A garage door is made up of many parts that all work together so the garage door can work properly. Torsion and extension springs are responsible for managing your garage door’s counterbalance system. It is the counterbalance system that uses force to offset the weight of the door, enabling it to safely and reliably open and close. There are several types of springs that can be used, but torsion and extension springs are the most common. Because both torsion and extension springs perform the same function, you might be wondering what the difference is. Garage door installation Pittsburgh PA guarantees that springs be professionally installed to help keep the door in working order for years to come.
The most common type of spring found in modern garage doors is the torsion spring. Torsion springs are available in several sizes and lengths. They are calculated based on the weight of your garage door and the height and track radius. Torsion springs are installed on the top of the garage door. When the door is operated, the spring slides into a channel where lifting cables are attached, allowing the springs to wind and unwind in a controlled motion. Some of the benefits of torsion springs include:
- Sturdy and Long Lasting: Although torsion springs are more expensive upfront, they are more durable and can last upwards of 15,000 to 20,000 cycles.
- Less Wear: When a garage door is opening or closing, the torsion springs provide steadier movement that keeps the door balanced, creating less strain on other parts. Torsion springs make it so your garage door doesn’t have to work as hard to open and close.
- Safer: If your torsion springs break, they will make a loud sound but remain encased in the shaft. But if extension springs break off, the result can include property damage or injury.
Extension springs are an older technology, but they are still common because they are more affordable and ideal for smaller garages. Instead of being installed overhead, extension springs are installed on the side of the door and extend when the door is operated.
Although extension springs are a popular option, many professionals don’t tend to recommend them because they only last upwards of 10,000 cycles. Not only do they not last as long as torsion springs, but they also require more maintenance, operate with jerking motions that cause more wear and tear, and can be a safety hazard if they break.
Whether you’re looking for torsion or extension springs, Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors can provide you with reliable and reputable garage door Pittsburgh PA installation and services. If you need expert garage door advice, Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors can help you discover which garage door springs, openers, etc. are right for you.
Replacing a Pittsburgh garage door is not something you have to do often. So you likely don’t have someone in mind when the situation arises. For many, the first step to hiring a garage door technician is getting recommendations for garage door dealers from friends and family members. Another great resource is to search for reviews online and learn more about prospective dealers. Ultimately, you will need to contact the company directly. When talking to a dealer, you can learn more about their skill level and trustworthiness when you ask the right questions. Here are a few things you should ask to ensure you find a reputable garage door dealer.
Learn About the Company
Researching the company should give you a good indication of their experience and qualifications. It is a good idea to learn about their history. How long have they been in business? If they are a new business, what experience and knowledge do the owners have? Are they a legal business? Do they have all the necessary licenses and permits required to perform work in your area? What kind of insurance do they have? It is going to be imperative that they be fully insured. Do they have a showroom where you can see and touch the products they offer? What brands do they carry? Knowing this type of information will help you know if you’re interested in doing business with them.
Learn About Past Customers
The most reputable companies will gladly provide a list of previous customers who were satisfied with their services. These customers will provide their feedback and opinions about their experience with the company. Ideally, these customers will be in or near your neighborhood. You can also ask companies to provide details, including pictures of past completed projects.
How Well do They Communicate?
If you are going to be working with a company, knowing how they communicate before the process will be a good indication of how they communicate throughout the process. In their correspondence with you, they should gather information to accurately advise you on how to choose a door that meets your needs.
Information that they will need to provide you with an expert opinion should include:
- Size requirements
- Design and style of your home
- Functions, features, and traits you can’t live without
- Other unique requirements
With the answers to these questions, they will be able to provide you with different options that fit within your established budget. Additionally, knowing your budget will enable them to provide you with a detailed quote that includes labor and equipment. They can also provide a written warranty in detail that includes the opener, the labor, and all other aspects of the garage door.
You want a company that will communicate openly with you during the initial planning phases of bidding and selecting a new garage door. You also want a garage door dealer that will be there for you after the installation is complete and will continue to communicate with you if warranty issues arise.
Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors is the premier Pittsburgh garage door dealer, with years of experience and knowledge. Whether you are looking for a new garage door or garage door repairs, Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors is the best garage door expert serving the greater Pittsburgh area.
Many homeowners enjoy awnings for the comfort and shelter that they provide. When shopping for Pittsburgh awnings for your home or business, there are several options for you to choose from. One of the first decisions you’ll have to make is whether you want a fixed or retractable awning. Both have their pros and cons, which we will discuss here.
Retractable awnings are great if you want flexibility. They can be extended when you want shade and retracted when you want the light. Some people prefer to only use their awnings when it’s extra hot outside or when they need protection from the rain.
In order to be retractable, awnings are made using a heavy-duty fabric, that is available in a wide range of prints and colors. This makes it easy to change them out when they need to be replaced or when you simply want to change them to match a new décor style. One of the biggest drawbacks to installing a retractable awning is that they require a lot of moving parts to retract. As a result, they are more expensive than a stationary awning. You can still purchase older, hand-crank style awnings, but newer retractable awnings are motorized and controlled with a switch or remote.
Fixed awnings are ideal for if you want your awning to be a permanent fixture in your home or building. Many businesses enjoy the permanent feature because many use it for signage to advertise their business name and phone number.
Fixed awnings tend to be less expensive than retractable awnings and are very sturdy. With a fixed awning, you have more choices for shape and covering material. Similar to their retractable counterparts, fixed awnings can also be covered in fabric. They can also be covered in aluminum or any other specialty materials.
What Type Should You Pick?
The type of awning you should pick is based on your personal preferences and the amount of space you have to work with. If you want flexibility and want to use it when you want and put it away when they don’t need it, a retractable awning is the way to go. Retractable awnings also make sense in areas that experience high winds frequently, as you’ll be able to retract it when the winds pick up, protecting your investment.
For those who have plenty of room for the required supporting posts, or have your mind set on a specific shape, a fixed awning is going to be the better choice. For those who don’t want to worry about the mechanics possibly breaking and want less maintenance may also find that a fixed awning is the best choice.
Regardless of what type of Pittsburgh awnings you decide to go with, if they’re installed properly and regularly retained can last for years to come.
Whether you are in the market for a new awning-retractable or fixed or want to learn more, the experts at Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors can help. Since 1950, we have been confidently serving the people of Pittsburgh with all the retractable and fixed awning needs, let us help you with yours!
The easiest way to distinguish between residential and commercial garage doors is simply by the type of building it is attached to. But here, we will discuss some of the other big differences between the two types of doors.
One of the biggest differences between commercial and residential garage doors is that residential doors tend to be more focused on looks than commercial doors. This is because many homeowners tend to want a garage door that is aesthetically pleasing, whereas commercial or industrial building owners are more focused on function. This is because a residential garage door tends to have a greater effect on a home’s overall curb appeal, and eventual resale value. To improve the appearance of residential garage doors, often windows, designs, or color options are carefully selected. Because commercial doors are more concerned with functionality, they tend to be plainer and simpler. The majority of commercial doors are of the conventional white roll-up or flat designs.
Height and Width
One of the most obvious differences is that commercial doors tend to be a lot bigger than residential doors. Residential doors tend to have a standard height of seven feet and vary between eight and nine feet wide. Although these are the standard sizes, homeowners with an RV, boat, etc. can special order a garage door that can be as tall as 12 feet high. Where residential doors come in standard sizes, commercial doors do not. The size of a commercial garage door is going to be dependent on its application. Commercial buildings that use a lot of oversized machinery will need a larger door than commercial buildings that do not.
Homeowners can purchase a garage door in different materials—wood, steel, fiberglass, etc. The deciding factor on what type of material is going to be best will depend on the homeowner’s personal preference and budget. Wood doors offer better curb appeal, while steel doors are long-lasting. On the other hand, commercial doors are primarily only made of aluminum or galvanized steel. This is because both materials are extremely durable and offer the security and longevity that commercial business owners are searching for in a garage door.
