Spring may be around the corner, but with the temperature continuing to drop and homeowners making preparations for dealing with snow, it is clear we are still very much in the throes of winter. Correct maintenance is very important to making sure that homes are properly outfitted for the winter months. Garages can be particularly vulnerable, as they are generally less insulated and less regularly used during this time, so knowing what to look for and how to prevent damage can be very useful.
Proper garage maintenance is relatively easy, and will mean that you won’t have to deal with doors getting stuck or property suffering damage in the cold. The best course of action is performing checks and preventative measures before winter, but it is never too late!
Checking the area
Before you start to repair or respond to issues, you should first do a proper check of your garage. Make sure to look for any signs of water damage that could suggest a leak, and try to find the source. Check that any windows and doors in your garage open without resistance as the cold can often freeze surfaces together. Another thing to look out for are any signs of mice or other pests. If your garage is left unattended for large periods of time it could become hibernation grounds for rodents, who can cause great damage. If you see any mice or any traces that they could be living there, call a pest control service as soon as you can, or look into humane methods of taking care of the problem yourself.
If you use the garage for storage then make sure that you remove anything that may be damaged by prolonged cold. Objects that contain liquid, live matter or mechanical parts are at high risk if there is poor insulation in your garage. If you use the garage primarily as car storage then make sure that your car is properly stocked for winter, that there are no leaks that could cause it damage and that you run the car engine ideally once a day to keep it working perfectly.
Maintaining your garage door
Performing a few maintenance tasks on your garage door will help make sure it still functions as intended during winter, and is fully operational when spring comes. Start by washing both sides of the door with water and mild detergent. Rinse it with cold water, and then if you have a steel door apply car wax for added winter protection.
Clean any weatherproofing rims and sealing of the door and door panels. General house cleaner will work fine for plastic, and cleaning these areas will make sure that the waterproofing does it’s job perfectly. You can also add silicone-based lubricant for extra protection, and look for any damage when performing this maintenance.
Examine any of the moving points to make sure that they move with no resistance, and use WD-40 or something lighter to grease any that stick. When doing this make sure to pay particular attention to springs, hinges and between each section of the door. This should help prevent it sticking during winter and prevent any damage that could arise from this. Check your garage door manual or check with the manufacturers to see if there are any further steps you could also take.
Checks during winter
During the winter you should regularly check the doors to make sure that they open correctly, and use lubricants to clear away any resistance that may have built up. Make sure to regularly check your garage for any signs of leakage or frost damage and seal any leaks that you see.
You can get professionals to check your garage if you are worried during the winter, but by following these steps and by doing regular checks and preventative maintenance, your garage, it’s doors and all it contains should be perfectly preserved for when the snow clears.