Wondering why your garage door sticks, makes noises, and feels heavy when the cold days find their way to your hometown? It’s all due to winter. But since winters are not all the same in different locations and garage doors are not the same either, problems vary too. If, for example, you have wooden garage doors, there might be some panel rotting concern during winter, especially if the levels of moisture in your region are high.
And then, the number of problems and the nature of problems also vary and differ depending on how old the garage door is and whether it’s regularly maintained and its problems fixed. As you can see, the variables are plenty. But if we wanted to talk about overall garage door winter problems, we would find that some problems are common to all garage doors.
Metal problems – whether you have steel garage doors or not
Metal-related problems do not happen only to those who have steel or aluminum garage doors. Nearly all garage door parts are made of steel and while metal is particularly durable, it’s also prone to contracting when the temperatures fall.
Metal contraction will affect the garage door’s performance. Freezing temps make metal parts hard – just like our fingers when exposed to really low temps. And so, they become susceptible to warping and scratching. At the same time, the lubricants harden and this makes the door even harder to move. If you combine the hardness and contraction of the metal with the hardened lubes, you will realize why the garage door rollers have a difficult time moving, why they make noises, and why the tracks may get dented.
What do you need to do to minimize or eliminate such problems? To hire a garage door technician for maintenance just before the temps drop.
Frozen garage doors
Have you tried to lift your garage door manually when there’s tons of snow outside? It will likely be impossible. Why? Due to the accumulated snow that blocks the door from moving. Of course, most parts will be frozen too. But if you cannot lift the door, you need to shovel the snow that blocks its movement.
Garage door spring failures
While all components are affected by the cold, the garage door springs are perhaps the parts most susceptible to damage due to low temps. At the same time, they are very important. One reason why you may not be able to open the garage door manually is the springs. If the spring is broken, the garage door will be too heavy to move. And although springs usually break due to wear and tear, they may also break when they are exposed to cold weather for a long time. The effects of the cold on the spring and the pressure put on springs for the lifting of the garage door when most parts are frozen make springs brittle and easy to break.
Now, if this happens, there’s nothing else you can do than call a pro to replace the broken garage door spring. One way to prevent this problem is to have the spring checked beforehand and its coils lubricated.
Weather strips damage
Weather seals are made to protect. And so, they won’t get damaged by the nasty winter weather unless they are already torn and worn. Since their role is particularly important during the cold months, it’s best to have a garage door repair tech check and replace, if needed, the seals before it gets cold.
Garage door opener malfunctions
Remember when we talked about the springs getting extra strain from the hard-to-move garage door due to the snow or a storm? The same thing may happen to the opener. And the strain will be worse on the opener if the spring is damaged or somehow affected by the cold. That’s because it’s the springs – and the garage door cables, which do all the hard lifting work. The opener brings electric power to the scenery. If the spring fails, the opener is extra strained.
Garage door openers may also be affected by cold weather. Don’t forget that they have metal components. The cables of the safety sensors may get disconnected or the chain may need lubrication, affecting the motor and the function of the opener overall. Once again, such problems may be prevented – at least, to a great extent, if the garage door is checked and maintained before winter.