Philadelphia Garage Door Openers

by Jon Nunan

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A garage door opener that functions properly is quite a convenience in Philadelphia. Garage door openers that function poorly, on the other hand, can quite literally leave you out in the cold (which, in southeastern PA is no joke). If you are one of the many people who have simply gotten used to a jerky, squealing opener, maybe it's time to upgrade. Your car, and probably your neighbors as well, will thank you for it.

Pre-Replacement Checks
Before installing a garage door opener, Philadelphians should first make sure that the door opens with ease manually. There are many factors in southeastern Pennsylvania that can hinder your garage door's operation. Rust on moving parts is definitely a concern, as is grit and dirt getting into rollers, bearings, or tracks. If you have a wooden door, warping and bowing can cause some noticeable operation problems, while large dents can have a similar effect on metal models. Give the entire door and its components a good once over. Clean it and use oil or an aerosol lubricant where necessary (nylon rollers, however, should not be lubricated). If the door still doesn't open easily, you may need to call in a professional.

Types of Garage Door Openers
Once the door opens smoothly and without a significant effort (a ten-year old can lift it), it's now time to pick out your new opener. There are three basic styles of garage openers, and each has its pros and cons. A belt driven model is generally the quietest, and a screw drive is best for doors that tilt up rather than roll up on a track. A chain driven model is very dependable and is suitable for most applications.

There are several levels of strength commonly available for the motor of your garage door opener. Philadelphia residents with an average sized single door will probably do fine with a 1/4 horsepower opener. For homes with a two car door, a 1/3 or 1/2 horsepower opener is recommended. If your door is over 7 feet tall, it is likely that you will have to use an extender kit to have proper function.

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Automatic Garage Door Safety Features
In 1993, a law was passed regarding garage door safety. It requires that any automatic door have one of the following features: a button that needs to be continually pressed for the door to close, an electric eye sensor, or a door edge sensor. A safe and well functioning garage door will also reverse when it comes into contact with an object in its path or whenever a sensor registers something in the path of the door. Modern garage doors should all contain some or all of these features. If your current door was installed prior to 1982, it may pose a risk to small children, pets, or property.

Philadelphia Garage Door Opener Pricing
The average Philadelphia garage door opener is going to cost in the neighborhood of $400 installed. Repairing a garage door opener in Philadelphia can run anywhere between $50 and $250. To replace the garage door itself, southeastern PA prices range from $1,000 to $2,000.

Jon Nunan is a freelance writer who draws on his experience in construction, ranging from landscaping to log home building, for his articles on home improvement.