Get Your Garage Winter Ready
Winter is the hardest season on your garage door with its cold temperatures, heavy snow, and road salt which can lead to rusting. However, when the temperature drops you’re unlikely to want to be in your garage fixing last-minute issues, that’s why it’s important to follow these steps in preparation for winter.
Dodds Garage Doors suggests that you maintain your garage door twice a year. You can do this anytime in the year that works for you but with Canada’s snowy climate once in the spring and once in the fall works well and by adding a couple of steps to standard fall garage door maintenance your garage will be winter ready in no time.
Fall Garage Door Maintenace Checklist:
- Look & Listen
- Check for Rust
- Clean your Garage Door
- Lubricate your Hardware
- Inspect your Weather Stripping
- Tidy your Garage
- Prevent Window Condensation
Look & Listen
Open and close your garage door fully, listen for any concerning noises and look to make sure the door lifts smoothly and evenly. If you discover any issues it is best to call on garage door repair professionals, small problems can get significantly worse throughout the winter with the added stress of the ice and the cold on the garage door’s hardware.
Even if you live in one of Canada’s milder regions, such as in Toronto or surrounding areas, the winter weather can still put a big strain on your garage door. When the temperature fluctuates around 0℃ any moisture that makes its way into your garage door system will freeze and thaw repeatedly potentially damaging your hardware and creating rust.
Check for Rust
Inspect your garage door both inside and out, as well as the springs, hinges and cables for any signs of rust or other damage. Rust is one of the most common causes of broken garage doors, and staying on top of it can prevent future more costly repairs. If you find minor rust on your hardware treat it with a rust remover, however if you find significant corrosion on springs or fraying cables, book a repair immediately.
Clean your Garage Door
Its very important to wash the exterior of your garage door twice a year, especially the bottom section where road salt can accumulate. You can do this by simply wiping the door down with dish soap and water, just make sure to so it early enough so that the water doesn’t freeze on the door. A layer of wax can then be applied to the door for extra protection against the elements.
Lubricate your Hardware
Lubricating the springs and hinges of your garage door keeps them running smoothly and increases the longevity of your door. This can be done by the homeowner if they are competent in the anatomy of the garage door but professionals can also be called to take care of this job efficiently and effectively.
Inspect your Weather Stripping
Weather stripping is essential to winterizing your garage, it keeps cold air from blowing into your garage along with the snow, dirt and creepy crawlies it can bring with it. Check that the weather stripping is creating a good seal and it is not cracked, then clean and condition your weather stripping to increase its lifespan. If you find that the weather stripping is not in good condition you can either replace it yourself or call on a professional garage door repair company.
Tidy the Garage
This is a great time to tidy the garage, swap out summer and winter wardrobes and get the shovels and salt out. Also make sure to get rid of any trash and seal any boxes or bins to eliminate potential nesting spots for chilly critters. In the cold weather, many rodents often find garages an inviting environment, so make sure to keep your door closed as much as possible. For more tips on how to prevent and exclude pests from your garage we recommend this pest library.
Another way water can enter the garage during the winter is through window condensation, the water can then drip onto the ground or onto your car. This can happen year round if you have windows in your garage door, however it is especially common during cold weather because it is caused when your garage is more humid than outside. If this has been a problem in your home in years past, read on to learn how to remedy this issue.
- Lower the heat – Reducing the heat in your garage will decrease the humidity. If you have a heater in your garage turn it off and make sure the heat from your home isn’t leaking into the garage by leaving the door open or a poorly insulated door.
- Brush off your car – Tracking snow and slush into the garage with your car increases the moisture in the room and therefore the humidity so try to brush off your car before parking.
- Humidifier or Fan – Installing a humidifier is a great option if the issue persists, it will also help preserve items stored in the garage, especially clothes and fabrics that can be damaged by moisture. A well-positioned fan blowing across the windows can also be used to decrease the humidity near the windows and decrease condensation.
- Insulated windows – Condensation is a much bigger issue for non-insulated windows, consider replacing your windows or garage door to be better insulated.
If you are looking to replace your old garage door before the winter or have more questions about garage door winter maintenance call the experts at Dodds Garage Doors.
With over 2000 5-star reviews, Dodds has been the Greater Toronto area’s largest and highest rated garage door company for over 60 years, and received the prestigious Consumer Choice Award as the best garage door installation and repair company in Toronto every year since 2001. Dodds Garage Doors services the entire Greater Toronto Area including Toronto, North York, Oakville, Burlington, Richmond Hill, Whitby, Oshawa and more.