does not, then there is either a problem with the remote itself or the sensor that detects the signal that the remote sends to the garage door opener to "tell" it to open or close. Check the sensor for any obvious problems, such as loose wires. It is a good idea to attempt to trigger the sensor with the remote by pressing the "open" or "close" button on your remote while very close to the sensor. If this works, then there may be something blocking the signal sent by the remote to the sensor, or your remote may be producing a much weaker signal than it should be.
At this point, if nothing is working or you have found a problem that needs be fixed, then it is time to consult your garage-door opener owner's manual for advanced trouble-shooting with your specific model of garage door opener. However, if the garage door opener seems like it is "trying" to do its job and the door is still not budging, then the problem is likely not your garage door opener, but instead the door itself, and you should move onto the next step.
2. Disconnect Your Garage Door Opener and Inspect the Garage Door Itself
If you have eliminated the garage door opener as the likely cause of your problem, then disconnect it by following the disconnection instructions in the owner's manual, which may instruct you to pull down on the knob of the carriage/trolley. You can then gently attempt to open or close the door manually to rule out any missed problems with your opener.
If your garage door is still stuck, then first look at garage door rollers and see if they are off-track. If they are, then you must decide if you have the DIY skills needed to attempt to bend the tracks slightly with pliers to open them and ease the door back onto the track. Remember that if you opt to try this yourself, then you may end up damaging your garage door tracks. It is a much better idea for anyone without experience in repairing garage doors to call a garage door repair professional to get the door rollers back on track where they need to be.
If the door is on track, then next take a look at the garage door springs. They are responsible for bearing much of the weight of the garage door as it opens and closes. If you see one or more springs that look damaged, such as gaps in the spring, springs that are only attached at one end, or any other sign that just doesn't look right, then it is a good sign that your springs are causing your door problems. Call a professional, such as Allied Garage Door Inc, to diagnose and repair any problems with your garage door springs, as it is extremely dangerous to try to repair them yourself.
Follow these tips if your garage door won't open or close, or if it is stuck partially open. Call a professional garage door repair company to come figure out what is wrong with your door if it passes this troubleshooting guide or if the solution to your problem is not something you do yourself.