The law requires garages in the United States to be equipped with safety sensors on each side.
The sensors’ primary function is to prevent the garage door from closing if there is anything underneath.
This greatly reduces the risk of injury to people, as well as damage to property such as automobiles and other objects.
However, in some cases, these sensors fail to work as intended, which in turn increases the risk for injury and damage.
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Despite the expertise offered by companies such as ours, some people prefer to take matters into their own hands.
If you prefer to diagnose and repair your garage door sensors by yourself, here is a list of common problems and solutions:
Garage Door Is Not Closing
A malfunctioning garage door is the first indication that there is a problem with the sensors.
If the garage door opens smoothly but encounters problems when closing, the sensors could be the culprit.
In some instances, the door closes properly but immediately reopens after.
In both of these situations, something is interfering with the garage door sensors, and they are reacting to an object or obstacle between them.
You can test the functionality of the sensors using the cardboard box test.
Cardboard Box Test
Take a couple of cardboard boxes and place them under an open garage door.
The garage door sensors are about six inches from the ground.
Therefore boxes that are higher than that should be chosen for this test.
After placing the boxes, attempt to close the garage door.
If the sensors are correctly aligned, the boxes should interrupt the beam passing between them and keep the garage door open.
However, if the sensors are misaligned or damaged, the door won’t stop until reaching and damaging the boxes you placed.
In this case, you should switch to manual operation since there is no way of predicting if and how the garage door can close without registering small obstructions.
It is advisable to avoid using the garage until the problem is solved to prevent a severe risk of injury or damage.
Photo-Eye Sensor Lights
The garage door’s photo-eye sensors are approximately six inches from the ground.
Typically, one sensor is equipped with a green LED, while the other is equipped with a red LED.
The green LED light sends the beam of light, while the red LED light receives it.
If there is a problem with the sensors, one of the two lights will either go out or blink.
This suggests that something is interrupting the light signal of the sensors, or that they are not on the same level.
If the red LED light is flashing while the green LED light is working as intended, it means that the sensors are misaligned.
Realign the sensors by slightly moving them until both lights are turned on.
The Sensors’ Lenses
The environment of the garage also plays a part in causing problems for the sensors.
If you reside along a busy street with the garage door mostly open, particulate matter such as dirt or dust will accumulate on the lenses of the sensors.
The lenses are extremely small; as such, a particulate matter easily builds up, which would disrupt the light signals.
Use a microfiber cloth or rag to wipe the lenses clean until they are free from any dirt or dust.
After doing so, repeat the cardboard box test to see if the problem has been solved.
Aside from particulate matter, humidity can also damage the lenses and interfere with its operation.
Tiny droplets of water may find their way inside the sensors if it rains excessively.
Proceed to wipe them dry, and subsequently unscrew the metal holders to check if the insides have water damage.
The Power Supply of the Sensors
If the LED lights on both sensors are off, this means that there is no power to enable the sensors to respond.
Always check if the cables are unplugged, so the garage door does not close.
The fuse inside the garage door may blow due to voltage drops or power outages.
In these cases, replace the fuse or call a professional to assist you.
Garage Door Repair in Houston
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From garage door spring replacement to garage door sensor maintenance, we use our expertise to service our clients to their satisfaction.
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