Door Opener and Garage Door Safety & Maintenance Guide
Garage Door System Safety - An Automatic Decision
A garage door is the largest moving object in the home. They are often
operated by electric door openers. Proper installation, operation, and
maintenance and testing are necessary to provide safe, trouble-free operation.
An improperly adjusted garage door or automatic opener can exert deadly
force when the door closes. This could lead to serious injury or death
from being hit by a closing garage door or from being trapped under the
Safety is Everyone's Business
A few simple precautions can protect your family and friends from potential
harm. Please take a few minutes to read the following safety and maintenance
tipe. Refer to your garage door and opener's manual for details specific
to the model you own. Then check the operation of your garage door and
Garage Door Openers are not Toys
Do Not stand or walk under a moving door! Do not let children or adults
play "beat the door". It is dangerous and can result in serious
injury or death. Adults should set a good example. Know how to use the
emergency release, in case someone is pinned by the door.
Do Not let children play with or use the transmitters or remote controls.
Always place and store them out of the reach of children.
The pushbutton wall control should be out of the reach of children (at
least 5 feet from the floor) and away from all moving parts. Mount and
use the button where you can clearly see the moving garage door.
Teach Your Children About Garage Door and Opener Safety
Garage door openers are not toys. Carless operation and allowing children
to play with or use garage door opener controls can lead to tragic results.
Discuss garage door safety with your children. Explain the danger of being
trapped under the door.
When using the pushbutton or transmitter, keep the door in sight until
it completely stops moving. Teach children never to play under or near
an open garage door.
Teach children to keep their hands and fingers clear of section joints,
hinges, tracks, springs and other door parts. Contact with a moving door
or its hardware could cause serious injury. These injuries can also happen
with garage doors that don't have automatic openers.
Routine Maintenance Can Prevent Tragedies
Take a few minutes to inspect and test your complete garage door system.
Make monthly inspection and testing a part of your regular routine. Safety
is everyone's business. Make garage door and garage door opener safety
automatic in your home.
Monthly Maintenance Checklist
Garage Door Opener
Force Setting Test
Additional Safety Devices
Visual Inspection - Springs, Rollers, Pulleys, Cables, and Track
Consult owner's manual for additional recommended maintenance for your
models of door and opener.
Testing and Maintaining the Garage Door Opener
There are routine safety and maintenance steps that you should follow
once a month. Review your owner's manula for the door opener. If you do
not have an owners manual, look for the opener model number on the back
of the power unit and request a manula from the manufacturer.
Make sure your opener has a reversing feature. If a reversing feature
is not present, it should be replaced. Garage door openers manufactured
after January 1, 1993 are required by federal law to have advanced safety
features which comply with the latest U.L. 325 standards: Contact your
manufacturer or installer for additional information.
Test the reversing feature every month.
First, test the balance of the door (see "Testing and Maintaining
The Garage Door."). If the door is properly balanced, then proceed.
With the door fully open, place a 1-1/2" thich piece of wood (a 2"x4"
laid flat) on the floorin the center of the door.
Push the transmitter or wall button to close the door. The door must reverse
when it strikes the wood. (Note that the bottom part of "one piece
doors" must be rigid so that the door will not close without reversing.)
If the door does not have reverse, have it repaired or replaced. Have
a qualified individual adjust, repair or replace the opener or door.
Force Setting Test
Test the force setting of your garage door opener by holding the bottom
of the door as it closes. If the door does not reverse readily, the force
may be excessive and need adjusting. See your owners manual for details
on how to make the adjustment. Test the revesring feature after any adjustment.
Additional Safety Devices
Many garage door openers can be equipped with additional safety devices.
Consider adding a photo eye or edge sensor as an extra measure of safety
to prevent against entrapment. Keep in mind that adding more safety devices
will not make an old opener meet current U.L. standards.
Make sure the additional safety devices, such as photoeyes or edge sensors,
are properly installed and adjusted (see owner's manual).
Testing and Maintaining the Garage Door
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.
Look at the garage door springs, cables, rollers, pulleys, and other door
hardware for signs of wear. If you suspect problems, have a qualified
person make repairs.
Warning - Springs are under high tension. Only qualified persons should
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. Only a qualified professional or a mechanically
experienced person carefully following the manufacturer's instructions
should adjust them. The torsion springs (the springs above the door) should
only be adjusted by a professional. Do not attempt to repair or adjust
the torsion springs yourself.
A restraining cable or other device should be installed on the extension
spring (the spring along the side of the door) to help contain the spring
if it breaks.
Never remove, adjust or loosen the screws on the bottom brackets of the
door. These brackets are connected to the spring by the lift cable and
are under extreme tension.
Regularly lubricate the moving parts of the door. However, do not lubricate
plastic parts such as plastic rollers and plastic idler bearings. Consult
the door owner's manual for the manufacturer's recommendation.
Periodically test the balance of your door. Start with the door closed,
If you have a garage door opener, use the release mechanism so you can
operate the door by hand when doing this test. 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.
Garage Door Opener Safety - An Automatic Decision
This important information is provided by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety
Commission, the National Safety Counil and the Industry Coalition for
Automatic Garage Door Opener Safety.