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The Basics of Garage Door Systems

Your garage doors are critical to securing your home. As one of the larger areas of the house, keeping the door in well-operating fashion ensures you have easy entry and exiting, along with the security needed. 

The great thing about garage door systems is that they do make life tons easier. Before automated garage doors, you would have to get out of your vehicle, open the garage, drive-in, and close. Sure, this sounds rudimentary now, but garages have been a massive improvement to the housing community and offer a luxurious feature of added storage as well as protection for your vehicle. 

The Seven Parts of Your Garage Door System

Though it might seem like the garage door system only has maybe three parts, the track, motor, and door, it has seven primary components. These all work together to create that smooth, seamless action of the door being lifted or closing.

Door Sections

The door itself is broken into sections. As the door folds up, there are places where the door will need to bend. This isn’t for every system out there, but it is for the bulk of door operations. The design is similar to how an accordion works. However, there is far less play. In situations where you have a solid door, the whole entry is the primary section.

Damage to the door sections can cause these to look unsightly and prompt a homeowner to replace the door. These dents and dings are often easily fixed and repaired quickly. Most dents and dings don’t affect the operation; it is purely aesthetic.


To connect each door section, there have to be hinges. This is what will allow each section to bend and travel as needed, whether it is opening or closing. Hinges can get old, squeaky, and rust. Proper lubrication is necessary to keep these in good working order. On the other side, hinges can also become loose and require tightening or replacing.


Part of every garage door system will be sensors. Sensors will stop the door from going up or down if there is something in the way. This is a safety feature and is critical to the operation of the door. Two sensors are used, one that emits and one that receives.


Most people are familiar with the tracks of the garage door system. These are what your garage doors move along when going up or down. Without tracks in good shape, the door won’t be stabilized, won’t move, and likely won’t stay put, falling on the ground. 
Tracks need to be free of debris. Common issues, like getting clogged with leaves, can prevent the door from moving up and down on the track. Lubrication is a must for optimal performance.

The Spring

Torsion springs are densely coiled springs under tremendous tension. Tension springs should be treated very carefully as injuries could occur. The spring is located above the garage door, and responsible for moving the door up. Think about how heavy the garage door is. This one spring has enough force to handle the task of moving the heavy door when needed. If the spring starts making sounds, don’t attempt to fix, contact a professional immediately for help. 

The Bottom Seal

While it might now seem like a pivotal part of the garage door system, the bottom seal protects the contents of your garage. The seal stops water from entering, as well as some pests and leaves. Seals don’t age well and will need to be replaced after a few years. You don’t have to replace the entire door just to get a new seal. 


With all modern garage doors comes a garage door opener. These now come with a variety of safety features to prevent any accidents, like a door coming down on the car. Instead of a separate clickable button, garage door openers can be incorporated into your smartphone or laptop. 

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