Garage Door Only Opens A Few Inches? How To Fix It

Today, almost every new house with a garage has a built-in garage door opener. Garage door openers are very useful devices that can save us a lot of time and trouble, but they can also break down like any other electronic device.

For that reason, regular maintenance is very important. One of the problems that you can encounter with garage doors is that they only open a few inches and then stop. If this happens to you, don’t worry.

According to experts, this is not uncommon, and you don’t need to create panic about it. A couple of reasons can usually cause this, such as a safety mechanism or a broken spring. In this article, we’ll explain how you can fix this problem and much more. So, let’s start!

Garage Door Only Opens A Few Inches And Stops?

Why Garage Door Only Opens A Few Inches And Stops? The most common reason why the garage door opens a few inches and then stops is most likely because of the spring assembly. If garage door springs are not adjusted correctly, the doors can’t open because the opener has too much weight to handle.

According to experts and other garage door owners, this is a very common problem, so knowing what can cause the garage door to open only a few inches and stop is useful information. Below, we will talk about how to figure out the problem so you’ll know in advance what prevents your garage door from fully opening.

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9 Reasons Why Garage Door Only Opens a Few Inches

Before we start fixing this problem, we must determine what causes the problem. So here are the nine reasons why your garage door opens only a few inches:

1. Something Is Blocking The Sensors

The first thing that comes to mind when a situation like this happens is that something stands between the garage door sensors and activates the reversing mechanism. Every modern garage door opener has a built-in reversing mechanism that keeps the door from forcible closure to avoid injury.

Check the sensors. The first thing you need to do is to check that everything is good with the sensors and that there is no object between them. Sometimes, sensors can malfunction because they are dirty and must be cleaned to work properly. Clean and test them again.

Clean the sensors regularly. It is important to clean the sensors from time to time. Since the garages are exposed to many things, dust, dirt, and spider webs accumulate on them after a while. Therefore, use a cloth and clean the lens.

2. Broken or Defective Springs

The second thing you can check is to see if any internal components on garage doors are broken. The best method to check this is to disconnect the cord.

Open the Garage Door Manually. To ensure everything is good with your garage door, try to open it manually by disconnecting the cord from the garage opener. If you manage to open the doors, then you probably have a problem with the broken or defective springs

We recommend that if you have a problem with the garage door spring, you contact a professional. This job is difficult, especially if you have never encountered DIY tasks. Garage door springs are not easy to handle, and sometimes, it can be dangerous to work with them. Serious injuries can occur, so it is recommended that you leave this to a professional.

3. Garage Remote Needs New Batteries

Sometimes, the problem can be in the remote controller. If you have a low battery, the signal may interfere with the receiver and cause the garage door to open slightly and then stop. Replace the old batteries with new ones and then try. Make sure to use branded batteries.

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4. Track Is Out Of Alignment

Alignment Problems With Garage Doors

If you notice that the track on your garage door is out of alignment, it usually means that your garage door won’t completely close. This is due to the gaps or bends in the rails that cause the track to be out of alignment.

5. Adjust the Force Limit and Travel Limit

Another important thing to check is if something is binding the garage doors while they open and close. If there is a problem with binding, then it is necessary to adjust the travel or force limits.

  • Check Travel limit. The main purpose of a travel limit is to control how far the doors will open and close during the operation mode.
  • Check Force limit. The main role of a force limit is to dictate how much pull is needed for garage doors to open completely.

Before doing any of this, check the owner’s manual and see how this is done. Every garage door opener model has different properties. You can also search on Google, by typing the right model of your garage doors. When you’re finished with the needed adjustments, check that the reversing mechanism is working properly. The reverse mechanism on garage doors is in charge of keeping the doors from hitting something.

Related Article: Garage Door Only Opens A Few Inches? (10 Main Reasons)

6. Broken Logic Control Board

Every garage door opener to function properly needs to have a logic board. Its role is to receive and process the remote controller’s signal.

