Lifespans Of Different Garage Door Rollers
There are several types of garage door rollers and they differ substantially in quality and lifespan. They include:
- Plastic rollers, which are the most basic type. They usually last only a few years.
- Steel rollers with ball bearings. These last about 10 to 15 years, if well maintained. That said, theyre the noisiest option.
- Steel rollers without ball bearings. Like plastic rollers, these are builder-grade rollers that will only last a couple of years.
- Nylon rollers have a lifespan of 12 to 20 years, depending on their quality. Theyre the most expensive option, but also the quietest and best performing.
Different Types Of Garage Door Rollers
Even though, as youll find out in a second, you could replace the rollers without being an experienced repairman, the likelihood that youll face some issues with the bottom rollers largely depends on their type. Plastic bottom rollers usually need to be replaced just after a few years of service, as their durability is the lowest.
Thats why we recommend choosing either steel or nylon rollers, which are a little bit more expensive but will serve you for a much longer period of time. Though it really depends on how many times per day you close and open your garage door, you should expect steel garage rollers to last you for around ten years.
However, when compared to plastic rollers, they are much louder, and youll have to remember to lubricate the rollers every once in a while. Nylon garage door rollers, on the other hand, dont generate much noise and will serve you even longer than steel ones would.
How To Replace Garage Door Rollers
In all seriousness, garage doors are under A LOT of tension.
My door has a cable that runs down the side of the door attached to the bottom roller with some red screws. When the door is closed, the cable sounds like a bass guitar string if you pluck it.
So do yourself a favor and never unscrew the bottom roller bracket!
Before you get started, there are two safety precautions to take:
- Unplug your garage door opener. Its unlikely that the garage door will start up by itself, but we want to be as safe as possible.
- Unhook the trolley from the garage door arm to move the door freely up and down.
Now that weve got that out of the way
Lets start with the easy ones first.
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How Often Do Garage Door Rollers Need To Be Replaced
Rollers are a key component of your garage door system. These rod-and-wheel systems connect the door to a set of tracks, allowing it to open and close swiftly and smoothly.
Every time you operate your garage door, the rollers are hard at work. Due to gradual wear and tear, however, they require periodic replacement. Heres everything you need to know about replacing your garage door rollers.
What Happens When Garage Door Rollers Break Down
If you miss the signs of the garage door rollers getting older and more worn out, you will soon see the signs in your garage door. They can wear out, loosen, or bend, and that will all affect the way the door operates. If youre seeing jerky motions when you use the door, thats a sign that theyre wearing out.
If the roller has cracked or broken, it can also jam the garage door. This stops it from closing all the way and obviously isnt ideal for security. Its also not great if your car is trapped in the garage at the time. Plus, the longer the door is open, the more pests are able to get into your garage and start nesting.
The longer that damage is left, the worse it will become. Plus, it will cause damage to other parts of the garage door system. Thats why its so important to replace garage door rollers as soon as possible.
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How To Replace Upper Garage Door Rollers
Grab a socket wrench and unscrew the retaining bolts to the brackets that hold the garage door rollers. AgainDO NOT DO THIS FOR THE BOTTOM ROLLER.
Sorry to sound like a broken record, but its essential.
Once youve got the bracket off, the roller will slide right out of the track.
Its good to inspect your garage door brackets for any damage, especially if you have an older garage door. I had a relatively new house, so mine was OK.
The old plastic roller just falls out, and the new one just slides in its place.
When youre putting the new rollers into your garage door hinges, its good to add a little lubricant to help things run smoothly.
I like using WD-40 White Lithium Grease, which is garage-door safe. Just be sure not to use the normal red-cap WD-40.
After the roller is in and youve added a little lubricant to it, just screw the bracket back in and move on to the next roller.
Garage Door Roller Types
Like everything these days, there is a range of roller types that vary in construction, durability and cost. Like a garage door spring, once one breaks, youre in trouble. A broken roller will usually result in the garage door being off the track making it very hard to open or close. So lets look at the roller types available to help decide which type is right for you:
Standard Plastic RollerMost new garage doors come with standard plastic rollers which is a plastic bushing on a steel stem with no ball bearings. Cheap and mass produced, they are popular only because they keep a new garage door system cost down. Over time, they get dirty and wear out faster than other roller types. You can expect 2-3 years out of these, which is usually less than the life of a garage door spring. So its important to keep an eye on these.
