Garage Door Won’t Close

by | Mar 2, 2018

Have you left your house to make a quick grocery shopping trip but your garage door won’t close?

Maybe you had to run a couple of errands and didn’t think to look back at your garage door simply assuming it would close like it always has. Well now you’re coming home only to realize that your garage door never shut!

Or even worse you know for a fact that it closed before you left but now you’re staring at an open door.

Could it be someone has a remote thats running on the same frequency? What if you never closed it all the way? Did it come down then decide to magically pop back up? Is it the door or the motor causing this?

Worry no more we’re here to help!

Calling a garage door company could result in a service call that can cost anywhere from 25-125 dollars! Let’s save that money. Maybe buy the wife some flowers or something. ūüėõ

We’ll cover all the possible scenarios and issues that may have been the root of the problem as well as give you solutions to face this evil.

Stubborn Garage Door Won’t Close

Let’s figure this out:

 The majority of our calls for this particular hindrance is almost effortlessly fixed. Onward toward relief we go.

The culprit of this devious dilemma may be as simple as adjusting the safety sensors, photo eyes, eye beams or whatever you want to call them. A sure way to tell if its the sensors is by holding down the wall control to close the door. If this works and door completely closes you’re definitely looking a sensor issue.

You want to make sure the the lights on the safety sensors are both a solid color. Any blinking or flickering will be a sign that your sensors are misaligned or malfunctioning. In a case of a malfunction you can order the replacement sensors and repair them yourself. It’s as simple as splicing two wires together. There is no fear of being shocked as these wires pose no serious electrical threat. Those parts can be found on our parts page in the¬†openers/parts¬†section.

Otherwise simply adjust the sensors so that the lights on them are completely solid with no flickering or flashing. You can locate these sensors down at the bottom of the garage door tracks/rails. They vary in color but are overall pretty noticeable as they typically stand out. Should you decide to go through a garage door company to adjust the sensors or replace them you will pay. On average 25-125$ for a service call to adjust, or 100-200$ to replace the faulty sensors.

” It Closed All The Way Before I Left”

Alright so it did close all the way but now it’s open, what do I do? Assuming someone else is running on the same frequency we have to imagine other people may have access to your door. It’s entirely possible someone that lived there prior to you has the old remote and hit the button nearby. Another possibility is that someone may have programmed a new garage door opener in the area and it is enough to trigger your door as well.¬†This exact situation has occured more than once in our experience and there are a few things you can do to prevent this from happening again.

1. The first thing you should try is to erase all existing remotes or keypad codes that may have been programmed. Then proceed to reprogramming your  keypads and remotes. This ensures that the opener will no longer accept foreign signals as well as giving you peace of mind. The remotes and keypads that are now programmed will be the only functional ones. All other means will be disabled. You can find a video on how to erase opener codes on our DIY page.

2.¬†Once you’ve performed this task you can now proceed to step two. It is possible your wall button wiring is making a connection somewhere ever so often causing your opener to activate. Check the wire to make sure your staples arent pushing down to hard on the wire. We’ve seen some staplers are stronger than others and will force a connection between the two small copper pieces inside the wire. Loosen any staples that may look too tight. You can also unscrew the wall control and check the contacts to ¬†make sure they aren’t loose.

You should also inspect where the wire meets the opener. Sometimes the wire loosens over time. Every time the opener vibrates it now has the ability to touch the other wire causing it come back up, even if it closed all the way!

3.¬†Lastly if you’ve done all of the above it may be time to consider replacing your unit as it may have a fried logic board. We recommend you replace your garage door opener in this case. Especially if your opener is already older than ten years. You can find our recommended replacements in the openers section of our¬†parts¬†page. If you decide you want to replace just the logic/mother board we have a few of the common models in the¬†parts¬†page.

“Watched It Come Down, But Not Sure It Went All The Way Down”

You watched it begin going down but trusted the door to close all the way in its own then did you? Got you far, huh? No worries though we’re here to figure this thing out together. Lets go through the possibilities here.

