How to Fix a Garage Door: The Ultimate DIY Garage Door Repair Guide

A garage door is an important part of every home. However, many homeowners don’t realize how integral a functioning garage door is to their daily life until it suddenly decides to quit working. Garage door repair is sometimes critical for your family when things go wrong.

For many homeowners the garage serves as not only a storage place for bikes, lawn mowers, and tools, but also as a parking area for vehicles, and, oftentimes, the main entry point to the home. In fact, many families that we assist tell us that they use their garage door to get into their home more frequently than their front door.

So we get it! When your garage door breaks you need it fixed fast. Below is our handy guide on how to fix a garage door. We hope this DIY garage door repair guide helps you troubleshoot any small issues that may be derailing this small but ever important detail of your home. And if not, we are always just a call away!

Don't have a broken garage door but want to know more about how we can help? Garage door installation is very tricky and often done improperly. Check out our services to make sure that you will need to use this DIY repair guide as little as possible, saving you time and money.

What’s That Sound? How to Fix a Garage Door That is Noisy

Garage doors are notorious for making loud, jarring, and unpleasant sounds. However, with proper maintenance and troubleshooting when problems do arise, you should be able to keep your garage door running so quietly that a baby could sleep through it opening.

Some of the most common noise complaints that we hear surrounding garage door repairs include:

  • The door makes a popping sound while in operation
  • The door makes a scraping sound while in motion
  • The door has a consistent and annoying squeak

The good news is, that these are all easy fixes! Here’s how to repair garage doors demonstrating these issues. 

1. DIY Garage Door Repairs for Popping

If your garage door is making a popping sound [1] during operation it most likely needs new rollers. Fortunately, this is a cheap and easy DIY garage door repair [2]. If you have a traditional garage door with five sections, you will need to purchase a dozen rollers. We suggest sticking with nylon rollers instead of metal rollers. Yes, they are a little bit more expensive, but they require less maintenance and are also quieter!

Traditionally most rollers have a four-inch stem and a two-inch roller, however we suggest double checking the measurements of your rollers before heading to the store for replacements. Once you have your rollers, the job should take no longer than an hour.

2. How to Repair Garage Doors that are Scraping

There are several reasons that your garage door may be scraping. These can commonly include [3] a tilted end bearing plate, a torsion spring cable or extension spring cable that is frayed, misalignment of the reinforcing strut, or extension spring cable pulleys that are worn out.

Sounds intimidating, right? However, when it comes down to it most of these DIY garage door repairs come down to simply buying and installing a replacement part!

If frayed torsion spring cables, frayed extension spring cables, or worn out spring cable pulleys are causing the issue, you can easily repair this garage door issue by purchasing a replacement and installing it.

However, if you conclude that a tilted end bearing plate is causing the issue, you may need to reinforce, straighten or replace the bearing plate. If you are going to DIY this garage door repair, we suggest utilizing this step-by-step guide for replacing end bearing plates [4]. If the reinforcing strut is misaligned you can easily repair it by evening out the spacing.

3. Getting Rid of that Annoying Squeak

As a homeowner nothing is quite as annoying as a consistent squeak each and every time you press open on your garage door remote. For an issue that makes quite a bit of noise, this DIY garage door repair is one of the easiest out there, and will most likely only require lubricating the tracks of your garage door.

Not sure where to start? You can learn how to fix this garage door issue in four easy steps. First, shut the garage door so that you have full access to the tracks. Next, grab a ladder, a silicon-base lubricant, and some protective eyewear. Now it’s time for the fun part.

To lubricate the track, simply spray the lubricant onto the track and chain until you have covered the entire track. Repeat this same action on the other side of the garage door. Once you are done all you need to do is open and shut the garage door a few times to ensure the track and chain are fully lubricated and VOILA, the annoying squeak is just a distant memory.

How to Repair Garage Door Opener Problems

You most likely rely on your garage door opener to get in and out of your home multiple times a day. So when an issue arises, you need it fixed quickly. Some common garage door opener problems that we see include:

  • The garage door will not completely close
  • The garage door will not open all the way
  • The door reverses before it completely closes
  • The door closes and then immediately reverses
  • The remote control or panel will not open or close the garage door

Like noisy garages, many of these issues are quick garage door repairs that you can do yourself without turning to the pros. Below are tips and tricks on how to fix a garage door with these issues.


1. How to fix a garage door that will not completely close

If your garage door will not completely close [5] with the remote or control panel, the close limit switch most likely needs to be adjusted. The limit switch is the device that signals to the motor when to stop lowering or lifting the door, so issues with this small but mighty part can cause a variety of issues when it comes to opening and closing your garage door.

If you want to DIY this repair, here is a helpful guide [6] that details every step of the process. If you try this and still encounter the same issue, we suggest trying to open and shut the door manually and see if the garage door is binding. If this is the issue, you should be able to adjust the binding [7] to eliminate the problem.

2. Fixing a garage door that closes and then immediately reverses

Similarly to a garage door that will not completely close, a garage door that closes and then immediately re-opens, most likely needs to have it’s close limit switch adjusted. We suggest using the previous guide [6] or this one [8] to figure out the exactly how to fix or reset the limit switch of your garage door if it is having this issue.

3. Troubleshooting a garage door that will not fully open

Similarly, if your garage will not fully open, the issue most likely lies in the limit switch. In this case, you probably need to move the limit switch closer to the motor [9].

