• Is My Garage Door Sensor Damaged?

    Is your garage door no longer opening and closing properly? Then you may need to do some troubleshooting to discover what’s causing your garage door to malfunction. Sometimes it is not clear whether your garage door sensor is simply broken, but there are some things to look for that might indicate that it is having issues. It is essential that as a homeowner you are aware of the signs that your garage door sensor needs to be replaced. Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors offers some simple steps that could help you determine the issue.

    1. Check for power

     

     

    One of the more common reasons that the sensors for garage doors seem to malfunction is a result of an insufficient power supply. Search for small lights that appear on the sensors. If all the lights seem to be glowing, then this is not the problem and you can cross it off your list of possible problems.

     

    2. Be sure the path is clear of objects

     

    The purpose of a garage door sensor is to restrain the door from closing if there is something in its path. This function is valuable because it keeps your car and loved ones safe from falling garage doors. If there is something in its path, it is programmed not to close, so make sure nothing is obstructing the sensor beam.

     

    3. Check for dirty sensors

     

    At times, dirt or grime can become plastered on the lenses of your garage sensor. This could be the culprit that is preventing your garage sensors from performing properly. To avoid this from occurring, be sure to clean the lenses regularly.

     

    4. Sensor alignment

     

    There is a possibility that the problem you have encountered with your garage sensors has to do with their alignment. Be sure to check thoroughly that both of your sensors are properly aligned. The way to check this is to examine both LED lights on the sensors and see if they are green. If you discover that these lights have turned red or are flashing continuously then you have found your problem and you will need to realign your sensors.

     

    5. Simple wear and tear

     

    Like with most things, time will surely catch up to anything, including your garage sensors. This is certainly accurate if you haven’t changed your sensors for more than ten years at a time. If you have conducted the tests that were previously outlined and you still cannot determine what is causing your faulty sensors, perhaps a replacement is needed. Consult Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors for repairs or to learn more about what may be hindering your garage doors.

  • 5 Types of Mounted Garage Door Openers

    Spring is an ideal time to replace worn-out or outdated garage components. While painting walls and installing shelving may be more exciting updates, it’s important to be proactive about the maintenance of the most functional feature of your garage: the mechanism that operates your garage door. The following is a user-friendly guide to select the right garage door opener for both your budget and lifestyle.

     

    General Considerations

    Lightweight aluminum doors are a good match for ½ horsepower openers at home, while larger, heavier, or single-piece doors may require ¾ – 1 ¼ horsepower openers. Larger motors last longer, although they may have a higher initial cost compared to smaller motors.  In addition, consider how much noise is acceptable.  For example, will the opener be used in an attached garage next to a bedroom? Lastly, decide how much maintenance you’re willing to put into its upkeep.

     

    Wall Mount (Jackshaft)

    For garages with vaulted ceilings or for homeowners seeking additional overhead space, a wall mount (or “jackshaft”) opener is a good option. One benefit is that no overhead electrical sockets are required because it is mounted on the wall at eye level and can reach standard outlets nearby. These garage door openers require professional installation, and the use of belts means they will require regular maintenance, similar to a belt drive.

     

    Screw Drive

    This low-maintenance design is a good choice for heavy or large doors. The lift mechanism is attached to the door and slides up and down a threaded rod.  Due to the small number of working parts, screw drive garage door openers require less maintenance than other styles, such as the belt drive. Since this style has more horsepower than belt drive or direct drive openers expect it to create more noise due to the larger motor which typically runs on AC power. 

     

    Chain Drive

    These are budget-friendly openers that use a system similar to a large bicycle chain.  These generally run on AC power and are a good choice for consumers who don’t mind a little added noise and understand that some regular maintenance will be required.

     

    Belt Drive

    Belt-drive openers are known to be the quietest type of garage door opener. This belt-drive opener generally runs on DC instead of AC power, making it quieter than other varieties. It uses a steel and rubber belt. The pliability of the rubber helps it to run smoothly. The rubber, however, means it will require some regular maintenance.

     

    Direct Drive

    Comparable to the belt drive, the direct drive is an alternative that produces slightly more noise while requiring less maintenance. The direct drive may use AC or DC power, rendering some models quieter than others.  Employing a stationary chain in a steel rail, the direct drive requires less maintenance than the belt drive.

