Your garage is a sacred place in your home—a place for your car, tools and equipment, or maybe even a collection of ninja turtle action figures you can’t part with. (Hey! As garage professionals, we’re not here to judge what you keep in your garage, but we will help you keep it safe.) And we know that safety is at risk when your garage door chain isn’t functioning as it should.
Here are the reasons why your garage door chain may be acting up and what to do when your garage door chain is loose:
Causes of a Loose Garage Door Opener Chain
A loose garage door opener chain is a common problem we see in chain-driven garage doors. Chain drives are cost-effective options but some homeowners prefer belt-drive garage door openers over chain-drive for their longevity. The combination of vibrating plus the garage door’s weight causes the chain to loosen over time.
When the drive chain is loose, you may notice the following:
- It’s noisy when your garage door opens
- The chain knocks against its railing
- Your garage door may have scuffs, marks or scratches
- Your garage door doesn’t open all the way
- Your garage door may close too quickly
You can handle it in two ways (which we cover below): the handy method and the hands-free method.
Tighten the Chain Using the Handy Method
Tightening your garage door opener chain should only be done using the handy method if you feel comfortable using tools and climbing a ladder. Oftentimes, unless you have experience working on your garage door, it is still best to receive an assessment from a garage door professional.
If you are equipped to assess it yourself, you can start with the following steps:
- Close your garage door.
- Turn off the power to the garage door opener and disconnect the garage door from the opener by pulling the emergency release lever.
- Using your garage door opener manual, locate the two bolts used to tighten the chain. Usually, there will be a locking bolt and a tightening bolt. You want to loosen the locking bolt and adjust the tightening bolt.
- Turn the bolt until the chain is tighter. You still want the chain to be flexible but not sagging.
- Turn the power back on and reattach the garage door according to your manual. You can usually reattach the release lever automatically by using the wall switch.
- Test your handy work by opening and closing the garage door a few times. If it is still making loud noises, or sagging, call in a professional.
Tighten the Chain Using the Hands-Free Method
If you have any doubts about tightening your garage door chain, or if you just prefer to have a second pair of eyes, it’s best to call a garage service technician. Tightening your garage door chain is a regular part of garage door maintenance and functionality checks. Having a garage door technician is not only an easy way to maintain your garage door and opening system, but it also prevents costly safety hazards and ensures your garage door chain lasts for the fullest amount of time possible.
If you find that you have to retighten the opener chain more than once a year, your opener or the chain may need a replacement. A professional can tell you when this is necessary so you aren’t hit with any unwelcome surprises.
When Your Garage Door Chain is Loose, Enlist the Pros
If your garage door is acting up, it can be an inconvenience in your schedule. Take back your valuable time and just give us a call to help take care of it so you can check it off your to-fix list. American Garage Door has been serving the metro Denver and Greater Front Range area for more than 30 years. We can work with you on a regular maintenance plan to ensure your garage door functions safely and reliably for many years.