Frequently Asked Questions About Garage Doors


As the largest and heaviest machine-operated object in your home, garage doors may be complicated, we get it. We also know that you’re looking for uncomplicated answers for your overhead system needs. Knowing what’s wrong with your garage door may help you to determine if it is a problem you can tackle on your own or to call in professionals for reinforcement. Troubleshoot your garage door issues with these 5 frequently asked questions.

Why won’t my garage door open?

More times than not, if your garage door won’t open it may be the result of a broken spring in the overhead system. If you look above your door and notice any kind of gap in your springs’ coils, you have a broken spring and your garage door will not open. Because springs are under heavy tension when wound, attempting to replace or repair on your own is extremely dangerous and should only be attended to by a professional. If coils are in place, it’s possible the garage door operator’s power source has been disrupted. Another large energy source may have broken the circuit or a storm may have shut off all power altogether. Make sure that your garage door opener is plugged into a working outlet and check your circuit breaker, fuse, and ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI).

If there is power to your door, it’s possible your garage door is off its track disallowing it to slide and close properly. Check the track for bends, bumps, or obstacles and watch your doors progression to spot any sections that are misaligned.

READ MORE: 4 Common Questions People Have About Their Garage Door

Why won’t my garage door close?

The most common reason your door isn’t closing is there is some kind of blockage either a person or an object. A photo-eye is a sensor placed 4-6 inches off of the ground near the closing of your door. It shoots a laser across the length of the garage that, if interrupted, will cut off the signal used to lower and raise the door. If you’ve checked the closing for possible blockages are there aren’t any, check the photo-eye for any additional damaged. Occasionally, a storm or leak can damage the photo eye. In addition, dirt and dust can clog the eye and block the laser beam, so a thorough cleaning of the photo-eye with a tissue may resolve this issue.

READ MORE: My Garage Door Isn’t Working?

What Is this rope hanging from my garage door? 

The rope hanging above you from your garage door is your emergency release cord. Releasing this cord will allow you to operate your door manually should you lose power or working order to your automatic garage door opener. If you have a modern unit, your door may be designed to automatically reconnect the cord to the door when you regain power and hit the open button on your controllers. If not, you’ll need to attach it yourself. When you pull back pull back on the cord, you activate a lever that moves up and down. Move the cord such that the lever reattaches to the electric door opener and listen to it click into place. .

Why does my garage door reverse as soon as it hits the floor?

Your garage door is programmed to travel a distance that has been measured specifically for your garage. If the door closes before that specific distance has been traveled it thinks there is a problem and automatically reopens to prevent any damage or safety risks. It’s possible for weather and other elements to cause a shift in the travel distance and a simple adjustment of your ‘travel down’ setting should do the trick. Another setting that may need to be readjusted is its ‘limit switch’. Similar to the ‘travel down’ setting, the ‘limit switch’ g: Much like your travel down setting, your garage door opener limit switch regulates where your garage door stops when being raised or lowered.

What is headroom and how much do I need?

When it comes to your garage and its door opener, headroom is the distance between the top of the door and the lowest part of the ceiling – taking into consideration of any obstructions such as a pipe or ductwork. The amount of headroom you need depends on the type of spring system installed. For extension springs, a minimum of 10″ is required for your garage doors to operate; torsion springs require 12″. Remember, these amounts are for garage door operation only. Additional headroom may be required and it’s always wise to check with the opener manufacturer for the adequate headroom for your garage.