Residential doors are designed to only be opened a couple of times each day, whereas commercial doors are designed to be opened and closed several times a day. As a result, a residential garage door opener is made to endure being open and closed only a few times a day. Whereas a commercial door opener is designed to open and close a door multiple times a day. Additionally, commercial doors are designed to operate more quickly and efficiently.
Another major difference between residential and commercial garage doors is the cost. Commercial doors cost significantly more to install and repair than residential doors because they are designed for commercial-level security, and are often larger in size. Because commercial doors are more expensive, they are rarely used in residential applications.
On the surface, both residential and commercial garage doors appear to be the same, when in fact they do have some big differences. Whether you are looking to replace your existing garage door or need repairs, Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors can do it all. Since 1950, Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors has been providing new garage doors and repairs to homeowners and business owners across Pittsburgh.
There are many reasons homeowners decide to upgrade their Pittsburgh garage doors. For others, it’s not necessarily a want, but a need, as their current garage door is in disrepair. Regardless of the reason, there are a few things you should know about insulated garage doors before making a purchase.
As with most other products, you have several options when selecting the right garage door for your home. A garage door serves as more than just an entrance to your home, it is a major part of your curb appeal and can have a big impact on your resale value if you ever try to sell your home.
One of the newest garage door trends is to purchase one that offers energy efficiency options. Here are five of the top reasons you should install an insulated door on your Pittsburgh home.
The majority of energy saving tips focus on the inside of the home. This makes sense because this is where the majority of heat gain and loss takes place. In fact, some people don’t even consider the garage when developing their energy savings plans. It is important, as most garages have finished rooms above them which are heated and cooled, along with having a door that connects to the main part of the house.
As a result, your uninsulated garage will transfer cold air into the rooms around it. Simply having a garage door that is insulated can cut down on the amount of energy required to heat or cool the rest of your home.
Aside from assisting with energy cost, insulated garage doors are more durable. This is a result of the way the doors are constructed. Insulated doors are constructed using either a steel or aluminum frame that is filled with solid-core insulation. The insulation is then sandwiched between either single or dual steel panels. This style of construction creates a door that is both durable and lightweight.
A more durable door will be more resistant to dents, reducing the amount of maintenance homeowners have to perform around the house. Because there is going to be less damage done to an insulated door, the lifespan of the door will be prolonged as well.
Garage doors are going to make noise. But insulated doors tend to be quieter than uninsulated doors. Noise isn’t an important factor in determining how a door functions, it is a nice bonus feature. Because all doors will produce noise, finding one that is quieter than others can make a huge difference. Insulated doors tend to be quieter than other doors due to their tight construction. Each panel is composed of materials tightly sandwiched together, reducing the amount of loose material that can make excess noise. Additionally, because insulated doors also weight more than uninsulated doors, they are less likely to jolt or vibrate on the track, thereby reducing the amount of noise made.
When vehicles are parked inside a garage, they are protected from the extreme weather outside. This is especially important during cold weather, as the cold can have a negative impact on your car in several ways. An insulated door can have a big impact on the overall life of your car. As a result of cold temperatures, you may experience any of the following:
- Shorter Battery Life or Dead Battery
- Thickened Transmission, Engine, and Brake Fluids
- Low Air Pressure in Tires
- Unreliable Spark Plugs and Wiring
The lower the temperature, the less likely your car is to run and function properly. Simply installing an insulated garage door can increase the temperature inside the garage enough to protect your vehicle.
For some, a garage is more than just a place to park your car. Some use it as a place for extra storage, for others, it is a great space to work out or participate in hobbies. Regardless of the way you use your garage, keeping it warm makes it easier and more enjoyable for you to use it. In areas with a colder climate, like here in Pittsburgh, that extra layer of warmth can make a huge difference in simple, daily tasks, such as carrying in groceries or carrying sleeping children into the house from the car.
