How to Open a Garage Door When the Power Is Out

How to Open a Garage Door When the Power Is Out

How to Open a Garage Door When the Power Is Out

How to Open a Garage Door When the Power Is Out

Automatic garage doors offer a significant advantage — when bad weather strikes, you can avoid the outdoors and move your vehicle inside with the click of a button. 

Knowing how to operate your garage door manually can help you stay comfortable, safe and secure during any emergency. The next time you have a power outage, follow these steps:

1. Inspect the Door

To work manually, your garage needs to be in good condition. Look at the door and its components — do you notice any loose springs or damages? If so, contact your local experts for repairs instead of manually operating the door.

2. Release the Trigger

Before moving forward with the next step, you must ensure the door is in the down position. Attempting to release a trigger while the door is in the open position can result in bodily harm or property damage. 

Look for an emergency release cord near the front of your closed door. The cord is usually red with a T-shaped handle and hangs from your door’s track. Slowly release the trigger to disconnect the trolley from the carriage. 

3. Manually Raise the Door

Use the internal handle to lift the door. You can use pressure to push the bottom edge of your door up and guide it into place as needed. 

You may have a broken spring if you can’t move the door. In this case, you will need repair services. 

4. Lower Your Door for Security

After you enter or exit your garage, you should lower the door. Engage the manual lock to prevent unwanted visitors from entering your property. 

5. Reconnect the Opener

You will need to unlock the manual lock when your power returns. Then reattach your door to the opener using either of these methods: 

  • Adjust the trigger: Grab the rope and pull it toward the door until you hear a click. Visually confirm it’s locked back in before you run the opener through a complete cycle, all the way up and down.
  • Engage the garage door opener: Hit the electric garage door opener’s switch to push the springs back into place. Reconnect the carriage and trolley to electrically open and close your door again. 

Feel Prepared for Any Power Outage With the Best Garage Door Upgrades

Do you currently have a manual-release garage door or want to upgrade your existing overhead door? Explore the stylish and high-performance options available at Crawford Door Sales when you contact our team today!

How To Prepare Your Garage for the Winter

How to Prepare Your Garage for the Winter

When you’re gearing up for the colder months ahead, you want to do everything you can to prepare your home for the cold and harsh elements. Part of this is making sure your garage is also well-equipped. Your garage is an extension of your home and protects your vehicle and other belongings, so it should receive the same time and attention.

Here are a few tips on how to prepare your garage so it’s ready for winter. 

Declutter and Organize 

We tend to use our garage for much more than parking a car or two. The garage seems the viable and safest option when the house has no space to keep your precious summer sports gear and other valuable items. Furniture, refrigerators and other household equipment often find their way to a semi-permanent home inside the garage.  

In winter, you can anticipate temperature drops that could reach a freezing point. Set time aside in the warmer months to declutter and organize things to avoid any items being damaged by the moisture and cold air in your garage. Sift through smaller items and box up anything that has monetary or sentimental value. Everything else should ideally be gifted or thrown away to save space. 

Weatherproof Storage Items

If you have large equipment like furniture or a washing machine, weatherproof it by wrapping it in plastic for extra protection and let it stand on raised platforms. This is a preventative measure — if you should experience flooding in your garage, it will be safe from water damage. 

Assign a dedicated spot to hang up wet shoes and clothes before entering your home so it’s not riddled with mud and dirt. Once everything is neatly stored and you’ve dusted and decluttered your garage, sweep and mop the floor for that added touch of cleanliness. Knowing you will be able to find whatever you need with ease should give you peace of mind. 

Remove Chemicals and Hazardous Materials

If you’re storing chemicals in your garage, now might be the time to get rid of them. When temperatures fluctuate, the liquid content contracts and expands and may lead to chemical spillage. This is dangerous and should be avoided at all costs. 

If you need to store chemicals and other parts like batteries, ensure they are secured, kept out of reach and protected from freezing. 

Insulate Your Garage

If your garage isn’t already well-insulated, it could help to do it in advance. Insulating your garage has its advantages, such as:

  • Heat retention: Heat and cold transmissions are reduced with insulation since it keeps the heat in and cold out as required. 
  • Energy conservation: Your energy bill is reduced when you insulate your garage because your HVAC system is less strained to accommodate heating the garage. 
  • Water heater blanket: By insulating your older water heater with a blanket, you’ll save further costs on energy bills. 
  • Protect stored items: Your garage is protected from humidity and dampness that can damage your items.
  • Noise reduction: An insulated garage reduces noise transmission so you hear less noise pollution from the outside and keep any noise within your garage from leaking out.

Protect the Pipework

When insulating your garage, include the pipework to minimize any potential damage caused by freezing. Fluctuations in temperature and extreme cold could burst the pipes, flooding your garage. This destruction can be costly and is easily avoidable. 

