Here's an exclusive insider tip from a Charlotte garage door repairman - one of the most common service requests that we receive here at Garage Door Guru is something that can easily be fixed by the homeowner themselves, completely avoiding a service call to us. Because we are committed to our community and our customers, we wanted to provide this money-saving tip to all of our neighbors in Charlotte, NC and beyond.
Have you ever pushed the button to lower your garage door and failed to have it come down? Have you seen the flashing light telling you that something is wrong? If your garage door opener could talk, it would say, "Hey! I think something is blocking the door. My sensors can't 'see' each other so I'm not going to move until it's safe." Garage doors are the heaviest moving part of your house, so they are designed with safety as the highest priority. When in doubt, they are programmed to stay open and refuse to close.
If the garage door looks clear, with no objects in the way, what has probably happened is the safety sensor is out of alignment. Here's how it works. Sensors at the entrance of the door shoot an invisible beam to each other constantly. As long as the entry is clear, the eyes can read each other and the door goes down. However, should the beam be crossed, you have a problem. A common occurrence is bumping the sensor out of alignment with a recycling bin or trash can. Sometimes an errant tricycle or bike, or even a family pet may be to blame.
The remedy? Simply loosen the wing nut of the wayward safety sensor (you can probably do this just with your fingers), then re-direct it to read its companion at the other end of the garage. Then retighten the wing nut. While you're down there, you may also notice cobwebs and leaves interfering with the sensor beam. Take the opportunity to give them a cleaning! Now you're all done and the door should function properly.
If it still won't close, it may mean that your garage safety sensor has gone bad or a wire has corroded. Those things do happen occasionally. In that case, your garage door will need a professional. Call a good, local garage door company with a trusted reputation. Ask around for a referral. The repair shouldn't run more than $150.