Garage Door Not Closing? 7 Fixes to Try

Before you go and pay for pricy garage door repair, you can troubleshoot the most common issues yourself.

You’ll save a ton of money and most of the fixes are quick. If you find problems with your motor unit or spring, it’s best to call a professional.

Below you’ll find out exactly what to inspect if your garage door isn’t closing.

Let’s get into it.

7 Reasons Why Your Garage Door Won’t Close

1. Check Your Sensors

Take a look at each of your photo-eye sensors and clean the lens cover. If they’re caked in dirt, they might sense that something is in the way preventing the garage door from closing.

See if there is anything blocking the path. Any toys or tools on the ground will prevent the garage door from closing.

It’s also a great time to check if your sensors are in alignment with each other. If the lights on the photo-eye sensor are blinking, that means you have an alignment issue. Direct sunlight may also be preventing their sensors from working properly during the day. Test them out during nighttime to see if that fixes the issue.

Make sure that the bracket holding the sensor is secure. It’s common for them to loosen over the years, tighten them up after inspection. Check the wiring as well, rodents or erosion may have damaged the wires. If the wires are damaged, turn off your garage door opener before doing any repairs.

If you’re not having any luck, you can try bypassing your garage door sensors.

2. Check Your Garage Door Tracks

The garage door tracks are what allow your garage to move up or down. If they’ve become warped over time, they won’t let your garage door fully close.

If you hear a bang when you try to close your garage door, it’s indicating that you need to inspect the tracks.

Clean any debris that might have made its way into the track. If you see where the track has become bent or warped, you can try hammering it back into place. Do this with the garage door closed to avoid the garage closing in on itself.

3. Your Torsion Spring is Unbalanced

Your garage door has a big spring directly above it. When this spring becomes unbalanced, it can leave your garage door crooked and prevent it from closing.

The best way to diagnose this issue is to turn your garage door on manual mode and open it to the halfway mark. If you let it go and it slams in on itself, you have an issue with the torsion spring.

I recommend calling an expert to deal with the torsion spring adjustment if you don’t feel comfortable fixing it yourself. It can be very dangerous if you don’t handle it properly.

4. Adjust the Limit Switch

On the back of your garage door motor unit, there are screws that control the travel limits of the garage door. Double-check how your garage door is closing.

If it’s not closing enough, then you need to increase the down limit range.

If it’s closing too much, then you need to decrease the down setting. Make small adjustments until your garage door fully closes. You may have to fiddle with it a bit to get the right settings.

5. Check Your Remote

If you’re having trouble closing your garage door with the remote, you might need to replace the batteries. If you’ve recently had a power surge, it could have reset the memory of your garage door opener.

With a ladder, go to the back of your garage door opener. You should see a “learn” button. Hold it down until it flashes and then press the button on your remote. This should fix any issue you have with your remote. You can try to reprogram your opener’s remote as well.

6. You Need a New Garage Door Opener

The first thing you want to do is take a look at the back of your motor unit. Depending on the model, the lights should signal what’s going wrong. Check your garage door opener’s manual to see what the lights indicate.

If the wall control lights are off, then you need to reset the circuit breaker. If the lights are on, then try resetting the power. This may fix the problem. If nothing works, then your garage door opener may need a new receiver logic board.

Some garage door motor units have gears made out of plastic which can warp. As a safety feature, the opener may prevent the garage door from going down when damaged. If the garage door opener is making a normal sound but nothing is happening, then it’s likely that the vinyl gear is damaged.

If you’ve diagnosed the garage door opener to be the issue, you may want to call a professional to take it over from here.

7. Broken Cables

If the cables have become frayed, your garage door will cease to function. Before you check the cables, you want to engage manual mode on your garage door.

Inspect your cables and the cable drum at the top of the garage to check for any damage.

If you’ve noticed any frayed, rusted, or damaged cables, you’ll need to get them replaced. I don’t recommend doing this by yourself unless you’re comfortable with the job.

If All Else Fails.. Call a Garage Door Repair Man

If your cables, opener, or spring have been damaged, your best bet is to call a garage door technician. Many of the repairs are dangerous and you’re going to need to know exactly what you’re doing to prevent injury.

Always be safe and take the proper precautions when doing any DIY repairs.

About Roy Cohen

I'm Roy, founder of Hack My Garage. I started out like most not knowing how to hammer a nail, but now I know more than most people about home improvement and DIY. I want to spread my wealth of knowledge with the world and hope to make it a better place.