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Old 02-10-2013, 07:11 AM   #1
TonyT OP
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Garage door problem

We have a double garage door with a Sears opener.
To move the door a traveller moves along a rail that looks like a miniature girder.
The problem is that when it's cold, the grease on the rail gets stiff enough that the traveller jams and the door stops moving.
So, what lubricant should I use on the rail so that we can enjoy the benefits of electric power year round?
Thanks,
Tony
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:22 AM   #2
STisma
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Are you sure it's the grease that is causing it?
How about the springs? Sounds like one is broken.
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:30 AM   #3
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Yep,, disconnect the door at the emergency pull and check for free door movement first..

Lube door and adjust torsion spring as needed. It will be obvious if one spring is broken too..
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:42 AM   #4
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Is it chain drive or screw?
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:45 AM   #5
Wansfel
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Caution advised if messing with the torsion spring!

Quote:
Originally Posted by spafxer View Post
Yep,, disconnect the door at the emergency pull and check for free door movement first..

Lube door and adjust torsion spring as needed. It will be obvious if one spring is broken too..
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:13 AM   #6
LuciferMutt
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Please disconnect the trolley from the door when the door is closed! If a spring is broken, the door is very heavy and will fall on you or whatever is in the way.

Use the quick release cord to discconect the trolley, and then try to lift the door yourself. It should glide open easily, and it a bit more than halfway open, it should be able to "balance" and hang there by itself, held by the springs. Also be observant of how the door rolls in the tracks, etc. Bottom line is it should work smoothly and the springs should lift the weight FOR you.

If a spring is broken, I do not reccomend fixing it yourself. It won't cost too much to have somebody with the proper tools and experience come out and replace it. The springs work under enourmous tension and will seriously injure you if you don't know what you are doing.

If the door springs are not the problem there is not realy supposed to be grease on the track rail. Clean it off and use silicon spray lube instead.
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Old 02-10-2013, 09:00 AM   #7
bwringer
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The traveler/trolley (whatever the hell you call it) can get worn as well.
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyT View Post
We have a double garage door with a Sears opener.
To move the door a traveller moves along a rail that looks like a miniature girder.
The problem is that when it's cold, the grease on the rail gets stiff enough that the traveller jams and the door stops moving.
So, what lubricant should I use on the rail so that we can enjoy the benefits of electric power year round?
Thanks,
Tony
I have the same problem as I have one large garage door on a 2 car garage and it jams about quarter way up when cold. I've tried all kinds of grease and sprays and the only one that really works is WD 40. As long as I apply it once every week or two, it never jams up no matter how cold it gets.

Jon
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Old 02-10-2013, 10:27 AM   #9
gonerydin
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You don't need to lube the rail. Doing so causes more problems than it cures. Mine has been working as such since 1989. I'm pretty sure the owners manual stated this.
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:00 PM   #10
TonyT OP
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Thanks for all the replies

There's nothing wrong with the door, the rollers or the springs. The door operates easily by hand when I pull the "emergency cord."
The traveller - don't know if that's the right term, but it sounds good - is made in two parts, an inner part that is in contact with the rail and an outer part that covers the inner. Pull on the emergency cord and a catch releases and the two parts separate. The traveller mechanism is pulled back and forth by chain.
I have greased the rail, believing that when metal slides on metal lubricant is good, but with the -20C temps of late, that grease is pretty thick and unyielding.
WD40, I have that, but being a lazy sod, I'd prefer not to have to do a weekly lube.
Cheers, and thanks,
Tony
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Old 02-10-2013, 03:03 PM   #11
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Tony - I think the point is that the track should not really need any lubricant. If you find that it is greased, and the grease is stiff you probably need to remove the grease, and if it needs some form of lubrication either due to noise or sticking in areas - then use something like a dry lube.

So clean out all that old nasty grease and the issue should resolve.
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Old 02-10-2013, 06:26 PM   #12
Kyle B
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It sounds to me like the "up" setting on the opener is set too lightly. A lot of garage door openers have up force settings, as well as down force settings. They both have to be properly adjusted to make the door open in all conditions, as well as not crush a pet or child in the down setting if the safety eyes fail. Check on the side with the light bulb for said setting adjustment screws and increase the up setting screw. There should be an arrow showing increase or decrease around the screw.

ANY QUESTIONS?

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Old 02-10-2013, 10:44 PM   #13
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So the door works fine when separated from the traveler. Have you checked the pulley at the head of the rail that the chain runs on to see if it spins freely? Just a thought.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:56 AM   #14
ericrat
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Clean the grease off with WD-40 then use this. http://www.homedepot.com/webapp/wcs/...367&ci_gpa=pla
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Old 02-11-2013, 09:57 AM   #15
Mirider
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I own a garage door company, there is no place on a garage door or opener that should have any grease on it. If you do clean it off. When the door is disconected from the opener does the trolley run freely back and forth or does it stop in the same place? Some models have a three piece rail and the bolts get loose that hold the sections together cause the joint of the rail not to line up. If this is the case line them back up and tighten the bolt. If that's not the problem then check the up force adjustment screw and turn it clockwise a little. Jerry
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