There are many benefits to switching out an uninsulated garage door for one with insulation. If you decide an insulated garage door will make a positive impact on your home, contact Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors today. As a leader in Pittsburgh garage doors, we have a wide selection of garage doors that make it easy to find the right garage door for your home.
As a homeowner, you do everything you can to protect your home, family, and belongings. You also know that your residential garage doors Pittsburgh are one, if not the main point of entry into your home. If a garage door is left open or unsecured, it can be an open invitation for burglars to enter your home without opposition. Here are a few security tips for your garage door that you can implement to protect your home and discourage burglars from entering your home unwelcomed.
Set Up a Home Security System
One of the easiest and more convenient ways to secure your home is to monitor every entrance, including the garage door, by having a complete home security system installed. Homes that are equipped with a security system deter crooks from trying to enter. High-quality alarm systems are designed to not only alert you of an intrusion but also emergency personnel. Most alarms are not silent, scaring off crooks and preventing them from entering or lingering in your home. The one drawback to having a home security system is that depending on how many doors and windows you have and how comprehensive your security system is, it can be quite costly.
Cover Garage Windows
Windows in garage doors can be both good and bad. Windows allow natural light to flow into your garage, cutting down your need for lighting. On the other hand, these same windows can provide would-be burglars the ability to easily see what is stored in your garage and how easy it is to enter your home via your garage. One of the easiest ways to protect yourself is to cover these windows to prevent people from seeing inside. You can achieve this by placing a decorative film or tint over the glass. Both of these options allow natural light to shine in while making it more difficult for someone to see inside.
Add Movement Detector Lights
If you’re concerned about nighttime break-ins, having a well-lit home will make you less of a target. A good way to protect your home is to install motion-active lights around the exterior of your home. A good location for a motion detected light is above your garage door, so when someone walks or drives up the light kicks on. These lights serve a dual purpose, not only do they deter people from approaching your home unwanted, but they are also helpful for when you return late at night.
Close and Lock Your Garage Door
This tip might seem like an obvious one, but you would be surprised to learn how many people forget to shut and lock their garage door at the end of the day. Be sure to shut your garage door every day to prevent easy access to your home. While not every residential garage door Pittsburgh is equipped with a lock, those that are should be locked daily. If your garage door doesn’t have a lock on it, you might want to consider looking into having a locking system installed on it for added protection.
If you have questions about your garage door or need a repair to provide your home with optimal security, contact Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors today! We can help you repair or replace your existing garage door to provide your home with added security and you with peace of mind. At Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors, we can help with all your residential and commercial garage door needs.
If you need to purchase a new garage door opener because your current one is too old or broken for garage door opener repair Pittsburgh PA, there are a few things you should know. You have many options when shopping for a new garage door opener, so how do you know you are getting the right one? Here are a few features that the best garage door openers will have:
- Low Noise Levels: Garage doors are inherently noisy, which is why if you are sensitive to sound or have living spaces located directly above or adjacent to your garage, you’re going to want to invest in either a belt-drive, direct-drive, or screw-drive model door opener.
- Remote–Control Reliability: For those who live in densely populated areas, your garage door signal can become mixed with those of your neighbors’ garage door openers. The best way to combat this is to invest in a garage door opener that offers dual-frequency. What this feature does is automatically switch between two different frequencies to minimize the chance of interference from your neighbors.
- Rolling–Code Security Technology: As an added level of security and protection, rolling-code security technology selects a new, non-repeating access code from billions of possibilities every time you use your remote control. This technology prevents would-be burglars from figuring out your access code and it also prevents your neighbor’s remote from accidentally opening your garage door.
- Keypad or Touchpad for Remote Entry: This feature is standard with some models, but not all. If your unit doesn’t come standard with a keypad or touchpad, generally you can add it on.
