Monthly Archives: April 2010

Frequently Asked Questions About Garage Doors

Listed below are the most commonly asked questions and answers about garage doors.

Q. Why should I use a professional garage door dealer/installer?
A. The installation of a garage door is not a do-it-yourself job. A garage door is the largest moving object in your home and because of the large number of small parts; installation of a garage door is highly technical. Connecting the springs can be particularly dangerous and proper installation is critical to the performance of your door.

Professional garage door dealer/installers can typically install a door in a few hours and are careful to make sure safety requirements are met. Installations by most homeowners typically span several days and cause much frustration. In addition, incorrect installation can void certain warranties, so we recommend a professional handle the job for you. One of the other services a professional garage door dealer/installer can provide is the disposal of your old door, if you are replacing a door.

Q. Is 25 gauge steel thicker than 24 gauge steel?
A. No. When comparing strengths of steel, remember, the lower the gauge number, the thicker (and stronger) the steel.

Q. Why should I choose an insulated door if my garage is not insulated?
A. A garage door opening is very large. Insulated doors will help to reduce the transfer of heat or cold air into your garage. This is important for a number of reasons:

1) If your garage is attached to your home, air in the garage can travel through the doorway to your living area.
2) If you use your garage as a workshop, your comfort will be a top priority.
3) If your garage is below another room in your home, air can travel through the ceiling of the garage into the floor of the room above. An insulated door will keep temperatures in the garage fairly stable to reduce the temperature fluctuation in the room above.
4) An insulated door is generally quieter and has a more attractive interior than a non-insulated door.

Q. What are the benefits of a steel door versus a wood door?
A. Steel doors may require less maintenance than a wood door. Steel doors are commonly pre-painted with a factory-applied baked-on coating. An annual cleaning of the exterior of the door with a common household detergent and warm water at least one time per year should be done. Wood doors are usually unfinished and need to be primed and painted or stained on all six sides of the door upon delivery. It’s recommended that a visual inspection of the paint or stain finish on wood doors one time per year to confirm if another finish application is necessary.

Q. What is required for installing an electric operator?
A. In the event that an electric opener is installed, the top section of the garage must be reinforced with a strut or angle iron spanning the length of the top section.

Q. I want to replace my old door, but don’t know how to dispose of my old one.
A. Most garage door dealers will haul your old door away after the new door is installed for a small fee. Discuss this with your local dealer when you get an estimate on your new door.

Q. When I replace my existing door, can I keep my old track?
A. It’s recommended to replace your track when you replace your door because each brand of garage door has been specifically designed to work with a specific type of track. In addition, replacing your track is an inexpensive way to insure that your entire garage door system is as safe as possible. By replacing your track you also ensure that your door warranty will apply, in the event that you have a problem.

Q. I have a one-piece door now. Can I replace it with a sectional door?
A. Yes. Your professional garage door dealer/installer can install a sectional door for you by installing track and springs to accommodate a sectional door. Depending on the construction of your garage, other modifications might be necessary. We would advise you to ask your dealer to evaluate the job prior to installation, so that any required modifications can be performed.

Q. I’ve been comparing R-values of various doors and am surprised at the variance among them. Can you explain this?
A. Many manufacturers use R-values to show the energy efficiency of their product. This number is calculated based on the thickness of the insulation and its chemical properties. Therefore, most of the published R-value numbers, reflect only the R-value of a section, not of the installed door. A door’s insulating capabilities can be greatly affected by the door’s construction.

Q. How do I know if my door is properly balanced?
A. There are several tests you can perform to tell if your door is balanced. Before testing your door, disengage you electronic opener.

1) Raise your door in 1′ increments, and the door should stay in place.
2) When you lower the door, the door lowers in a controlled manner and doesn’t slam down.
3) When you raise the door, the door rises at a controlled pace.
4) When the door is fully-raised in the open position, the bottom of the door should be aligned with the bottom of the header of the door opening.

