If you have an automatic garage door that seems to vibrate quite a bit as it moves up and down, then the door requires some maintenance. While the movements may indicate a motor or spring issue, they may be caused by a much simpler problem. Keep reading to learn about some possible causes of the vibrations and learn how you can stop them from occurring.
Dry Roller Bearings
Most garage doors move seamlessly up and down with the help of rollers that sit within a metal track. These small parts are typically made out of steel, nylon, zinc, or plastic, and they are rated to withstand pressure and stress from 10,000 to 100,000 cycles depending on the grade and material. This means the rollers will begin to wear out once the garage door is raised and lowered 10,000 to 100,000 times. However, before they wear out completely, the bearings inside of them tend to dry out if the door has steel, nylon, or zinc rollers. This makes it difficult for them to move and this can cause the stiff rollers to shake as they move down the track.
You can easily stop this sort of problem if the roller bearings are dry by adding oil to them. Motor oil works well to lubricate and moisturize. Use a cotton swab or a cotton ball to add a small amount of the motor oil to each bearing along the middle of every roller. Motor oil can be utilized to help lubricate the inside track of the garage door too, to make it easier for the rollers to move. However, use only a small amount of the oil to prevent the track from becoming too slippery and allowing the garage door to fall down the track.
If your garage door does not use nylon or metal rollers, then it likely has plastic ones. These do not contain bearings in most cases. However, the plastic materials can be gouged or worn away over time. If the rollers appear or feel rough, then replacement may be necessary. You can replace them on your own or ask your garage door repair specialist for assistance. If replacement is necessary, make sure to opt for commercial grade rollers if possible, since they last the longest. These parts are made with tempered steel stems and they contain more bearings than general use rollers. Once the parts are greased or replaced, make sure to use a screwdriver or a socket wrench to tighten the hardware along the edge of the garage door tracks. Loose hardware can cause shaking or movement issues as well.
A typical garage door will vibrate across the main opener as the gears are activated within the device and the chains or belts are pulled through the opener. When this happens, the opener will shake a small amount as the motor and gears work. While most openers are placed at least a few inches below the garage ceiling, low clearances may mean that the opener must sit quite close to the ceiling. The opener may knock against it. Even if this is not the case, the hardware may vibrate. Most issues like this can be solved with the placement of anti-vibration pads. The small pads are placed around the hardware that attach the garage door opener to the ceiling.
Purchase anti-vibration or vibration isolation pads from your local garage door retailer. These pads are typically made from laminate, dense foam, or elastomer materials. Place one or two large pads between the garage door opener and the ceiling to prevent it from hitting it. Also, look for a bolt on either side of the garage door opener that connects the opener to the ceiling brackets. Remove the right bolt and slip a small pad on it. Replace the bolt so the pad sits against the underside of the opener. This will prevent the bolt from knocking against the opener as it operates. Do the same thing with the bolt on the left side of the opener, and activate the opener to make sure that movements have been reduced. For more information, contact a company like AAA Garage Door, Inc..