- Battery Backup: During power outages, you won’t be able to use your garage door opener unless it is equipped with a battery backup option. This feature, which is typically only included on a few, higher-end models, allows you to keep using your garage door opener during power outages. A battery-backup door should still be equipped with a manual release that allows you to manually open and close your garage door by hand.
- Overhead Lights: Lights are a standard feature on all garage door openers. Specifically, look for lights that you can control independently of the door’s opening and closing.
There are plenty of options available when you need to replace your garage door opener. As with most garage door opener repairs in Pittsburgh PA, you shouldn’t attempt to make the repairs yourself. Hire professionals, like those from Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors to make the repairs or install replacements.
Entry doors are an important component of any home, not only as it pertains to curb appeal, but also when it comes to security. Sifting through the many entry doors Pittsburgh and ultimately deciding on one that best represents your style and protects your family and possessions is a big decision. Before you make the purchase, here are a few questions you should be asking to ensure you get the right door for your home.
What Kind of Door Should I Purchase?
If this is your first time purchasing a new entry door, you may feel a bit overwhelmed with all the options and decisions that go into making this purchase. An entry door is an investment that will last you for many years and is not something you exchange often. There are a few important factors that you should keep in mind throughout the decision-making process, including style, energy efficiency, and security.
- Style: There are many different styles you can select from—traditional colonial, craftsman, glass or no glass, etc. Do you want your new entry door to make a bold statement or do you prefer something subtle?
- Energy Efficiency: Purchasing a new, quality door can dramatically reduce your home’s heating and cooling bills. Because homes lose the majority of their air through the doors and windows, having a door that is high-quality and energy efficient can help prevent cooled or heated air from escaping your home.
- Security: Because entry doors are the main entry point into your home, it is imperative you have a door that provides optimal security to protect your home, family, and possessions.
What Type of Material Should I Chose?
You have options when it comes to the material you want your entry door to be constructed from. The material you select will set the tone for how visitors perceive your home and property. The three most common types of materials available include wood, fiberglass, and steel.
- Wood: Wood doors provide a classic look that many homeowners are drawn to because of the natural, beautiful look they offer. This classic look does, however, generally come with a higher price tag than other materials. In addition to their increased upfront cost, they also require periodic maintenance to help them retain their refined look and feel.
- Fiberglass: Fiberglass doors generally cost less than wood doors and also do not require much maintenance. These doors are extremely durable and energy efficient, providing homeowners with security and overall lower energy bills. As an added bonus, fiberglass doors can mimic the look of a wood door, for a fraction of the price.
- Steel: Steel doors are extremely strong and durable, making them the best choice for homeowners most concerned about security and longevity. They can also be painted any color, allowing you to get a door that complements the rest of your home. Similar to fiberglass doors, steel doors also provide excellent energy efficiency.
Will the Door Swing Inward or Outward?
The most common way for exterior doors to swing is inward. This is because entry doors that swing inside provide better security. Although, climate can play a role in determining whether the exterior door swings inward or outward. For example, homes located in areas of the country that are prone to hurricanes or tropical storms may have outward swinging doors because they are less likely to be blown in by high winds. On the other hand, those who live in areas that are prone to high amounts of snowfall, are more inclined to have a door that swings inward so that don’t get trapped inside their home as a result of snowfall.
When you are ready to invest in a new entry door Pittsburgh for your home, contact the experts at Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors to help you find the right style, material, and swing of your door to complement your home. At Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors, we can help you replace your existing door with one that will provide you with optimal security, energy efficiency, and style.
Cold weather is fast approaching, bringing in the winter months with it. When the weather starts to turn cold, it is a good indication that it is now time for you to begin winterizing your home. One way that you can help cut down on your home’s heating costs during the winter is with a well-insulated garage. If your garage is too cold, you risk damage to your vehicles and anything else that you store inside your garage. The best way to prevent expensive repairs from accruing later on, is to winterize your garage ahead of time. Here are a few things you can do to protect your garage before winter sets in which will prevent you from needing to invest in a new garage door installation Pittsburgh come spring.
