How Often Should My Garage Door Be Cleaned?
If you’re like most homeowners, cleaning your garage door is probably not at the top of your priority list. We understand. There’s a lot going on right now. Americans are working longer hours on average than they have in the past. Finding the time to maintain your home doesn’t appear to be as easy as it once was – so why is it so necessary to clean your garage door?
With proper care and maintenance, the average garage door can last up to 20 years. When you clean your garage door, you are safeguarding your investment and extending the life of a door that you use frequently. Cleaning may appear to simply help on the surface, but it’s a fantastic method to avoid more significant problems. In other words, cleaning your garage door for an hour now can save you several hours of work and thousands of dollars later on when you need to repair or replace it.
Spring is just around the corner, and there’s no better time than now to start your spring cleaning by giving your garage door some TLC. Are you ready to begin? Here are a few things to remember.
Why Should You Clean Your Garage Door?
Garage doors should be washed at least twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall, on average. In rare situations, doors on residences in tough environments, such as a coastal area or a place with a lot of snow, may need to be cleaned on a quarterly basis. This is due to the fact that prolonged exposure to salt can degrade a garage door’s finish.
Sure, keeping your garage door clean improves the appearance of your home — a big plus if you’re concerned about curb appeal — but it also has a number of other advantages:
1. Extend The Finish On Your Door
Rain, sun, wind, and dirt are all elements that your garage door is exposed to on a regular basis, and they can all take their toll, even on the highest-quality door. The finish on your door might deteriorate over time, becoming dull and, in some circumstances, damaged or corroded. If filth and grime are left on the door for an extended period of time, the finish will erode faster. While wood garage doors should be refinished on a regular basis, keeping them clean will allow you to go longer between refinishing. You may not be refinishing doors made of various materials on a regular basis, but preserving the integrity of the door’s surface goes a long way toward keeping the door in good shape.
2. Keep Your Warranty Active
If your garage door is still under warranty, you must clean it on a regular basis to keep the warranty valid. Failure to keep your door clean may void your warranty and prevent you from utilizing it in the event of a problem. While we hope you never have any issues with your door, adhering to the terms of your warranty will provide you with peace of mind in the event that something goes wrong.
3. Improve Your Exterior Appeal
All you need is some soap and water to clean your garage door – and your entire house. Cleaning your garage door removes all of the dirt and grime that can dull the surface and deplete the life of your home’s exterior. This is especially crucial if your home is for sale or you plan to sell it soon because purchasers generally judge a home’s potential based on its outside.
4. Rust Prevention
When salt, grime, or other particles become lodged on your garage door, rust develops. Rust is not only ugly, but it can also compromise the structural integrity of your door over time. On doors constructed of specific materials, regular cleaning prevents rust from accumulating, extending the life of the door. Cleaning is also a lot easier than attempting to remove rust later.
5. Permits Inspection Of The Door
Take a few minutes to inspect your door both inside and out after cleaning it. Consider cleaning as a reminder to inspect all of the moving elements of your garage door opener, including the photo eye sensors and other components, the spring, the tracks, and, of course, the door’s surface. Cleaning the outside of your door also allows you to see the door’s surface better. You’ll be more likely to notice whether your door has become damaged if it’s clean. And, if you catch problems early on, you have more time to fix them. This is a better approach than ignoring your door and allowing little issues to escalate into major issues.
Washing The Door To Your Garage
After you’ve learned about the advantages of cleaning your garage door on a regular basis, it’s time to get started. It may appear daunting, especially if you’ve never cleaned your garage door before, but it’s actually fairly straightforward and can usually be performed using tools you already have around the house.
Make sure you have the following items before you begin:
1. Solution For Cleaning
A mild detergent, such as dishwasher soap or car wash soap, is your best bet, making this one of the most cost-effective home repair projects you’ll ever undertake. If Tide isn’t available, you can use a detergent with less than 0.5 percent phosphate. Simple Green®, a non-toxic biodegradable cleaner, will also work.
Grab a bucket and combine one cup of liquid soap with two gallons of water once you have soap on hand. This is usually the ideal ratio for dealing with regular garage door dirt and grime. Bleach should
never be used in a cleaning solution. Only use bleach as a spot cleaning for difficult-to-remove stains — more on that later.
2. Clean Cloths And Non-Abrasive Sponges
Using an abrasive brush or sponge on your door’s finish is the last thing you want to do. Scrub the door with a milder option, such as a non-abrasive sponge or cleaning cloth. Avoid using scouring goods and unclean towels or rags that may have dirt or sand on them. You’ll need some soft, dry cloths to dry the door after it’s been cleaned.
