One basic step to ensure the durability of your garage door is to understand its key components, their operation, what they do and how to keep them operating optimally. A garage door is made up of many different parts that work in harmony to enable it to open and close safely. Some of these parts and accessories include the garage door opener, remote controller, safety photo eyes, springs, rollers, hinges, cables, pulleys, weather seals and more.
Here are the most important garage door accessories you ought to know about:
- Remote Controls
Remote controls are the accessories used in initiating the command to open or close a garage door. They are used to send/transmit a signal to the garage door opener signaling it to open or close the door. There are many different types of remote controls available, including hand-held transmitters, key operation controls, transponders, beacon systems installed in the car, cigarette lighter or other convenient locations, push-button keypads and even biometric recognition remote control systems.
A professional garage door expert can advise you on the best option to choose depending on your needs, tastes and preferences.
- Garage door opener
This is a key part in a garage door. The most common garage door openers use a chain, belt or screw-drive mechanism. Each system has its pros and cons, and each system also requires different types of maintenance. A belt-drive system offers a smoother operation and is quieter than a chain-drive system. Chain-drive systems are, however, cheaper but require frequent lubrication. A screw-drive system requires no additional maintenance and provides great power and speed.
- Safety accessories
There are two mechanisms commonly used to provide safety in garage door operations—namely, the mechanical and photo-eye systems. The mechanical system works by reversing the direction of a garage door when it touches an object in its path. To test whether your mechanical safety system is working right, place an object on the door’s path and then close it. If the door reverses its direction upon touching the object, then it’s in good working condition. If not, contact a professional garage door expert for repair.
The photo eye safety mechanism uses two sensors positioned on both sides of the garage door’s path. If the sensors detect an object in the path when the door is closing down, they automatically direct the garage door to reverse its direction. If your garage door uses this system but the photo eyes are not working correctly, seek professional help.
Springs are the crucial components that help balance a garage door. The most commonly used springs are torsion and extension springs. Torsion springs are installed parallel and horizontal to the top section of the door, while extension springs are installed above the horizontal track and perpendicular to the closed door. Extension springs work by stretching while torsion springs work by winding and unwinding to provide garage door lift power. Damaged springs should only be repaired by a professional.
- Garage door tracks
A garage door track is important as this is what the door glides on when opening and closing. Always make sure that the tracks on both sides of the door are cleaned and free from dirt and debris. In case the tracks are out of line and need adjustments, consult a professional technician for repairs.
These are the main components of a garage door that you should be aware of. There are many more accessories that you can learn about by consulting your garage door dealer. The better you understand each one of them, the easier it will be to undertake simple maintenance services on them.