Garage Door Repair - Garage Door Installation

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Monthly Archives: June 2014

Is it Possible to Have a Glass Garage Door?

Garage door with no parking signFor sure you have thought about having a garage door made of glass at least once. If you did some research on the market you may have noticed that there are no offers when it comes to this product. The truth is that in theory it is possible to have an all-glass garage door, but reality begs to differ.

Why aren’t there any glass garage doors?

If you do research the matter you might see that the garage doors you find are sectional garage doors made of aluminum frames that come with inserts of glass or polycarbonate which give the impression of a door made of glass only. Naturally, we also have to take into consideration that there are some places where the law doesn’t allow constructors to use glass right above the heads of the people passing by.

What is that you can find on the market?

If you are determined to have a glass garage door, most probably you will get a sectional garage door. It is common for the manufacturers to achieve a glass-like surface by using toughened acrylic. At the moment there are two main options for you to achieve a glass door. One of the options is to use a sectional door that comes with glazing sections which make the door look like it is made of glass. The second solution is to have a trackless sectional door that has glazed panels.

In order to make the door lightweight, easy to operate and modern, the majority of the manufacturers use aluminum. If you want to make sure that you have the glass door that you always wanted but you have some privacy as well, you might want the glazing to have a smoky effect. The only downside of these garage doors is that you need to place a special order for them and they are usually made only in large sizes as they use the mechanism of industrial garage doors.

Other options for special garage doors

If this isn’t exactly what you had in mind, you might also consider the trackless sectional doors. In this case the door has a counterbalance weight system, which is able to lift the two panels vertically without using internal tracking. This solution is suitable for your home if you have a high ceiling. Usually the frame of the garage door is made of timber. The advantage of this material is that it is durable and the homeowners can choose from numerous different colors to match the style of their home.

Privacy and security

Some might have concerns regarding the glass garage doors. As it has already been mentioned, these are made of toughened materials so they offer some degree of sound and heat insulation. In order to have as much privacy as possible, it is best to choose the garage doors that come with a smoky color.

Although it’s not possible to have a garage door made only of glass, there are several alternatives that look just as good and that are highly functional.

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Considerations for Buying an Environmentally Friendly Garage Door

Two violet, purple, amethyst, or lavendar garage doorsWhen the time comes to purchase a new garage door, you might consider going green. Today many people are concerning themselves with sustainability to the point where they consider the environmental impact of everything they do – Including the articles they purchase. If you are keen to be green, then you might want to consider buying a new garage door with the lowest possible environmental impact. If so, here are a few things to bear in mind when shopping for your new, eco-friendly garage door.

Consider the Material Used for Construction

The construction of your new garage door should be the first thing you consider when buying green. For example, if you want to buy a wooden door, make sure it’s made from composite, recycled wood and not from virgin timber. Steel and vinyl doors are also readily available which use only recycled materials in construction.

If you really want to be sure your garage door purchase has a low environmental impact, you should be prepared to ask a few questions of the supplier. Any reputable supplier or installer will be happy to give you a straight answer to the following questions:

  • Do you support sustainable business? If so, how?
  • Where do the materials for your doors come from?
  • How much energy is consumed in the manufacture of each door?
  • How will you dispose of my old garage door?

If you are shopping around and your priority is sustainability rather than price, ask these questions of all potential suppliers or installers on your shortlist and choose the one whose answers are most satisfactory.

Consider Insulation

If you are buying your garage door with sustainability in mind, then you should certainly purchase one which is already insulated. Try to choose a door with the highest stated R-value. However, it’s important to note that the R-Value claimed by manufacturers only relates to the door panels. You will still need to have weather stripping installed around your new door when it’s in place to stop air leakage into and out of your garage.

Buying a well-insulated garage door and installing weather stripping will win half the battle against heat loss from your garage and therefore from your home (or cool air loss if you are in a warm climate and use air conditioning). To get the maximum benefit from a green garage door purchase you should also have the walls and ceiling of your garage insulated.

Consider Durability and Finish

Finally, to have the least possible impact on the environment, you should make sure you buy a garage door which will stand the test of time. The more durable your door, the less materials will need to be used for upkeep and repair. You should buy a door with a protective finish, or be prepared to apply a finish yourself. This will actually extend the life of your door by further improving durability.

If you shop for your new garage door with these points in mind, you can rest with a clear conscience, knowing that you have done the environment one more small favor. Furthermore, you should end up with a new garage door which will protect your car and your home for many years to come.

