Midwest winters are crazy and unpredictable and can cause issues from time to time. This includes having your garage door freeze shut. Well, what do you do? The following are some tips on how to get that garage door open to make sure you get to work or appointments on time.
First things first, DO NOT keep trying to open your door. Colder temperatures make it harder for your garage door opener to do its job properly; therefore, if the garage door won’t open the first time, don’t continue trying to open it. Attempting to use the automatic opener when a door is frozen shut can damage the motor or strip the gears of the machine and cause hundreds of dollars in repairs.
In addition to not continually trying to open the door, you need to check to see if the bottom of the door is actually frozen. It's possible the garage door may be locked. Check the lock button on your wall console as well as the interior slide lock to be sure. Another thing to check is that the door is not broken. Look for any parts that may appear to be broken and causing the door to not open.
If none of those check out, then you probably have a frozen garage door. You have a few options as to how to thaw or melt the ice or snow at the bottom of the door. You can use hot water, a blow dryer, kitty litter or even salt. The temperature outside will help you determine which method is best for you. If you are in single digit temps, using hot water might not be the best, because once it hits other cold air or snow it can freeze and make matters worse. Therefore, if available, use salt, kitty litter or a blow dryer to thaw sections of your garage door at a time.
Another method you could try is using an ice scraper to scrape away that ice that is built up on the bottom of the door. If, after scraping away some ice, it appears to become unstuck, try opening the door again. Be sure to bundle up and wear thick gloves to prevent frost bite.
How can you prevent the freezing of your garage door in the future? To prevent your door from freezing shut in the future, you should spray the bottom seal with a lubricant. If you happen to have time to lubricate all the machinery in the garage door, do that as well. Also be sure to clear the snow and ice from the bottom of the door as often as possible. This helps in keeping the buildup of snow and ice to a minimum. You can also put sand or kitty litter alongside the bottom of the door.
If, however, the weather gets the best of you, it’s okay! Give us a call, and we can help you get out of your house and make any needed repairs.
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