If you're like most people, you don't give your garage door much thought. Unfortunately, that lack of thought can put your family at risk, especially where young children are concerned. Some garage doors weigh about 360 lbs. That much weight could crush a small child or animal if they were to get stuck under the door.
To protect your children and pets around the garage door, here are four steps you need to take right away.
1. Ensure Routine Maintenance
If you don't conduct routine maintenance on your garage door, you need to start.
Routine maintenance does more than eliminate the squeaks and keep the tracks clean. Routine maintenance also ensures that your garage door is in prime operating condition. This is particularly true if you inspect the springs, cables, and wiring each time you service your door. If the cables or springs malfunction on your garage door, your garage door can come crashing down.
2. Test Your Safety Sensors
If you have young children in your home, test the safety sensors on your garage door several times a year. Garage doors pose a serious safety risk for young children. In 2007, over 13,000 people were injured in accidents that involved garage doors. Monthly testing of your safety sensors helps prevent accidents in your home.
If you have an automatic garage door, the system is equipped with an auto-reverse feature. This feature is designed to automatically reverse when the door comes in contact with something other than the flat surface of the floor.
Place a block of wood on the ground under the garage door and engage the automatic garage door opener. The door should automatically reverse once the door encounters the wood.
If your garage door has a motion-detector feature, that should be tested once a month as well. With the automatic opener engaged, wave something under the door. The garage door should stop once movement is detected.
When you test the safety features on your garage door, also test the manual control. This feature ensures that you can open your garage door when the power has been cut to your home.
3. Elevate the Control Switch
If the control switch for your garage door is within arm’s reach of young children, they're at risk for serious injuries.
Young children are naturally curious. That curiosity can get them into trouble, especially where garage doors are concerned. Young children may activate the garage door and then try to race to the other side. Unfortunately, if they're not fast enough to beat the door, they risk being crushed beneath the weight. Not only that, but they can activate the garage door while other children are in the area.
For maximum safety, the control switch for your garage door should be installed out of the reach of young children. For additional protection, you should also keep your garage door remote up and away from children, as well.
4. Install a Garage Door Safety Alarm
If you have young children, your garage door should be as secure as possible. One way to make your garage door more safe and secure is to install a garage door alarm.
Garage door alarms send you an audible alert each time the garage door is activated. This advance warning lets you know when your children are around the garage door. As an added benefit, the audible warning also lets you know when an unwanted intruder has attempted to break into your home through the garage door.
If you haven't tested the safety features on your garage door, you need to do that as soon as possible, especially if you have young children. If your garage door hasn't been serviced in a while, or you encounter issues during your safety inspection, contact us at Pro Overhead Door.