Garage door jumping off the track can be pretty annoying. It leaves the space unsecured and can make the opening mechanism malfunction from time to time. So, when our door was exhibiting these problems, we were pretty much determined to learn how to get garage door back on track.
Well, even though there are a good amount of guides out there, none of them offers a quick solution. So, we had to improvise. Our improvised process provided us the ability to get the door back on track in about hours. And we plan to cover that specific process in this article. So, stick till the very end.
Reasons Why Garage Door Came off Track
The garage door is sure to malfunction if it comes off the track. But the real question is, why does it come off the track in the first place? Let us dig a little deep in that, shall we?
The most common cause behind a door getting off the track is misaligned tracks. This misalignment will usually happen when bolts that are holding the tracks get loose. As a result, the bracket wobbles even when there is a minimal amount of vibration on the door.
When the tracks do not have the proper alignment, there will also be a risk of the rollers coming right off the tracks. So, try to get the best rollers in the market. With some basic knowledge, you can change the door rollers yourself.
Also, when the tracks are not of high-quality materials, the slightest impact on the door can make them bend. And fixing a bent door is not a hassle that you would want to go through, would you?
Just like misaligned tracks, if they get loose, the door will come off from the placement. In fact, the whole structure can get misaligned if the tracks are loose. You will also notice that the bolts are wobbling too much when the tracks are not held in place properly.
The tracks can get dented or damaged for multiple reasons. And when the dents are serious, the rollers can come right off. This phenomenon will also cause the whole structure to become misaligned. You will also notice that the door is shaking a lot while opening and closing if the tracks are dented.
Debris and Grime Buildups
Over time, the dust, debris, and grime can build up inside the path. This buildup will come in the way of the rollers and cause them to misalign. For that reason, most garage door manufacturers will recommend you clean the tracks at least once a month. That cleanup can lower the chances of buildups occurring. You should also use door lubricants for your garage.
Even though it is pretty rare, but the door can get off the track when the cables get damaged or broken. You will find these cables on both sides of the garage panel. There will be cable winds. You will also find a cable drum that will be placed to a strong steel shaft.
For any reason, if the alignment of the door is distributed, the cable will not line up as it should. That will make it break without showing any warning signs. And when the cable breaks, the weight of the door will transfer to a single side, which will let the panel get off the tracks. It often happens after a little modification in your garage door like installation of a new garage door insulator. You can easily replace a garage door cable by yourself.
This is yet another common reason behind the door getting off the tracks. It will usually happen when the person is in a hurry and drives the car off, even when the door is not fully opened. And when the vehicle does hit the door, it will not only bend the panel but also damage the core components of the opening mechanism.
Furthermore, the rollers can come off from the place, allowing the door to be free-floating. This freely floating state can cause some severe accidents if you do not address it at the earliest.
How to Fix Garage Door off Track?
Now that you know the reasons behind a door coming off the track let us describe the thing that primarily brought you here in the first place. And these are the steps that you would need to follow to fix a garage door that is off the track:
Step 1: Disassemble the Door from the Automatic Opener
First, you need to detach the door from the automatic opening mechanism. Here, pull the overhead string. That will disengage the opener. Disengaging the opener will offer you the ability to manually close and open the door, which will come in handy for the fixing process.
Step 2: Partially Open the Doors and Place Vise Grips
You should partially open the door at this moment. Open it in such a manner that one of the detached rollers is lining up with the damaged or troubled region of the track. Then, you must attach some vice grips under the door. They will ensure that the door remains open when you are working with it.
Step 3: Open One Side of the Track
Next, grab strong pliers. Use it to pry open one of the sides of the track. Make sure that the opening is wide enough that you can slide the roller back in. If the opening is comparatively narrow, you will struggle a lot to work with the rollers. However, do not make the opening too wide. Repeat the process for each of the rollers.
Step 4: Close the Opening
Now that all of the rollers are back inside, you need to close the track's opening. The most straightforward way of doing this would be to place a small piece of wood inside the opened track. It will support the shape of the track. Then, use a hammer to bend the track back into place.
Here, the wooden piece will help in terms of setting the correct shape of the track. Hammer it until the shape matches with the track around it. Also, ensure that the rest of the track is aligned with the area you are hammering on.
For smooth opening and closing use a wireless garage door keypad.
At this point, you can remove the vice grips and wooden pieces. The garage door should also function normally.
Step 5: Test Out the Door
Do not re-engage the automatic opener just yet. Instead, close and open the door manually a few times. Check if the rollers are rolling smoothly or not. If you notice any hiccups or the door getting stuck in places while moving, you might need to repeat all of the steps above. But this time, ensure the alignment is right.
Step 6: Reattach the Door Opener
At this point, the door should be good as new. So, you can re-engage the automatic door opening mechanism. If the previous steps were carried out properly, the door should not exhibit any problem while it is being opened and closed automatically. Here we would suggest you add best garage door seals from the market.
We hope that we are capable of properly showing you how to get garage door back on track. So, whenever the door gets misaligned and starts malfunctioning, instead of worrying and panicking, follow the steps we have gone through above.