Garage doors rattle when they open and close. That’s understandable. But when they rattle from the wind blowing outside it can get a little annoying. Why do some garage doors rattle in the wind?
A garage door rattles in the wind if there’s a gap between the door and the door frames or if it has loose components. Improper installation, poor lubrication, loose nuts and bolts, unbalanced doors, or a loose chain in a chain drive door opener are potential sources of rattling noise.
Throughout this article, you’ll also learn the following info:
- How to fix a rattling garage door
- The tools you need to get the job done
- How to keep your garage doors safe and prevent further problems
Check for Loose Nuts and Bolts
A garage door comprises dozens of fasteners such as screws, nuts, and bolts, which come loose from the frequent opening and closing. The vibrations that result when operating a garage door knock them loose. Loose fasteners mean there’s a play between some door components that should otherwise be tightly bound.
A quick inspection of your garage door can help you spot the loosened hardware. If left unattended, loose fasteners can eventually come off, which affects your garage door’s integrity.
- Check for loose screws, nuts, and bolts and tighten them as needed. Check the spring plate mounts on swing-up doors for loose screws. On roll-up doors, examine the hinges joining the various door sections and replace the faulty ones.
- You can use a screwdriver or a drill to tighten the screws but don’t overtighten as that could lead to stripping. If some screws no longer fit into their holes, replace them with similar-sized but longer screws. Encase the new screw in a hollow fiber plug and dip it in carpenter glue before screwing it back in.
- Repeat the process and fix all the loose nuts and bolts in the garage door with a socket and wrench.
Fix Unbalanced Garage Doors
An unbalanced garage door poses a grave danger to your family’s health and wellbeing as well as your property. The door can fall off its hinges and cost you a pretty penny to repair and fix any additional damages.
While it’s advisable to leave such repairs to a professional garage door repair, you can fix an unbalanced garage door if you have the right tools.
Gather the Tools
You’ll not need any specialty tools to fix an unbalanced garage door, so you’re likely to have the tools handy. You’ll need:
- A stepladder
- Two winding bars
- Locking pliers
- 3/8-inch open-end wrench
How to Repair Unbalanced Garage Doors
- Start by closing the garage door. Disconnect the motor’s power cords and pull the emergency lever to release the door from its track.
- Open the door manually. This allows you to test whether the door remains open or it’ll come down on its own. Open the door in incremental bits until it gets to a position where it doesn’t stay open. If the door drops, proceed with step 3.
- Close the door. Place the stepladder on the front wall and step on it to access the tension spring’s adjuster and torsion rod. You’ll find it in the outer area of the spring.
- Attach the locking pliers vertically to the torsion rod, about 12 inches from the adjuster. Ensure the pliers’ handle is resting against the door or the wall to immobilize the bar as you adjust the door.
- Insert one end of the winding bars into the lower hole on the spring adjuster and loosen the adjuster’s nuts with your wrench. Despite the spring’s tension pushing the bar against the rail, you should leave it in place.
- Insert the second winding bar in the hole above the first winding bar and grip the other end with one hand.
- Holding the first bar, lift the second winding bar to form a 45-degree angle between them.
- Apply upward pressure and insert the first winding bar’s end into the spring adjuster’s lowest hole. Sometimes you may have to let the other winding bar rest against the rail before applying the pressure.
- Tighten the lock nuts with the wrench and rotate the adjuster with the second winding bar to remove the first winding bar.
- Test the garage once more by closing and opening it manually, section by section. If the door doesn’t hold in the open position, repeat the process once more. If it remains in the open position, you’ve successfully balanced the garage door.
- Engage the emergency level and reconnect the power supply.
Lubricating a Garage Door
If a garage door isn’t well maintained or lubricated regularly, it may become noisy from the wear and tear. Experts recommend lubricating your garage door every six months to keep it in excellent working condition and extend its lifespan.
To ensure that you do a thorough job lubricating a garage door, you should complete a pre-lubrication maintenance checklist:
- Tighten the loose hardware. This includes nuts, bolts, screws, and chains that come loose from the garage doors’ frequent vibration and rattling.
- Check the rollers. Unsealed bearings on the rollers collect dirt and grime that cause the rollers to break down. Faulty rollers are noisy because they tend to wobble on the track.
- Inspect the hinges. Worn and loose hinges squeak and screech and will cause the door to stick at every section as it opens.
- Tighten the chain on the garage opener. A loose garage opener chain produces slapping sounds and makes the door jerk around as it opens.
Once you’ve gone through this checklist, you can embark on lubricating your garage door.
- Close the garage door and disconnect the power supply
- Wipe down the outside and inside of the track to remove dirt, grime, and debris. Never apply a lubricant on the track as it makes it difficult for the rollers to move, increasing the garage opener’s load. If the track is caked with grime, you can dislodge it with an automotive brake cleaner.
- Open the door manually and lubricate each of the hinges. Pay special attention to where the hinges meet the track’s bend.
- Lubricate the rollers, especially the tiny ball bearing housed in each of the rollers. Carefully wipe away the excess lubricants as it can lead the door to come off balance.
- Lubricate the garage door spring and bearing plates at the top. Close and open the door to ensure an even distribution of the grease.
- Oil the armbar and the lock, if your garage door has one, as it makes it easier to lock the door manually. Do the same with the keyhole and the large armbar atop the garage door.
- Lubricate the top of the chain rail by spreading the grease with a rag. You may skip greasing the chain as it comes with a natural lubricant.
If your garage door rattles in the wind or squeaks and screeches every time you open it, take that as an indication that something is wrong. The frequent usage of a garage door takes a heavy toll on it, resulting in heavy wear and tear.
Without regular care and preventive maintenance, some garage door components are knocked loose and out of whack. When that happens, the door is bound to rattle and shake, creating a ruckus.
Espousing preventive care keeps your garage door in proper working and extends its lifespan; more importantly, it won’t keep you up at night.
You can learn how to make your garage more energy efficient, including a simple way to increase the efficiency of your garage doors.
As a homeowner, I am constantly experimenting with making the structure of my house more energy-efficient, eliminating pests, and taking on DIY home improvement projects. Over the past two decades, my family has rehabbed houses and contracted new home builds and I’ve learned a lot along the way. I share my hard-learned lessons so that you can save time and money by not repeating my mistakes.