 

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All the Right Reasons to Get a Side Hinged Garage Door

garage_door_safetyTechnology is making great advancements and new designs appear every day, so why is it that the side hinged garage doors are still so popular? These doors all use the same mechanism: two side hinged panels in a frame. Besides the simplicity of the mechanism, what makes them so appealing to people?

The advantages of the side hinged garage doors

All people know the side hinged doors and they know that they are easily operated. There is only one lock or handle to open and there is no need for lifting. If you’re using the garage door not only to enter with your car, this might be the best solution. This is because the mechanism allows you to open the door only halfway so that you can enter by foot and then you can close it again. The majority of the designs have a 1/3 or 2/3 split and there might be a pedestrian door as well. In this case the large leaf is only opened when the garage door is fully lifted.

The available materials

The majority of people imagine timber when it comes to the materials. Nonetheless, there are some more practical solutions as well, such as steel and GRP. The mechanism is the same, but the design takes advantage of the more modern materials for flawless operation.

The pros and cons of timber side hinged doors

One of the major disadvantages of timber is that in some cases the garage doors are made of low quality, unsorted redwood that could warp and rot.  However, this isn’t the only option that homeowners have. One of the best solutions is to get a garage door made of cedar wood which is lightweight and it has a high resistance against the elements. In case you use the right treatment, you can give the door any color you’d like so that it will match the style of your home.

Steel is also an option

Although it might not be the most popular material when it comes to doors, there are some high quality single skin steel garage doors made of galvanized steel. These come with all the parts included so the door is easy to install.

The option of having a GRP door

GRP is also known as fiberglass and the advantage of these garage doors is that they come in numerous styles, designs and colors and they come with all the parts included so they can be installed fast and easy on site. These represent good value for money and the best thing about them is that they need only little maintenance.

Insulated side hinge doors

One of the biggest hits of the moment is the insulated side hinge garage door. These offer heat and sound insulation. Aside from this, they are also known for the high level of security that they offer.

Some might think that the side hinge garage doors aren’t modern enough, but when it comes to functionality, they always represent a safe bet for all homeowners.

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A Garage Door Spring 101

shutterstock_662638Without springs, your garage door would be no fun at all. After all it’s a very heavy item. The springs which are fitted to the door are what make it so easy to open and close, even if you have no automatic opener. Yet you probably don’t pay those door springs too much mind until something goes wrong with your door. Knowing a little bit about these springs however, can help you to head off any serious and expensive future problems. Therefore, today’s post provides a few useful facts about garage door springs.

Two Types of Garage Door Spring

The first thing to know about garage door springs is that there are two types. These are known as torsion springs and extension springs. Torsion springs are situated along the top of the door opening. They work by uncoiling as the door is opened and coiling up when it’s closed. Extension springs are fitted parallel to the horizontal section of your door tracks. Instead of uncoiling, they extend as the door is opened and retract as it closes. Another important thing to note is that both types of springs are always installed in pairs.

About Garage Door Springs and Safety

Torsion springs and extension springs are all installed under an immense amount of tension. Under no circumstances should you try and work on the springs yourself. Removal and replacement of springs should always be done by a professional garage door installation and repair service. For the uninitiated DIY enthusiast, the uncontrolled and sudden release of door spring tension can result in serious injury. By all means, lubricate the springs occasionally, but for anything more than this, call in the experts.

Life Expectancy of Garage Door Springs

Generally, there is not too much that can go wrong with your garage door springs. Eventually wear and tear will take a toll on them and will result in weakness. The average door spring is good for 10,000 cycles of opening and closing. Therefore if you only open your garage once in the morning and once in the evening and perhaps a few more times on weekends, you can expect at least ten years of use from your springs. Conversely, if you have a large family who are regularly in and out of your garage, ten years use would be optimistic.

If your garage door does get heavily used, it can be worth investing in “extended life” door springs. While they are twice the price of standard springs, but you can expect them to last four times as long, which definitely makes them a value proposition the next time you need to replace your springs.

It’s actually very easy to identify when the time to replace your springs has come. With the garage door in manual mode, lower it all the way down. Then lift the door to a height of about two feet from the ground. Now let go of the door. If the door starts to slide downwards, the springs have lost their strength and will soon need to be replaced.

Now you know a little more about your garage door springs, just remember to test their strength occasionally and lubricate them with light oil every three months or so. Otherwise you can continue to pay them little mind and they will serve you well for years.

