Tips for a quieter garage door

Tips for a quieter garage door

Tips for a quieter garage door

Is it a truck? Is it an earthquake? No. It’s your garage door.

If opening your garage door is a loud, house-shaking, baby-waking event, there is likely a combination of many components that have been worn and shaken over years of use. While you’ll never have a totally silent garage door, there are several factors that can cause significant noise. Some repairs can be DIY, but garage doors can be very dangerous, so many repairs require a professional.

DIY

Find the noisy culprits – Open and close your garage door several times to attempt to isolate the sources of noise. Look and listen for:

  • Rattling sections of track
  • Rollers that jump, drag, or otherwise roll unevenly
  • Squeaking hinges and chains

Tighten the nuts and bolts – It is common for nuts and bolts on the door and on the tracks to shake loose after many openings and closings. You can do this regularly to cut down on noise.

Find worn hinges – If you can see an oblong hole where the pin meets with the bracket, the hinges may need to be replaced. Metal shavings around the hinge are also a sign that it is worn. If you feel comfortable, this is a replacement you can do yourself, but improperly installed hinges are a safety hazard, so this is not a beginner DIY suggestion.

Check the garage door opener chain – A loose chain can rattle and cause the rollers to smack against the track. If you still have your owner’s manual, you may be able to tighten this up yourself following the instruction provided.

Lubricate moving parts – This should be done every six months as routine maintenance. Choose a lubricant made specifically for garage doors. This specialty product acts as a liquid but is not tacky when it dries so it does not attract debris that would gum up moving parts. Apply to springs, hinges, tracks, pulleys, rollers and other moving parts. Be sure to hit the torsion bar bearings and all pivot points.

Caution: If your garage door is belt driven, do NOT apply anything to the rubber belt

Soundproof – It is possible to control some of the sound output from your garage door, but many soundproofing solutions require a significant investment of time and money. Here are some options:

  • Install noise insulators between the motor block and the slotted metal brace that attaches the motor to the ceiling. These can be purchased from a garage door specialist
  • Add a strip of rubber between the track and the garage. The track may be rubbing against the garage, especially if it is made of concrete or brick
  • If noise and vibration are loud in a living space above the garage, purchase specialty anti-vibration pads to install between the mountings of the garage door and the ceiling

Professional

A garage door professional will be able to complete any of the above measures that you do not feel comfortable doing yourself. Remember, garage doors can be dangerous and you should only do what you are comfortable doing. Garage doors themselves can weigh 200 pounds or more and the springs necessary for their operation are under significant tension.

If the tips above don’t work, hire a professional to get to the bottom of the problem. A professional can also complete more complex and dangerous tasks to fix a door including:

  • Replacing steel rollers with nylon ones, or replacing worn nylon rollers, for smoother operation
  • Replacing the extension spring system with torsion springs if there is room
  • Replacing your chain-driven garage door opener with a belt-driven one

 

10 Common Questions Garage Door Dealers Get

10 Common Questions Garage Door Dealers Get

So you’re thinking about purchasing a new garage door for your home,… but where do you begin? Metal or wood, insulated or non-insulated, windows or no windows? It can be overwhelming, but there’s no need to stress. Below are the answers to these questions and some of the other most common questions garage door dealers get from people looking to buy a new garage door.

Door Material, Metal or Wood?

Each material has it’s pros and it’s cons. Metal doors are typically cheaper, lighter weight and require very little maintenance, but can lack design quality. Wooden doors are popular for their natural design and quality, but are usually more expensive than metal and require some seasonal up keep. Overall Wooden doors are preferred by architects and home designers, but many aluminum and steel doors have similar quality levels.

Insulation or No Insulation?

This mostly depends if your garage is attached or detached and how you use it. I you have an attached garage that has living space above it, insulated is the way to go. But if your garage is simply used to park your car, there isn’t much need for it to be insulated.

Insulation Type, Polyurethane or Polystyrene?

Polyurethane is a better insulator than polystyrene, however the latter is cheaper. If you live in an area that experience below freezing temperatures for more than 4 months out of the year, it may better serve you to insulate with polyurethane, but if you live in a relatively mild area, polystyrene will get the job done.

Double Garage Door or Two Single Doors?

This is mostly a case of personal preference. Two doors are the more practical option, giving you multiple entrance/exit points in case of malfunction, but two doors also mean double the equipment leading to higher costs. Designers and architects tend to favor two single doors as they provide a better since of balance.

Hardware, Extension or Torsion?

Torsion hardware is preferred, if you have the necessary headroom (at least 12 inches). Torsion is preferred due to how it centers the weight of the door on the anchor plate, providing smooth operation. An extension system is preferred on garages with low head clearance using two springs working independently of one another.

How much headroom clearance is needed?

There is no correct answer for this, as all homes vary, especially older homes. 14 inches is ideal, but the absolute minimum clearance is 6 inches. Door and opener technology has greatly advanced in recent years to reduce the foot print of garage hardware and opening systems.

Does the Garage Door Frame Need to be Prepped?

You just need to make sure the exterior and interior opening match the size of the door. Typically garage door frames are framed using 2×8 or 2×10 boards.

Windows or No Windows?

This question comes down to two factors, security/privacy and natural light. If there are no other windows in your garage, adding some windows would conveniently add some natural light. But if security and privacy are of higher importance to you, choose to forgo windows.

What is the Lifespan of a Garage Door?

Depending on the quality of the door and its components, a typical garage door should last for more than 20 years. If you take preventative maintenance measures and make sure to clean the door at least twice annually, your garage door can 30 years or more.

How Much Does a New Garage Door Cost?

Finally! The most popular question. A lot of variables go into the cost of a new garage door, but for the comparison purposes, a high-quality, metal, insulated, double garage door without windows would cost around $1500 – $2000. For a wooden door of the same quality the price ranges from $1000 – $5000 depending on the type of wood.

Other Questions

If the questions you have aren’t on this list, don’t worry. Contact the experts at RCS Garage Doors with any of your garage door questions. We are eager to help!

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