|You can see part of the garage on the left.|
One of the selling points of my house was the spacious one-car garage. It didn't have an automatic door opener, but the previous owner agreed to pay half the cost for installation when I requested it. I've loved it. Extra security when I get home late, no chipping ice off the windshield in the winter, a lighted area to work on things like replacing headlights or adding oil.
The downside to my garage is that the door is so blasted heavy it takes two MEN to open it if the opener craps out (there is no way I can lift it myself). The only times I've had trouble with this is when the power was out to the house, so it isn't usually an issue with the garage door opener. I've always been concerned about the door though because whenever I open or close it the automatic opener sounds like it is barely able to complete the job.
On New Year's Day I discovered that the garage door wouldn't open more than halfway. I was on my way out to catch a movie with some friends, but after trying to open and close the garage unsuccessfully I shut it manually. At that point it was pretty clear I'd be staying in for the night.
As I usually do when something goes wrong and I'm not sure why, I called my dad. He came out to look at it Sunday and said he thought the door was binding and the spring that acts as a counterweight was broken. Neither of those issues are something my dad can fix, which meant calling a professional.
About the Door:
- The door is an uninsulated metal door, according the the repairman who came out from Overhead Door of Tulsa it's one of the cheapest on the market.
- The previous owner added a decorative wood facing to the door. As you can see in the picture above it does look nice. However, the metal door is rusting and wasn't designed to bear the weight of a wood facing.
- The facing added a ton of weight to the door and the previous owner didn't compensate for that. The repairman said that the spring should have been replaced with a sturdier one meant for more weight.
- The hinges and tracks were also designed for the lighter metal door, the additional weight will likely cause it to give out sooner.
What To Do
The repairman's advice was that I invest in a new garage door. Dad thinks I can probably hold out for about a year--especially if I clean and paint the door with a rust inhibiting paint. The long and short of this is that my pendant lights may have to wait a little longer.
The repairman did fix my garage. He told me to keep an eye on the bolts, etc. since I'll probably need to tighten them periodically. He also adjusted some of the parts that weren't installed properly and replaced the spring with a bigger one, I should be able to open the door myself now!
Share Your Thoughts
Anyway, with that exciting start to the new year, do any of you have advice about garage doors? Experience with types or brands that are worth buying (or not)?