By keeping your pipes insulated it will also retain heat and in turn, help save energy. 

Invest in Adequate Heating

If your garage is used as a workshop, gym or office unit, you probably use it more often. In this case, you’d want the temperature to be consistent and warmer during the winter. A bar, fan or space heater all provide the necessary heating requirements to keep your garage comfortable when you use it on colder days. 

Any pipework is kept at ambient temperature when you use a heater, preventing potential freezing and corrosion.  

Seal Cracks and Fix Leaks

Wherever there are cracks in your garage wall, flooring, window frames and garage door, you’ll find drafts can easily enter and make the space inside cold and unpleasant. The increasingly cold and damp air could eventually also damage your stored equipment. 

Inspect each section from the floor to the ceiling and walls for cracks and seal them if they’re small enough, including the exterior walls where cracks could be evident. Adding caulk around your windowpanes should help keep it sealed for winter.

If you notice any leaks, find the source and try to fix it or call a plumber to inspect the area in case there’s extensive damage you can’t see or fix yourself. 

Seal the Floor

Besides sealing cracks in and around your garage, you will benefit from sealing the floor to prevent corrosion due to salt residue. This salt is used to combat slush from snow and ice and aids in keeping cars on the road. It is brought into your garage by your car and seeps into the floor, causing gradual corrosion of the top layer. 

By sealing your garage floor, the surface is more resistant to any form of damage and maintains its durability. 

You also decrease the chances of anyone falling and hurting themselves. An epoxy sealant that prevents slipping is especially beneficial for the winter when there’s a higher risk.

Inspect Garage Door Parts

Your garage door is the main component that protects your belongings from the direct impact of rain, sun, snow and other weather elements. Perform a thorough inspection to ensure your door is fully functional and ready for the winter. There could be negative consequences associated with neglecting to maintain your garage door, such as the risk of personal injury or damage to your vehicle.

To help protect and prepare your garage door, perform essential maintenance:

  • Weatherstrip the garage door: Weatherstripping provides better protection from the cold and prevents snow and debris from entering your garage. If it is old and worn, be sure to replace it before winter hits.
  • Lubricate moving parts: Lubricate any moving parts, like the track and rollers, to ensure your garage door performs optimally despite the low temperatures.
  • Repair or replace worn parts: Have a garage door technician inspect your door for any worn parts. To keep you and your family safe, be sure to leave any significant repairs to the professionals.
  • Check the opener: Check the opener to ensure a proper connection to the remote and other moving parts.

You can contact a professional garage door company for help inspecting your garage door and making sure it’s ready for the upcoming winter season.

Contact Crawford Door Sales for Your Garage Door Repairs and Installations

At Crawford Door Sales, we are proud to deliver superior service and workmanship on every job we do, big or small. We put you first as our valued customer and ensure every encounter is pleasant, from consultations to repairs and installations. 

We look forward to helping you prepare your garage door for the winter so you can rest assured knowing your valuables are protected. Call us at (651) 455-1221 or submit a service request and we’ll take it from there. 

How to Secure Your Garage Before Going on Vacation

How to Secure Your Garage Before Going on Vacation

If you’re looking forward to some well-deserved rest and relaxation on your next vacation, increase your peace of mind by taking the time to protect your garage and reduce the chance of a break-in while you’re away. A few preventive steps before vacation can help you avoid stress when you return.

Keep your garage and the rest of your home safe from burglars and theft by adding garage security to your pre-vacation checklist. Here’s what you can do to protect your garage before you leave. 

1. Turn on the Vacation Lock Feature

If you have a newer garage door opener, it may be equipped with a vacation lock feature. If that’s the case, activate the feature right before you leave. Once turned on, the vacation lock prevents radio signals from opening the door until you deactivate the feature. 

2. Unplug the Garage Door Opener 

Older garage door openers may not have a vacation feature. If that’s the case with yours, unplug the opener before you leave. When there’s no power to the garage door opener, no one will be able to open it with a code or remote control. 

3. Install an Additional Lock

You can also protect your property and belongings by adding another lock to your garage door. You can use the additional lock along with or instead of using vacation mode or unplugging the automatic garage door opener. 

The extra lock attaches to the door from the inside and physically prevents someone from forcing the door open. Think of it as a heavy-duty deadbolt for your garage door. 

4. Protect the Windows

If there are windows in your garage, burglars can gain entry through them. Secure the windows by installing bars on the exterior. If you don’t like the look of security bars, another option is to place window film on the interior glass. The film will make it more difficult for a burglar to shatter the glass and gain entry.

Also, consider installing blinds or curtains on the windows, so people can’t peek inside your garage while you’re away from home.

5. Install Motion-Activated Lights

Prevent aspiring burglars from accessing your belongings by installing motion-sensing exterior lights. The lights will turn on automatically whenever they detect movement, deterring would-be thieves.

