Your Guide to Leveling a Garage Door

Hate driving up to your home every evening because the garage door is not even? It's an annoying problem, but one that you can fix pretty easily. This guide will help.

You like this look? This garage door is a Standard+ Classic XL, 9' x 7', American Walnut, Clear windows.

Love this door style? This is a Standard+ Classic XL, 9' x 7' garage door, American Walnut, Clear windows.

There are few elements of the home that take up more of the façade. Because of that, an askew garage door can mess with your entire home's aesthetics. The gap between the door and the floor just screams for attention and detracts from curb appeal.

Even if you try to manually force the door down, you probably won't be able to make it meet the pavement flush. That little gap is a big problem, too. It can let in water, pests, and other threats.

What's behind my garage door not being level?

Is this your style? This door is a Standard+ Vog, 9' x 7', Black, window layout: Left-side Harmony.

If you're wondering “why is my garage door crooked?”, you're not alone. It's a problem that affects tens of thousands of homeowners, particularly those with old or low-end doors. Leveling is the answer, but it's also important to understand why the door is crooked in the first place since it will help prevent the problem down the road.

Why is my garage door unlevel?

The single most common reason for your garage door to be crooked has to do with the torsion springs. If your door has overhead springs, those are torsion springs. They're made from tightly wound metal designed to provide years of reliable use.

However, over time and through normal opening and closing, the springs will slowly start to unwind. You'll notice some slack in the spring itself, perhaps. That can cause the door to move in its track, often unevenly, since springs do not unwind or wind at the same rate. If a spring ends up being damaged, the door may still open, but you'll notice it is much slower than usual.

The problem could also be with your extension springs. Each extension spring is designed to support a specific amount of weight. If that weight is exceeded, the door will be uneven. If left unaddressed, the problem could get so bad that the door won't open or close any longer.

An unlevel garage door isn't something that should be put off for later. You'll need to act soon to prevent it from becoming worse.

The Balancing Act: Fixing Your Garage Door

You like this look? This garage door is a Princeton P-21, 18’x 7', Chocolate Walnut door and Ice White overlays, 4 vertical lite Panoramic windows.

How do you like this style? It is a Princeton P-21, 18' x 7', Chocolate Walnut door with Ice White overlays, 4 vertical lite Panoramic windows.

Now that you know the extension springs could be the culprit, the next step is probably answering the question of how do I adjust my garage door? Thankfully, that adjustment isn't rocket science. With that being said, you will need some specific tools, so if your collection is a little lacking, it might be wise to call in the garage door experts.

Step one is the check the balance of your garage door. It's important to know which side of the door is out of balance so that you can make the right adjustments. To do this, you'll need to disconnect the garage door opener by pulling the central cord. How does the door hang with it disconnected?

Now, open and close the door a few times by hand. Does it move correctly in the track? Is there an obstruction? If so, make that your priority, as it could be the culprit and not your springs. If the door's movement is fine, then open it halfway and let go. Does it stay in place? Move up? Begin closing?

If your springs lack tension, the door will start to close. If the door stays where it is, it is balanced.

Realigning Your Garage Door

A retro building with a pristine and maintained garage door. Image: Pixabay

Garage door maintenance is critical to reliability over time. Image: Pixabay

With the testing out of the way, it's time to start repairing it. Here's what you need to do:

Cut the power

Always turn off power to the garage door opener at the fuse box or by unplugging it from the outlet.

Inspect the Cables

Check out your garage door cables. Are they worn and/or rusted? If so, they'll probably need to be replaced.

Get Help

There's a good chance your door is going to be beyond your help. If that's the case, call in the professionals.

Make Sure Your Garage Door Seals

This battered and old garage door could use some maintenance. Image: Pixabay

Don't let aging and exposure rob you of a functional garage door. Image: Pixabay

Because of its visibility and prevalence on the bottom of the garage door, there's a myth that uneven doors are actually caused by the weatherstripping. That's not the case. With that being said, if your weatherstripping is old and worn, it won't create a tight seal and that will allow water, pests, and dust into the garage.

If you find yourself wondering how can I get my garage door to seal better, there are a few things you can do. First, make sure the door itself is level. Check your weatherstripping for signs of wear and damage, and be prepared to replace it if necessary. You can install this yourself with little more than a few minutes of time and a decent knife to cut the material. You'll also need a screwdriver.

For a true seal, the weatherstripping should press to the floor, but also up to the bottom of the door. Once replaced, make sure you keep it in good condition. In fact, you should clean and maintain all the door components, including the tracks, springs, rollers, weatherstripping, and everything else.

What If My Door Can't Be Leveled?

You like this look? This garage door is a Cambridge Traditional (CM), 8’x 7’, Ice White door and overlays, 4 lites Panoramic windows.

Is this the right look for your home? This garage door is a Cambridge CM, 8' x 7', Ice White door and overlays, 4 lites Panoramic windows.

In severe situations, your door may not be able to be leveled. If that's the case, it's time for a new garage door. Thankfully, there are so many options available to you!

You'll find that the market is chock-full of different sizes, styles, and designs. Whether you want something classic or modern, retro or out of the ordinary, it's available.

If you're about to invest in a new garage door, make a smart decision and hire professionals to install it.

Getting Your New Garage Door

Contact a garage door pro that serves your local area. These experts can provide all the guidance you need.

At ACS Door Services of Omaha, we can simplify the entire process with an easy email quotation.

Not sure how to match a new door to your home's design? Explore these 3 styles to make certain you get the ideal door for you.

Feel free to call us at 402-333-8988. We would be delighted to talk over your options, as well.

App lover?

Explore the Design Centre app! You'll find plenty of garage door styles, as well as the ability to upload a photo of your garage and try new ones on virtually.

Need some guidance?

Many gorgeous residential garage doors are waiting for you here. Explore your options. Take a little time to get to know what is available to you, then make an informed decision.

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