Traverse curtain rods open and close the curtains with a small pulley system. This allows you to tug the pulley string and adjust both sides of the curtains at once. The rods only open symmetrically, meaning that both curtain sections are equally drawn back from the center of the curtain. If your traverse curtain rod is giving you problems, it may be because the system is dirty. Clean the pieces before looking for more serious problems.
Things You'll Need
Dust the top of the curtain rod and the back housing of the rod. This eliminates excess debris that may cause the sliders to function improperly. Spray canned air into the track for large logged debris.
Inspect the cord for tangles or knots, and fix as necessary. The pulley won't work properly when tangled. Twist the pulley cover to help eliminate twists and tangles in the cord.
Inspect the strings for debris or buildup, which limits the cord from moving smoothly. Wipe down the string with a dry towel. Gently scrape excessive oily buildup with your fingernail or a spoon; do not dig into the nylon cord.
Pulley System Problems
Pull the knotted cord from behind the "overlap master slide" (center part of the curtain rod that slides back and forth and makes the curtains slightly overlap) and re-knot it at the appropriate length. This allows you to adjust the tension of the pulley system cord. Cut off excess cord with scissors as necessary; too much slack in the line makes the curtain not open and close as quickly.
Switch the side of the "draw" (side you pull on the cord) by detaching the pulley cover, and pulling on the cord on the opposite side of the curtain rod, just on the inside of the end brackets.
Snap the pulley cover back into place, and attach the bottom bracket the wall with the accompanying hardware. Position the bracket straight underneath the pulley cover for best results.
Most people install the pulley systems on the right hand side since most people are right-handed. Install the pulley system on the left side when the window is near the corner of the wall, or for left-handed people.
Don’t tug too hard on the pulley system or cord or you could break something. Inspect the cord for tangles before you look for a more serious problem.