Garage door opening too slow or closing too fast? Let's do some troubleshooting...

Garage door opening too slow or closing too fast? Let's do some troubleshooting...

The garage door system has a number of components that work together to open and close the door. When everything is in sync, it operates without any problems. But as pulleys become worn, lubrication wears thin and springs lose their tension, the garage door will fail to operate at its full potential speed. Typically a garage door will open or close on average within 12-15 seconds. If this process takes longer or shorter than that it means something is off with your opener system.

Garage Door Opening Slowly

Hardware maintenance

It is important to keep the tracks and hinges well lubricated and clean so that they open smoothly. You can do this yourself as part of regular maintenance or get a garage door company for this. If you chose the DIY option here is what to do:

  • Remove grease and from all the hardware (tracks, wheels, brackets), you can wash it down with soap and water.
  • The wheels need to be lubricated and so do the hinges. We recommend the Nanotech Bearing Protect or a silicone spray as lubricant. Grease, Q20 or WD40 tends to leave a residue that will just attract dust and grime and it will end up fouling sooner than what you would like.
  • Open and close your garage door a couple of times to get the lubricant spread evenly

If this was the problem you should see your door operating better and quieter.

TIP: While you have the lubricant out, give the torsion spring a spray too. It will assist with corrosion control and friction.

If this fails to improve the garage door opening speed there might be something else wrong, for example a slack or broken spring, broken cables or collapsed wheels. In this instance it would be best to call in a garage door repair company to come and assess.

Check your garage door motor

This is a slightly more challenging DIY item to check but here is some basics to check:

  • If the garage door opener has a battery backup it could be that the battery is nearing the end of it's service life or is drained. This is not uncommon during load shedding. Unfortunately there is not much you can do here but replace it.
  • The drive gear can be worn and is ether slipping (you will hear it as it slips, its a very distinctive sound), or just worn where its is not pulling optimally. The latter will normally have a delay in the beginning and once it start pulling the speed should be steady.
  • The drive motor might have problems

In all the scenarios above it would be better to call in garage door company with the exception of changing a battery. That should be pretty straight forward for any DIY enthusiast.

Garage Door Closes to Fast

When your garage door closes too fast, it can be a sign of problems with either its spring, cables or motor. It also poses a great risk as the door might come down on someone or you vehicle and do not have time to stop at the limits or the obstructions sensors.

The spring on your garage door is designed to counterbalance the force of gravity and control its speed. The cables support this weight during opening and closing.

If the garage door is still opening normally it is probable that the spring is slack and needs to be readjusted. This is normal for the spring as it ages and tension will need to be adjusted to bring the lifting system back in balance. For this it is advisable to call a garage door repair company.

CAUSION: The spring and cables is under great tension, it is best not to try and and fix it yourself as it can cause serious injury if you are not familiar with the task. If you require a reputable company to assess you can look here at our preferred installer page.

Limits on the motor can also not be set correctly and will cause the door to slam shut. Grab the user manual and reprogram the limits.

If the above does not seem to be the problem, call a garage door company to assess.

In Conclusion

Your garage door opening speed can be one of the first signs of problems. With good maintenance and looking out for these symptoms you can prevent a more serious problem from occurring or damage of your vehicle, pets or person. If in doubt, contact a reputable garage door company and they will be able to assist.