Keep it Moving: 4 Tricks to Keep Your Garage Door From Freezing Shut

It’s February folks, and you know what that means? That’s right, we’re in the midst of winter and your garage door is still taking a beating (oh, and Valentine’s Day is around the corner too).

Last month, we here at the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines went over some ways to help you maintain your garage door during the winter. However, for those especially frosty February days, it helps to know a few additional tricks to keep it from freezing shut.

 

Sometimes, You Just Gotta Shovel

It’s not the most glamorous answer, but it’s usually the thing that works best. If you don’t want your garage door to freeze, you have to try your best to keep it clean. Brushing away excess ice and snow in between the times when you go out to shovel the full driveway is usually all it takes to prevent the build-up that causes garage doors to freeze shut.

Feel the Heat

Space heaters are good for more than just keeping your basement livable during the winter months, they can also help to combat the elements in your garage. Keeping a pair of small, sturdy space heaters handy will not only make the morning trudge to your car a bit easier, they’ll also help to keep the weather seal (that’s the fancy name for that thin piece of rubber on the bottom of your garage door) from cracking and the battery in your opener from draining – just make sure to be mindful of the cords and unplug them when you’re not using them.

Look in the Pantry

Heavy-duty ice melt is essential during the winter. However, we’ll forgive you if you chose to stay in during that cold weekend when you probably should have been at the hardware store picking up a bag. In those instances when you need something to break down icy build-up, look no further than your pantry for assistance. Both table and Kosher salt are serviceable replacements for the heavy-duty stuff. Just sprinkle a little seasoning near the weather seal, let it marinate and watch as your garage door returns to its former glory.

Just Add Water

If your garage door does freeze, the solution may seem a little counterintuitive – adding water. Pouring a small amount of warm (not boiling!) water on the weather seal could be the answer to unsticking it and preventing you from having to take more drastic steps.

If you’d like any additional tips or think you might need to replace the weather seal on your garage door, call the trained professionals at the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines today!

Plus, be sure to come check us out at the Des Moines Home & Garden Show at the Iowa Events Center starting this Thursday, Feb. 7 at noon and going through Sunday, Feb. 10. For tickets and more information click here.

 

(515) 276-1332

Keep Your Garage Door Humming Through the Cold

Everyone knows that winter is the worst time to be a homeowner in the midwest. You’ve got to shovel the driveway, squeegee boot prints off your floors, and make sure that the furnace is keeping your fortress warm. The last thing you want to do is add another item to that checklist. However, we here at the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines know how important it is to put a little time into maintaining your garage door as well. Following these simple steps will ensure that everything is running smoothly for the rest of the winter months.

Grease It Up

Making sure your garage door’s moving parts – rollers, tracks, springs, and hinges – are properly lubricated is something you should it make a point to check yearly. During the winter months though, it’s imperative that you stay on top of it. The snow and slush can cause these parts to corrode which leads to more friction than your garage door can comfortably handle. Like everything else mechanical in your life, a little elbow grease – and, in this case, literal grease – can go a long way. Break out a can of WD-40 and get lubricating.

Accessories Matter

Even if your garage door is in pristine condition this winter, the accessories may not be. The cold weather can drain the battery of an outdoor keypad or remote opener at a much faster rate than during the warmer months. If you can, try to replace the batteries beforehand so you’re not fumbling around with them in a pair of gloves at the end of a long day of work.

Keep It Clean

In case you haven’t heard, wood and water aren’t the best of friends. Same goes for steel and H2O. In addition to harming the functionality, the aesthetic damage to your garage door can be considerable during the frosty months. Warping, rust, and water damage can all be prevented by washing your garage door with a mild cleaner and giving it a wipe down with a soft towel. Just make sure to save this for one of the days when you don’t have to throw a parka on to do it.

Listen to the Music

Even though your garage door may pass the eye test, it might not be functioning at its peak. Another way to ensure it’s working properly? Listen. If there are any unusual creaks, cracks, or crunches while your garage door is moving it could indicate that something is off. If something sounds jarring (or downright terrifying) call the professionals at Overhead Door Company of Des Moines immediately to take a closer look.

Know Where the Power is

Unfortunately, there will be times when you politely ask your garage door to open and it replies with a resounding “No!” In these instances, you need to know where your garage door’s power is coming from so that you can shut it down and open it manually. Make sure this cord is properly highlighted and easily accessible so that you won’t have to spend your time rummaging around the garage with a flashlight searching for it.

 

All of this may seem a bit over-the-top, but this small investment of your time can pay big dividends by saving you time, money, and stress later on. If you have any additional questions, or you want to set up an appointment to talk about your garage door, give Overhead Door Company of Des Moines a call.

(515) 276-1332

 

Safety Reminders for Your Holiday Decorating

We at the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines have been reflecting on our blessings and are so grateful and appreciative to our local community for allowing us to serve you and yours over the past year.  As a token of our gratitude, we have devised the following “12 Days of Christmas” list as a reminder to keep safety a priority this holiday season.

“On the first day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Be selective when purchasing a live tree.  Sidestep ones with brittle needles and dried out trunks, as those two ingredients can increase the chances of a fire hazard.

“On the second day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Perform research if you are considering buying a pre-lit artificial tree.  These products have a history of being recalled and may pose an electrical shock if not thoughtfully displayed.

“On the third day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Do not position a Christmas tree next to a heating source such as a fireplace, heating duct or space heater.  Simply put, they can’t take the heat so keep them out of the kitchen as well.

“On the fourth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Read all packaging instructions prior to hanging tree lights to determine what is considered the proper amount of strands that are safe to connect.

“On the fifth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

When hanging ornaments, remember to place breakable and smaller ones higher on the tree to keep children and pets safe from harm.

“On the sixth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Look for the UL (Underwriters Lab) label when selecting lights.  This red tag indicates that the lights have been independently tested and have cleared all safety requirements for both indoor and outdoor use.  The green UL tag means the lights are for indoor use only.

“On the seventh day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Check your ladder prior to use to ensure it can hold your weight plus that of the objects you plan to use to create your holiday masterpiece.

“On the eighth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Be sure your outdoor power source is a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlet.  This type of outlet is designed to shut down power in case of a surge.

“On the ninth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Beware of overloading circuits.  A clear indication that you may be overexerting your power source are too many extension cords and an abundance of power strips.  Review and follow all label instructions to avoid a potential fire hazard.

“On the tenth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Use caution when displaying outdoor inflatable decorations.  Make sure they are grounded securely and away from sidewalks or where children play to avoid a tripping hazard.

“On the eleventh day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

Never burn a real tree as a means of disposal.  Trees typically burn faster than expected.   Check with your local community sites for municipality disposal which may include curbside pickup.

“On the twelfth day of Christmas, the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines said to me…”

After the holiday festivities, be sure to triple check your floor for debris.  Metal hooks and unseen broken ornament pieces can cause a painful gash for tiny feet and paws. 

From all of us at the Overhead Door Company of Des Moines to all of our family, friends and neighbors, we wish you a very merry holiday and a safe and secure new year!

(515) 276-1332

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