How To Lubricate Your Garage Door
Author: Stan Klugman
Have you been having trouble trying to get rid of the squeaking noise coming from your garage door? We want to explain to you how to take care of that problem with a couple of do-it-yourself solutions and some valuable information on how to properly lubricate your garage door.
One of the most common errors that homeowners make when greasing the garage door is that they use regular oil or ever-so-popular WD 40. The main problem with WD-40 and oil is that they're degreasers, so they're actually taking out the grease rather than helping your situation.
Lithium based grease
The best thing to use is a lithium-based grease. If you can't find the lithium spray at your local Home Depot, Lowe's or hardware store, next best thing would be a silicone spray, it’s not as good as lithium, but it's a hundred times better than using WD-40. The lithium spray leaves a generous thick coat that doesn't run or drip like oil.
So how to lubricate your garage door properly?
You want to lubricate all moving parts of the door. First, make sure that your door is in a closed position and disconnect the door from the garage door opener. You should be able to move your doors manually around the bend of the track, make sure you grease all moving connections. The next things you want to lubricate are your rollers, the most common rollers that most manufacturing and garage door companies are using are metal rollers or plastic rollers. If you have plastic rollers, you can put some grease on it, but we’re not sure how much good that's actually going to do because these rollers have no wall bearings and they're only designed to last a few years, so you should probably be replacing them anyway. If you have metal rollers you can see the ball bearings. Those ball bearings always need to be greased. Use the straw so when you spray your grease, it can get in there and fill it up. Remember, you'll be doing this with rollers in place on the door track so be sure to do it with good lighting. You may need to use a ladder to get to those top spots.
Garage door opener chains come out of the factory with a protective coat already on it that should last the life of the motor. If you ever feel the need to give your chain a little love to help maintain it take a cloth spread a little WD-40 on it and wipe it down, that'll help repel moisture.
What you want to do is lubricate the top of the rail, that's where all your friction is, not at the bottom. Most people spray the bottom of the rail, that's not going to hurt, but it's not going to do anything either just going to create a mess that drips all over your car your floor your head.
Another thing you don't need to grease is your garage door track. If you think you see symptoms that make you feel you need to grease a track, then you have something wrong with your door. Some people might start adding oil or packing it up with more grease, over time, air will pick up dust and dirt and bring it into the grease. The only thing on the track that you can grease that'll help out with the noise is this particular part of the track with a break and the bolts are screwing two pieces together, not necessary but it's the only place in the track that we would recommend. Remember, tracks don't need to be greased, they need to be cleaned, that's something you can easily do with a wet cloth or little WD-40.
When it comes to your garage door springs, you won't need grease if you have extension springs, they've already been dipped coated and require no maintenance. On the other hand, if you have a torsion spring that's going to need a little love, instead of springs getting stretched, torsion springs get wound, and because of that, you'll want to grease them. Even when they're brand new, they tend to make some noise but that's what's a rubbing against each other, all you have to do is take the spray straw out and coat from one end to the other, then bring the door up and down a couple of times and let the grease work itself in. The grease is going to do two things in your torsion spring, one is going to reduce the amount of noise that you hear from the friction, secondly, most of the companies out there only use oil tempered or galvanized springs so the grease help prevent rust build-up here at Calgary Garage Door Fix, we prefer powder coated springs. Basically, that's a spring that’s been dipped and coated both inside and out, and therefore you never have to worry about rust problems. So going out to another manufacturer and getting a new spring from them or perhaps going to a Home Depot you may end up getting a spring that coded on the outside but not coated on the inside and trust me, it's challenging to coat the inside of a coil spring. My recommendation is to ask your garage door specialists or the salesperson at a Home Depot and find out if they have powder coated springs because it's the best investment that you can make, it's maintenance-free. The last thing you need to grease in a torsion spring door or the bearing plates is your bearing. There's two more located on both sides of the door, that bar sits inside these bearings. When you wind up your spring, all the power gets transferred to it, and the bar spins inside the bearings. Unfortunately, bearings in the plates are not accessible unless you remove the springs. I would not recommend to the average homeowner to deal with the springs. If you feel your garage door need a service, you should immediately contact a professional door technician, you will be safe and your garage door will be working perfectly for years to come!