     

    There are several types of garage door openers, many of which have specific applications for many types of doors. After considering noise, horsepower, and maintenance, this list should give a general idea of which type of opener will be most appropriate for your home. Selecting the most appropriate garage door opener will ensure the garage continues to function optimally. Contact Giel Garage Doors for more information or to schedule an appointment.

  • Spring Cleaning Your Garage Like a Professional

    garage door maintenance

    garage interior; 3d illustration

    As spring is approaching, you’re probably gearing up to deep clean your home. But while you’re at it, don’t forget to include the garage in your spring cleaning plans. If your garage is like most garages, then may be a bit disorganized and cluttered. A good spring cleaning will declutter, clean, and free space in your garage. If you’re not quite sure about the cleaning process, here are some steps to help you clean your garage like a professional.

    1. Empty out the garage

    The first step is to completely empty your garage before you can start cleaning. Decluttering is probably the most time-consuming aspect of the cleaning process so it is best to do it on a day when you know the weather will be clear and you can move everything outside.

    2. Air the garage out

    Once you’ve completely emptied out your garage, give it a good airing out before you continue with the cleaning part. Open the windows and door to let some fresh air in. This will improve the airflow and help to clear any moldy, musty scents. You can also keep the doors, and windows open while cleaning your garage.

    3. Wipe down and sweep the garage

    Now it is time to properly clean the garage. Start by cleaning all flat surfaces such as shelvings, walls, and windows with a damp rag. If the garage has rough surfaces such as a brick or drywall, use a broom to sweep them. This process can get really messy so use a dust mask and protective goggles.

    4. Hose your garage floor

    Cleaning the floor does not require much, all you need is a hose, a light cleaning solution, and a broom to scrub the floor and work the solution into the surface. Once the floor is thoroughly cleaned, use the hose to rinse the floor and the walls and allow it to air dry.

    5. Inspect and clean your garage door

    Now you need to focus on your garage door. Start by conducting a visual inspection of all the moving parts for rust and damage, and make sure everything is well-oiled and working properly. If necessary, call a Giel Garage Doors specialist for seasonal garage door maintenance. Next, clean the inside and outside of your garage door with a mixture of soap and warm water and rinse it down with the hose.

    6. Sort through the mess

    While the garage is drying, it’s time to sort through all the items outside. Separate the items in categories to differentiate which ones you’ll keep, which ones have to go, and which one you’ll donate. Take some tips from Marie Kondo and only keep what “sparks joy.”

    Springtime is great to deep clean your house and garage. With a little planning and the above-mentioned tips, you can transform your garage into a calming space. For more information and resources about garage door maintenance and garages in general, browse the Giel Garage Doors blog.

  • 7 Reasons to Always Park Your Vehicle in a Garage

    garage doors

    It is said that preventive measures are always worth the investment, especially when you are protecting a valued possession such as your vehicle. Most people understand how important it is to protect their cars. Although we understand that not everyone has a garage, if you have one, it may be time to rethink using it exclusively for storage or as a workshop.

    Parking your car outside exposes it to many dangers including theft and nature. Let’s look at 7 reasons why you may want to make space for your car in the garage.

    1. Safety

    Parking the car on the street exposes it to all types of safety threats such as theft and vandalism. When you park your car in a garage, you eliminate these problems. Also, depending on the garage, you may want to invest in high-tech security cameras and an alarm system to keep your vehicle safe. 

    2. Protection from the elements

    The elements can also do great damage to your car if left outside for extended periods of time. Rain, mud, slush, wind, extreme heat from the sun, can all damage the exteriors of a car for life. Parking your car inside a garage protects it from the elements. 

    3. Protection of rubber components

    Your vehicle has many rubber components that can wear out if they get exposed to the harsh weather and fluctuating temperatures for an extended period. This can cause problems such as rattling and squeaking.

    4. Preserves car coating

    Most cars today come with a Teflon and wax coat to protect the vehicle’s paint. However, if these coatings get exposed to harsh conditions for a long period, the vehicle’s paint can start to get chalky, fade or peel. 

    5. Protection against birds and their business

    Bird feces on your car can ruin your day. Also, if this happens often, the acidity in bird feces can irreversibly damage the paint job of your car. 

    6. Longer engine life

    The temperature inside a garage stays fairly consistent. As a result, the engine stays lubricated and the engine oil remains at its optimal viscosity for engine start-up.