The same sponges or clothes that you would use on a car are a good rule of thumb. You should protect your garage door against scratches in the same way you would protect the surface of a car.
3. Step Ladder
Even the tallest homeowner is unlikely to be able to reach the top of their garage door without strain. A step ladder ensures thorough cleaning from top to bottom. You don’t want to only clean the bottom part of the door, after all! This will also assist you in inspecting the various components of your garage door to ensure that everything is in functioning order.
It’s time to get to work after your supplies are ready. There isn’t much to it if you have the correct equipment. A door can be scrubbed by anyone. However, keep the following suggestions in mind as you work:
- Don’t be scared to put in a little extra effort. Scrub vigorously, even with your hands, to remove stubborn spots or dirt caked on the door.
- Spot clean stubborn stains with a bleach/water solution.
- Make sure to clean the weatherstripping and door trim as well. This will extend the life of your weatherstripping, which will save you money.
- Both the exterior and interior of the door should be cleaned. The interior, particularly the bottom piece, is still dirty and grimy. Don’t forget to give it some tender loving care.
If you’re wondering how to clean a fiberglass garage door, a wood garage door, or an aluminum garage door, the reality is that the basic processes are the same for all types of garage doors. If your property has a wood garage door, however, you must be cautious during the cleaning process. Cleaning your finish thoroughly may show gashes or deterioration. These are indicators that the door needs to be refinished or, at the very least, a fresh finishing coat applied to the current finish.
Waxing The Door To Your Garage
Steel garage doors should constantly be waxed once they are cleaned, which is another variation between various types of garage doors. Many homeowners are unaware that waxing a garage door is an important part of the cleaning process; nevertheless, just as you would use wax to keep the finish on your automobile, you can use wax to protect the finish on steel doors. A layer of wax will protect your garage door from all of the daily wear and tear, as well as resist dirt and grime. If you live in a harsh climate or near the shore, this is especially important because it will protect your door from the corrosive salt that may quickly degrade the finish.
Steel garage door owners should follow a thorough cleaning with careful waxing twice a year as a decent rule of thumb. Don’t put off waxing until a later date or time. Waxing should be done on a clean, dry surface.
When it comes to the product to use, a decent quality automotive wax should suffice, but make sure it’s a liquid wax rather than a paste wax; never use paste wax on your garage door. To ensure correct application, follow the wax manufacturer’s application directions. Cover all exposed areas of the door, including the bottom interior of the door, which is still exposed to a lot of grit and filth from the outside.
If you’re not sure what kind of wax to use or if your door needs to be waxed after it’s been washed, let Quality Overhead Door’s knowledgeable staff guide you to the proper materials. We’re always ready and prepared to assist you in making informed decisions about how to protect your garage door.
Things Not To Do
Although washing a garage door is a simple task, it should not be undertaken without caution. If you use an improper cleaning solution or an abrasive sponge on the surface, even the most durable garage doors might be harmed. So, when you get ready to clean your garage door, remember these pointers:
1. Do Not Use A Pressure Washing Machine
It’s fine to clean your garage door with a mild hose, but don’t use a power washer. While it may be tempting to give the cleaning procedure “more force,” this can compromise the integrity of your door.
Instead of using power equipment, opt for gentle handwashing and waxing. It will take a little longer, but it will protect your door and keep it in good shape, which is why you are washing it in the first place.
2. Bleach And Cleaning Solution Should Not Be Mixed
Spot-cleaning exceptionally difficult stains with a bleach-water mixture are possible, but it should never be done while the soap is still on the door or integrated into your cleaning solution. If a bleach solution is needed to remove a stain, first wipe away all cleaning solution from that area of the door, then use bleach that has been diluted in water.
3. Do Not Use Abrasive Sponges, Clothes, Or Solutions
These products can scratch or harm the surface of the door, as well as corrode the sheen. The last thing you want to do while trying to clean your door is to harm it.
Choose soft cloths and sponges to protect the finish on your garage door and keep it looking fantastic and running smoothly. Avoid using aggressive cleaning agents or chemicals that could damage the finish on your door.
4. Remember To Clean The Other Parts Of Your Garage Door
Don’t forget to wipe the weatherstripping along the bottom of the door while you’re at it. Take a few minutes to clean the garage door tracks as well as the photo eye sensors on your garage door opener. You keep these pieces in good functioning order by keeping them clean. While no garage door can remain indefinitely, there’s no need to accelerate its demise. You may avoid problems down the road and save money by maintaining your garage door and garage door opener.
By keeping your garage door always clean you can keep your garage door safe from being damaged. But if you need to repair it call us as we are providing the best garage door repair service around California.