Over time, garage doors can become noisy. This is usually caused by loose hardware, worn rollers or parts that need to be lubricated. Here’s how to check and lubricate a garage door that’s making noise.
Visually Inspect Parts for Correct Operation
Start with a visual inspection of all the garage door’s parts. Look at all the rollers, cables, tracks, hinges and brackets to make sure they’re in good condition and operating correctly. To check their operation, you’ll need to watch the door open and close a few times. Any components that look worn or frayed likely should be replaced.
Check the Bolts and Screws
With the door turned off, check the tightness of bolts and screws that aren’t painted red. Tighten up any that are loose. You may want to wear gloves for this to reduce the likelihood of pinching your skin while checking and tightening.
Do not test any bolts that are painted red or other parts that have a safety tag. These components are part of the garage door’s tension spring system and should only be adjusted or replaced by a trained technician who has the necessary tools to work on these springs. If a mistake is made, tension springs can be lethal.
What Lubricant To Use
What lubricant is the right one to use?
For the chain and tracks of an automatic garage door use a cloth with:
- brake parts cleaner
Using other lubricants on the tracks and chain could cause the garage door to slip, which can be a potentially dangerous situation.
For all other components (except wheels in the track), a lithium-based (non-silicone) spray is the most widely recommended lubricant. Spray the hinges, rollers, etc. but not the wheels in the tracks.
There are other lubricants you can use, but they have disadvantages:
- silicone-based sprays don’t last as long as lithium-based ones, and they drip
- grease isn’t recommended for smaller parts, and it attracts dirt and dust
- oil is messy to use and drips
- powdered graphite is effective, but it’s difficult and messy to apply on smaller garage door parts
A lithium-based spray, in comparison, is easy to apply, can be used on all parts of a garage door (except the wheels, the track and chain), doesn’t drip and lasts a long time.
Lubricate the Door
Once you know everything is in proper working order, the final step is to lubricate the garage door.
- First, wipe down the tracks and chain (of an automatic garage door opener) with a cloth that has brake parts cleaner on it.
- Spray all other components (except the wheels in the track) with your lithium-based spray.
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