Admit it. At least once or twice, you’ve played “beat the garage door.” You hit the close button and run through garage and duck under the door before getting forever stuck inside. Alright, maybe not forever, but it’s more fun if the stakes are high, right? But what about if you or your car actually gets stuck inside your garage?
Have no fear! Neighborhood Garage Door Service of San Jose, CA has some troubleshooting steps you can take if your garage door is stuck with your car inside.
If your garage door is stuck while you are inside with your car, be sure your vehicle is not running. In an enclosed area like your garage, carbon monoxide can build up fast. Prolonged exposure to carbon monoxide can cause severe health problems or even death.
In the unlikely, and unlucky, event that you find yourself stuck inside your car and locked out of your running car, take immediate action. Open a window or side door to your home or garage, and use your cell phone to call for help without delay. Things can get hazardous quickly.
Troubleshoot the opener and switches
If you’re trying to open your overhead door with a remote, try using the wall-mounted switch. If you’re garage door is stuck with you outside, try changing the batteries in your remote control. If you’re inside and neither of these work, check to make sure the opener is plugged in and has power. Lastly, if you have access to your breaker box, check to make sure none of them are tripped.
Check your sensors
On either side of your garage door, near the bottom, you will find sensors. They will usually be square plastic units with a small eye facing the center of the doorway. Check to see if either is bent or obviously out of alignment. Each sensor should also have a visible red or green light.
If all of your troubleshooting of the electronics reveals no issues, try manually opening the door. Locate the emergency release pull cord. It will usually have a red handle. Pulling this cord will disengage the automated lift system and allow you to pull the door up by hand and rescue your car.
When the electric components are working again, simply slide the handle back into place to resume regular use of the automatic opener.
Inspect the tracks
If you cannot even lift the door manually, you may have a problem with the tracks. Check each track for two things. First, make sure that all the garage door wheels are on the tracks. Second, see if there is any warping or bending in the tracks themselves.
If one of the wheels is off track, try to put it back onto track. Grab a pair of pliers, which you hopefully have in your garage, and bend the track enough to slip the wheel back into place. Then bend the track back. If more than one or two wheels is off track, you need to call us at Neighborhood Garage Door Service of San Jose, CA for help.
If one of the tracks is bent, use the pliers to bend it back into shape. Again, if there’s too much damage to fix on your own, give us a call!
Look at torsion springs, but don’t touch
Locate the torsion springs on your door and see if they are properly attached. If not, call a service technician immediately. Each pound your garage door weighs is counterbalanced by an equal poundage of force in the torsion spring. With the extreme pressure these springs are under, they can cause injury or death if handled improperly.
What if you’re outside?
If you’re stuck outside while your garage door is stuck, start with the remote control troubleshooting above. If that does not work, it’s possible to break your way in if you find yourself in an urgent situation.
You can straighten out a coat hanger and fish it through the top of your garage door between the wall and the door. You may be able to use the coat hanger to reach the emergency pull cord and disengage the electric opener. Now try manually opening the door.
If none of these troubleshooting tricks works, call Neighborhood Garage Door Service of San Jose, CA right away. With our large number of locations, we can be on site quickly to help you get your car out if your garage door is stuck closed. Don’t wait, call us today!