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How Can Winter Affect My Garage Door?

a garage door snow fall

A garage door is one of the biggest and costliest pieces of mechanical kit in your home and most of us open and close the door several times a day without thinking twice. Winter can be a tough season for your garage door, and depending on the harshness of the winter – which is especially relevant depending on which area of the country you live in – there are some potential problems that could come to fruition if you aren’t careful.

Of course, having a broken garage door would be a pain during any season, but if you’re unable to get your car out of the garage during those cold, dark months, it would be far worse than any other season.

The positive news is that you can potentially avoid these by performing a little maintenance.

Garage Door Springs

 

Cold weather can distress a garage door in a multitude of ways, but broken springs are the most common. Wear and tear is usually the main culprit – garage door springs typically last around 10,000 cycles and with everything else we need to remember in our lives, particularly during winter, maintaining the springs on our garage doors often slips by the wayside.

Despite this, it’s important to check the springs quite often by lifting the door to halfway and letting go. If the door is stationary, the springs are in good working order. If it begins to drop slightly, then consider replacing the springs.

Another way to safeguard against broken springs in the winter is to ensure you have a safety cable installed. The cable exerts enough force to act as a counter-weight, so if your springs do break, you won’t need to worry so much.

Door Frozen to The Ground

a man shovelling in front of his garage door

If water pools at the base of your door, a frost overnight can freeze the water and seal the door shut.

There are no easy or fast ways to deal with this problem, but here are a few solutions which you use to try to rectify the problem:

  • Manually open the door using the emergency cord. The severity of the freeze will directly impact this option.
  • Pour boiling water along the base of the door. Be sure to sweep away the pool though, as it could refreeze.
  • Use a scraper to chip at the ice until you can free the door.

Any of these methods takes a fair bit of time and energy, the best thing to do is to ensure you sweep away any puddle or snow build up and pour some salt around the area to prevent the reappearance of ice.

Water Damage

Especially the case with wooden garage doors, the moisture over winter can lead to the swelling of the door and the frame itself. In the worst scenario, this can close up the space, which causes rubbing.

The door can even get stuck, which prevents you from entering or exiting through the door.

It’s important to clear your rain gutters of leaves and debris to prevent water from running down onto the door, which only exacerbates the problem.

Opening Issues

Colder temperatures can meddle with the opening and closing functions of your garage door, here are a few things to watch out for:

  • Lubrication Consistency – Garage door opening mechanisms require lubrication at various times throughout the year to ensure the parts run correctly. During winter, it’s not unheard of for this lubrication to alter its consistency and prevent the components from moving successfully.
  • Sensitivity Problem – All automated garage doors are designed to stop the process if there is an obstruction. Thickened lubrication can alter the sensitivity of the sensors and prevent the garage from opening or closing correctly because it confuses the thickened deposits of lubrication for something it might crash into.

When the cold weather descends, your garage door may be pushed to its limits. However, by keeping an eye on your door and performing a few small tasks, preparing your garage inside and out for winter means it will be able to withstand the harsh conditions of winter.

 

If you have any questions about winter protection for your garage or any of our other products or services, then contact us today.

For a free, no obligation survey give us a call on 0800 048 0741, and our team will be happy to advise you on which security considerations would be right for your home and garage.