Are you hearing unusual sounds when your garage door goes up and down? If so, this could be a good indicator that you need to provide lubrication to the rollers or that the rollers need to be completely replaced. Your family’s safety is the most important reason to maintain and keep your garage door rollers working properly.
Think of your garage rollers like your knees. Your knees support the entire weight of your body just like the rollers support the weight of the garage. However, the rollers are not given a warm-up before being used and so lubrication is even more important.
Quick fact: The completion of one opening and one closing is called a garage door cycle.
Do you know how much work is involved in opening and closing a garage door? Watch this video . Your garage door’s daily work habits have been measured.
Your family’s safety is just one reason that your garage door needs maintenance. Even the most minimal maintenance can help prolong the usable lifespan of the door and keep it working quietly and seamlessly. Pay close attention to what you see and hear when your garage door is operating.
Here, a trained garage door professional blogs about routine maintenance. The steps required to keep garage door rollers functioning properly as well as how to identify when to install new rollers and how to go about removing and replacing the rollers are also explained.
First –What Kind of Garage Door Rollers Do You Have on Your Garage Door?
The three most used types:
- In Black Rubber : These do not have ball bearings inside and are suggested for doors no more than ten feet wide.
- In Steel : These rollers have a minimum of ten ball bearings.
- In Nylon : These rollers are for single or double doors and are quieter due to having twelve ball bearings.
Two-inch diameter garage door rollers are the standard for 99% of all residential garage door applications.
CUT THE POWER BEFORE BEGINNING ANY WORK!
Do not do any type work, not even maintenance on garage doors without doing the following:
Shutting off the power source
Disconnecting the power cord on the garage door opener from the electrical receptacle
You are asking for serious trouble if you work under a garage door that still has electricity.
Spend the short amount of time it takes to check the power and save your life. It is not wasting time, it’s saving lives.
How to Lubricate Your Garage Door Rollers?
YOU SHOULD NOT USE OIL AS A LUBRICANT NO MATTER WHAT MATERIAL THE ROLLER IS MADE OF, including Nylon, Steel and Rubber.
Oil lubricants are detrimental to rollers. Your rollers are squeaking and creaking because of a need for grease. Oil lubricants are degreasers and contraindicated. It’s like adding more dirt to plants dying for water.
With the exception of steel rollers, all rollers should be maintained with a silicone-based lubricate.
- Steel Rollers : Apply the lubricant directly on the ball bearing which are inside the roller.
- Nylon Rollers with Exposed Bearings : Lubricate the area where the roller and shaft meet as well as the outside area of the roller.
- Nylon Rollers with Sealed Ball Bearings : These are the best! You don’t have any maintenance. These rollers are designed to last the life of the garage door.
- Lubricant cans have an included straw for spraying, use it.
- Thin coats are best.
- Use unsoiled cleaning cloths to STRAIGHTAWAY remove excess lubricant.
- Rollers must tumble into the track, not slide.
- Manufacturer recommendations are for lubrication every 6 months.
While you have your lubricating supplies handy, lubricate the following as well:
- Hinge : The center where the two sides join
- Arm Bars
- Bearing Plates
- Springs : Even though the springs need regular lubrication, YOU, AS AN UNTRAINED HOMEOWNER, SHOULD SIMPLY NOT DO THIS. Dangerously high tension holds these springs down and creates a serious risk to your safety.
As said already, your life is essential. Leave the spring portion of your garage door maintenance to well-trained and knowledgeable professionals.
Should You Go with Nylon or Steel?
If replacement is your best option for you, which garage door rollers should you choose, steel or nylon?
The cost of nylon rollers is a little more than the cost of steel ones.
But, nylon rollers are:
- More durable
- Longer lasting, up to ten years.
Tim, from GarageTransformed explains that garage rollers made of steel are:
- Deafening compared to nylon rollers
- Likely to rust or corrode to corrosion & rust
- Maintenance heavy
- Short-lived, normally three to five years.
How to Replace Garage Door Rollers in 5 Steps
Safety Warning : Garage door roller replacement is extremely dangerous and should NOT be done by YOU.
AT NO TIME should the bolts that attach the bottom piece to the door be loosened nor should the cable be taken off bottom fixture.
Failure to heed these warnings may cause THE SPRING TO BREAK AWAY, the door to collapse or to become stuck, causing extensive damage to property and/or personal injury or even death. You have been advised!
There are two main factors that make replacing rollers dangerous:
- Garage doors are extremely heavy
- The springs are under tremendous tension due to the door’s weight.
When it’s time to replace the rollers, it is most likely time for overall maintenance. Complete maintenance is a good reason to call your local garage door professional for maintenance or part replacement.
1 – Disconnect the power source from the garage door.
To avoid it from being unknowingly opened or closed while you are underneath it working.
2 – Use a winding bar to uncoil the springs.
The springs need to be unwound before the door is down; however, hinges and rollers should be replaced while it is in the down position for your safety.
Lock the cable in place using a vise grip attached to the spring shaft.
3 – Take the rollers off the garage door.
- Undo the screws that are on the hinge attached to the roller.
- Gently rap on the hinge with a hammer to Tap the hinge out with a hammer to discharge the hinge.
- IMPORTANT – Do one set at a time; once you remove a hinge and roller, install the new one before moving on. The door is held in place with the hinge and roller and would be unstable if you removed them all at one time.
- Take the old roller off.
4 – Install the new roller
- Slip the roller in the appropriate hole.
- Angle backwards and into the path of the track.
- Align the hinge over the corresponding bolt holes.
- It is a good idea to use larger screws or go with Loctites.
- From the outside, gently hit the bolts to get them back through the hinge. Tap the bolts back from the outside through the hinge holes. Make sure the nuts are tightened.
Once you have completed these steps for all rollers, you are ready to move on to the final step.
5 – Return the springs to their starting point, using the winding bar to unwind them.
- If needed, make adjustments.
- Take the vice grip off the shaft.
You Want Professionals Handling Your Garage Door Rollers Replacement and Your Garage Door Maintenance?
When you first started reading this you probably had no idea that garage door tension springs were so dangerous. Or you have learned that it takes a lot of knowledge and skills to maintain and repair garage doors.
Give us a call at 1-800-590-4455.
We have a desire to maintain and repair garage doors and openers safely.
Our expert technicians are here for your needs.
Are you ready for help? We can send you email quote, simply let us know your needs.
Not looking for service, thinking you might need a new garage door? We can help there too, you’ll have a new door in no time.