Garage Door Maintenance Checklist: Protect Your Investment

Date: February 24, 2017

A new garage door is an investment in your home; an investment that is easy to protect with a minimal maintenance routine done on a yearly basis. No garage door is entirely maintenance-free, but by following our simple garage door maintenance checklist, you won’t have to spend your entire weekend on this DIY project!

Routine garage door maintenance is worth the time you put into it because it will:

  • Prevent damage caused by foreign matter
  • Reduce wear and friction on garage door hardware
  • Restore the look of the factory-applied finish by removing dirt and chalking
  • Assess door surface finish for deterioration

Here are the main areas that your yearly garage door maintenance should address.

Garage Door Track Maintenance

For your overhead door track, yearly maintenance and lubrication is key to avoiding friction and wear on the metal components.

  • Clean the door track. Remove oil, dirt, or grease to ensure smooth operation of your door.
  • Use a lightweight household oil, 30W or lighter, (NEVER use grease) to lubricate all moving parts of the garage door track, including:
    • Locking hardware moving parts where lock turns or slides
    • Track steel rollers and roller stems, do not lubricate nylon rollers
    • The full length of the torsion spring and torsion tube
    • Lift cables at the bottom bracket
    • All hinge pivot points
  • Wipe off excess oil when done.
  • Finally, with your garage door closed, inspect all hinges, struts, handles, locks, and brackets for loose fasteners. Tighten any loose fasteners but be careful not to over tighten as this could strip the threads and create bigger problems.

Garage Door Opening Inspection

Your garage door’s weather stripping plays an important role in keeping moisture and excess cold air out of your garage. Carefully inspect the weather stripping, following these steps, to ensure it’s working efficiently.

  • With your garage door open, inspect the weather strips on the top and both sides of the opening for rips or tears.
  • Also, inspect the weather strip or astragal on the bottom of your door for rips or tears.
  • Check all weather strip material for flexibility. As the material stiffens, it is less effective. Close the door and look for gaps in the material.

Garage Door Finish Inspection

Over time your garage door’s finish will degrade. Painted doors will experience fading. With stained and faux paint-stained finishes, the clear protective top coat will degrade and thin.

All door finishes will degrade faster when the garage door faces south or west because they receive the day’s most intense sunshine. The sooner you notice a change in the finish on your door, the easier the maintenance will be to keep the finish looking great.

  • Look for fading, cracking, peeling, or blistering.
  • Look for any dings, dents, scratches or gouges that cut through the surface and would allow moisture to penetrate the door.
    Touch the door to determine if it ‘feels’ dry or if there are areas where the finish is missing
  • Clean your door using a mild detergent (dish-washing liquid or biodegradable cleaner) and a soft cloth or soft bristle brush.
    • Work from the bottom section to the top section
    • Clean behind the door stop and all weather strips
    • Rinse with a garden hose or low-pressure garden sprayer
  • NEVER use a pressure washer or high-pressure sprayer. NEVER use scouring powders or solvents. NEVER mix cleansers or detergents with bleach.
  • Re-examine for damaged areas – noted above – after a thorough cleaning.
  • Assess the extent of damaged areas and condition of any top coat and determine if touch-ups or a new top coat is needed. Refer to our Maintenance page for further touch-up and top coat maintenance guidelines.

 Download our Garage Door Maintenance Checklist.

garage door maintenance checklist

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