You naturally want your garage door to last for a long time. If you are like most people, you do not even think about your garage door very often. The only time you think about it is when there is something wrong or when you start to notice rust spots. Those rust spots can be very frustrating, especially if you have a garage door that is still relatively new. They are supposed to be protected by special paint, so they will not rust. What happened?
One of the first and most important things that you will want to do is consider the environment in which you live. If you live in an area where there is a lot of moisture and where there is a lot of salt in the air – or on the road in the winter – it means that your garage door might be more prone to rusting. If your garage is close to the street, and there is a lot of salt being used to remove ice from the roads and sidewalks in the winter, you might find that there is more of a risk of rust. These are issues that do not tend to be much of a problem most of the time or for most people. However, they can happen, and garage door specialists have seen them many times in the past.
Strangely, you might even find that pollen could be your problem, and you don’t have rust at all. There are some types of trees, such as birch, that can leave orange streaks on a garage door. These can look like rust, and it can cause people to panic, as they wonder what could have caused that much rust on their garage door overnight!
Excellent garage door manufacturers ensure that they use high-quality paint on their doors. Most will apply a primer coat and then add a baked-on coat of paint. The steel that is used to make the doors will also contain some zinc, which helps to protect against rust. The Door and Access Systems Manufacturers Association even has guidelines for the needed thickness of zinc coatings for proper galvanization of steel.
If you bought your home and have not yet replaced the garage door, there is quite a bit that you do not know about it. You do not know, for example, if it was repainted or if it had been damaged. There could be rust damage that has been painted over, for example.
If the steel surface of the garage door has been damaged in any way, it could also mean that it is at risk of rusting. It needs to be repaired correctly and by a professional if that is the case.
Washing the garage door
How long has it been since you last washed the garage door? If you do not clean your garage door regularly, it is time that you started. You can wash away the grime and dust from the surface of the door with some simple soap and water. Liquid dish detergent will work, and so will the soap that you use to wash your car. When you wash the door, you can see if there is any damage. You can also remove any grease or oil that might be there. If you do notice any issues with oil spots on the door, it is likely because you used too much lubricant the last time you lubricated the drive chain.
When you are washing the garage door, you want to stay away from pressure washers. They work for the driveway and the deck, but they can cause damage to the garage door. You can use a garden hose. Just make sure that you set it to one of the shower settings, so the spray is not too concentrated.
One of the common questions that get asked is just how often you should wash the garage door. While it might vary based on where you live, the minimum will be at least two times per year. Those who live in areas that might be a little harsher on steel might want to wash four times per year. You can follow the ideas presented in Garaga’s maintenance guide for your garage door. It will take a bit longer, but the techniques work well.
What if there is rust?
If you find some rust, it is not the end of the world. There are some things that you can do about it. For the stains that are on the surface, you can remove them with an equal proportion of water and vinegar added to a spray bottle. You can then spray it on the door and wipe it away using a clean cloth. If this doesn’t get rid of the stains, you can create a paste from water and baking soda. Put the paste onto the rusted parts of the door and wait for about 20 minutes to half an hour. Then, use a clean cloth to remove the paste and rinse the area. You could also use bathroom tile cleaner in much the same way if you have some available.
When you need a new door
In some cases, simply removing the rust that’s there is not enough. Sometimes, the damage to the door is already too severe, and you would be better off getting a new garage door. Fortunately, that’s possible, and it is easier than you might think. You can contact us now at 1-877-828-5279 if you live in or around Springfield, MA. We have the knowledge and the experience needed to ensure that you get the right garage door for your property and that you can stay within your budget.