Garage Door Opener and Garage Door Safety & Maintenance Guide
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 door.
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
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
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
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
Routine Maintenance Can
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
* Reversal Test
* Force Setting Test
* Additional Safety Devices
* Visual Inspection - Springs,
Rollers, Pulleys, Cables, and Track
* Door Balance
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
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
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 adjust them.
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
* 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 Counsil and the Industry
Coalition for Automatic Garage Door Opener Safety.