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Is Your Garage Door Specialist a Fraudulent Worker?

shutterstock_1589767When your garage door stops working, you can easily be overwhelmed and on the lookout for professional help, as fast as possible. Most individuals rush to the computer or the yellow pages and try to find the first garage door repairman in their area. However, doing so often leads to a poor choice of professional. Unfortunately, some technical workers can sometimes not have your best interest in mind. So how do you know if your garage door worker is fraudulent? This article lists a few signs to be on the lookout for.

Neither License Nor Identification

A garage door salesman who does not have a state license and ID on him/herself raises a big red flag. A lot of fraudulent companies often have only one worker who is certified and can send unqualified individuals to your home. Sometimes the person who diagnoses your garage door is licensed but the individual who repairs it may not. Always ask for an ID and license before agreeing to any services. Additionally, this advice also applies to the company itself. If you realize the company you are calling has a 800 number or lacks a physical location, beware. A lot of dishonest companies aren’t actually local and send a bogus employee to your home.

No Precise Quote

Another sign to lookout for is the lack of a precise quote after the diagnosis. A worker who does not put a number on paper or fails to give an estimate even orally is almost always a bad sign. A garage door specialist should always have a compilation of services with him or her for you to consult. Never agree to start services if you have not signed a contract with a fixed sum of money. Don’t let an individual rush you through signing on a service either. Always take time to call a few garage door repairmen after your consultation to see how the professional’s repair compare with the individual you just met.

Too Many Problems

Sometimes, fraudulent garage door repairmen will diagnose your garage door with many more problems than you expected. A lot of individuals, in the hurry of changing their door or fixing it do not take the time to have diagnosis visits from different companies. If your garage door specialist finds many more problems with your garage door than you expected, take a step back and call another company for an outside opinion. The individual may have been right, but the garage door professional may also be trying to overcharge you for a simple issue.

Dealing with fraudulent workers can delay the reparation of your defective garage door and can also cost you money. The best way to avoid dealing with a dishonest worker is to do your research for a quality garage door before you start having problem. This way, you get a fair idea of the market, know the prices of the services and can get to know a great handyman you can trust and rely on.

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How to get a Jaw Dropping Garage Door

shutterstock_89979706Garage doors come in many different materials and styles. You can have a plain and mundane garage door, a smart and stylish steel door, faux or real wood carriage style. For a garage door that will really turn heads though, how about having one that doesn’t even look like a garage door? Did you know you can buy garage door artwork which will fool passersby and visitors into seeing something completely different?

Garage Door Stick-on Murals

There is a growing trend in garage door decoration, which started in Europe and is beginning to take off here in the United States. Weatherproof 3D murals, made especially for garage doors can transform even the ugliest door into an amazing work of art. In fact the images are so realistic, they might not be a good idea for anyone living at the side of a busy road, for fear of causing accidents.

Costing anything from $200 to $500, the murals attach to the door of your garage using magnets or Velcro. Made from durable material used for commercial outdoor advertising, these amazing prints are easy to attach and remove. If you have the budget and a penchant for collecting, you could even have a range of murals to interchange whenever you fancy a change.

Eye-Popping Motif Designs

Many of the murals make your garage look as if the door is open, with an exotic car, motorcycle, boat or even a jet fighter parked inside a stunningly realistic garage interior. Far from being limited to transportation themes though, you can fool onlookers into believing you have a giant crocodile or an elephant captive in your garage. How about a garage full of gold bullion? Just make sure you secure your garage well though as this might attract thieves, so realistic are the images.

Other murals use images such as a fully-stocked wine cellar, music studio, and platform of an underground metro station complete with train. There are also beautiful cityscape and landscape images to choose from. If you have a double or even a triple garage, you can have an image in two or three parts. When each part is fitted onto a respective door, the result is an image which extends across the front of your garage to make it look as if you have a ship or jumbo jet stored in there.

Check Local Regulations

If you do have a mind to purchase any of these murals, be sure to check with your city first. Otherwise you may be forced to take it down, which would spoil all the fun. If your garage is in plain sight of your neighbors, it’s a good idea to canvas their opinions too. Some people just don’t want to see anything which stands out too much.

The beauty of garage-door murals is their impermanency as well as their visual impact. If you are putting your home on the market, for example, you can easily take the mural down: potential buyers may not have your taste in artwork, after all. These images might not be for everyone, but if you really fancy doing something different with your garage door’s presentation, they make an unusual and fascinating focal point in the approach to your home.