    7. Increased effectiveness of air-conditioning and heating

    When you park your vehicle in a garage, the air conditioner and heating system will maintain a more moderate temperature and when you start up your car, because it hasn’t been exposed to the outdoors, they will work faster and more efficiently.

    If you regularly park your vehicle outside, you expose it to many dangers. To limit these dangers and extend your vehicle’s lifespan, it is best to park it in a working garage. For more information and resources about garage doors and garages in general, browse the Giel Garage Doors blog.

  • How to Fix a Garage Door That’s Off Track

    garage door repair

    Professional automatic garage door opener repair service technician man working on a ladder at a home residential location making adjustments and fixing it while installing it.

    An off-track garage door is a major inconvenience and can cause enormous frustration. In addition, it can cause property damage and serious injuries. Fortunately, fixing off-track rollers is a simple DIY project. Here is our 5 step guide to fixing your off-track garage roller.

    Steps to Get Your Garage Door Back on Track

    Step 1: Disconnect the opener

    To start the process, find the string hanging from the console that controls the door opener. Pull-on this string to disengage the opener. This will allow you to manually open and close the garage door.

    Step 2: Open and secure the garage door

    Check that the door is completely released from the opener, then lift it until the track is lined up with one of the rollers. This step requires caution so use a pair of vice grips or locking pliers to hold the garage door in place or ask someone to help you. 

    Step 3: Bring wheels back to track

    Use a pair of pliers and open the track precisely at the spot where the roller has jumped out of the track. Put the rollers back inside the track and close the opening in the track. Finally, use a rubber or wooden mallet to bring the track back into the correct shape.

    Step 4: Manually check for proper alignment

    Now that all the rollers are fixed, the next step is to manually check if the rollers are operating smoothly and if the door is opening correctly. You can do this by manually opening and closing the door a few times. While you’re at it, you can test its balance as well. 

    If the track is still misaligned, repeat the steps above until the entire track is correctly aligned.

    Step 5: Check the automatic operation

    Now that you’ve made sure that the door is back on track, hanging straight and operating well manually, it is time to check the automatic operation. Use the remote control to activate the opener and allow the door to automatically open and close a few types. If this final test is successful, then consider your garage door as good as new. If you are still having trouble getting your garage door back on track, there may be more issues with your garage door system than you originally anticipated. Contact Giel Garage Door to schedule an expert garage door repair service.

    Fixing your off-track garage door is a breeze if you have the right skills and tools. Follow the above-mentioned steps to quickly fix your garage door and make sure to hire a garage door repair company to perform regular maintenance of the garage door opener system. By doing so, your doors will stay reliable and functional for years to come.

  • A Guide to Garage Door Insulation

    garage door specialist

    Workers are installing lifting gates of the garage.

    If you live in an area where it’s hot in the summer and cold in the winter, the efficiency of your garage door depends on insulation. For this reason, it is vital to choose the right garage door insulation to protect your garage itself as well as the items inside. An insulated garage door can also increase the overall energy efficiency and durability of your home.

    Types of Garage Door Insulation

    There are many garage door insulation products available on the market and it is often difficult to decide which is the correct fit for your home without professional expertise. We guarantee our clients genuine solutions that are suitable for their homes and don’t compromise quality.

    Each insulation material has its unique pros and cons, including cost, shape, and durability. Here is a quick guide for types of garage door insulation solutions for you:

    Reflective Foil: It is typically sold in rolls and thickness may vary.

    Polystyrene Foam: It is sold in a large sheet and they need to be cut down to the size of the garage door.

    Panel Kits: These are the easiest to install and are made from plastic laminated polystyrene or fiberglass.

    The Crucial Steps to Install Garage Door Insulation

    Handy homeowners may choose to embark on this garage door insulation journey on their own. But it always makes the job a little less cumbersome to hire some help. Hiring a reputable garage door specialist makes the job a breeze. But if you do decide to go it alone, here is are the necessary steps to install your new garage door insulation:

    • Using a quality degreaser, clean the surface of the garage door to eliminate any residual oils.
    • Apply the adhesive, even if you choose Velcro strips or the double-sided tape.
    • Make sure to test a few panels before to be confident they match the correct size of your door.
    • Always trim the excess from the panels and install the barrier panels as well.

