Garage Door Cleaning "Do’s" and "Don’ts"

Man holding soapy sponge in garage for cleaning

When I first moved into my own home, the first thing that struck me was the amount of maintenance that needs doing over the course of a year. It's never-ending! And most people get so fixated on maintaining inside their home, that they forget about the outside, and by extension, they forget about the garage door. But given the size of it and the impact it has on a person's first impression of your property, it's vitally important to keep it clean. And we're not just talking about rinsing it down with the garden hose from time to time. There's a bit more to it than that.

As Parker and Broomfield garage door repair and maintenance experts, we’re going to run through some of our main do’s and don’ts when cleaning garage doors.

Do Clean Your Garage Door Every 3-6 Months

Keeping your garage door free of dirt and grit is a great way to prevent the need for garage door repair and prolong the door’s lifespan. But it’s not just about cleaning it once and then never again. This is something that needs to be done fairly regularly.

We’d recommend that you do this every 3 to 6 months. If you don’t, the stuff that your door is exposed to will start eating away at the paint finish and maybe get to the layer underneath. You don’t want to let it get to that point.

Do Use a Mild Cleaning Agent

There’s a million different cleaning solutions that you could use on your garage door, but you want to choose something mild. If you use harsh chemicals on the surface of your door, it’ll likely take away any protective finish that’s on it, and potentially even start to damage the paint too.

Definitely stay away from bleach. Shop for a solution that is specifically designed for use with garage doors. Even dish soap usually does a pretty good job. The key is to mix the solution that you use with warm water, as that really helps to cut right through the grime.

Do Use a Brush, Sponge or a Rag

Just like with the cleaning solution, you don’t want anything that’s too abrasive, as this may do lasting damage to the paint finish of the door. We find that a brush often works well to loosen dirt and grime if it’s particularly “caked on”. Otherwise, for less intense cleaning jobs, a rag or a sponge will usually work just fine.

Do Apply Wax to the Door Afterwards

Now that you’ve got the door clean and free of dirt, it’s time to protect it. One of the easiest ways that you can do this is by applying a coat of wax. This acts as a protective barrier against the elements, pests and any debris that may come into contact with the door. Most garage door manufacturers recommend completing this step after cleaning.

Not only does this serve a practical purpose; it can improve the aesthetics of the door as well. This only applies to metal and fiberglass garage doors though.

Don’t Get Lazy with a Pressure Washer

Don’t get me wrong, pressure washers are an amazing tool when used for the right job. I’m a big fan. But they should not be used to clean garage doors. They’re too powerful and have been known to damage the panels that make up the door, as well as the weatherstripping and other parts of the door’s hardware. Soft and steady wins the race here.

Don’t Forget to Clean the Weatherstripping Too

It’s easy to forget about the weatherstripping. After all, it’s nowhere near as visual as the rest of the door. The panels demand your attention, but the weatherstripping is kind of hidden. Regardless, it performs a vital function, stealing the door against the floor and improving the insulating properties of the door significantly.

While you’re at it, it’s a good time to carefully inspect the weatherstripping. Over time, it dries out and cracks and no longer does its job as effectively. If it is cracked, this is a good time to replace it.

Don’t Clean Your Door in Direct Sunlight

You might think that a sunny morning or afternoon would be the perfect time to wash your garage door. After all, who doesn’t love being out in the sun. But the sun, and the heat that it produces can actually prove to be a problem when washing the garage door. You see, if the door gets hot, this heat can actually cause the cleaning agent you’re using, as well as the wax after to start breaking down, and that can kind of ruin the appearance of the door when you’re finished. Instead of looking crisp and pristine, it’ll look chalky and blurred.

Garage Door Broken? Call Our Garage Door Repair Team!

When you’re cleaning your garage door, it’s the perfect time to do a quick inspection of the rest of the door. Regularly looking at the various parts of your garage door can prevent the need for costly garage door repair. Some of the more important parts to keep a close eye on include:

  • Make sure the tracks are kept clear
  • Are the rollers moving up and down smoothly?
  • Notice any strange noises?
  • Do all of the moving parts seem like they're well lubricated?

If upon cleaning your garage door you notice a problem, call our overhead door company for garage door repair in Parker, Broomfield and the surrounding areas on (303) 920-2267.

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