Garage Door Opener Repair and Troubleshooting

If you are having issues with your garage door, you will need to conduct some troubleshooting measures before calling for a professional garage door repair company. While it is recommended that you have trained technicians service or repair your garage door, you should inspect the door, tracks, and opener first to identify the problem. You may find that the issue is something you can address yourself or at the very least, narrow down what may be wrong with it so you can provide good information to the repair company.

Here are a few troubleshooting tips that will help you locate and identify the problem with your garage door. This may help you to avoid making an unnecessary call to a garage door repair company and save you money.

The Garage Door Should Be Closed

Before you begin inspecting the garage door, it will need to be in the closed position if possible. This will mean that you should get the vehicles outside if practical, but otherwise the door should be closed. If you cannot close it, then you will need to be extra careful during your inspection and make sure no one is under the garage door. This is because if the problem is a broken spring, which is a common garage door repair, and you disconnect the opener using the emergency release cord, the door may come slamming down to the ground.

So, clear the area around the garage entrance and be sure to unplug the opener as well unless that is the issue. If you suspect that the opener, wall switch, or remote is at fault, leave it plugged in. However, keep in mind that an active opener may mean that you lose a digit if someone presses the remote or risk possible electrocution if there is a loose wire.

Check the Warning Lights

Many garage door openers will have an LED warning light system in place to help you identify the problem. Keep in mind that the warning lights will not be precise, but it will help you narrow down the issue affecting the garage door system. The lights will usually blink in a code of which the key will be in the instruction manual and may cover the following areas;

  • RPM Sensor in Motor is Defective
  •  Obstruction of Garage Opener Trolley
  • Obstruction of Garage Door Track
  • Overheated Motor

If you get an overheated motor, leave it alone for an hour and try again. If that doesn’t work, unplug the motor from the outlet, wait a minute or two, then plug it back in. If that doesn’t work, you may have a damaged motor. Here are a couple of other common garage door opener issues.

Wall Switch Works, Remote Does Not

This may be the easiest fix of all to make since the problem will either be dead batteries or the remote itself. Replace the batteries with new ones and test out the remote. If that does not work, replace the remote and that should solve the problem.

Remote Works, Wall Switch Does Not

The good news is that there is nothing wrong with the garage door, tracks, opener or any other garage door parts. However, you may need to replace the wall switch or the wires that lead to the opener. You can find out by removing the switch from the wall and touching the two wires that were in the switch together. If the opener starts to run, then you need to replace the switch. If not, then the wires may need to be replaced.

Door Works Fine Going Up, But Only Wall Switch Makes It Go Down

This may be an issue with the safety sensors that are near the bottom of each track. If nothing is between the safety sensors, they should be lit. However, if you do not see a light, then they may not be aligned properly or need to be replaced. Keep in mind that direct sunlight may affect the sensors as well, which may be the case if the issue happens with the sun in the same location on different days.

Outlet Works, but No Power to Garage Door Opener

Check the outlet to see if it has power. If so, then your garage door opener may have a bad circuit board. A lightning strike may be the cause, but in any event, you will need to replace the circuit board. The good news is that circuit boards are relatively easy to replace, so you may be able to do the job yourself. Adding a surge protector will reduce the chances of a lightning strike blowing up the circuit board in the future.

If everything is working except for the lights, then you will need to replace the light socket. This is actually more complicated than replacing a circuit board, but not too difficult to accomplish.

If the issues you are facing do not relate to the garage door opener, then you will need to check the track itself. Unplug the opener and pull the emergency release so you can operate the door manually.

Obstruction of Track

Move the garage door up or down and look for any irregularities or issues with the track itself. There may be an obstruction or a bend in the track that is causing the door not to slide properly. If the door slows or stops, look at the area where it is having difficulty and see if you can spot any issues. A simple obstruction can be removed, but if the track is bending or falling apart, you will need a professional garage door repair company to fix the issue.

If the door operates normally in the manual mode, reconnect the opener and see if the issue is found there. It could be a faulty RPM sensor in which case it will need to be replaced or repaired to correct the problem.

If you have identified the problem and you cannot easily correct it or cannot find the issue at all, then it is time to call a professional garage door repair company. They can inspect and correct the problem for you so that your garage door works properly.


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