The sad truth is that garage doors do break over time just like automobiles and others devices that make our life easier throughout the day. However there are some do it yourself tips that you can use to prolong the life of the door and prevent a service technician to come to your house for repairs.
The first issue that people have problems with are photocell cameras. The cameras are located at the bottom corners of the garage door opening and are used to prevent the door from crushing items that are in the path of the moving garage door. A good tip to keep these cameras in good condition is to check and see if the wires are fasten to the cameras. There are instances where loose or corrosion on wires my cause the cameras to not receive the proper power in order to work. To fix this just cut off the bad section of the wire and strip off the section of the plastic coating to expose copper wire. Then attach the exposed wire back to the corresponding terminal the wire broke off of. Another important thing to check on the camera is to see if dirt or spider webs are in the lenses. If this is the case, apply a brush to the lenses wiping away the dirt and webs so that the cameras can see each other clearly.
If you have an older opener that doesn't have photocell cameras. A safety reversing sensor is applied to the opener so that if an object is in the path of the opener. The moving door senses the object when touched and returns back to the open state with damaging the object or the door. As part of maintenance a safety test should be conducted where you take a standard wood 2x4 and place it flat on the ground where the 2x4 is in the path of the moving door. If the door reverses with the 2x4 in the way of the opening then the test is complete. If the door doesn't reverse, the closed sensitivity need to be adjusted and you should call a overhead door technician with the model of the opener for further instruction on how to resolve the issue.
The last thing for our maintenance plan is to lubricate the moving parts of the garage door. You can get garage door lubricant at your nearest hardware store. With the lubricant in hand spray the lubricant on the small wheels in the inside track of the garage door. Also the other important thing to lubricate is the spring which will be located as a long black coil along the top of the opening or along the sides of the track. This will prolong the life of the spring by preventing friction between the coils of the spring.
You should do this maintenance plan every six months for best results of your garage door and opener. If you have any questions or have some other concerns while performing maintenance contact your nearest overhead door technician for assistance.