Adjusting Your Garage Door Photo Eye

Adjusting Your Garage Door Photo Eye Phoenix AZ

Today’s garage doors are outfitted with safety precautions. Some of them are part of the leading edge as the garage closes, others are infrared beams which “watch” for people or possessions to be in the garage door’s path.

Today will we talk about the photo eye that controls one type of safety protocol. For the infrared beam to work correctly, the beam must shoot straight at the other sensor and the “eye” must pick up the signal clearly. If they are out of alignment the system will believe there is an vehicle, object, person, or even a pet in the way and it will not close.

These sensors are usually installed about 6 inches off the floor.  If you can’t get your garage to close, there is a chance that the problem is the photo eye. Follow the steps below to get your garage working again.

Photo Eye Adjustment Steps

Step #1 – Knowing your enemy is the biggest part of any repair. Garage doors that will neither open or close are having more problems than misaligned photo eyes. However if your door will not close, or only closes a bit and then retracts, you might check your photo eyes. Some garage doors will not attempt to close if the beam is not hitting right, they might flash a light or make a clicking sound.

Step #2 – Clear the path around the garage door and the sensors. While you would probably notice if the car was hanging out a small item that has fallen in front of the garage door sensor will prevent it from working. In addition if someone has bumped the sensor or something has fallen on it, it will not work correctly.

Step #3 – Check the lights on the sensors. Most sensors will have LED lights installed to help you know their current condition. If one of the sensors light is not on or it is flashing you should try to adjust it. If you aim it just right it should re-establish the connection and allow your garage door to close again. Persistent problems with sensors coming out of adjustment should be looked at by qualified garage door technicians.

Step #4 – Wipe your eyes, or at least clean your sensors. It is easy for rain, dust, or dirt to get onto the lens of your sensors. Using a damp cloth you should wipe the cobwebs, dirt, or dust away from the lens and then ensure they are pointed correctly. This should help you get both LED lights to come on and indicate that they are working properly. There is also a chance that the sun shines into the sensor at certain times of day. If you suspect this, you can have a sun shade installed on your garage door sensor to overcome this problem.

Step #5 – The sensors are installed many times with pivot brackets. These brackets allow the angle of the sensors to be customized and overcome walls or tracks that are out of plumb. If your house is settling or the track has been bent the bracket can be loosened and the sensor pointed back at level to fire directly at the other sensor.

Step #6 – Photo eyes in garage doors should be mounted at exactly the same height. While they might work for a while with a slight difference in height, they will start to have problems over time and be more prone to dysfunction with normal environmental buildup on the sensors.

Step #7 – Checking the wires is the last step in DYI garage door repair. If the wires leading to your sensors are pulled loose or have been frayed you should call for some professional help. Caring for the safety system of your garage door is a job for professionals and you should invest in the safety of you and your family.

Garage Door Photo Eye Service

If you have tried these steps and haven’t been able to get your garage door working, give the experts a call. On Track Garage Door knows all brands and technology to get your garage door back on track. We can help you adjust, repair, or replace damaged photo eye safety sensors on your garage door anywhere in the Phoenix valley. Call today at 480-641-2301.

Garage Door Maintenance Tips

Top Preventive Maintenance Habits for Garage Door Owners Phoenix AZ

No matter what season it is, what time of day it is, your garage door has to open every single time you need it to.  We come and go many times a day and rarely have the time to find a way to fix a malfunctioning garage door.  Preventive garage door maintenance is the way to avoid having the inconvenience of a broken or malfunctioning garage door is to take care of it before it needs repair.  Here’s a list of ways you can keep it running for years with trouble free operation.

Keeping the Tracks Clear

Ensure that the tracks on both sides of the garage door are free from objects or debris.  As an owner you can easily check the plump with a level to see how it’s weathering use, but if you see that it needs adjustment it’s time to call the professionals who have the tools, experience and knowledge to do this work safely.

Test the Safety Features

Most modern garage doors have a safety feature that prevents it from harming someone or something they happen to be in the garage doors path.  There are a couple main ways that it can see if there is something in its way, a photocell and mechanical method.  For the mechanical system you can just find a brick or a 2×4 for it to come down on close on, as soon as it touches the object it should reverse direction and come back up.  For the photocell as your garage door is closing just wave your leg or an object under it and it should automatically stop and reverse direction.

Keep Moving Parts Lubricated

If you want your garage door to last for many years just keep it well lubricated.  It takes less time than reading the paper and is very simple.  You can find white lithium grease and use it on the screw or chain.  Then most garage door specialists will have some spray lubricant you can use to spray directly on the overhead springs.