6. Keep Your Vacation Under Wraps

Prevent your home from being a target for burglars by not advertising that you’re away. You can accomplish this goal by asking the post office to hold your mail and pausing newspaper or other regular deliveries. You can also connect a few interior lights to timers so that they switch on and off at night. 

If you use social media, wait until you’ve returned home to share pictures and details about your time away. 

Contact Crawford Door Sales Before Your Next Vacation

Before you head off to relax, make sure your garage door is in good working order. Schedule garage door maintenance or repair with Crawford Door Sales and rest easy knowing that your home will be secure while you’re away, as we specialize in garage doors. Contact us today to request service.

Contact Crawford Door Sales Before Your Next Vacation

5 Warning Signs It’s Time for a New Garage Door

5 Warning Signs It’s Time For A New Garage Door

If you’re like many homeowners, you may not give much thought to your garage. It’s a place to put your car and store a few items you don’t want, need or have room for inside your house. 

However, whether it’s an attached or a stand-alone structure, your garage can begin to show signs of age. An older garage can start to deteriorate, which may require a complete replacement. The door is one area that demands attention to ensure it’s functioning correctly and safely. 

Leading Indicators of a Garage Door Replacement

Some symptoms pointing to a garage door upgrade or total structure replacement include:

1. Obvious Signs of Damage

Sometimes, it’s easy to tell when it’s time for a garage replacement. Do you see cracks in the walls or floor? These issues can indicate that the garage’s structural integrity is weakening, eventually creating a dangerous situation. Signs of animal or insect infestations also mean that these critters are finding ways to get inside. 

2. Exposure to the Elements

Do you feel drafts in the garage with the door closed? Is rain, snow or wind able to get inside? These situations can be especially bothersome if you use the garage for purposes other than storage, such as a home office or gym. If the elements enter through your garage door, replacing it may help you maintain the space’s comfort.

3. Frequent Repairs

If you’re always fixing something in or around the garage, those repairs could cost a fortune in repair bills. Weighing the costs of frequent service against that of a replacement is common when deciding whether a new garage door is necessary. Investing in a new one can be a significant investment, but it can also help you save money long-term. 

4. Loud Door Noises

If you hear abnormal sounds like grinding, squeaking or groaning, it likely indicates a severe mechanical issue requiring immediate attention. A sudden, loud bang usually means a snapped spring, creating a potentially dangerous situation.

5. Sagging Door

A door that sags, looks uneven or becomes unbalanced is another cause for concern. Practice caution and call a professional immediately, as these signs often mean the door is ready to fall. 

Crawford Door Sales Offers Garage Door Services in the Twin Cities

Crawford Door Sales Offers Garage Door Services in the Twin Cities

If you live in the Twin Cities area and experience problems with your garage door, the experts at Crawford Door Sales can meet all your replacement and repair needs. Contact us to request additional information or schedule a convenient service appointment today.

Anatomy of a Garage Door Explained

Anatomy of a Garage Door Explained

Your garage door is an essential element in your day-to-day life. A garage door plays many roles, whether you rely on it to exit or enter your home, protect your equipment or safeguard your home or business from intruders.

Although the door function may appear seamless, many components work hard to allow entrances and exits. Each element is vital to the door’s movement, and understanding how they work can ensure your door stays in the best shape. Learn what the parts of a garage door are called and how they work to lift and lower your door.

How Does a Garage Door System Work?

Your garage functions when all the components in the system work together. When it’s time for the door to raise or lower, you can do so with the push of a button. When the motor runs, the other parts of a garage structure respond. The door will slide open by moving over rollers along a track to reach the ceiling. Additional components counter the door’s weight, allowing it to move up and down seamlessly.

What Are the Parts of a Garage Door?

Understanding your garage door parts can be helpful when you need to make repairs, require new door installation or want to consider customization options. The better you know the parts, the more easily you can determine the best solution for your door and space. Here are the essential garage door components to understand:

Garage Door Opener

Your opener is a vital component of your system. Without this piece, your door would not receive instructions to open or close. One of the most important parts of a garage door opener system is the sensor that triggers when it’s time to respond. This sensor often has a distance sensitivity, so you can rest assured that you won’t accidentally open the door from the remote while away.

Tracks and Rollers

The rollers and tracks allow your door to slide up and down. Rollers will often have a metal rod and wheel made of steel or nylon. Rollers glide on the tracks fit along the door sides.

The tracks run vertically on either side of the door and above it along the ceiling. The tracks guide the door where it needs to go while it moves along the rollers to open or close. Most doors have a safety feature to prevent the door from opening if it comes off the track to avoid damage and injuries.


Although the motor signals when to open or close the door, the springs produce the energy the system needs to lift or lower the door. Depending on the age and model of your door, it has torsion or extension springs. Most modern doors will have torsion springs above the door, but older homes and businesses may have extension springs on the horizontal track.