Q. Do I need a lock on my garage door?
A. If an electric garage door opener has been installed on your door, it may not be necessary to have a lock. Newer electric openers function as the lock, making it improbable that an intruder would be able to lift your door from the outside. If you have an older opener, check to see if your door can be lifted from the outside.

DASMA, the trade association for the garage door industry, discourages homeowners from attaching a lock when an opener has been installed, because too frequently, a child or other family member will accidentally lock the door. If someone then tries to open the door using the electric opener, the opener will pull against the lock causing the door to be damaged. If no opener is installed on your garage door, a lock is highly recommended.

Q. What type of care and maintenance is necessary for my steel door and hardware?
A. We recommend that you wash your steel door a minimum of one (1) time per year with: (a) One cup of Tide® (or other common detergents which contain less than 0.5% phosphate), dissolved into five gallons of warm water. NEVER BLEND CLEANSERS OR DETERGENTS WITH BLEACH.
The use of a well-soaked cloth, sponge, brush (with very soft bristles) or low pressure spray washer is recommended. Once the door is washed, thoroughly rinse with clean water to eliminate the possibility of residue.

In addition, lubrication of rollers and hinges is recommended on a yearly basis. Visually inspect springs and cable for wear and binding once each year and contact a professional garage door dealer/installer if damage is suspected. Do not attempt to remove, repair or adjust springs. HIGH SPRING TENSION CAN CAUSE SERIOUS INJURY OR DEATH.

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Garage Doors – Security with Automation

If you are a person that feels scared or threatened driving home at night or someone who simply wants to improve the security of their house then perhaps an electric garage door opener is right for you. Garage door openers provide both home and personal security improvements. Plus, the newest versions use a rolling code that ensures that no one but you can access your house. Besides this there are many other great features.

One of the most important benefits of equipping your home with an automatic entrance is that it allows the removal of the external handle. While this may seem like a simple thing it really increases the safety of your house. No longer is there an easy access point for thieves to tamper with. In fact a thief is likely to see from the street that there is no handle and move on. The burglar will be sure to pass up a secure building in search of a less secure one somewhere else.

In addition to this feature many models now come equipped with an automatic closing function that closes your garage door once you have left, in case you forget. This will prevent anyone from entering behind you and reduces the vulnerability of your property. Think about all of the things besides your car that you keep in there. Bicycles, golf clubs, maybe even family keepsakes all get stored in this relatively unsecured area. Even if a burglar was not able to steal your automobile they could easily get away with a lot of valuable stuff.

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Today’s Lesson Boys and Girls: Don’t Leave Your Garage Doors Open

It’s an easy thing to do when the weather warms up, but leaving a garage door up while working in the back yard or anytime can be a bad idea according to police.

There have been a number of reports of burglaries in many areas of the country because residents leave their garage doors open.

In a recent case, a family left the door open overnight and thieves made off with thousands of dollars worth of golf clubs and more.

The wife happened to also leave her purse in the car which had all her credit cards and personal items. The crooks who took the credit cards immediately started using them. The thieves used the cards at a Burger King, two gas stations and a K-Mart. Hundreds of dollars was racked up in charges all in under five hours.

For the crooks, it’s a way of life. That’s their business. That’s what they do. They drive around specifically for garage doors that are open.

Another homeowner recently had thieves steal more than her belongings. They also took her peace of mind. The thieves came in while her family slept, took golf clubs, a video camera and her purse. She said the thieves ran up a number of charges on the family’s credit card before she knew it was gone. The bank covered the credit card charges, but she said she was worried about what could have happened. They could have very easily taken the garage door opener, taken the keys from the vehicle and would have gotten back in the house at any time.

The lesson here is, don’t leave your garage door open.

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Garage Doors: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

If you’re trying to sell your home, or simply want to raise its value and overall look, you may need to consider replacing your current garage door.

An attractive and stylish garage door instantly improves the curb appeal of your home. It’s also a less time consuming and less expensive way to upgrade the exterior of your house than a major project like installing new siding or completely renovating your yard. You should especially consider replacing your old garage door if it is dented, scratched, or if its color clashes with the exterior of your house.

