In most cases, your garage door is a convenience that allows easy entry for your vehicle and keeps out potential thieves. However, this convenience can potentially come with the frustration of a garage door that won't open or close properly. Here are three things that could be causing your garage door to get stuck.
Obstruction or Warping in the Track
Problems with the garage door track is one of the most frequent causes of a stuck garage door. The first thing you should look for if your garage door won't close properly is an obstruction in the tracks. This can be something as simple as a broom or shovel that has fallen against the track, or it could also be a clod of dirt or rust that has built up inside the track.
If your garage door track seems to be free of obstructions, you should next assess whether the track is in proper alignment. Many door tracks are made of aluminum, which is prone to denting and warping from tool damage or extremes in temperature. If you locate a section of your garage door track that is noticeably bent, you can try to straighten it by bending it into place with the claw of a hammer. Large-scale warping is a problem that is best left to professionals.
Garage Door is Off the Track
Even if there are no problems with your garage door track, the door itself may have come off of the track. You should refrain from using the door if it is off the track to prevent further damage to the door or the track. The first step you should take to correct this problem is to disengage the garage door opener. Many openers have a lever or rope that you can pull to disable its connection to the door.
After the opener is disconnected, lift the door manually so that the bottom rollers are off of the ground. Attach locking pliers to the track under the door so that it remains in this position, and use another pair of pliers to bend the track outward so that there is room to guide the rollers back onto the track. When you have opened the track wide enough to fit the rollers back in place, lift the door and push the rollers back onto the track. You can now use a hammer or pliers to straighten the section of the track that you bent outward.
If your garage door springs are broken, you will find that the door will not raise off the ground at all without manually lifting it. There are two types of springs that are typically used to lift garage doors: torsion springs, which consist of two springs positioned horizontally at the top of the door, and extension springs, which are located at either side of the garage door and oriented perpendicularly to the inside of the door.
Broken tension springs will have a noticeable gap between the two springs at the top of the door. For extension springs, look for a loose-hanging piece to indicate that they are broken. Whichever type of spring you have, it is best to have broken springs replaced by a professional. Garage door springs are under several hundred pounds of pressure that could easily cause injury if the homeowner attempts to replace them.
A stuck garage door is an inconvenient problem that can have several causes, but many of these causes are easily identifiable for the homeowner. Keep these tips in mind if your garage door gets stuck so you can determine the most likely cause and hire a professional for garage door repair if necessary. If your garage door requires repair, visit a site like http://www.702garagedoors.com to find a garage door repair company that can help.