These springs harness potential energy that controls the door’s movement and prevents it from slamming shut or snapping open. If you experience either of these issues, call a professional for immediate assistance, as garage door springs can injure people or cause damage if they fly free.

What Are the Parts of a Garage Door?

Hinges and Brackets

These metal pieces hold other components in place and connect sections of your door together. Hinges are in the middle of the door to attach the panels and bend as the door opens or closes. Brackets typically keep rollers and cables fastened on the door sides.


Panels act as a protective layer and a stylish choice. Panels come in various styles and face the outdoors. Typically, you can choose between wood, aluminum, steel, vinyl or fiberglass panels to achieve your preferred look. These can boost curb appeal for a home or business and protect the rest of your garage door components from the elements.


Metal lifting cables on either side of the door connect the door and the opening mechanism. Each garage door cable attaches to the bottom of the door and stretches to the top of the door to reach the drum. As the drum rotates, the cable rolls up, lifting the door.


The drums connect to the cables, lifting and lowering your door when needed. They also connect to the tube shaft and act as pulley wheels. The drums rotate when the springs release energy. In turn, this will cause the cables to move.

Tube Shaft

The tube shaft runs across the top of the door and holds the springs in place. It remains stationary and ensures the springs can function properly, allowing the cables and drums to react to their energy.

Weather Seals

For additional protection, your door will have a weather seal to protect the door and items inside the garage from natural elements. The weather seal runs along the door bottom, preventing drafts, rain, snow, insects and debris from entering. This helps increase the door’s energy efficiency and can extend the life span of other door components by protecting them from weather conditions and pests that could damage them.

Emergency Cord

The emergency cord is a safety feature that can disengage the door from the opener. This cord hangs on the inside of the door and disconnects the door from the motor when pulled. It typically has a red tag to indicate the safety feature and ensure no one pulls it accidentally.

Although the motor is disengaged, the springs still function, allowing you manually open the door. This feature is excellent when you want to perform maintenance without the risk of accidental opening or closing. For example, a homeowner who needs to open the door halfway could use the emergency cord to prevent someone else from opening the door with a remote while they work.

Safety Sensor

Another safety feature on your door is the safety sensor. Similar to the emergency cord, these photo eye sensors can stop the door from moving. The photo eye has two sensors, which you can locate on either side of the door near the floor. One sensor projects a beam to the other across the door. If an object or person is underneath your door, the beam will break, signaling to the door that it is unsafe to lower.

Count on Crawford Door Sales for Your Garage Needs

Count on Crawford Door Sales for Your Garage Needs

Crawford Door Sales is family-owned and operated. We’ve had the pleasure of serving commercial and residential garage door owners for more than 60 years. Our vast experience has empowered us to offer superior service and products to anyone needing to keep their door in tip-top shape or replace an existing system.

Our goal is to provide the best professional installation, deliver high-quality service and offer the best products available to each customer. We can help you learn more about garage doors or repair or replace an existing one. Call us or fill out our contact form, and let us be your one-stop shop for all your garage door needs.

How to Inspect Your Garage Door

How to Inspect Your Garage Door

If you’re like many homeowners, you and your family may open and close your garage door several times a day. All this wear and tear can take a toll on your door and its various operating mechanisms. 

Like any mechanical object, a garage door needs regular service to keep it in peak working condition and safe to operate. You can do your part by periodically checking the door to spot potential repair issues before they become significant problems.

How to Inspect a Garage Door

At Crawford Door Sales, we’ve been providing expert garage door services in Minnesota’s Twin Cities region since 1958. Use our comprehensive garage door inspection checklist to assess the areas most likely require attention. 

1. Photo Eye Sensors

These small devices are affixed to either side of the door’s opening about 6 inches above the ground. Their purpose is to stop the door from closing and cause it to reverse direction if it encounters an object. 

To test the sensors, place a block of wood or another object that is more than 6 inches tall in the opening and begin the closing process. If the door doesn’t close, the sensors are functioning correctly. 

2. Tracks and Rollers

These mechanisms enable the door to move freely and keep it open when you want it to remain that way. Inspect them by switching the opener into manual mode and moving the door into various positions by hand. The door should stay on track as you make these adjustments. 

You should also check the rollers for signs of corrosion, cracks, chips or warping. 

3. Springs

Springs are essential for raising and lowering the door and counterbalancing its weight. If the springs squeak during operation, apply a lithium grease or silicone spray to lubricate them. If you notice rust or other signs of damage, call a professional garage door technician to address the issue. 

Spring repair is not a do-it-yourself project. The built-up tension in the springs can cause them to snap, which can lead to severe injuries. 

4. Pulleys and Cables

Garage door systems have a series of pulleys and cables that lift the door and move it along the belt. Check them to ensure they move freely during operation and that the cables aren’t beginning to fray.

