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The most commonly asked questions and answers about garage doors.

Q: Why should I use a professional installer?
A: The installation of a garage door is not a do-it-yourself job. A garage door is the largest moving object in your home and because of the large number of small parts; its installation is highly technical. Connecting the springs can be particularly dangerous and proper installation is critical to the performance of your door. One of the other services a professional installer can provide is the disposal of your old door, if you are replacing a door. Professional installers can typically install a door in a few hours and are careful to make sure safety requirements are met. Installations by most homeowners typically span several days and cause much frustration. In addition, incorrect installation can void certain warranties, so we recommend a professional handle the job for you.

Q: Why should I choose an insulated door if my garage is uninsulated?
A: A garage door opening is a very large hole in your garage. Insulated doors will help to reduce the amount of outside temperatures that enters your garage, thus keeping it more comfortable for you. This is important for a number of reasons:

  1. If your garage is attached to your home, any air in the garage can travel through the doorway to your living area.
  2. If your garage is below another room in your home, air can travel through the ceiling of the garage into the floor of the room above. An insulated door will keep temperatures in the garage fairly stable to reduce the temperature fluctuation in the room.
  3. An insulated door is generally quieter and has a more attractive interior than an uninsulated door.

Q: What are the benefits of a steel door over a wood door?
A: Steel doors are low maintenance. Typically a wood door needs to be painted or stained as frequently as the wood trim on your home due to weathering. Steel doors can be insulated, making them far more energy efficient than wood.

Q: Why is quality so important, aren't all doors made the same?
A: Due to size and the frequency a garage door is used (often used more frequently than the entrance door), it is important to purchase a door that is attractive and has options that can accent your home. More importantly, a garage door should provide durability, longevity, security, insulation value, and be safe to operate year-in, year-out. While inexpensive non-insulated, or partially insulated doors may look good from the outside they can wear quickly, become a safety hazard, and ultimately will not provide the key benefits of durability, security or insulation value.

Q: How do I know what door size is required?
A: On residential doors the door size is the same as the finished opening (width * height)

Q: What maintenance does my garage door require, and how often?
A: Perform routine maintenance steps once a month. Review your owner's manual for the garage door. If you don't have a manual, look for the model number on the back of the door, or check the lock handle, hinges, or other hardware for the manufacturer's name and request a manual from the manufacturer.

Visual Inspection
Look at the garage door springs, cables, rollers, pulleys, and other door hardware for signs of wear. If you suspect problems, have a qualified First United Door Technologies Garage Door Dealer make repairs. Garage door springs, cables, brackets, and other hardware attached to the springs are under very high tension and, if handled improperly, can cause serious injury or death. Only a qualified professional or a mechanically experienced person should adjust them, but only by carefully following the manufacturer's instructions. The torsion springs (the springs above the door) should only be adjusted by a professional. Do not attempt to repair or adjust torsion springs yourself.

Regularly lubricate the moving parts of the door. However, do not lubricate plastic rollers or the vertical track. Consult the door owner's manual for the manufacturer's recommendation.

Door Balance
Periodically test the balance of your door.

  1. Start with the door closed.
  2. If you have a garage door opener, use the release mechanism so you can operate the door by hand when doing this test.
  3. You should be able to lift the door smoothly and with little resistance. It should stay open around three or four feet above the floor. If it does not, it is out of adjustment. Have it adjusted by a qualified service person. Do not put your fingers or hands near the sectional joints.

This important information is provided by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the National Safety Council, and the Industry Coalition for Automatic Garage Door Opener Safety.