Tag Archives: cold weather

Anyone who has ever tried to accomplish anything in their garage during the cold months of the year is aware of the benefits of a heated garage.

Whether you have a shop out there or rehearse with your band, an unheated garage is extremely uncomfortable. It need not be as cozy as your den, but a little heat makes all the difference in the world. While that may be true, there are some disadvantages to heating your garage. The cost of insulating might be prohibitive, but without it any heating tends to be quite inefficient. The other problem is the cost of energy. Before you decide whether or not a heated garage is worth the cost, look at both sides of the issue. 

Pros

An unheated garage is a most uncomfortable place to have your shop, workbench or makeshift recreation area. During the winter months you will spend as much energy keeping warm as you will on your project. Having to wear gloves, a hat and a scarf while building a model, jewelry box or anything else is no way to work. There are methods to heat your garage while you are present that will neither require a great initial investment nor extravagant monthly costs. All in all, if you use your garage for anything other than parking your car or storage space and spend any length of time inside, heating it is well worth it. 

Cons

If your garage is not insulated, any heat you supply it with may largely be lost either out the door, through the walls or out the roof. Garages are infamously drafty. Spending the money to heat a garage is ineffective. It is not worth it to fully insulate and run heating duct to the garage, especially since it will be used so infrequently. Besides that, any space heat provided will only warm a small section of the garage, so it must be adjusted to accommodate different areas. 

Garage Heating Options

It is probably not worth the money to insulate the walls and roof and route the heating duct to a garage. On the other hand, it can get very cold in a garage. If you use it for any length of time, during a cold winter it can be like going outside. A happy medium, then, is to purchase a space heater to supply the garage with heat just while you are in there. From portable heaters that provide radiant heat to propane-powered heaters, you have options. You can also run space heaters from your home’s natural gas line. Another option is to use an oil-filled radiating heater that is powered electrically. Each one, whether powered by propane, natural gas or electricity can effectively heat a small space. Whichever model you choose, space heaters provide a temporary heating solution that will increase comfort within a space.

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Troubleshooting a Garage Door for Cold Weather Problems

Troubleshooting your garage door is something to undertake before the weather goes bad. When the temperatures dip, the snow piles up on your driveway and the sidewalk becomes slick with ice, the last thing you want to deal with is trouble getting into your own garage after a long, blustery day at work.

Unfortunately, the cold weather season is precisely the time of year that most homeowners start to have problems with their garage doors. It’s best to be prepared for these types of situations, so as not to waste too much time hopping from foot to foot in desperation if you can’t get the door to lift in the middle of a blizzard! Read the troubleshooting tips below to be prepared in case this happens to you.

Problem 1 – Garage Door Won’t Open

The most common problem by far that is reported by homeowners during the winter season is that their garage doors either won’t open completely or won’t close all the way shut. This can be due to a variety of reasons, so try each of the following steps to address the issue. First, lubricate all hinges and joints with an appropriate lubricant, like Genie lubricant, to make sure that all the parts are sliding smoothly.

If you’re still having problems, then the cold temperatures may have caused the brackets that hold the runners for the garage door in place to become misaligned, due to contraction of the metal in the cold weather. Check them to make sure they’re correctly in place, and if not, adjust them so that they are.

Still having problems? Then do a thorough check of all the electrical fittings for your garage door. The cold weather may have caused cracks or other damage to parts that house electrical wires or sensors. If you don’t have much experience with electrical work, you may want to call in an expert to help address this problem, since a lot could go wrong if you try to fix it yourself without the proper background and know-how.

Problem 2 – A Creaky, Complaining Garage Door

Another common wintertime complaint for homeowners is a garage door that just won’t shut up. As it opens or closes, it moans and groans as if it were being tortured! Again, the most likely cause is probably a lack of proper lubrication, due to freezing temperatures. Get some lube (making sure to use one that’s specifically for things like garage doors, otherwise, you could end up sticking up the joints) and slick up all the necessary joints, hinges and other metal parts.

If after that procedure the door is still super noisy, it’s probably another case of metal contracting in the cold weather, causing the door and its runners to be slightly misaligned. Unfortunately, depending on your individual situation, there may be nothing you can do to fix that until spring comes and thaws things out.

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