5. Weatherstripping

The rubber treads on the bottom and sides of your door provide a seal that makes the garage more energy efficient. Check the weatherstripping for obvious signs of wear and replace it if necessary.

How Do You Inspect a Garage Door Opener?

You should also know how to test a garage door opener to ensure your door will operate safely and efficiently. All openers manufactured after January 1, 1993, have a built-in auto-reverse mechanism that functions much like the photo eye sensors. 

To test this feature, place a block of wood or another object at least 1.5 inches high at the door’s edge. Press the opener’s button to close the door. If the auto-reverse is working correctly, the door will stop and change direction. 

Contact Crawford Door Sales for Additional Assistance

Crawford Door Sales can perform a fast, professional garage door inspection to ensure your door is functioning correctly. We can also handle any maintenance or repair issues we discover during our check. Contact us to schedule a convenient appointment today.

Call Our Team Of Experts To Inspect Your Garage Door

How to Choose the Right Size Garage Door

How to Choose the Right Size Garage Door

When it comes time to purchase or replace a garage door, several critical measurements ensure you’ll get the best possible door for your home, including the overall width and height. Knowing the specs of your garage and the measurements of the vehicles you’ll park inside are essential for maximizing both efficiency and convenience. 

Since a new high-quality garage door will ideally last many years, you’ll want to make all the right choices the first time.

Which Garage Door Size Is Right for You?

Most standard garage doors are 7 feet tall. Larger sizes are available for property owners needing overhead clearance, such as bigger trucks or SUVs with transport or storage racks on top.

If you’re considering increasing the overall height of the opening, you’ll want to ensure you have enough headroom between the opening and the garage’s ceiling to provide space for the garage door’s track.

Average Garage Door Widths and Height Options Learn More About Our Garage Door Services

Average Garage Door Widths and Height Options

Industry standards for size allow dealers to keep an inventory of doors on hand. Most contemporary homes have openings that fit traditional 7-foot doors, although designs with increased heights are gaining popularity. Some of the most common measurements include:

  • One-car garage door size: Standard single-car garage doors range from 8 to 9 feet wide by 7 to 8 feet high. These doors work well for one small car without any need for extra space. 
  • Double-car garage door size: A door featuring one opening for two cars typically measures 16 feet wide by 7 to 8 feet high.
  • Multiple Garage doors: Some garages have two or more doors on either side with a vertical beam in the center separating them. While it might be aesthetically pleasing, the post in the middle of the opening may be inconvenient. We do not advise or work on the removal of such posts but can direct you to someone who could do that scope of work. 
  • Garage door height for a truck: If you want to park an oversize truck or a taller recreational vehicle inside your garage, you may need to increase the height of your door to 8 to 10 feet and opt for a non-stock size option. However, it’s vital to remember the headroom needed for the tracks. A knowledgeable dealer can help you determine the best measurements in these circumstances.

Most garage door sections or panels come in 18-, 21- and 24-inch sizes that can combine to various widths and heights.

Contact the Professionals at Crawford Garage Door Sales Today

If you need advice choosing the optimal measurements for your new door, the team at Crawford Garage Door Sales is ready to help. Our professionals work with you to determine the ideal solution for your unique needs. Contact us today to learn more!

Request a Free Quote Today

How to Keep Your Pet Safe Around Garage Doors

How to Keep Your Pet Safe Around Garage Doors

As a pet parent, you do everything to keep your pets safe. You keep them away from dangerous foods and protect them from safety hazards. If your pets make frequent trips to your garage, you may worry about their safety around the garage door. Keep reading to learn more about the importance of garage door safety around pets and how you can keep your cats and dogs safe.

Importance of Garage Door Safety Around Pets

Garage doors are designed to be safe for humans and animals alike. Automatic garage doors will stop closing when the sensors detect movement, which prevents the door from fully closing. The only way to get the door to start closing or opening again is to use the remote a second time. Despite how truly effective the garage door safety features are, you should be aware of the potential risks your garage door may pose.

Here are some common questions pet owners ask in regards to their garage door and pet safety:

Can a Garage Door Hurt a Cat?

This answer may come as a surprise, but other doors actually pose a greater risk to your cat than an automatic garage door. When a cat is injured by a shutting door, the cause is nearly always user error. You routinely open and close the front and back doors of your house so many times each day that it’s muscle memory. Sometimes, you’re tired and lost in thought, and your cat might linger in the threshold for a little too long.

An automatic garage door will react when something enters its sensors by immediately raising it back up. Cats run low to the ground and have a small surface area, giving them plenty of leeway to slip past a nearly shut garage door without being hurt.

Learn About Our Garage Door Repair Services


Can a Garage Door Kill a Cat?

