How to Close a Stuck Electric Garage Door

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An electric garage door can become stuck in the open position for several reasons. Because of the potential danger of broken parts, you should inspect the garage door for damage before attempting to close it. When you know there is no damage to the door, you can close the garage door by disconnecting the door from the electric opener.

Things You'll Need

  • Vise grips
  • Socket wrench
  • Clean rag

Look at the door springs before disconnecting the door from the door opener. If the springs are broken, you will need to call a door professional to replace the door springs. Also inspect the door cables on each side of the door. The cables should be tight without any slack. Loose or missing cables will require a door professional.

Look at the door rollers on each side of the door. All rollers should be inside the door track. If they are not, you will need to lower the door slowly by hand. If the bottom roller is out on one side, bend the outside edge of the track with a pair of vise grips and push the roller into the track before lowering the door. Bend the track edge back with vise grips.

Pull the emergency release cord to free the garage door from the door opener if the springs and cable are in good condition. The release cord is on the carriage connecting the door opener arm to the opener track. When you pull down on the rope, the carriage releases from the base, and you can operate the door manually.

Watch and feel the travel of the door as you close it. If you notice any binding, the opener will not force the door down. Loosen the bolt that secures the door track bracket to the wall with a socket wrench, and pull the track away from the door edge slightly nearest the binding area. Tighten the track bracket bolt with the socket wrench.

Test the garage door opener while the door is down. Push the wall button to operate the door opener. If the opener operates, the binding was setting the internal safety mechanisms off, alerting the opener not to close. Raise the door slightly and jiggle the emergency cord to lock the carriage back over the carriage base, and attempt to operate the door with the motor.

Clean the photoelectric safety eyes at the bottom of the door track with a clean rag if the opener did not operate with the push button. Sometimes dirt and moisture will keep the eyes from making a good connection. Push the wall button again to see if the opener operates. If the opener does not operate, call a door professional to troubleshoot your door opener. Meanwhile, you can still open and close your door manually.

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