But color is not the only option when it comes to garage doors. Garage doors now come in a wide variety of styles, sizes, shapes, and decorative options. Even if your home is ultra modern, you can find a decorative steel garage door to match it.

Traditional homeowners will have no troubles finding a wide selection of beautiful options to match that style as well. Carriage house style garage doors are a great way to upgrade the exterior attractiveness of your house. Carriage house doors resemble the classic wooden doors that are found on many stables and carriage houses of old manor homes. They have a gently curved top that looks stylish and high class, and feature a row of small windows near the top of the door.

For a more rustic look, taking the same steel carriage house doors and gel staining or faux painting them will them the feel of yesteryear. If you’ve got children and pets that love to play in your garage or driveway, you want to consider a tough and durable steel garage door. These materials resist dents and scratches better than wood or glass, and will look good for a long time.

By choosing a stylish and updated option you can increase attractiveness of your home’s exterior. By doing so, you’ll also automatically increase its resale value as well. You can also replace a broken, damaged, or non-functioning garage door with a new working model. By upgrading this often overlooked part of your home, you are investing in your house and increasing its curb appeal.

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The Shortest Garage Door Story

Garage doors open – garage doors close. Cars go in. Cars go out.

With the garage door closed, the cars are safe and dry. But what if that door didn’t open? With the hustle and bustle of life today, things like garage doors usually get taken for granted. And if they suddenly stopped working, think of how fast they’d occupy our minds.

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Mystery of the Garage Door Remotes

With technology bringing us so much at the click of a button, we’ve gotten used to convenience at our finger tips.

However, there could be problems caused from all the advances.

In a west Omaha neighborhood, a strange occurrence happened Saturday around noon. “Saturday my kids were getting things out of the garage, and my son came in and said the garage door didn’t work,” said Patti Donscheski. “When I went out to take a look at it, it looked like there was power coming to everything, but nothing would work.”

A few blocks away, two more residents near 168th and Harrison had similar experiences.

“Same thing, Saturday our garage door just wouldn’t open up,” said Christie Bechler. “One of our remotes worked, the others did not.”

The garage door problems appear to be more than coincidence. Experts say anything that emits a strong signal can affect the way our garage door works. Anything from cable television, to computer routers, and even Offutt Air Force Base conducting tests, can interfere with the frequency on which garage door operators wrok.

Every time you have something running through a power line, it does emit a little bit of sound or noise, sometimes that can be high enough to interfere with the frequency that the garage door is on. Garage doors are operated on two separate frequencies, 390 and 315. The only answer for those with issues may be to install a black box that receives both frequencies.

Still, it’s unclear exactly what caused the outage in the west Omaha neighborhood. “It’s pretty odd, makes me want to start calling my neighbors, because you don’t normally just bring it up in conversation,” said Donscheski.

“Now hearing about the neighbors it really makes me wonder, I guess I just never would have guessed it would be something so complicated,” said Bechler.

The outage may be a nuisance, but the women say it could be worse. “As long as it doesn’t affect my husband’s remote control, we’ll be alright,” said Donscheski.

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Cheap Garage Doors: Like Tissue in a Box

Finding a cheap garage door may not be as cheap as one thinks.  

An open eye to everything that you buy is important. While buying a cheap garage door has one major advantage.

It’s not too expensive to replace the following year.

Kinda like a box of tissues.

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Barn Doors Become Garage Doors

The car exploded in the American society at the turn of the 20th century, bringing with it many practical problems that had to be resolved.

For example, the creation of what was called a “new type of non-construction” is what was generally regarded as barns in rural areas became “transportation houses” in urban areas. A logical place to store their car beside the cart.

The car owners back in the early 20th century were only those who could afford it, usually from a rich and influential family. These owner’s cars however acquired the smell of manure. They needed a less smelly alternative. Initially, garages were more as walk-in parking structures. You stored more than one horse in a barn. Why not do the same thing with cars? So private and some public garages were constructed of large spaces and a monthly fee was charged for a space for your car. It was quite a lucrative business. But in 1910, there were too many cars for these garages and overcrowding led to increased pricing and dissatisfaction. The solution was the advent of the Carriage House. A construction of a small structure without horses near the house meant specifically for the car.