Feline fatalities from garage door accidents are exceptionally rare, even for pets that spend a lot of time lounging around garages and mudrooms. Since garage doors have motion sensors that can detect movement, it’s unlikely that a garage door would kill a cat. While accidents do happen, following pet safety tips can keep your furry friends safe.

How Do I Make My Dog Safe in My Garage?

If your dog stays in your garage, the best way to ensure your pet’s safety is to provide obedience training. You can train your dog to stand away from the sensors until you push the remote and give them the go-ahead to walk past the door. Training your dog will allow you to always know where they are when you’re opening and closing your garage door.

When your pet is in the garage, refrain from keeping the garage door open slightly. Many pet owners will open their garage door a few inches to allow air to flow into the garage. The problem with this is that it can cause unnecessary tension on the springs of your garage door that can wear it down over time. Worn-down springs are unsafe for pets and run the risk that the door could suddenly fall shut. To keep your dog safe in your garage, don’t leave the doors slightly open. Keep them fully closed or have them fully open if you’re home with your pet.

How Do I Keep My Dog From Running in the Garage With the Door Open?

The best solution for keeping your dog from running in the garage with the door open is training. You can train your dog to remain outside the garage when you enter and keep them from entering. Teaching the “stay” command is especially helpful in this case because it keeps your dog in one place and ensures they don’t run into the garage.

Garage Door Safety Tips for Pet Owners

Garage Door Safety Tips for Pet Owners

Safe handling is important when you have pets. Below are some more tips for garage door safety:

  1. Use the garage door as recommended and don’t leave the door open partially for pets to exit and enter.
  2. If you have a cat that likes to climb, check the door gears before opening or closing the doors. A cat might try to climb up onto the shelf a raised door provides.
  3. Schedule regular maintenance for your garage door to know when you should make repairs.
  4. If you have to leash your pet in the garage, avoid tying them to the garage door. The metal might seem like it would be sturdy enough to support a rambunctious pet, but the mechanisms are intended only for raising the door.
  5. Play games like catch, keep-away and fetch outside of the garage. Using your door for a race game or as an obstacle to get to their toy will encourage the pet to charge the door without reserve.
  6. Make sure any cables or wires are safe from your pet chewing on them. If you have a pet that likes to chew, provide them with enough toys so they have a few distractions from the door. You can also try blocking off the wiring, but remember to make it accessible for maintenance and repairs.

Learn About Our Garage Door Repair Services


Motion Detectors For Pet Safety

All automatic garage door systems have motion detectors set at ground level. Test yours to make sure they’re working properly before you allow any pets into your garage. You might have tried raising your foot over the sensor as you exited to avoid triggering the safety feature. Since animals rarely jump over the garage threshold, the sensors will detect their feet crossing over.

When one or both sensors stop working correctly, your door might stop shutting entirely, or you could have other noticeable issues. Buying a quality product will ensure that your door functions well and lasts a long time before needing repairs

Automatic Reverse Function

The garage door should raise up when the sensors detect motion. This is a safety feature that is standard for all automatic garage doors.

Pet Doors For Garage Safety

Rather than leaving the door raised or overusing it, which causes strain on your gears, install a pet door for convenience and safety. Pets can enter and exit the garage as they wish, and you can use your automatic motor sparingly. If you decide to get a pet door, make sure to install it a reasonable distance from the garage door to keep them away. 

Buy a Quality Garage Door With Crawford Door Sales

Want to make sure your pets stay safe? Crawford Door Sales services automatic garage doors for residences in the Twin Cities area. We offer a wide variety of garage doors that can add some curb appeal to your home while keep you and your furry friends safe. Contact us to learn more.

Buy a Quality Garage Door With Crawford Door Sales

How to Line Up Garage Door Sensors

How to Line Up Garage Door Sensors

Garage doors are essential entryways for homes and businesses. Garage door sensors are important components that prevent emergencies and keep your door in safe operation. If your electronic sensors are out of alignment, you can troubleshoot your installations to get them back on track.

What Are Garage Door Sensors?

Garage door sensors communicate with automatic openers. The main purpose of a garage door sensor is to stop an overhead door from shutting on vehicles, children, pets and other objects. Residential and commercial garage doors have a minimum of two sensors, one on each side of the track.

If something obstructs the garage door’s path, sensors tell the automatic opener to stop closing and reverse back open. 

How to Align Your Garage Door Sensors

In most applications, the sensors will prevent the door from closing but does not affect opening which is a very good clue that there is an issue with the door sensors. Home owners will often state that their door opened fine but will not close. Other signs of blocked sensors are lack of indicator LEDS on the sensors themselves, door attempting to close but reversing right away, the dome light on the motor itself will blink when a door reverses. When you get one of these symptoms there are a few things to look for to determine if this is a quick fix or may require professional service:

1. Check for an obstruction: sometimes a shovel or broom or bike might be placed in front of the sensor, in this case they are doing exactly what they should do, remove the obstruction and run the door as normal to see fixes it.