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How to Find the Perfect Garage Door Technician

bigstock-Carpenter-Drilling-Hole-47760583You are in a hurry to get your garage door fixed, you just want to get it looked at every other year or you may need to get a part replaced. In any case, you need to find a quality garage door technician to complete these tasks. So how do you encounter the perfect garage door technician you can trust for years to come? This article lists the main characteristics of an honest, competent garage door handyman.

An Open and Easy Communication

The first sign to look for in a quality garage door technician is the ability to have a fair and transparent conversation about the problems with your garage doors, the prices of the services and the way the repairs will be handled. Always beware of professionals who constantly rush the conversation to a price or cannot answer your questions.

A Recommended Individual

As usual, the best way to find a qualified garage door repairman is to seek recommendations from your family and friends. If you live in a house, you can bet that at least one neighbor in your block has had to call a garage door technician in the past. Interview people in your neighborhood and ask them who they relied on, what company did the worker belong to and if they were satisfied with the price and performance. Make sure to ask about the price and the nature of the repair, as not everyone has the same perception of a ‘good deal’ or ‘cheap prices.’ You can also consult internet sites and forums in your local area to find out if there is a specific company to employ or not employ.

A Clear Individual

The worker should always announce a clear price for the repair or new piece needed for your garage door. If not, it is always better that the professional checks with his or her company/contracting agency first rather than being inaccurate about the fee of the service. In any case, the worker should have the necessary resources for you to check to make an informed decision, such as a catalog of services and even comparisons with other local companies.

Manners, Manners

As for any technical worker or even worker in general, sometimes little details can tell a lot about the professionalism of the handyman. Does the contractor arrive on time? Is he or she polite? If you need to call the worker, how fast does the individual return your call? How does he or she behave on the phone? All these little things can indicate a very good but also very bad worker. If you can’t trust a professional for showing up on time or not lying on prices, don’t trust them with your garage door.

As always, the best key to find the perfect garage door repairman is to take the time to research and interview several individuals, right after you buy a new door or before you start having problems. Make sure that the individual is acquainted with the manufacturer who made your door so that you can get replacement pieces for your door easily if needed.

 

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How to Maintain a Chain Drive Garage Door Opener

downloadWide availability and inexpensive purchase cost is what makes chain drive garage door openers among the most widely used in the United States. They also have the benefit of being quite easy to maintain yourself. With a bit of regular attention, you chain drive opener should give you many years of trouble-free service. Here are a few tips to keep your opener in top condition.

Check for Loose Nuts, Bolts and Screws

Even the best chain drive opener is subject to some vibration in use, due to the way it’s engineered. This can result in hardware working loose over a period of time. Therefore it pays to inspect all the associated nuts, bolts and screws every few months. Tighten up any that have started to loosen. Neglecting this simple task can result in a broken or binding chain eventually, or perhaps even parts falling free and getting damaged.

Lubricate the Chain

The vibration generated by a chain drive opener can be greatly reduced if you lubricate the chain occasionally. You just need to use light machine oil or WD-40 for this. Apart from helping the door opener mechanism to run smoothly, keeping your chain oiled will also reduce noise from the opener and help the door to open and close smoothly, reducing the load on the motor.

Remove any Slack from the Chain

Check the chain on your door opener for slack once a year. If there is slack in the chain, you can get rid of it by turning the limit screw on the power unit until the chain is taught. Be careful not to over-tighten the chain though. Slack is sure to develop in the chain from time to time as it stretches. However, it’s important to reduce this slack; otherwise the door will close heavily and/or will not open all the way.

Door Rails and Rollers

As well as the chain drive itself, certain parts of your garage door assembly also require maintenance to extend the life of your door opener. You just need to occasionally address the following points:

  • check the door rail fastenings occasionally and tighten them if required
  • Lubricate the door rails lightly
  • Check the rollers to make sure they are all turning freely

If any of the door rollers are sticking, you might need to replace them. However, do NOT attempt to replace the bottom rollers yourself. This is a task for a professional garage door technician.

Don’t Forget the Light

Most garage door openers come with a light fitted. This is used to light up the garage when the door is opened. Every six months or so you should remove the transparent light cover and give it a clean. Also give the inside of the light area a wipe out. To make sure you never have to deal with a failed bulb plunging you into darkness, it’s worth replacing the bulb every 18 months.

All of these maintenance tasks are easy to perform yourself and will make a big difference to the life expectancy of your chain drive door opener. While a chain driver opener is relatively inexpensive to purchase, a little preventative care will save you having to replace yours before its time.

 

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