Steel Roller With Ball BearingsA steel roller is a good upgrade from the standard plastic roller. The ball bearings reduce friction and add to the overall weight rating of the roller extending the life of the roller. The ball bearings can and should be lubricated as part of a routine maintenance plan and can be expected to last over 5 years. The number of ball bearings varies with more bearings making for a smoother, more durable component.
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Signs That You Need To Replace Your Garage Door Rollers
- Does your garage door vibrate as it moves up or down?
- Is your door making unusual noises like screeching or creaking sounds?
- Does your door often become misaligned?
If you answered yes to all questions, then its high time that you examine your rollers.
A shaky and noisy garage door indicates that there is a problem with your garage door rollers.
Your rollers may be unlubricated, rusty, bent, or worn out.
Consult your trusted garage door technician on what to do with your rollers.
But more often than not, they would suggest that you have your rollers replaced.
Do You Need To Bend The Track
There are two schools of thought about replacing rollers: bend the track or unscrew the brackets.
The people who say to bend the track will say that youre going to need to do it anyway to tackle the bottom roller . If youre already doing it for one set of rollers, you might as well do it for all of them.
But the people who say to unscrew the brackets and just pop in new rollers will tell you that this is more straightforward. It also saves you the trouble of popping each garage door section off the track.
It also saves some wear on the rollers when trying to squeeze them back on the track.
I fall in the second camp. For me, unscrewing the brackets was much simpler and only took a few minutes per roller.
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Need Premium Garage Door Rollers Call The Doctor
When your garage door rollers are making more noise than your Harley, it may be time for a replacement. The sooner you get those replaced, the safer it will be for everyone in your family. Garage doors are very heavy and can do a lot of damage to your car if it comes off the track. Call the Garage Door Doctor at or to get a FREE estimate on replacement or a new install. The Garage Door Doctor will answer your questions and give you a fair deal with a warranty.
Are All Garage Door Rollers The Same Size
No. However, most garage door rollers are relatively standard in size. For example, most residential rollers are two-inch, but the roller diameter is closer to 1 3/4 inches. Thus, roller sizes are standard at one inch, two inches, or three inches except the dimensions are usually ¼ short: ¾, 1¾, and 2¾.
Commercial and industrial doors use two-inch and three-inch rollers. The wheels on three-inch rollers measure closer to 2 3/4 inches.
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Ten Balls Bearing Nylon Roller
The ten-ball bearing nylon roller is made of heavy-duty Nylon to prevent wear and provide a quiet experience as it goes down the steel track. In addition, it features exposed bearings to provide a lubrication point.
They are rated for 75 lbs. per roller and can last for 10,000 15,000 cycles, which is equivalent to the average life of a torsion spring.
What Are Signs You Need To Replace Garage Door Rollers
You will need to replace garage door rollers when they have reached their maximum number of cycles. Every opening or closing constitutes a cycle, which means at three to five cycles a day, the door will have around 1,500 cycles yearly.
Your garage door should have documentation telling you how many cycles your garage door components last before they require replacement. If your rollers are at the end of their estimated life cycle, replacement is a good idea. The projected life cycles for different rollers are:
- Nylon, which lasts about 12-20 years and are the quietest option
- Plastic, which is the most common but lasts only a few years
- Steel without ball bearings, which also last only a few years
- Steel with ball bearings, lasting 10-15 years but the noisiest
Although the life cycle ratings for most roller types are typical, sometimes the rollers wear out sooner than projected. Inspecting your rollers periodically can help you spot trouble before it starts. Some signs to look for include:
- Visible wear or damage, including chipping and cracking
- Loose connections between rods and wheels
- Broken seals in doors with ball bearings
- Squawking or grinding noises
- Slow or irregular door operation
A yearly professional inspection, at the least, will help you spot any problems before they become too serious. Part of this inspection will also include roller lubrication.
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Why Garage Doors Are A Must To Repair
Maintaining the security of your home is crucial, and your garage door play a vital role in keeping your family and possessions safe. Here are just a few reasons why you should repair your garage door as soon as possible:
Your garage door is one of the largest openings in your home, so its important to make sure that it is secure. A broken or damaged door could easily be forced open, giving intruders easy access to your home.
A malfunctioning garage door can also be a safety hazard. If the door is not opening or closing properly, it could cause serious injury to yourself or your family members.
In addition to security and safety concerns, a broken garage door can also be a major inconvenience. If you cant open or close your garage door, you may not be able to park your car inside. This could leave you stranded if you need to leave in a hurry.
As you can see, there are many good reasons to repair your garage door as soon as possible. Dont wait until its too late call a professional today.
