A garage door, while practical and often essential, is among the heaviest moving parts of a home. As such, ensuring it functions properly isn’t just about convenience; it’s about safety.
In this blog post, we will share safety tips every homeowner should be aware of to prevent accidents and maintain a secure environment.
Let’s dig in:
1. Always Watch the Door While Operating
Safety begins with attention. Always keeping an eye on your garage door while it’s in motion can prevent numerous accidents.
Awareness of Surroundings
Make sure there is a Clear Path.
Before activating the door, make sure the path is clear of obstructions, people, and pets.
Objects left under a garage door can not only damage the door and the item but could also become dangerous projectiles.
The Dangers of Partially Open Doors
Risk of Closing on Objects
Leaving a garage door partially open might seem harmless, but when activated again, it might close onto an unrecognized obstruction, causing damage or injury.
2. Regular Maintenance and Inspection
Like any other machinery, your garage door needs regular check-ups to ensure its optimal and safe operation.
Visual Checks for Wear and Tear
Regularly inspect the door for signs of wear, rust, or damage, especially in springs, cables, and rollers.
Listen for Anomalies coming from your garage door.
Unusual sounds can be early indicators of parts needing replacement or lubrication.
Check Safety Sensors
Safety sensors are crucial as they prevent the door from closing if there’s an obstruction.
Regular Checks are necessary.
Ensure the sensors, located near the base of the door, are facing each other without any obstruction between them.
Beam Interruption for sensors.
Periodically test by placing an object in the path of the closing door. It should reverse upon making contact.
3. Educate Children
Children, being naturally curious and often unaware of potential hazards, need to be educated about the importance of safety around certain areas of the home, and the garage is no exception.
Considering the size, weight, and mechanics of garage doors, it’s important to instill in children a respect for and understanding of the dangers.
Here’s how you can go about it:
Start Early and Be Consistent
Introduce the concept of garage door safety as early as possible.
Just as you teach kids not to play near a hot stove, it’s equally important to instill caution around the garage door from a young age.
Demonstrate Safe Use
Show them how to properly open and close the garage door using controls.
Emphasize that they should always wait for the door to complete its motion before attempting to enter or exit the garage.
Explain the Dangers
Talk about the weight and power of the door, making them understand it’s not a toy.
Discuss the risk of pinched fingers between door sections.
Explain that getting trapped under a closing door can lead to serious injuries.
Make it clear that the garage is not a play area.
Establish a rule that they must always be supervised when in or around the garage.
Keep Controls Out of Children’s Reach
Store remote controls in places children can’t access.
Explain that these are tools, not toys, and should only be used by adults or with adult supervision.
Lead by Example
Children often emulate adults. Always use the garage door safely, avoid rushing in and out, and ensure you’re demonstrating the behavior you want them to adopt.
Avoid Fingers Between Door Sections
The sections of a garage door can pose a pinch hazard, especially for little fingers.
- Hand Placement
Always keep hands and fingers away from the door sections when it’s moving.
Choose Safe Designs
- Non-pinching Panels
Consider doors designed to prevent finger-pinching, especially if you have young children.
4. Install a Manual Release
This allows homeowners to manually operate the door during power outages or if the automatic function fails.
- Practice the Release
Regularly check and practice using the manual release mechanism to ensure you know how to operate it during emergencies.
5. Secure Your Garage Door
A garage is often an entry point for burglars. Ensuring its security is crucial.
- Add-on Security
Consider installing additional locks or a security bar for added protection.
- Cameras and Alarms
Installing a camera or an alarm system can act as a deterrent for potential intruders.
Regularly Change the Opener’s Code
To prevent unauthorized access, regularly changing the code of your opener is advisable.
- Rolling Codes
Most modern openers change codes automatically with each use if yours doesn’t, consider upgrading.
Do Not Tamper with Springs
The springs are under high tension and can be dangerous if mishandled.
- Professional Help
Always call a professional if springs need adjustment or replacement.
6. Consider Installing a Battery Backup
Power outages shouldn’t leave you stranded. Battery backups ensure continued operation.
Benefits of Battery Backup
- Seamless Operation
With a battery backup, power outages won’t hinder your garage door’s functionality.
7. Insulation and Weather Stripping
An insulated door adds energy efficiency but also provides an added layer of protection against accidents, reducing the chance of the door being forcibly pushed in.
Proper weather stripping not only seals the door against external elements but also ensures a smooth operation, reducing the chances of jams that might lead to accidents.
8. Certifications and Ratings
Check if the door design has been rated or certified by recognized institutions. Doors that meet specific safety standards give an added assurance of their quality and safety.
9. Stay Updated
Advancements in technology bring newer safety features.
- New Safety Features
As technology progresses, consider upgrading your garage door system to incorporate the latest safety features.
The safety of your garage door is paramount. By adhering to these tips and regularly inspecting and maintaining your system, you can ensure that your garage remains a safe environment for everyone.
Remember, when in doubt, always consult with a professional. Safety is always worth the investment.