Your garage door opener has a lot of parts to it. When you think about all that your garage door opener does it is actually an astoundingly small amount of machinery for lifting a huge piece of material in a relatively short amount of time, all at the touch of a button. For most however, you probably haven’t thought about that since you were a young kid and maybe your parents let you press the button for your garage door opener. Otherwise it is something that we generally take for granted as a convenience that we almost count on to work in our daily life. In this article we’ll be giving a quick overview of all of the working parts of your garage door and garage door opener so that you can really appreciate just how much it’s all doing. This knowledge should also help you to better stay on top of things like maintenance so that you can know how to pinpoint problem areas more easily. Having a better idea of what your garage door opener is doing is never a bad idea so sit back and soak in just a little bit of information in order to make you a slightly more effective home owner.
Your garage door is the biggest part of this equation so we can start with that. Depending on the type of garage door you own it could be a single piece of material or many different piece that articulate to make your door easier to open in close in a certain amount of spaces. Most garage doors are paneled to make them move more easily and also to make replacement of the different panels easier if replacement is needed. Other than needing to be painted every once in a while most of the actual garage doors out there really don’t need any maintenance. Most garage doors have a few hinges on them to keep the panels together when they are moving that can do with some lubrication every so often, but they are otherwise easily taken care of.
The things that do the heavy lifting in the garage door opening equation is actually not the garage door opener for the most part like you would think. The garage door springs are the most powerful pieces of machinery in your garage and use a lot of force to keep your garage from being too heavy for your garage door opener or yourself should something go on. These springs, depending on the type you have, extend or unwind in order to take on the weight of the garage door during different positions. This allows your garage door opener to use much less power than it would need to if it had to lift a whole garage door. Garage door springs then take on a lot of the stress and pressure from the garage door’s weight and so are the real powerhouses of the garage door opener system. Because of all of this they are also the most dangerous and breakable pieces of your garage door system and so will need to be replaced more often than many of the other parts. They should be lubricated often but otherwise shouldn’t be fiddled with too much because when they snap or break the release of all that tension can be incredibly dangerous.
The next two parts of your garage door really work in conjunction with each other, not to say that the other parts do not, but without one of these the other would really be useless. The garage door’s rollers slide along the tracks to make your garage door move smoothly from one position to the next, i.e. from opened door to closed door. The rollers go from the hinges on the side of the garage door to the tracks and do just as you would expect them to, they roll along. The rollers are extendable which means that they garage door does not always need to be perfectly aligned in order to raise and descend easily. These rollers should be lubricated every so often and checked to see if they are rubbing the wrong way or too much anywhere, but otherwise really don’t need much help to do their jobs.
The tracks of your garage door do pretty much exactly what you would expect them to. If you need more detail than that, they keep the rollers on your garage door in the same place and keep your garage door in the same place when it is raising and descending. The tracks are smallish strips of metal that guide the garage door up and down as it moves along. The tracks have lips in order to keep the rollers in place but otherwise are just pieces of metal that follow the route of the garage door. Your garage door tracks don’t really need any maintenance at all and should be fine unless they are somehow damaged by an impact from your garage door, a car or something similar.
So there are just a few of the basic parts of your garage door opening system, not overly glamorous but hopefully you now have a slightly better idea of how your garage door is opening and closing everyday. You should also be able to use this sort of knowledge to do some troubleshooting of the various problems your garage door or garage door opener might run into. Knowing what each piece of the puzzle does to a certain point helps to pinpoint what the culprit may be when things start going wrong and also will give you a better respect for some of the more dangerous parts of your garage door and garage door opener. If you want to learn more or just have questions that seem beyond your scope even after this quick article then feel free to talk to your local garage door professional. Remember that while you may be able to troubleshoot your garage door’s problems more easily you should always consult a professional for their opinion in order to make sure what you are doing is safe and within your area of expertise.