4. Repairing a Garage Door that will only close partially before reversing

There are six common issues [10] that may be causing your garage door to only partially close before reversing. These include issues with the close force, a torsion spring cable or extension spring cable break, an issue with the sensor, dry bearings or rollers, or worn out extension spring cable pulleys.

If the close force appears to be causing the issue, you will most likely simply need to adjust it. There is a step-by-step guide for doing so [11]. If the torsion spring cable or extension spring cable are broken, you will need to replace them [12]. Similarly, if you identify that the issue is with the garage door opener sensor, you will most likely need to replace it [13].

Dry rollers and bearings are an easy fix, you will simply need to lubricate [14] them. If the extension spring pulleys are worn out, they will need to be replaced [15].

5. How to Repair Issues with Garage Door Remote or Panel

If your garage door will not open with both your remote and panel, the issue is most likely with the power source itself. To ensure it is properly receiving power [16], double check that it is plugged in and check the circuit breaker or fuse for the system.

If the issue is only with your remote, there are several easy and quick fixes [17] that won’t require a professional. The most common issues include being out of range, an issue with the antenna, a programming issue, or a dead battery. To ensure you are in range, simply move closer to the garage (easy, right?).

To make sure that the antenna is not causing the issue, make sure that it is hanging down off the unit itself. If those fixes don’t work, try replacing the batteries (see, we told you these were easy!). Finally, if none of those quick and easy fixes eliminate the issue, we suggest reprogramming the remote control.


Other DIY Garage Door Repairs


Although noisy garage doors and issues with garage door openers are some of the most common issues reported by clients, there are plenty of other things that can go wrong when it comes to your garage door. In this section, we will detail some other common issues and how to repair garage doors with these problems.

1. How to Fix a Garage Door that is Frozen

If you live in a cooler climate, you may have experienced the dreaded frozen garage door [18] during the winter. The reason that this happens when the temperature dips too low, is that the mechanism of your garage door is stiffened by the freezing weather, which results in a loss of power.

However, if your garage door opener was manufactured in the last 15 years, it should include pressure adjustment settings for opening and closing the door. We suggest checking in on and adjusting these pressure adjustment settings seasonally to avoid and eliminate issues with freezing.

2. DIY Garage Door Repair for Rusty Door Track

Since garage door tracks oftentimes come in direct contact with your damp, concrete garage floor, it is common for them to rust. If this has happened to your garage door, it is an easy issue to fix yourself. You can also move the tracks to rest a little bit above the floor to eliminate the issue of rust in the future.

To repair garage door tracks that are rusty, you will need to cut off about a half inch of the bottom of the track. Then, you will need to remove any lubricant from the the track by rubbing the first six inches or so with paint thinner. After this you can scrape off the rust. After this, choose a specialty paint for metal surfaces that have rusted. And there you have it. With these few easy steps, your door is as good as new.

3. How to Repair Garage Doors that are Sagging

Sagging garage doors don’t just look bad - they are also difficult to operate and can be a real headache if you use your garage on a regular basis.

Fortunately, fixing garage doors that are sagging [18] is a pretty easy repair that you can easily do yourself without enlisting the help of a professional. In order to fix the sagging of your garage door, you will need to square up the door with tension rods. To do this, you will need to position the rods diagonally (top to bottom) on the back of the door.

You can then straighten them, which will in turn straighten out the door.

We hope you found this guide on how to repair garage doors useful. As you can see, when it comes to how to fix a garage door, sometimes issues that may seem big are actually quite simple DIY garage door repairs.

If you already tried your hand at fixing your garage door with no success, don’t see your problem listed, or if you simply aren’t the DIY garage door repairs type, feel free to give us a call today and one of our experts can come out to diagnose the issue and fix your garage door. We’ll have it up and running in no time!


Resources and Guides

1. http://ddmgaragedoors.com/diy-instructions/troubleshooting.php#problem-14

2. https://www.thespruce.com/how-to-quiet-noisy-garage-door-1398179

3. http://ddmgaragedoors.com/diy-instructions/troubleshooting.php#problem-14

4. http://ddmgaragedoors.com/diy-instructions/end-bearing-plate-replacement.php

5. https://www.thespruce.com/troubleshooting-common-garage-door-problems-1398186

6. http://homeguides.sfgate.com/reset-garage-door-opener-limit-switches-29051.html

7. http://www.home-repair-central.com/adjusting-a-binding-garage-door.html

8. https://www.hunker.com/13418544/how-to-reset-garage-door-opener-limit-switches

9. https://www.thespruce.com/troubleshooting-common-garage-door-problems-1398186

10. http://ddmgaragedoors.com/diy-instructions/troubleshooting.php#problem-3

11. http://homeguides.sfgate.com/troubleshoot-garage-door-opener-closing-force-probably-needs-adjusting-38929.html

12. http://ddmgaragedoors.com/diy-instructions/cable-installation.php

13. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Jth3R4ZulI

14. https://www.lowes.com/projects/repair-and-maintain/maintain-a-garage-door/project

15. http://ddmgaragedoors.com/diy-instructions/pulley-replacement.php

16. https://www.thespruce.com/troubleshooting-common-garage-door-problems-1398186

17. https://www.thespruce.com/troubleshooting-common-garage-door-problems-1398186

18. http://www.popularmechanics.com/home/outdoor-projects/how-to/a3403/garage-door-repair-tips/