Garages are a great way to make sure that your vehicle stays safe. Not only will parking it in a garage protect it from the elements, it will also prevent anyone from breaking into your car.
Parking in a garage also comes with a high level of convenience since you’ll never have to carry groceries or other objects from the end of the driveway or parking lot.
But, garage doors can prove to be dangerous (especially to children) if you don’t take the proper safety precautions. Each year, there are over 10,000 injuries that are direct results of garage doors.
Thus, garage door safety is something every homeowner should keep fresh in their mind. Let’s take a look at 10 tips that can help keep you and your family out of harm’s way.
10 Vital Garage Door Safety Tips
Don’t Race to the Door
We’re all guilty of it but racing the door while trying to exit the garage can result in significant injury.
While it’s unlikely that a garage door will fall on you the moment you pass underneath it, running through your garage could end with you getting hurt in other ways.
It’s not at all unlikely for you to trip and injure yourself. You also risk the possibility of not making it to the door in time and colliding with the metal garage as it closes. Therefore, it’s best to exit the home through other means if you can’t close it from outside.
Never Perform Maintenance Yourself
One of the most common reasons for injury when it comes to garage doors is from people trying to perform their own maintenance.
It’s common for homeowners to immediately break out the toolbox when the door isn’t functioning the way it should be. But, very few people understand what they’re even looking at.
The issue here is that garage doors utilize tightly-wound springs to open and close. Attempting to repair these springs could easily result in serious injury. In this case, calling a professional is the best option.
Mount the Interior Controls High off of the Floor
This tip is crucial for those who have young children. Kids love to explore, and they seem to have unlimited amounts of energy. Therefore, it can be hard to keep up with them, especially if you’re a single parent.
Mounting your internal garage door control too close to the ground may result in your children being able to reach it. Given how unpredictable younger kids can be, plenty can go wrong if they have that capability.
In general, it’s best to mount the control at least five feet from the garage floor. This will both keep the kids away from it and provide you with convenient access.
Stay Away While the Door Closes
While we’ve previously established that you should never race to the door as it is closing, it’s important to stay away from it completely while it’s moving.
Standing too close to the door can result in getting your hair or clothing caught in the metal components. As you would expect, there is no positive outcome when this happens.
Make sure you’re at least a few feet from the door at all times while it’s opening or closing so you can prevent injury.
Don’t Operate a Damaged Garage Door
This is one of the most vital garage door safety tips to keep in mind. Garage door damage can come from many different sources, such as natural disasters or a vehicle colliding with it.
Since the pulley system on garage doors involves so much force, it’s a serious risk to leave a damaged garage door unattended to by a professional.
Attempting to open or close the door could potentially be catastrophic under the right circumstances. If you find that damage to your garage door, consult a professional before trying to operate it.
Inspect for Wear and Tear Every Few Months
Most products degrade over time, and garage doors are no different. Inspecting for wear and tear is an important part of garage door safety.
Squeaking, slow opening or closing, and improper alignment are all signs that you need to repair your door. If left unchecked, the door will not function properly and could cause harm to you or your family.
Know How to Perform a Safety Check
Sometimes, we place too much trust in electronics without thinking to check if things are running smoothly.
One of the worst scenarios for a garage door is for the safety mechanism to fail. But, it’s easy to perform a safety check.
By placing a box, stool, or another firm object that’s approximately 12 inches tall off the ground underneath the door while it closes, you’ll be able to see if the automatic safety feature is working correctly.
If it is, the door will open back up after making contact with the object. If it does not, you’ll need to have the door repaired, as the door will not rise if something were to get trapped underneath it.
Open the Door Before Starting Your Car
It’s common knowledge that cars produce carbon monoxide as a form of exhaust fumes. This gas can be deadly if breathed in, so it’s imperative that you limit your exposure to it.
If you start your car and your garage door fails to open, you’ll most likely want to get out and take a look at the issue. Spending too much time in an enclosed space with carbon monoxide in the air could result in carbon monoxide poisoning.
If you breathe in enough to make you pass out, it will most likely be fatal. So, always open the door before you turn your key in the ignition!
Keep the Remote Away from Children
Children love to play with objects, especially electronics. You should keep your electric garage door remote away from children by placing it in a secure area or on a high shelf.
As a form of extra caution, you should never leave it in your car so that you can be sure your child won’t get a hold of it.
Educate Your Children
Education can make garage door safety an effortless process.
Taking the time to make sure your kids know the dangers of playing with the garage door can help them develop good habits and prevent any problems from arising in the future.
Always Keep Garage Door Safety in Mind
Injuries that result from garage doors are no joke. But, you’ll be able to keep you and your family safe from any incidents as long as you’re always wary of safety measures.
Want to learn more about how you can make your home a better place to be? Check out our blog.