Garage being the French word for custody, housing, or protect became a ubiquitous name for these structures within a decade. With side-hinged, the large double doors and locks, the early garages were also more like what we would today call a woodshed with its rough exterior, nails, and squeaky hinges.

 Improvements over time deemed necessary. Doors gained sliding tracks, and the garage became more flexible. The invention of the door modern folding garage was necessitated by the fact that a standard hinged door would require a wider space in which the opening edge for absurdly large garages. When the inventors finally realized that the door could be made of several panels that fold back into the corners and adjacent walls or ceilings, modern garage doors were born.

It would be for many years; however, before electric motor opens the garage door would relieve the need to open the garage by hand.

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Cheap Cheap Garage Doors!

Time to consider a new garage door? Are there dents, dings, peeling paint, or has it not opened or closed in a long time? There are lots of different ways to find cheap garage doors, although the key to pricing is in relation to the type of door you want.

The best value will be those made out of steel. They are tough, heavy duty, and they also provide a reasonable level of protection for your house. Wood is very widely used, and it is easily obtainable in a number of different finishes and colors. This is typically the priciest type, but the look for your home is just terrific. With today’s technological know-how, the steel can potentially rival wood in terms of the appearance, but real timber always takes first place amongst homeowners for looks.

The web has become the first place that a lot of consumers look when looking for home improvement objects. For many individuals, the various garage door company sites offer the visitor an opportunity to do a little research on designs, colors, warranties and price. A number of these sites also offer exclusive deals that can only be obtained online.

You’ll find cheap garage doors if you make an effort to try and do a little research. By understanding as much as you can regarding the different materials, variations, and warranties available, you will be better prepared to begin the search for this important part of your home’s curb appeal.

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Avoid Garage Door Disasters!

The usual garage doors weigh around a hundred pounds and typically use an extension spring to counterbalance the heaviness of the garage door. This becomes dangerous if the springs break, causing the door to malfunction. Indeed, the garage door is a great potential of harm and accident at home. To help you avoid garage door accidents, try following these advices.

If you are still planning to have your door installed, choose a reputable and qualified service installer to do it. Be meticulous about safety, they must have the necessary skill in this kind of job, especially in the setting of the spring, which is the very important yet crucial part of the work. An improperly installed door will give you a headache and dissatisfaction no matter how many repairs you make. However, if you are installing it by yourself, make sure to read the instructions and follow it carefully. There must be no room for errors. After the installation, you must familiarize and take care of the remote control, if ever there is a garage door opener. Don’t leave it lying around.

Ask any garage door installer and they will give you one golden rule: Keep your children safe. And by this, it means that you should orient your children (and any other family members) about garage door safety. Tell them that playing near it is prohibited, no playing with the remote and explain to them the consequence of being trapped under and behind the doors.

Monthly check-ups and inspections should be done. Look for imbalanced doors, hidden things, loose bolts, broken wires, rollers, cables and the push button wall should be out of reach of the children. Contact local technicians if problems are observed.

Your garage door is hugely supported by the spring under high tension. Make sure to replace old springs. Broken or loose spring may hit on your car or worse, on a person. Usually, doors have two springs, if the other is broken, be sure and change the two.

Door openers should have a reversing feature, or else, replace it. The absence of the said feature will cause damage, the fact that it might caught something while it is closing, because it will make contact to the door before closing. All garage doors are required by the authority to install reversing feature.

For additional knowledge, garage door openers are motorized device used to open and close garage doors. The most common style of operator is the trolley operator (usually at home). The motor hangs near the center of the ceiling with rail guides and a trolley across the ceiling to the top of the doorway. The trolley is attached to the door arm that is then attached to the top of the door. When the trolley traverses the rail the door opens and closes Additional features that have been added over the years, including and automatic lights that turn on if the door opens and automatically turn off with a preset time, wireless keypads and keychain remotes, which are widely used today.

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