When Do Garage Rollers Need Replacing
Depending on the cycle ratings of your garage door rollers, which you can usually find on the documentation, you will need to replace them when they start showing signs of wear. On average, a garage door is opened and closed about 1500 times a year.
If you are using nylon garage rollers which are typically rated 10,000 cycles then you would expect them to last about 8 years. However, the garage door opener and its springs also need to be considered as they will have an impact on how many cycles a roller can handle before wearing out completely.
If you are having problems with your rollers then it is best practice to replace them sooner rather than later because if one breaks or wears out while your door is open then it will be difficult to get the door closed again.
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Signs Your Garage Door Needs New Rollers
You may not realize how often you use your garage door until something goes wrong. Keeping your garage door in good condition is important for your convenience and safety. Your garage doors components will sometimes need to be replaced, including the rollers.
The signs that your garage door needs new rollers include:
Excessive Vibration When Operating
Your garage door should open and close smoothly. Your garage doors rollers can become worn out over time. This causes your garage door to vibrate and shake excessively when its opening or closing. If your garage door seems like its going to jump off its track every time you operate it, its likely that your rollers need replacing. Have your garage door checked out by a repair technician.
Door is Frequently Out of Alignment
This is one of the easiest ways to tell that your garage door needs new rollers. The rollers help to keep the garage door aligned properly. It needs to stay in alignment in order to function correctly. If your garage door is frequently running off its hinges or slipping out of alignment, the rollers will need to be replaced.
If your garage door is in need of repairs, dont wait. Garage door problems can become unsafe if theyre not addressed. If you think your garage door needs new rollers or any other repairs, give us a call at Smokeys Garage Door. Our expert technicians will be happy to assist you.
How To Replace Garage Door Rollers In 12 Steps
Replacing the rollers on a garage door is often a straightforward DIY project. If youve never done it before, it can take a bit of getting used to, but by the time you have replaced the 1012 rollers that most garage doors have, youll be a pro!
If you have a helper, it will make this task safer and easier. However, it can still be done safely by working carefully, not rushing, and using a solid stepladder to replace top rollers.
- Safety: Safety glasses, work gloves,
- Tools: Pliers, hammer, screwdrivers, step ladder, clamp
- Supplies: New rollers
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Replacing The Bottommost Rollers
What Kind Of Garage Door Rollers Should You Buy
Before you replace your garage door rollers, you have an important decision to make: what kind of rollers should you buy? The answer depends on what youre looking for, whether its affordability, durability, or low maintenance.
Plastic rollers are the cheapest option but wont last as long. You will probably have to replace your plastic garage door rollers again within a year or two. The nice thing about plastic is that its much quieter than steel or nylon.
Steel rollers are much more durable than plastic and come at a higher cost. While they will last a long time without replacement, you will have to maintain them by applying lubricant every few months or so.
Nylon rollers are generally regarded as the best option for a combination of affordability and function. They are quiet, durable, and will last for years with occasional maintenance.
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How Does A Garage Roller Door Works
- Extension Spring System This one right here uses springs that are directly attached to cables. They are also, in turn, attached to the bottom corners of your garage door. Unfortunately, this system is infamous for not being able to last longer.
- Torsion Spring System This is without a doubt the most common type when it comes to the garage door system. Torsion springs are typically mounted horizontally above the door opening.
Maintaining Your Garage Door Rollers
You have your new garage door rollers in place, so youll need to do some work to keep them in the best possible condition. This is very easy to do, you just need to follow these tips:
Do regular inspections: This is the most important thing you can do for your garage door. If youre keeping a close eye on it, youll be able to spot if anything goes wrong much quicker. Its better for garage door safety too, as you wont have a problem get worse without you knowing about it, and potentially putting your family in danger.
Look for any signs of wear and tear on the door. You can also conduct a test of the auto-reverse if you have a garage door opener. Make sure that everything is working as it should.
Lubricate the door: This is so important for your whole garage door, not just the rollers. Youll need to lubricate all moving parts regularly, including those ball bearings in the rollers. This keeps everything moving smoothly. Use lithium grease to do this, and youll get the best results.
Have you seen anything that isnt quite right on your garage door? If so, then youll want to call in the experts right away. Some homeowners shy away from this, as they feel its expensive. However, if a problem is repaired by a novice or left alone, its going to be a lot more expensive to fix the damage. If left long enough, the whole garage door may have to be replaced.
If you see anything that needs to be replaced or repaired, call those experts now so they can take care of it for you.
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