Choosing the Right Garage Door Opener ­– Do You Know Your Options?

Choosing the Right Garage Door Opener ­– Do You Know Your Options?

Choosing the Right Garage Door Opener ­– Do You Know Your Options?
It is pretty much standard in this day and age for garages to feature automatic garage door openers. While at first glance they might all look the same, one look “under the hood” and it is easy to see that couldn’t be further from the truth.

Choosing the right garage door opener requires either knowledge of each of the three main types of automatic garage door openers, or the advice of a trusted garage door expert.

When it comes to garage door opening systems, the three main categories are belt drive, chain drive, and screw drive.

In order to know which one would work best for you, you should know a little about each type to determine which one fits your specific needs.

Belt Drive Openers

Belt drive garage door openers are by far the quietest of the three. They are generally sleeker in design and are commonly referred to as the “luxury” option.

They are able to achieve an almost noiseless operation by using a belt, usually made from fiberglass, rubber, or polyurethane, to drive the door open or closed. Whereas a chain made of many links will vibrate and rattle, a solid belt will not, resulting in much quieter and smoother operation.

They tend to fall right in the middle when it comes to price, positioning themselves just below screw drive openers and just above chain drive openers.

Chain Drive Openers

Perhaps the most “classic” option available, chain drive openers are easy to install and simply use a chain to run the garage door along a track to either open or close position.

As briefly mentioned earlier, chain drive openers are much noisier than belt drive openers, due to the presence of the metal chain moving along a track. The louder operation usually leads people to installing these openers in detached garages, where the noise won’t bother anyone inside the house.

Some folks actually prefer the noise, as it serves as an alert that somebody is entering their home. Advancements in technology have contributed to quieting chain drive openers down, but you should still expect some noise.

Screw Driver Openers

Mechanically very different from the other two options, screw drive openers rely on a threaded steel rod to rotate and move a trolley to open or close the door. There is no pushing or pulling of a chain or belt.

The absence of a track means less moving parts, which in turn means fewer opportunities for pieces to break. Simply put, it’s a much more basic operation.

Noise-wise, they fall right in between the virtually silent belt drive opener and the rowdier chain drive opener. They tend to cost more than the other two options but are less likely to break down and require less maintenance over time.

Local Garage Door Specialists

No matter the type of garage door opener you are looking for, we at Superior Overhead Doors are here to help. Contact us to get started finding the right option for you.

4 Tests To Make Sure Your Garage Door System Is Working Properly

4 Tests To Make Sure Your Garage Door System Is Working Properly

An automatic garage door opening system needs to be properly functioning at all times to ensure safety. A garage door that opens and closes correctly provides you with a major convenience. If your system is currently broken down or not operating correctly, you should contact a garage door professional immediately to have it inspected and repaired.

4 Tests
Here are some basic tests that you can perform on your own to make sure your automatic opening system is running smoothly:

Visual Test

Starting with a basic examination, give all the components of your system a good look. Every spring, cable, bolt, pulley and roller needs to be checked from inside a closed garage to make sure nothing is missing or damaged before you begin the motion tests. Some things to look for include frayed cables and loose mounting. If everything seems fine, open and close the door a few times and just listen and watch the moving parts. If a foreign sound occurs or piece of mounting starts shaking, you need to schedule an inspection before moving on.

Balance Test

If everything seems to be in working order, you can move on and test the overall balance of your garage door. To do so, release your door from its automatic opening system so that it can be opened manually. Once it is freed, simply attempt to open the door by hand. It should offer little resistance and open and remain open quite easily. If this is not the case, then your door could be unbalanced and would require immediate repair.

Photo Eye Test

The photo eye is the mechanism that shoots an invisible beam across the path of your garage door, usually 1’ off the ground, and detects if objects are in the path of a closing garage door. If it detects a disturbance, it alerts the system and the garage door reverses direction and opens. Test your system by closing your garage door then waving an object, like a broom, from a safe distance into the path of the photo eye. If your garage door changes direction, then your photo eye works properly. If it doesn’t, move the broom out of the way and open the door. Check the photo eye for dust and give it a wipe to make sure it is clean. Try the test again, and if it still doesn’t detect the broom, you will need a garage door professional to inspect your system.

Reversing Mechanism Test

Automatic garage door opening systems are designed to reverse direction if the door strikes anything that might be below the beam of the photo eye. To test this feature, lay something low profile and sturdy, like a wooden plank, on the floor where the garage door will close on it. Close the garage door and wait for it to strike the wood. If it reverses direction, then your system is operating properly. However, if it remains shut on the object, your reversing mechanism is malfunctioning and needs an inspection right away.

While a garage door professional is the best way to thoroughly inspect and repair your automatic garage door opening system, these simple tests will give you an idea of how well your system is currently running. If your system is due for maintenance, contact Superior Overhead Doors today and have a technician take a look at your garage before it’s too late!

Noisy Garage Door? Here’s What to Look For

Noisy Garage Door? Here’s What to Look For
Garage doors are not meant to be alarm clocks. If you are noticing a horribly loud noise every time you open your garage door, your door might be experiencing too much friction on the tracks that could possibly lead to more serious problems if it isn’t attended to immediately.

This problem is indicated by very loud garage doors – no garage door operates silently. However, it is very easy to tell when your garage door is making far too much noise every time it opens or closes.

Find the Source of the Noise

As stated before, every garage door will produce some noise when it operates, which is totally normal. If your garage door is waking up the neighbors, though, it deserves some attention.

Finding the source of the problem is imperative to knowing how to solve the issue, and it is best to start with the areas where friction is most likely to occur. Considering the large number of moving parts incorporated with garage doors and their opening systems, there really is no “best” place to start. Just begin inspecting the screws, bolts, and hinges and work your way up the actual track.

What Are You Looking For?

The main thing to look for when inspecting your garage door is instances where two parts are grinding together. Lack of proper lubrication is the most common cause of a noisy garage door system.

The friction caused by lacking lubrication or oil can do more damage than just noise pollution, though. The constant wearing down and grinding of gears can possibly result in much more serious problems and even injury.

It is best to act as quickly as possible to repair any problem areas you discover.

The Solution

The fastest and easiest way to resolve this issue is by simply applying an appropriate lubricant to the areas that need it. Don’t get lured into buying a fancy lubricant that claims to be better for garage doors; any silicone-based lubricant will work just fine.

Double-check that all bolts and screws are tightened to the correct level to reduce unnecessary rattling and shaking. While one loose bolt may not seem like a lot of noise, a whole chorus of 20 rattling bolts can cause quite the headache.

Garage Door Professionals

If you are still experiencing a noisy garage door, your solution might require the help of a professional. Contact Superior Overhead Doors in Murfreesboro today to set up an inspection.