    With the right garage door insulation, you would be able to not just control your energy bills, but it can also provide you with essential protection from harsh weather conditions. Garage door insulation is the perfect investment that will provide durability to your door and keep your belongings inside safe and protected. With unpredictable weather changes, find the time to secure your home with easy and convenient garage door insulation. Giel Garage Doors has been providing garage door installation and repair services since 1950. Contact us today if you have any questions or concerns about insulating your garage door.

     

  • How Important Are Garage Door Safety Checks?

    residential garage door

    There must be no debate that durable, sturdy, and properly functioning garage doors are essential for any home. But homeowners often install a new residential garage door and then quickly forget about it unless it breaks down or has other problems. As long as the door is able to close and open while making minimal to bearable noise, the owners are satisfied. If the door is finally behaving intermittently and erratically, only then they decide to look into the situation.

    But does your garage doors need routine inspection and safety checks? The answer is yes and the reasons are below.

    Prevention of Accidents

    It is vital to keep a check and balance on the complete operation of your garage door. Most people who experience a garage door accident don’t realize their mistake until after damage has been done. But sometimes mistakes can be serious, even life-threatening. This is why it is important to schedule regular maintenance and inspections for your garage door to avoid later catastrophes.

    Keeping You Safe and Secure

    The majority of today’s garage doors are automatic and not manual. Once the door detects the vehicle is inside, they close automatically. But what if the sensor is not working properly and it delays in closing the door on time? In the United States, 9% of burglars enter the house from the garage door. This is why it is especially important to conduct a safety check and ensure the working conditions of your garage door. Keep your family and yourself safe from accidents that can cost you.

    Keep a Check on Loose Hardware of the Door

    Your garage door is composed of numerous small and big pieces of hardware. Each and every piece of hardware must be in working position. Even if a tiny nut is malfunctioning or a hinge collapses, an accident could occur.

    It is recommended to keep a check on the tension springs of the door and replace them when needed. If the spring is rusting, be sure to change it instantly. If you observe any loose brackets, inspect the door and make the necessary adjustments. Look for fray cables before they cause disastrous accidents.

    Never wait for a mishap before you decide to inspect your residential garage door. It is recommended to schedule monthly maintenance and inspection to avoid fiascoes later on. Never forget to lubricate the hinges of the door to ensure their smooth working and running. Giel Garage Doors ensures satisfactory inspection and maintenance services at reasonable rates. Stop worrying and call us today to avoid problems down the road.

  • Are Steel Garage Doors Worth the Investment?

    Pittsburgh garage door installation company

    Garage entrance with sectional doors. 3d illustration

    When you visit a Pittsburgh garage door installation company to choose a garage door for your home, you will come across multiple options. These options range from style, color, durability, and material. Many garage doors today are made from steel. Steel garage doors require little maintenance, while adding plenty of aesthetic appeal to your home.

    We are a reputable garage door repair company operating since 1950. We have worked with every type of garage door, made with every type of material.

    But is investing in a steel garage door really a wise investment option?Let’s review the pros and cons of choosing a steel garage door.

    The Factors of Affordability and Durability

    Steel is one of the most affordable and durable materials available on the market. It is made from sturdy material and lasts longer than any other material type. Steel won’t bend or break easily.

    Materials such as wood and aluminum are more expensive than steel when all costs are considered. In the past steel was prone to rust, but today they can be coated to make them rust-proof.

    Colors, Style, and Warranty

    The most appealing reason for choosing a steel garage door is that it comes in countless colors and styles. So if you are looking for something to raise the value of your home, then steel garage doors are a great option for you.

    The steel doors come in various styles that can suit your personality and the style of your home. Give your home a touch of elegance and sophistication with a hint of modernism. Steel doors also offer a warranty for long-lasting and sustainability. Especially if you have new drivers in your home, steel may be your best bet for protecting your investment..

    Steel garage doors are undoubtedly a wise option. The durability and consistency ensured by steel is unmatched. Other materials such as vinyl and wood are not as durable and affordable. It is surely an investment that can also raise the valuation of your property.

    The incredible security and peace of mind offered by steel garage doors are also an added bonus. If you are looking for options and styles of steel garage doors then we recommend you to check out Giel Garage Doors for more information.

  • 6 FAQs About Garage Doors

    residential garage doors Pittsburgh

    Garage entrance with open sectional doors. 3d illustration

    Ever-changing garage door technology has made commercial and residential garage doors in Pittsburgh more complicated. For this reason, we have comprised an FAQ page with answers to your most commonly asked questions. 

