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What You Need to Know About Garage Door Alignment

garage-doorYou have watched your garage door open and close thousands of times. But on this day, something doesn’t seem right. The garage door looks crooked, and upon closer inspection, you notice that there is a gap at the edge of the door and are wondering what you should do.

When the garage door is out of alignment, it will look crooked, and you may notice a gap on the side or the bottom of the door. Although the door may appear to function, do not use the door until it has been repaired. A misaligned door can fall off the tracks resulting in injuries and property damage. So be sure to fix the problem right away.

There are several ways that a garage door can be knocked out of alignment. One of the most common is accidentally backing into the door. Even a small tap can shift the balance. Also, if the door doesn’t operate smoothly, vibrations from daily use can cause nuts and bolts to become loose. There could also be an issue with the tension spring, chain or cable that connects the door with the opener.

Check the tension spring

The tension or extension spring provides the torque for the opener to lift the door. The spring needs to be tight to exert the required force to overcome the resistance of the weight of the door. When the springs are loose, it can’t store the energy it needs. Depending on the type of door you have, there may be one or two springs. Replacing tension springs is not a DIY garage door repair. Incorrectly removing or installing springs can result in severe injury or death.

How to adjust a crooked garage door

Garage Door IssuesMake sure the garage door is closed and inspect the tracks for warping. Warped tracks need to be replaced. Then check the rollers cleaning any debris between the rollers and tracks. Use a silicone spray to lubricate metal rollers that are sticking. Replace nylon and plastic rollers when damaged. Do not lubricate them, or you will damage them further.

There should be a ½” to ¾” gap between either edge of the door and track. Loosen the bolts that hold the track bracket in place. Slide the bracket to adjust the gap distance and re-tighten the bolts. Only adjust one track at a time.

Fixing a gap under the door

Even if you’re tracks are correctly aligned, you may still notice a gap under the door. It is usually due to a deteriorating or missing weather strip.  The weatherstripping will keep your garage floor cleaner by preventing water, debris, and pests from getting inside. Replacing the weatherstrip is an easy process:

  • Measure the gap between the bottom of the door and the floor.
  • Measure the width of your garage door.
  • Install a garage door weatherstrip on the floor just under the door.
  • When installed correctly, the garage door will form an airtight seal when closed. You can also add weather stripping to seal the sides of the door too.

Call the Repair Experts

The garage door is a very heavy object with many moving parts that need to be in perfect harmony for a smooth and safe operation. When you need help with your garage door, call the experts at Safe Way Garage Door Repair & Service. We will get your door up and running fast, saving you time and frustration.