Many people don’t realize that garage doors can be very dangerous and can cause some serious damage. Unfortunately every year an estimated 1,500 people in the United States get injured from garage door related accidents.

To push garage safety standards, the federal government passed a law requiring all doors to have safety mechanisms to reduce the chance of entrapment and common accidents. However, these safety systems can wear down or break down randomly. Regular inspections are important to make sure your garage door is up to par with safety standards. Regular inspection will warn you about possible issues.

Here are a few tests you can do to help you check the safety technology utilized by your garage door.

Spring Balance Inspection

To test if your springs are applying the proper amount of balance, follow these steps.

  • Open your garage door
  • Push your garage door opener to make it close.
  • As the door descends, hold up the bottom of the door.

If your garage door doesn’t effortlessly raise back up, your garage doors is exerting too much force to close. If this is happens to you, contact a trained mechanic.

Sensor Inspection

Garage doors have safety sensors that transmit a beam of light to recognize any obstructions passing by. If the light is tripped while the door is closing, the garage door opener reverses the direction of the door to avoid accidents or injury.

To test your sensors:

  • Fully open your garage door.
  • Push the garage door opener to close it.
  • As the door comes down wave a broom or other long object in front of the sensors to “break the beam.”

The door should reverse, but if it doesn’t; your sensors may be broken and should be looked at by professionals.

Reverse Mechanism Inspection

All garage doors manufactured after 1993 feature reverse mechanism systems that make garage doors retract if the doors sense an object in their path. Listed below are steps to a simple inspection to make sure your reverse system is working.

  • Completely open your garage door.
  • Place a wood 2×4 or paper towel roll in your driveway under the door.
  • Press your garage door open remote control or wall button so the closes.

When the door contact with anything while closing it should cancel movement and reverse automatically. If it doesn’t retract the reverse mechanism isn’t working and and you should contact a certified garage door repair technician.