Many homeowners take their garage doors and the associated openers for granted. It is expected that these doors should work on demand every time, all the time. In most cases, they perform as expected, but at times they can end up being a source of great frustration like when it will not fully open. If the garage door isn’t fully opening you obviously can’t get the car out of the garage.
Generally speaking, when a garage door isn’t opening fully, there is often a simple solution to it. Below we look at what could be causing the problem and how you can fix it.
Start with Being Safe
Now before you start troubleshooting the garage door opener or the door, it is important to take the right measures. Most garage doors are heavy with their associated springs under a lot of pressure. When something is wrong with the door that tension can end up becoming a safety threat, especially for someone who does not have experience with these types of repairs.
You will always want to follow the guidance in the manual that comes along with your garage door opener and door. However, if you’ve never worked on a garage door before or aren’t comfortable with such repairs, then it is best to call a professional who should diagnose and fix the problem in no time.
Image Credit Wikimedia Commons
Balance the Garage Door
The most common reason for the garage door not opening fully is because it is unbalanced. You will want to start by testing the door’s balance, which can be done by disconnecting the door from the opener. The door should lower and rise quickly by hand. Now pull the garage door to the point where it is roughly 50% open. At this point, it should be hanging by its springs, or it would gently rise up or even lower. If the door slams shut its an indication that it has to be rebalanced.
Rebalancing is the job of a professional and shouldn’t be attempted on your own. Once it is balanced, the garage door should work as normal.
Adjusting Force and Travel Limits
If the balance is fine, but the garage door closes but not open fully, or it opens but does not close, then you need to examine the force and travel limits. Every garage door has its own safety features which need to be optimized during installation. The limits dictate how far the garage door should travel, and how much force is needed for it to open and close. If the limits are not correct, the garage door may think something is wrong and turn on the auto-reverse feature which can be damaging to the door.
It is not easy to fix this issue on your own. But you should try the steps listed in the garage door opener’s instruction manual. If that does not work, then hire a professional.