Replace Weather Stripping
One of the easiest things you can do is to start by replacing the weather stripping on your garage door. This will create a seal between the garage door and the garage door opening, keeping cold air from coming in. When cold air is allowed to find its way inside your garage, it will create cold drafts that cause the temperature inside your garage to drop dramatically.
To install new weather stripping, start by removing the old weather stripping and remaining sealant. Use a putty knife or scraper of some sort to remove as much of the old weather stripping as possible. Cleaning the surface as much as possible will make it easier for the new weather stripping to be installed. Once you have the surface cleaned and prepared for the new weather stripping, be sure to measure before you begin to install anything. You’ll want to make sure that you don’t have too much rubber sticking to the sides, where it could possibly interfere with the garage door track. Close the garage door and align the weather stripping so the rubber flap flattens slightly against the door. A good seal on your door allows the garage door to operate easier.
Insulate the Garage Walls
Another way to insulate your garage to prepare it for winter is to insulate your exterior garage walls. You can purchase fiberglass batt insulation fairly cheaply at any home improvement store. You can simply tack it into place on the walls of your garage. You’ll want to check to see that you have the right insulation thickness to ensure that you provide your garage with plenty of insulation against the cold. Failure to install the insulation securely to the wall or forgetting to provide extra support for the insulation can result in problems. In order for insulation to work properly, you’ll need to ensure that it has a snug fit and completely covers your wall.
Repair Garage Door
If your garage door is old or broken and is the source for the cold air getting into your garage, you might want to consider replacing it before the really cold weather arrives. At Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors, we provide garage door installation Pittsburgh, along with repairing and replacing broken panels and other parts. A garage door that is properly repaired or replaced can work to eliminate cold air from finding its way inside. Often, replacing an old or broken door with a new, insulated door is the best option for homeowners.
Heat the Garage
Another great way to ensure that your garage stays warm throughout the winter is to install a heater unit after you’ve completed all the other necessary precautions. Heaters will not only protect your garage from getting too cold, but they will also protect your vehicle and other belongings from the low temperatures. Keep in mind, it is important to be careful when using a heater, as heaters pose a risk of personal injury or potential house fires if not handled properly.
As you can see, your garage plays an important role in keeping your home warm during the cold winter months. If you are considering replacing or repairing your garage door before the cold sets in, contact Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors today!
Your front door Pittsburgh is one of the first things that people see when they come to your home. That being the case, it’s also creating the first impression that people will have of your home. Do you know what your front door is saying about you? Here is a guide to help you decipher what message your front door is sending.
Front Door Color
The color of your front door says a lot about you and your personality. While you might personally like the look of the traditional, stark white door, visitors coming to your home might think you are kind of boring, or just don’t care about first impressions. Add some color and tell your visitors a little more about the people inside.
- Red: A red front door is a good indication that those inside are full of energy and passion.
- Brown: Brown doors are typically associated with a desire for privacy and a message of warmth. Therefore, a brown door typically sends a confusing message to visitors about what message homeowners are trying to convey.
- Blue: Blue is the most popular color choice for a front door, as it conveys a message that the home is a serene sanctuary.
- Green: Green is a peaceful color that is often associated with earthiness.
- Black: A black door symbolizes strength and sophistication.
The Condition of the Door
The overall condition of your door will also send a message to visitors. Doors that are in disrepair, breaking and need to be replaced, may be inviting burglars. Doors that are well kept, and in good condition will send the message that you take pride in your home and you care about protecting what is inside.
Finally, the style and decorative features on your front door Pittsburgh will send a message saying something about the occupants who live there. Ornate decorations are seen as being a connection to a busy personality of those who live there. Whereas, a simple door, painted a solid, traditional color, will demonstrate that occupants are traditional in their style and décor.
As you can see there are many subtle messages that your front door is sending about you, your home, and your family. If you are in need of an upgrade or if you need to replace a broken door, contact Thomas V. Giel Garage Doors today.