1. First thing you want to check is if the tension cables cables are in place and intact. Tension cables are an important piece in the functionality of a garage door and if they’re not in their proper place they will pose a problem. These can be located at the top right and left of the garage door, when in the open position. You may have to crane your neck a bit to see them on the cable drum but they’re definitely there. Make sure they’re spooled on the drum. The drum has grooves and the cable sits in the grooves as it rolls up.

Unfortunately if they appear tangled or out of place you’re definitely going to want to contact a repair company for this sort of issue. An average price range for this kind of repair shouldnt exceed 200$ unless your springs are broken. However, the garage door would not have likely opened in this event anyway so it shouldnt be something you need concern yourself with.

2.¬†The cable is okay so what do I do now? Let’s take a look at how smooth your door is and see if you need to lubricate anything. We can achieve this by testing the doors functionality. Release the door from the opener catch by pulling the red string and closing the garage door by hand. Bring the door down slowly and feel for binds or bumps as it comes down. Sometimes your door will rub against the outside trim causing friction. The friction in turn will be felt by the opener and bounce back up since the openers are set up not to push to hard. The door may even get stuck as you try rolling it down.

You should lubricate the garage door rollers and hinges as well as the trim itself. For the hinges and rollers we recommend using spray type grease¬†like this. As for the jambs/trim you can try putting some thicker grease on spots that look like they’re taking friction. This is usually visible as black streaks on the trim where the door pushes too much against it.¬†White lithium grease¬†is our favorite for this type of quick fix and you can find that in our miscellaneous section of the¬†parts¬†page.

Should none of these remedies ressolve the occurance, and the door still feels rough, you should consider having a repair man coming out and performing a tune up. A service such as this shouldnt cost any more than 125$.

3. Not the cable or the garage door? Adjusting the amount of force your opener exerts is the next step. Older openers run out of juice occasionally and it might be that your opener just doesnt have enough power to close the door anymore. We have videos on adjusting the power  levels on many garage door openers. The videos can be found on our youtube channel or on the DIY page.

None of these? Read on good sir, kind madam!

“The Garage Door Came All The Way Down But Came Back Up”

Now here is another case you may be experiencing. You watched the door close but it hit the ground and came back up. Stubborn thing why won’t it stay closed! Allow us to explain what’s going on.¬†

1.¬† The most obvious explanation (to us garage door guys anyhow) is one of two things. You may have a chain drive garage door opener and the gear has shifted forward due to wear and tear and will be breaking soon. When the gear shifts the opener thinks it can go further than it normally does. It hits the ground but doesn’t stop. Once the opener feels the excessive force it is exerting by pushing further will cause it to come back up. You can obviously prolong the life of the opener by adjusting the limit switch. We wouldn’t recommend this just because it will shift forward again and you also increase the chance of damaging the center stile and even the top panel of your garage door. You’d then have to repair even more than just the gear.

Other symptoms of a failing gear would include a sagging chain. If you decide to attempt this repair on your own you can expect to pay around 20-50$ for the part. You can order the part by clicking here. You can find a video of adjusting the limits and changing the gear here. 

2.¬† Alternatively, if you’ve got a garage door opener that isn’t a chain drive you’re likely looking at adjusting the limit switch. The operator thinks it can go further than it actually can. It senses that it’s pushing harder than normal and will come back up. You should adjust the operators down limit in order to stop it from pushing too far. You can find a¬†helpful video here.

Conclusion

In conclusion it can be a variety of different issues that are causing your garage door to open back up or to open on its own. The most frequent reported fix is adjusting/replacing the sensors. Other possible causes include a tangled cable, low power level on the operator, or a faulty opener gear/limit switch. We hope to have been able to guide you towards an accurate assesment and propose a viable solution. Hopefully you can sleep in peace now as you have educated yourself quite a bit. You deserve the rest! Share this article with your friends and leave a comment if you found this helpful!

You can also reach out and send us an email if you have further questions.

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Have an awesome day!

- Andrew @ Garage Door Guidance

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