How To Tell Whether Your Overhead Garage Door Has Worn Tracks

An overhead garage door has vertical tracks on either side. When you operate the door, the tracks guide it up and down with the help of the rollers. Worn tracks can affect garage door operations and cause abnormal movement. Severely damaged tracks can prevent the door from opening, locking you out of the garage. Therefore, you must replace the worn tracks to restore smooth door operation. Below are three ways to tell whether your overhead garage door has worn-out tracks.

Inspect the Tracks for Wear and Tear

Garage door tracks are made of metal; therefore, they are susceptible to corrosion and other structural defects. A visual inspection can reveal wear and tear on the component. Therefore, locate the tracks on the sides of the door and look for the following issues: 

  • Visible warping
  • Rust on the tracks
  • Bends or cracks on the tracks 

The above problems are common with older or poorly maintained garage doors. For example, a lack of lubrication can cause the rollers to grind against the tracks. This causes the tracks to wear prematurely. The door may also make unusual grinding or screeching sounds when opening and closing. Replace the worn-out tracks and service your door regularly to restore quiet, optimal operation.  

Check the Tracks for Alignment Issues

For your garage door to open and close smoothly, its tracks must be properly aligned. If the tracks are out of alignment, the door will open and close slowly or roughly. Severe misalignment can jam the rollers and prevent the door from moving. As a result, the garage door will get stuck in midair or fail to open. 

Track misalignment occurs in older garage doors. However, alignment issues can also arise if you accidentally hit the door with your vehicle or other heavy objects. You can fix a minor misalignment by loosening the bolts on the mounting bracket and realigning the tracks. However, if the tracks are damaged, you should replace them to prevent future alignment issues. 

Look Out for Uneven Door Movement

A garage door should open and close evenly. If your door appears uneven when opening or closing, it has worn-out or misaligned tracks. When operating your garage door, leave it halfway closed and inspect it from both sides. If one side is lower than the other or the door appears crooked or lopsided, you should install new tracks. However, uneven movement can also occur due to damaged extension or torsion springs. Therefore, you need an expert to troubleshoot the door and pinpoint the faulty components. 

Is your garage door exhibiting any of the above signs? If so, you should repair or replace the tracks to restore smooth operation. Contact a garage door contractor for professional repair services.

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