2. Check sensor eye for debris: A common issue is spider webs, dust, or other debris may over the sensor lens. If you see this, clean lens with a soft dry cloth, being careful not to bump the eye position

3. Sensors are misaligned: Because of their location, sometimes the sensors may get bumped and misaligned. Most sensors will have a indicator LED that will be lit up if the sensor is working correctly. The sending sensor should always have a LED on but the receiving sensor will only have a LED on if receiving the signal beam from the sending sensor. You can check your owners manual, call your door dealer, or search the opener manufacturer on the internet to see what color codes your sensors use to indicate their operation status and fault indications. If you suspect a misalignment, you can use the below steps to help re-align the sensors.

Home and business owners can usually fix the situation with these steps:

  1. Disconnect power to the garage: Unplug your garage door opener or cut off power at the breaker box. Wear electricity-resistant gloves.
  2. Loosen sensor mounting brackets: Use a screwdriver or sometimes socket wrench to loosen the garage door sensor brackets until the brackets move freely. 
  3. Reposition height: code requires door sensors to be positioned a minimum of 6″ from the floor and no more than 18″, 6-9″ is best. Use a tape measure to position both sensors the same distance above the floor.
  4. Reposition sensors: Rotate each sensor so it is pointed directly across at the other, you can use a level to do this. Pay attention to the indicator LEDs. Once both are solidly lit, you can refasten.
  5. Refasten the sensor brackets: Use your screwdriver/socket wrench to fasten the brackets back in place. Reconnect power and test the system

How to Test Garage Door Sensors

Once you complete the adjustment process, test out your new sensor placement. All you need is a block of wood. Grab your automatic opener and move the overhead door to the open position. Put the block of wood between the sensors and attempt to shut the garage door. Your overhead door should stop or reverse when it detects the object.

Remove the block of wood and repeat the process to see that your door shuts completely. If your garage door won’t close but the sensors are aligned, you may have to adjust its sensitivity.

What If Garage Door Sensors Are Too Sensitive?

 Garage door sensors do not change sensitivity however they may be affected by sunlight if it is coming in at an angle that hits the sensor lens. There are a variety of DIY fixes such as placing a shield over sensor lens to prevent light interference from the sides (many manufacturers have an aftermarket option available) or swapping the position of the eyes. The receiving eye will be more affected by sunlight interference so swapping positions often solves this issue.

Contact Crawford Door Sales for Garage Door Maintenance and Repairs

Crawford Door Sales works with home and business owners in the Twin Cities, Minnesota, area. If you’re experiencing a garage door issue, we offer a variety of repair services for residential and commercial installations. Our team has more than 60 years of experience serving the local community to get your assembly back up and running. Contact us to schedule your appointment today!

What Is the Average Lifespan of a Garage Door?

What Is the Average Lifespan of a Garage Door?

What Is the Average Lifespan of a Garage Door?

Every central feature of your home has an average lifespan before you’ll have to replace it. Elements like your roof, water heater, heating and air unit, electrical panel and garage door have lifetimes you can prolong by getting regular maintenance and choosing high-quality products.

Your garage door is a standout feature of your home. It impacts your curb appeal and might be the primary entry point. A quality garage door will operate properly, provide security and last a long time.

Knowing your garage door’s lifespan will help you determine when it needs upkeep and replacement. It’s also helpful when you’re building a new home and need to select a quality garage door that will last for several years.

Typical Lifespan of a Garage Door

Though many factors contribute to a garage door’s lifespan, a typical garage door will last around 15 and 30 years. 

Your garage door’s lifetime will vary depending on the type and brand you choose. Factors like the weather, environment, usage and maintenance schedule also impact the longevity of your garage door.

Take a look at how these factors can contribute to your garage door’s lifespan.

  • Weather and environment: Depending on your location and the weather that usually occurs there, your garage door may experience damages related to storms, floods and other environmental factors.
  • Usage: The amount of open-and-close cycles your garage door has depends on the type of springs it has. The more you use your garage door, the closer it will get to the end of its lifespan.
  • Maintenance: If you regularly perform maintenance on your garage door, you’ll likely increase its lifespan.
  • Door type: Purchasing your garage door from a trusted company and ensuring that you buy a high-quality door will boost the lifespan. 

Your garage door is an essential part of your home, and it’s beneficial to inspect your door and all its components to avoid any garage door problems and ensure it’s working correctly and lasting as long as it should. 

Learn About Our Garage Door Repair Services


Ways to Increase Your Garage Door’s Life Expectancy

While you can’t pinpoint the exact date you’ll need to replace your garage door, you can at least take extra steps to ensure you’re taking care of it and that it will last you a long time.

Instead of constantly repairing a broken garage door and racking up a service bill, try following some of these tips to prolong the lifespan of your garage door.

