A noisy garage door can be quite annoying, but it may also be a sign of something more serious. Before you initiate any garage door repair, you should identify the source of the noise if you can when opening or closing your garage door.
The good news is that there are steps you can take without having to call a professional garage door repair company to reduce, if not eliminated the unwanted noise the garage door makes when traveling along its tracks. Plus, a little maintenance every so often will help keep your garage door quiet and extend its life.
Here are just a few tips to help you identify and reduce the noise your garage door makes. Keep in mind that some issues may require garage door professional assistance if you are unable to either identify or correct the problem on your own.
Identifying the Noise
You should run your garage door up and down to identify the location of the noise. You may have to stand on different sides of the garage door to hear where it is coming from, so be patient and listen carefully.
A common cause of noise is the garage door rollers that are not properly greased or lubricated. This results in the rusty-sounding noise that can be located easily and treated with the proper products. It may be one wheel or the wheels on one side the garage, or it may be all the rollers. Another common cause is the track not being properly aligned. This means that you should feel resistance in the door being moved up or down.
Take note of how the garage door moves up and down the track as you locate where the noise is located. The feel of the door moving may provide an indication that something additional is wrong. Plus, once you have made the correction, move the door again and feel how it glides along the track just to be sure.
Once you have located the source of the noise, the next step is fixing the problem. The good news is that most noisy garage doors can be repaired with the use of lubrication or replacing inexpensive parts.
Perhaps the easiest way to fix a noisy garage door is to lubricate the moving parts. Although it may be tempting to use oil-based products, such as multi use WD-40, it is better to use lithium-based sprays as they will last longer and are designed for lubrication purposes in the long run. However, there may be an occasion where WD-40 is the better choice, so be sure to have both types of lubricates handy.
- Rollers: You’ll see the rollers on the inside of the track and they are often the source of noise if they are not properly lubricated. However, if you have solid plastic rollers with no bearings, then they do not need to be lubricated because they are not the source of the noise. Only rollers where you see the ball bearings inside exposed will need to be lubricated. If you see hinges attached to the rollers and bearings, be sure to spray those as well.
- Operator’s Shuttle Rail: This is the garage door opener rail that is located above where the shuttle rests on the door. You’ll want to spray the top of the rail, not the bottom. This means that the lubricant will seep naturally to the bottom of the rail and you’ll have less of a mess on your garage floor. If you see a pulley alongside, spray that as well since that may also be the source of the noise.
- Torsion Springs: Keep in mind that some garage doors do not have torsion springs, but those that do will have them on the top of the garage door. You’ll see them expand and contract as the door is moved, so you will need to lubricate them as well. While they are not often the source of noise, a properly lubricated spring will help keep the garage door moving smoothly.
- Pivot Points & Hinges: You’ll find hinges where the door pivots and folds up as you open or close. You’ll want to spray lubricant on the points where the pivots are located. You may need to move the garage door up or down as you travel along the pivot points so that you get them all.
- End Bearings & Lift Cable Drums: You’ll see these at each corner at the top of the garage door attached to the garage door springs. The end bearing plates themselves have a steel ball bearing which means they will need to be lubricated on each side but be sure to avoid the lift cable drums cables as that will interfere with the operation of the garage door.
Tracks, Chains, and Miscellaneous Parts
If the source of the noise is the tracks, then you’ll want to lubricate them at the appropriate places. However, for general maintenance, use WD-40 near the bottom of each track and along where it curves as these are the most likely places that noise will develop.
If you have a chain-drive garage door opener, then the chain itself may need lubrication. However, newer models have a coating on them that prevents rust from developing, so that may not be necessary. Plus, lubricating the chain will probably mean dripping oil or grease on the garage floor, so be careful.
There are several miscellaneous parts to your garage door that require attention, although they usually do not cause any noise even when the door is in operation. You’ll want to be careful about lubricating them because they may not require it or worse, may be negatively affected by contact with oil or grease. If you have any doubts, consult with those who have the answers.
If you are unable to locate the noise or suspect that something might be wrong with your garage door, then you should call a professional garage door repair company. They have the knowledge, experience, and tools solve the issue. Plus, you can ask for an annual maintenance plan which will help prevent future issues with your garage door.