Why is My Garage Door Opening So Slowly?

partially opened garage door

Your garage door is supposed to open and close on demand. There’s not really much else to it – as long as it continues to do that, it’s part of your home that you likely won’t pay much attention to or spend much time thinking about. But, if this morning, you went to your garage, hit the button to trigger your garage door opener, and the door opened so S-L-O-W-L-Y that you could have had a nap and woken up again before it finished its cycle, there’s probably something wrong. Garage doors don’t open at the speed of light, but they also shouldn’t take an age. If your garage door has gotten noticeably slower, something is not quite right, and in this article, we're going to help you get to the bottom of it.

Firstly…How Long Should a Garage Door Take to Open?

Before we get into the troubleshooting part of this article, let’s talk for a second about what the norm is in terms of a garage door opening, as you may be overreacting or your mind may be playing tricks on you and we want to rule that out first.

It will depend a little bit on the brand and type of opener you have, but a rough ballpark timeframe is somewhere between 12 and 18 seconds for your door to fully open from the moment you hit the button.

If your garage door is taking 20-25 seconds or even longer to open, it’s likely that something is not quite right, and garage door repair or maintenance could be necessary.

What Could Have Caused It to Slow Down?

Now that you’ve confirmed that your garage door is definitely taking longer than it should to complete its open and close cycle, it’s time to try and figure out what could have caused this issue.

As garage door repair pros in Loveland, we've seen this issue a fair bit over the years, and it's usually down to one of the following issues:

Lack of Lubrication

Keeping the moving parts on your garage door well-lubricated is one of the most important (and simple) maintenance tasks that the homeowner should take care of.

You see, when these parts get “dry”, there’s significantly more friction generated and the components involved in the lowering and lifting of your garage door have to work overtime. This not only wears them out a lot quicker, it takes them longer to do their job, and that's why you may have noticed that your garage door is opening slower.

Luckily, this is a simple issue to remedy. You just need to get hold of some suitable lubricant (a silicone spray works great) and apply it to all moving parts. Once you have done this, run your garage door through the full cycle to see if it has gotten noticeably quicker.

Garage Door Opener Was Switched to a Slower Setting

Technology sometimes plays tricks on us, but often there’s a simple explanation. The opening/closing speed can be programmed on most garage door openers to whatever level you desire.

Is it possible that someone else in your household has changed this speed setting? It’s also possible on some models that the unit itself may have detected a speed that it deemed unsafe, and consequently modified this setting for you.

Either way, it’s worth going into the settings for your garage door opener and checking on this to see that it’s not the issue.

Worn Garage Door Parts Need Replacement

Nothing lasts forever. Isn’t that what they say? And it’s definitely true of garage door components. You open and close your garage door daily, and over the course of thousands and thousands of cycles, all of those moving parts that combine to raise and lower the door can wear out, to the point where they no longer function as efficiently as before. When this happens, you might notice your door opens slower.

One part in particular to look at when you experience this issue are the torsion springs. They're usually good for about 10,000 cycles. Beyond that point, their function can become impaired and they may struggle to bear the weight of the door as effectively as they once did, adding to the time it takes the door to fully open. It's also possible that through use, the door has become unbalanced, and with everything out of whack, the opener has a harder time pulling the door up.

The Importance of an Annual Check-Up

As we mentioned at the start of this article, lots of Loveland residents don’t think about their garage doors until they really have to. But if you want to avoid issues such as a door that struggles to open or one that opens much more slowly, regular garage door maintenance is a must. A good way to ensure your garage door is always ready for action is to schedule an annual check-up with our Loveland garage door repair pros.

This can help to:

  • Prolong the lifespan of your garage door
  • Keep you safe and avoid dangerous accidents in your own home
  • Reduce the amount you spend on garage door repair over your door’s lifetime
  • Ensure your garage door opens as quickly as you expect it to!
  • For further help or advice, or to schedule an appointment with our friendly team, pick up the phone and dial 970-663-7335 today.

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