Replace Door Parts and Use Garage Door Lubricant

You should regularly inspect all parts of your garage door to ensure they’re working correctly or determine if you need to replace them. Your garage door has several components to inspect. It’s helpful to check features like rollers and weather seals because they’re typically cheaper replacement parts to purchase. If you catch these issues and fix them before they break, you can save yourself from making a service call.

You should regularly inspect all parts of your garage door to ensure they're working correctly or determine if you need to replace them.

Some of the more expensive parts are your garage door opener, the panel and the springs. When it’s time to replace these parts, it’s worth buying quality replacement parts to increase the life of your garage door.

Monitor the Garage Door’s Function

The most crucial aspect of your garage door is performance. Many households use their garage door more often than their front door to enter the home, so it’s essential to check to make sure it’s working correctly and see if you need to perform maintenance or replace the door.

Whenever you open or close the garage door, look out for any noticeable changes in its performance. Even if a change doesn’t seem significant, it might be a sign of a more pressing concern in the future.

Look out for changes like:

Once you notice something off, you should contact your trusted garage door company for maintenance.

Understand Your Garage Door’s Warranty

Look over the warranty coverage for your garage door. It will likely have information that clues you in on the door’s expected lifespan. Along with reading your garage door’s warranty, it’s helpful to know when it ends so you can keep up with the maintenance after the warranty period is over.

Learn About Our Garage Door Repair Services


Monitor the Spring Function

By design, the springs in your garage door function for a specific amount of open-and-close cycles before you need to replace them. Research the type of springs your garage door system has to see their cycle amount. Doing so will help you gauge your springs’ replacement timeline and when to start monitoring them in case their performance starts to slow down.

If it’s time to replace your springs, contact your local garage door company to request a service technician.

Take Care of the Exterior

Cleaning your garage door’s exterior is a simple chore to add to your to-do list. Most garage doors will need a rag or mop and some mild cleaning detergent to achieve a like-new sparkle.

Caring for your garage door also depends on the type of door you own. Common residential garage door materials are wood, vinyl, aluminum or steel.

If you have a wooden garage door, check for cracks or warping of the wood panels. You may also need to repaint your wooden door if it begins to peel or look dull.

Homeowners with vinyl and aluminum doors should look for cracks or bends in the panels. The severity of the damage may require you to replace the panels or the door.

Steel garage doors may require care like sanding, painting and checking for rust on the exterior panels.

Call a Trusted Garage Door Company for Service

One of the most crucial things you can do to improve your garage door’s lifespan is to use a garage door company with years of experience and knowledge to service your garage door. A professional technician can give your advice on garage door care and perform quality maintenance that will impact the longevity of your garage door.

Lifespan of a Garage Door Opener

Your garage door opener is a crucial aspect of your door system, but it’s important to know that openers tend to have a shorter lifespan than the door itself. Most need replacing every 10-15 years. Still, there are a few things you can do to extend the lifespan of your garage door opener.

Keep up With Door Maintenance

Your garage door opener interacts with the garage door every time you use it, so it makes sense that the health of one is tied to the health of the other. By scheduling consistent maintenance and evaluations, you’ll ensure your opener isn’t straining or working harder than it has to to get your door opened or closed. This enhances your garage door opener’s lifespan and makes sure you get the full amount of years your opener is rated for.

Look for Signs of Wear

Sometimes, a garage door or garage door opener stops working out of the blue, but in most cases, there are signs preceding a complete breakdown. Every time you use your garage door, you should be looking for these indications that it’s time to call in a professional:

  • The door starts to make more noise upon opening and closing: When you operate your garage door, some noise is expected. A sudden increase in noise or a sound you’ve never noticed before may indicate your garage door or garage door opener is reaching the end of its lifespan.
  • The door takes more time to operate: You probably don’t time your door’s opening and closing, but when it starts to take longer than the few seconds you’ve come to expect, it can throw off your entire day.
  • The door is unreliable: Is your door not closing the whole way, pausing in the middle of a cycle or stuck in one position? These are surefire signs it’s time for you to connect with Crawford Door Sales.

Get Garage Door Opener Maintenance

The best way to improve the lifespan of a garage door and its opener is to ensure both of them have regular maintenance. We discussed the need for door maintenance above, but the same is true for the opener itself. Your door relies on the intricate processes going on inside the opener, and even one misfire can throw the entire system off track. A good garage door professional will be able to evaluate both parts at once and determine which aspects are causing your issues.

Contact Crawford Door Sales for a New Garage Door or Garage Door Service

Your garage door is a vital part of your home, and knowing that it’s going to work every time you use it is the peace of mind every homeowner deserves. Contact Crawford Door Sales to perform high-quality maintenance on your garage door or shop for your new residential garage door

Contact Crawford Door Sales for a New Garage Door or Garage Door Service