    Q. Which garage door is best for me, as a homeowner?

    A: When it comes to garage doors, there is no single best option. The best garage door is fully dependent on the homeowner’s unique needs, style, energy-efficiency, and location. Based on these factors, a homeowner can choose a garage door that is made from steel, wood, or aluminum and choose a design and color that best complements his/her home.

    Q. Should I choose a steel door or a wood door?

    A: The type of door you choose is completely up to you. Both steel garage doors and wood garage doors are beneficial and can enhance your home’s curb appeal. The benefits of steel doors are that they offer better strength, security, energy-efficiency, affordability, and require less maintenance. Wood doors, on the other hand, provide both security and insulation, but tend to be higher priced due to its customization in manufacturing. Wood doors are often pricier and tend to expand and contract with changes in temperature. Nevertheless, wood garage doors exude natural warmth and beauty and you can easily paint it to match the color of your entry door and home.

    Q. How important is insulation in a garage door?

    A: There are numerous reasons to have an insulated garage door, but the more obvious ones are that an insulated garage door allows less heat to escape in the winter and less heat to get in the summer. This helps save money on your utility bill. Also, an insulated garage door dampens incoming noise and adds strength to your door. 

    Q. How much does a garage door cost?

    A: The cost of residential garage doors in Pittsburgh vary. The cost is calculated according to strength, size, amount of customized design required, insulation, and much more. 

    Q. Is there a warranty?

    A: New doors and openers should be covered by a warranty. Most garage door companies will offer a minimum two-year warranty on material. Several doors and openers have extended material warranties beyond the first year. Giel Garage Doors also provides service and repair work warranties.

    Q. Do I need a lock on my garage door?

    A: If you already have an electric garage door opener installed on your door, a lock is no longer required. In this day and age, a door opener is the best option, as it can make lifting your door from the outside almost impossible. There are several pieces of information you’ll need to know (such as size, material the garage is made of, insulated or not, etc.) before you can install a door opener. However, a door opener is highly beneficial and a great option for the protection of your garage.

    Do you have a question that wasn’t answered above? Feel free to reach out to Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors. We’re happy to answer any questions you have about garage door installation, repairs, maintenance, and more. 

  • How to Modernize Your Garage

    custom garage doors

    Garage entrance with sectional doors. 3d illustration

    Modernizing your garage is one of the easiest and most effective ways to increase its functionality, improve the aesthetics of your entire house and add to your house’s curb appeal. If you are not sure how to kick off this process, here are 5 things you can do to modernize your garage and create the space you’ve always wanted.

    1. Upgrade the garage door

    The garage door is often the first part of your house that people notice. So, why not use it to make a great first impression? Let your home stand out with a custom-made garage door. Custom garage doors can be designed to match your driveway gates, front door, or just the overall style of your home. This will immediately increase the curb appeal of your home.

    2. Transform your garage into a smart garage

    Garage door technology has rapidly improved in the last couple of years. The trend for garage doors over the last couple of years is ease and convenience. One way to modernize your garage door and have it stand out from the crowd is by installing a Smart Wi-Fi Controller. This fully automates the garage door and allows you to open, close, and monitor it from anywhere at any time.

    3. Upgrade the floor

    Your garage floor has suffered extreme wear and tear over the years, therefore it is a good idea to also focus on the floor. You can give the floor a good pressure washing and repair noticeable cracks. You can also cover the concrete floor with Rhino Linings polyaspartic coating for a durable, clean and attractive surface. 

    4. Add a smart security camera.

    The garage has always been a target for burglars and intruders. One surefire way to protect your home from intruders is to add a motion-activated smart security camera in front of your garage. 

    Often these cameras have built-in lights and can be a great deterrent for intruders who view your home as an easy target. For even better security, install a model you can operate with your smartphone. This allows you to monitor your house regardless of your location. 

    5. Consider ceiling storage 

    Your garage has a finite amount of space, but its potential to be used as storage space can be expanded. If you’ve reached your limits with floor space and wall space, just lookup. The ceiling can be a great place for long-term storage of seasonal items such as holiday decorations. 

    The home of your dreams deserves an equally aesthetically and modern garage. Modernize your garage using the above-mentioned tips to not only make it more attractive, but also more enjoyable. If you’re ready to upgrade your garage door or just want to better understand our process for creating custom garage doors, contact Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors for more information.