Cable Checking

These high-tension cables are something only a trained professional should be working on.  They are extremely dangerous and can maim and kill if not handled properly.  You can’t work on them, but you can inspect them to see if you should have a professional come and do the work for you.  Visually check them out looking for broken strands, especially down near the bottom roller bracket.

Roller Inspection and Replacement

The rollers need to be looked at about every six months, regardless of their material.  They should also be replaced any time they look worn or at least every 7 years or so.  If you notice wear, chips or cracks they need to be replaced.  You can do this or a professional will be happy to come out and do a minor service on your garage.  If you want to do it simply removing any roller brackets that are not attached directly to the cable system, and then reattaching after the roller replacement.

Garage Door Balance Testing

Even though you might not be able to see it with the naked eye an imbalanced garage door can cost you money.   Being out of balance puts more strain on all the parts and will wear them out sooner.  You can test the balance of the garage door.  Simply start with your garage door in the closed position and pull the release handle (typically a red cord).  Then manually raise the garage door about halfway.  It should stay right where you leave it, if it doesn’t your counterweight springs are out of balance and you need to call a professional as these are extremely dangerous to work on.

Tighten Loose Bolts and Other Hardware

Given that most garage doors open over a thousand times a year in all sorts of weather conditions they are subjected to a lot of vibration.  Vibration loosens bolts and screws.  Take a look at all the hinges, brackets, bolts and screws to ensure they are tight.  You can even tighten these down with a socket wrench.

Be Aware

As you sit waiting for it to open before leaving in the morning its typically quiet and a great time to just be listening and watching how it functions.  If it seems to run roughly or jerks at certain spots it’s a sign that something isn’t quite right and needs some attention.  If you hear grinding or scraping noises it’s time to take a look at the tracks, rollers, and the general condition of the door.  It can be difficult to track down the issue and a professional can come out and help you with an inspection.

Garage Door Care

Even if the all the mechanical systems are working perfectly it can still need some surface attention.  Comprising about a third of the front façade of your home checking for rust spots on your steel doors will keep your house looking great.  Wood doors need to be examined for signs of water damage like warping and will need any stain or paint checked out for peeling or chipping.


If you take care of your garage door, it will take care of you.  A little time spent on a cool weekend morning will save you frustration some afternoon when the sun is out, it’s hot, and you just want to get in your garage.

If you’ve got a worry or a doubt that about your garage door and think something might be wrong, call the experts and On Track Garage Door Service.

Tips to For Garage Safety

Your garage is one of the most vital components to your home. It can store important belongings, house vehicles, act as a workshop or a common area. Regardless of the way your purpose your garage it holds inherent safety risks that every home owner should be aware of. On top of knowing and understanding the risks associated with garages and automatic garage door systems can go a long way toward successfully avoiding any unnecessary risks or injuries that could lead to health issues or potential lawsuits. Not only can your garage pose the risk of physical accidents, it is also the most vulnerable area of your home when it comes to break-ins and burglary. The nature of garage doors leaves them open to being breached if they are properly secured. Even automatic garage door openers can be easily hacked with any kind of frequency transmitter is the automatic garage door opener system is old enough. Taking the time to understand the weak points of your garage is the only way to strengthen them in order to increase the efficiency of your garage in both performance and security. Protect your family, guests as well as your belongings with some of the tips listed below.

  1. Use a smaller remote garage door opener that you can fasten to your keys instead of you car visor. Keeping the remote on you lowers the probability of someone getting ahold of by breaking into your car.
  2. Inform your kids about garage door safety. Make sure they understand how it works and where the possible dangers are. Knowledge is truly power.
  3. Make sure you always keep your garage door closed if you don’t need it to be open. Don’t give would be thieves a peek at your merchandise or an easy entry point. Keep your possessions safe and out of view, close your garage door.
  4. Keep your garage door well-kept and maintained. Making sure your garage door is always functioning properly is the best way to make sure it is operating safely. Your garage is the biggest moving part of your home, make sure it and its components are always in good condition. Performing routine checks of your garage door system is an absolute must on both the safety and maintenance fronts. Not only will keeping tabs on your system make it more safe to operate, it will also position you to save major money over the lifetime of your automatic garage door opener system.
  5. Make sure your windows are covered for the same reasons we listed above for keeping your garage door closed at all times. Giving would be intruders a way to peek inside your garage and take inventory of its contents and entry points is raising your chances for an intrusion/robbery. Keep your windows covered with attractive curtains or blinds so you can enjoy the open windows when you are working in your garage, but leave your windows covered and concealed when you are not.

More tips coming next week!!