Why Is My Garage Door Squeaking?

A noisy garage door can be frustrating; no one wants to be woken up to the sound of a creaky garage door in the morning. While a garage is beneficial to your home, if it starts malfunctioning, it can be more bothersome than many would want to admit.

However, if you have a noisy garage door, there are a few common causes, and they all have simple solutions. A good garage door technician will have these faults fixed in no time, leaving you with a quiet garage door to open and close in peace.

What Are The Causes?

There can be many causes of a squeaking garage door; here are some of the most common ones and their fixes. While some can be fixed at home, often, you may need to consult a professional to ensure a safe and durable solution.

If your garage door is difficult to move, opens very quickly, or the rollers derail from the tracks to not attempt to quiet or fix your garage door. Any of these conditions can result in serious injury, so make sure to contact a garage door specialist.

Malfunctioning Chain

If a malfunctioning chain is a problem, it means that the chain on your garage door opener is either too slack or too tight. It could also signal that one of the chain links is missing or broken too.

Investigate the chain to see if anything is visibly wrong. If you can’t see any problem but still suspect that the chain is causing the noise, try applying WD40 or any similar product on the entire length (and also along the inside track).

If the door continues to malfunction and the issue isn’t resolved, consider having the chain checked by a professional garage door technician.

Warped Sheave Wheels (Or Loose Rollers)

If your garage door sheave wheels appear dented, warped, or bent, it can cause the door to go up and down in a skewed direction. This skewed angle can cause metal-to-metal friction and constant squeaking or unwanted noise. This can also be caused if the stem connected to the roller is loose.

When this is the problem of your garage door noise, make sure to replace any warped wheels or loose rollers. If the rollers are in good condition, consider lubricating the rollers and any other moving parts. Regular lubrication helps to keep a garage door in good condition and will prevent squeaking noises. Do not lubricate the nylon areas of the rollers or any other plastic door components, as petroleum can degrade these materials. When working on your garage door, remember to disconnect your garage door opener and notify your family when working.

If lubrication doesn’t fix the noise problem, it’s time to call a garage door professional to inspect the rollers. Unless you’re a professional, this job is best done by a garage door technician and can be prevented with regular garage door maintenance. We recommend nylon rollers over metal rollers; though these can cost more, you don’t need to lubricate them as often.

Out Of Alignment

One of the most common reasons that a garage door can make noise is due to it being out of alignment. Often this is because some moving parts are incorrectly installed, or some have been worn out. When garage doors are out of alignment, the metal parts rub together abnormally and get worn down – this is what causes the squeaking sound.

To fix this issue, consult a garage door technician to professionally align the entire garage door. The garage door system needs to work well together in alignment, and this can be ensured through regular repair services.

Stuck Debris

No matter how thorough you are with cleaning, debris can easily become lodged in garage doors. From dead bugs, dried leaves, and dirt to bird’s nests, you never know what’s stuck in your door, causing it to squeak. When any foreign object is lodged in a garage door system, it will prevent the door from rising and lowering smoothly and will often cause unwanted noise.

The best way to clear this issue is to go over all parts of the door with a stiff bristle broom to remove any hard-to-reach debris. If you do this and feel that something is wedged out of sight, it can be helpful to call a professional cleaning service to give your garage door a new lease of life.

Broken Springs

If your garage door has torsion springs and extension springs, you may want to check to see if these are the cause of any squeaking. You can find the torsion springs above the door when closed and the extension springs by the tracks on the sides of the door.

If you find that your springs require a replacement or are broken, do not try to remove or repair them by yourself. High spring tension can cause severe injury or death, so make sure that any adjustments, repairs to the counterbalance system are made by a trained professional.

Specialists advise that if the spring looks worn or the door has been opened and closed approximately 10,000 times since the last spring replacement, it should be maintained. If the springs are working and not worn, try lubricating them with a synthetic-based lubricant to reduce garage door noise. Try not to over lubricate, as any excess lubricant can drip onto the door surface when it is operating.

Broken Tracks

Tracks are an essential part of your garage door system; if any part of the track is cracked, broken, or splintered, noise could be an issue. Tracks help the garage door open, so if these are compromised, you’ll hear it through squeaking sounds.

Get a professional opinion on the state of your tracks to see how severe the damage is, and get a personalized plan to fix your garage door tracks. Do not work on these if you’re not a trained professional; any tampering can result in a serious injury.

Rusted Bolts, Nuts & Hinges

Rusted parts are another common issue; when rusted or stuck, nuts and bolts are present, it can cause your garage door to squeak. Lubricant is an easy fix for this issue. Remember to check your garage door manual to ensure you purchase the right lubricant and take safety precautions before working on your garage door. Disconnect your garage door opener to make sure it won’t operate while you are working on it and notify any family in the house when you’re working. Gloves are also advisable when working with lubricant.

All garage door parts will eventually wear, so make sure to investigate all hinges too. Check for wear, dust, or metal filings in the hinge areas; if these are present, we recommend calling a trained doors system technician to replace the hinges. Do not repair or adjust hinges on your own, as removal of the bottom bracket may cause your door to fall and can result in serious injury.

If you find your garage door still squeaking after you’ve applied lubricant, it could signal that some rusted parts need to be replaced or tightened. A professional garage door technician is the safest option to fix these. Over-tightening these parts can put unnecessary strain on the door and cause even more wear.

Garage Door Opener

It’s possible that the garage door squeaking could also come from the garage door opener. Check the chain or belt drive to see if these are loose, as this can sometimes cause jerky garage door movements and squeaking sounds. If this is loose, contact a trained repairs company to repair the garage door operator.

It’s not advised that you adjust or repair the garage door operator if you aren’t trained, as this can be dangerous. Repairs of garage door operators should only be performed by trained professionals. If you do need a repair, specialists recommend a steel-reinforced rubber belt drive system as these are often quieter than the standard chain system. Vibration isolators can also be installed to reduce noise coming from your garage door operator.

If the garage door chain or belt drive is in good condition and not loose, lubrication may stop the noise coming from it. Make sure to look at your garage door manual before applying any lubrication, as you may need a specific type of lubricant.

Maintenance Is Key

When it comes to keeping your garage in good condition, it’s important to schedule regular maintenance to prevent any serious issues. Specialists recommend a professional check each year and lubricate the door parts every few months to keep your door running for a long time. 

Hopefully, one of these methods provides a fix for your squeaking garage door; however, if not, make sure to contact a local garage door specialist to ensure your door stays quiet and working smoothly.