How to Clean Your Garage Door
Cleaning your garage door should be routine practice for any homeowner. However, this is not always the case. Most times, garage doors experience neglect, cutting the lifespan of your door short and even resulting in unnecessary problems. In this article, discover how to properly care for your garage door and get the best out of your investment.
How Should I Clean My Garage Door?
Garage doors are highly visible, hard-working surfaces that are subjected to a lot of use daily. Even though they are built to withstand stress, garage doors deserve as much care as windows, patios, and other home areas. If you’re wondering how to go about cleaning your garage door, here is a short guide to help:
- Use a mild liquid soap (dishwashing liquid, for instance) and water to wash the surfaces and windows of your garage doors. Use a soft brush, cloth, or sponge to wash both the interior and exterior of your garage door. Avoid using abrasive detergents as this can damage the garage door seals or the painted surface of the door.
- After washing, rinse thoroughly with a hose, but avoid using a pressure washer. The force from a pressure washer can also damage the surface of your garage door.
- Suppose you encounter stubborn stains such as oil; you should spot clean the area with a solution of water and diluted bleach. Ensure the bleach is diluted, and do not mix the bleach with other cleansers as this results in harmful fumes. Once you are done spot cleaning, rinse all surfaces thoroughly.
- Wax your door to protect its finish after washing and rinsing. Make use of a quality car wax and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Inspect the weather stripping at the bottom of your door and clean it. You can apply a vinyl protectant to prolong the life of the weather stripping. Ensure that the bottom strip is in top shape and in full contact with the garage floor. This will serve as an insulator and help keep insects and rodents out of your garage.
- Finally, clean and organize the areas around your garage door. Take out any stacks or objects that can cause an obstruction or damage the garage door track.
Before you begin cleaning your garage door, you should have the following supplies:
- Mild cleaning solution
- Non-abrasive cleaning cloths and sponges
- A step ladder
- Diluted bleach
The Dos and Don’ts of Cleaning Your Garage Door
1. Clean your garage doors at least twice a year
Elements such as rain, snow, dust, wind, and so much more constantly interact with your garage door. These elements can damage the surface of your garage door paint and even eat at the surface below. Cleaning your garage door is a great way to get rid of the junk accumulated on the garage door, while waxing gives it a protective coat.
2. Wax your garage doors
It is recommended that you wax your garage doors at least once a year. Wax adds a protective coating, enhancing the finish of your door while keeping it from getting faded or damaged by the elements.
3. Clean your weather stripping
Weatherstripping around your garage door creates an insulating seal to prevent the elements from getting into your garage. Chances are, you aren’t paying as much attention to your weather stripping as you are to your garage door’s exterior.
Use a general-purpose cleaner to get rid of grease or dirt that accumulates on your weather stripping. It would be best if you also took this opportunity to inspect the weather stripping for cracks or other damages.
4. Never clean your garage door with a pressure washer
Pressure washers are amazing for dealing with stains, algae or dirt caked on hard surfaces like your sidewalk. You should never use a pressure washer on your garage door, as even pressure washers with smaller nozzles still have the potential to damage your weather stripping and even your door itself.
Garage door manufacturers specify that you do not wash your doors with a pressure washer because it can damage your door and render your warranty void. If you wash your garage doors regularly, you won’t even need a pressure washer to get out any dirt stuck to the door.
5. Avoid washing your garage door in direct sunlight
You should clean your garage door early in the mornings/evenings. Garage doors are the biggest non-insulated surface in your house, and it traps heat pretty easily. If your door gets too hot, it will begin breaking down the chemicals in the soap and wax as soon as you begin applying them. This breakdown will result in a chalky garage door look, and you don’t want that.
6. Never clean your garage door with pure bleach
Pure bleach is very powerful, and this isn’t the best cleaning product for your garage door. The protective finish and even the paint of your garage door can be seriously affected by using bleach to clean your doors. If you do need to use bleach, make sure it is diluted and in a water solution.
Why Should You Clean Your Garage Door?
Beyond improving curb appeal, there are several benefits of cleaning your garage door. Some of the reasons you should clean your garage door include:
1. Improve your curb appeal
All you need to clean your garage door is soap and water. The difference this makes to the appearance of your home is so amazing. When you clean your garage door, you get rid of all the grime and dirt that might be dulling the surface of your garage door. A clean garage door does wonders for your curb appeal, especially if you intend to put your home up for sale.
2. Prolong the finish of your door
Your garage door is exposed to so many elements daily. Sun, rain, dirt, and wind can take a toll on garage doors of even the highest quality. Over time, due to these harsh conditions, the finish of your garage door can become dull, eroded, or even damaged if you do not take proper care of your garage door.
Wood garage doors should be refinished periodically, but keeping your wood garage door clean means you can go longer between refinishing. Doors made out of other materials may not be refinished regularly, but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep them just as clean.
3. Stops rust
Rust is a result of dirt, salt, or other substances getting stuck on your garage door. Rust is very unsightly, and over time can even damage the integrity of your door. Cleaning your door regularly prevents rust from forming on doors, ultimately extending the door’s life. Rust is also very difficult to get rid of, so cleaning your doors is a cheaper, less stressful alternative.
4. It helps keep your warranty
If the warranty still covers your garage door, you must keep it clean to maintain the terms of the warranty. In certain cases, failure to keep your door clean will render our warranty void and make you unable to lay claims when any problems arise.
5. It allows you to inspect the door
When cleaning your garage door, you should take a few minutes out to inspect both the interior and exterior of the door. You should view cleaning as a reminder to check all moving parts. The tracks, spring, photo-eye sensors, and, of course, the surface of the door should be carefully inspected. When your door is clean, it is a lot easier to notice if it has been damaged in one way or the other. The sooner you notice problems with your door, the sooner you can address them rather than letting them turn into much bigger problems than they should originally be.
How Often Should I Clean My Garage Door?
When was the last time you thought to clean your garage door? For most homeowners, cleaning the garage door isn’t exactly high on their list of priorities. On average, a garage door lasts about 20 years with the proper care and maintenance. Cleaning your garage door is a great way to protect your investment. A clean garage door will last longer as cleaning prevents serious issues from developing with your door.
You should wash your doors at least twice a year, during spring and in the fall. If you live in harsh weather conditions such as coastal areas, you should clean your garage door quarterly. Excessive exposure to factors such as salt can cause the finish of your garage door to erode a lot quicker.
If you reside in Toronto or the GTA and search for the best, most knowledgeable garage door experts in Toronto, check out TBC Garage Doors.
We are a reputable company that provides professional garage door installation, replacement, and repair. We also offer emergency garage door repair and installation services, and our specialized team is available whenever you need help.
Some of our services include new garage door installation, garage door spring installation/repair, garage door sensor repair/set up, garage door opener belt installation/repair. Garage door framing, among many others. We also handle different doors, from sectional, roll up and side hinged garage doors to up and over/tilt-up canopy garage doors.