Fall has arrived, bringing football, changing leaves, and pumpkin-spice lattes, which is our signal that the cold, snowy, Wisconsin winter is on its way. By this time of the year, you have probably already taken steps to prepare your home and yard for winter. But you can easily overlook winterizing your garage door which is a must for Wisconsin winters.
Winterizing Your Garage Door
Garage doors are constructed to withstand harsh winter elements and be the first defense line for your home. But without proper maintenance, it will wear out and break down, creating an inconvenient problem to resolve at a most inopportune time. Cold weather causes metal parts, like screws and springs, to shrink and results in declined performance. Warped tracks and broken springs cause the door to struggle. Without winterizing your garage door, cold air can flow into the home. Snow, ice, and freezing rain can seep in as well, along with insects and pests looking for refuge inside your home.
Joe Wile Company can help you save on potentially costly repairs and emergency service calls by following our garage door winterization checklist. These tips will help your garage door be ready for the Wisconsin winter.
Test the Balance
Open and close the door multiple times, paying attention to the ease in which it moves and listening for strange sounds. If the door is out of balance, the opener motor will have to work much harder, leading to damage from undue stress. Check the balance by pulling the release handle when the door is closed to disconnect it from the opener. Then lift the door manually halfway. If it stays in that position, then the counterweight system is balanced correctly. If not, you will need to call in a professional to rebalance the springs. Make a note of anything else that requires further inspection. If you cannot determine the exact problem or are unsure how to address it, contact Joe Wilde Company for a professional inspection.
Lubricate Moving Parts
Moving parts such as springs, hinges, and bearings will move with ease when adequately lubricated. Use a lubricant specifically designed for use on garage doors and their components. A general product such as WD-40 or a few engine oil drops will work, but avoid lubricants containing petroleum and silicone.
Check Door Seals, Weatherstripping, and Hardware
Most people open and close their doors multiple times each day. All this movement and vibration loosens the hardware, causing gaps in the door where cold air, snow, ice, and pests can invade. There are three items to check – seals, weatherstripping, and bolts.
Bolts should be kept tight, so examine each one and tighten with a socket wrench. Next, check the seals around the door for gaps. An effective way to do this is at night by turning on the interior light, and standing outside the closed door. Look for light shining through gaps, which indicates a problem with the door seal. Clean the seal with a household, multi-purpose cleaner, and wipe down sensors to ensure safety features are operational.
Weatherstripping along the bottom edge of the door prevents the winter elements, debris, and pests from invading your garage. If it is cracked, brittle, or disintegrating, replace it. Even just taking this one step will insulate your garage more effectively.
Take a moment to examine the condition of the door itself. If there are chips or scratches on the door’s surface, repair them by sanding and repainting. If the door is damaged, or you desire to replace it, Joe Wilde Company offers an extensive line of beautiful and durable garage doors.
Examine the Rollers and Cables
While the door itself may be in excellent condition, the parts that move and secure it wear out over time. The rollers should be replaced every several years, so inspect them to see the current wear and tear level to determine if they should be replaced now.
The garage door uses strong, high-tension steel cables to lift and lower it, and the cold makes these cables brittle. Inspect these cables to look for signs of wear, such as fraying. If they need to be replaced, it is imperative that you hire a professional. Because of the extreme tension they are under, they can snap and cause severe or fatal injuries.
Bring in the Pros
By performing maintenance now, you can ensure that your door will function throughout the winter. It’s always best to bring in a professional, and Joe Wilde Company is ranked by Expertise as one of the best garage door companies in Milwaukee. Our exceptional team of knowledgeable professionals is dedicated to performing your garage service at the highest standard. To schedule a free, no-obligation estimate, fill out our contact form online, or call us at 262-782-0500.