Finding Better Garage Doors

Chain, Belt, And Screw: Top Maintenance Tips For Each Type Of Garage Door Opener

Motorized garage door openers make opening and shutting your garage door a snap even in the coldest and stormiest of weather. But garage door openers, like any other appliance, require some routine maintenance so that the opener continues to operate to the best of its ability.

There are a few maintenance tips that apply whether you have a chain, screw, or belt drive garage door opener. If you want to perform deeper maintenance, consult your owner's manual for tips or ask a garage door service technician to come in and walk you through the best practices.

Clean and Lubricate

Chain and belt drives both involve a type of pulley – a metal chain and rubber belt, respectively – that moves through a metal track system. A screw drive has a steel rod that rotates to lift a pulley bar attached to the garage door. Despite these operational differences, all three types of openers require some type of cleaning and lubrication.

For chain and belt drives, you want to regularly clean the track while checking for signs of dents then follow up with an application of track lubricant. Small dents can be removed with a hammer while dirt and debris can be removed with a can of pressurized air. Larger dents, holes, or areas of rust require a call to a garage door service tech for assistance. 

A screw drive has fewer places for dirt to become trapped but you still want to check the rod and pulley for signs of dirt, wear, or breakage. You should also periodically lubricate the rod so that it doesn't snag up on the pulley system while spinning.

Safety Sensor System

Regardless of the type of opener, your garage door will have at least one type of safety sensor installed to prevent the opener from releasing the heavy door directly onto you or your vehicle. There are often two types of sensors: one set that checks for obstructions and reverses the door and another that senses the ground and then stops.

Consult your owner's manual for the exact location of your sensors. You can test the sensors by having someone else trigger the door while you hold a broom handle under the door. First, hold the handle at a level where the door is supposed to sense an obstruction and reverse. Then you can test that the door can properly sense the ground by placing the broom handle along the bottom sensors and waiting for the door to reach that spot.

Contact a service like Pivotech Doors Inc to learn more.