If you try to open or close your garage door and it isn’t working properly, then the problem may be in the logic control board. One of the solutions is to replace the garage opener, but before you try that, see if the logic control board causes the issue.

Reboot. Another thing you should definitely try is to reboot the logic control board of your garage door. All electric components, including the logic board, may only need a simple refresh to work. If this doesn’t work, you’ll probably need to buy and replace your logic control board with a new one.

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7. Cold Temperatures

During the winter, when temperatures are very low, your garage door opener may run into problems. Normally, cold temperatures can cause an issue with motor or sensor operation and thus prevent the door from fully opening. You can’t usually influence such problems, but they are easily identified.

8. Problem With Contraction

Garage Door Contruction Problem

One of the reasons why garage doors don’t work during the cold weather is due to contraction. This is because the metal in cold temperatures reduces the molecules and causes the material to shrink and contract. You can use a lubricant to solve this problem. Apply lubricant to hinges, springs, and all other metal components on your garage door. This will allow your garage door to open easily once again.

  • Lack of Lubrication: It is important to use lubrication whenever it is needed. If you don’t use it, the components that are exposed to cold temperatures can shrink, harden, and break after some time. Then they will need to be replaced, which will cost you money.
  • Regular Maintenance: Sometimes, when you have an issue with garage doors that open only a bit, check the joints and tracks. They need to be greased and lubricated to work. If they lack the lubricant, make sure to apply it.

Remember that regular maintenance is the key if you want to maintain the longevity of your garage door. During winter and cold temperatures, this is even more important because the internal components of the garage door are at risk. They need to have enough grease to work properly.

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9. Broken Springs

Broken Springs On Garage Door

The spring is the crucial component that allows the garage door to function normally. If any of the springs are broken, your garage door will not work properly (open or close).

Sometimes, these springs can also be rigid and frail. Cold temperatures can also cause the springs to become brittle. Therefore, if you indicate that the problem is related to garage door springs, let a professional do the job. It is unsafe for someone with no experience in similar repairs to do this job.

Regular Maintenance. Just like with all other devices, regular maintenance prolongs the life of the device and reduces failure. That way, you will save a lot of time and money in advance.

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Contact A Professional

If you are unsure what the problem is or you think you can’t fix it, it’s best to call a professional. Although this solution will cost you money, at least you will be sure that the job will be done by someone with a lot of experience and knowledge in this area and will certainly make your garage door work.

After all, you can watch what he does and try to learn. This will help you better understand the problem next time, and maybe you will be able to solve it yourself. Either way, experience is the best school, only tuition is sometimes expensive.

If you want to learn more about this topic, be sure to watch this YouTube video:

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FAQ: People Also Ask

Why Does My Garage Door Only Open Sometimes?

The most common reason why this happens is that your remote control is most likely out of range. The garage door can’t receive the signal and won’t trigger the doors to open. Be sure to manually check the signal and see if the doors will stop opening.

Why Does My Garage Door Opener Keep Losing Power?

The garage door opener may lose power because of a bad connection in the power outlet, internal wiring, opener cord, or the components of the opener. By moving the cord you will see if the light on the opener goes off or if it flickers. Be sure to try an extension to another outlet to test it there.

How Do I Know If My Torsion Spring Is Broken?

The torsion spring is the component that every garage door opener has. If the torsion spring is broken or damaged, the door will not function properly and may not open. If you are not an expert, you’ll be unable to determine if this is a problem.
The best way to see if the problem is connected to a broken torsion spring is to try to open the garage door manually. If the garage door is stuck or it is too heavy to move, the torsion spring is likely broken.

Final Thoughts

Garage doors can break down like any other mechanical and electrical device. But if you know how to identify the problem, it is much easier to fix it because you know which part you need to replace. Don’t worry if you encounter a problem with your garage doors.

In this article, we have explained what the most common reasons of failure that can happen are and why your garage door does not want to open. I hope this article has helped you, and if you have any additional questions, feel free to leave the comment below.

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