Hesitant Opener


Old 02-16-10, 02:39 PM
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Hesitant Opener

I have an ancient Craftsman 1/2 hp garage door opener that I installed about 30 years ago. It has given years of flawless operation. I have had the main circuit replaced twice due to lightning over time, but the last time was many years ago. Most of the year the door opener works fine. However, when the outdoor temperature falls below, oh, say 35-40 degrees F or so, it stops part way up. If I exert a little upward pressure - not a great deal at all, and restart the opener, it will complete the process. This year, there seem to be two stopping points, the original point at about 18 inches open and the second one about 18 inches higher. The stopping points are always at the same place. Closing is flawless. Should I be looking for a new opener, or is there something else to check? I'm thinking that my trusty Craftsman may just be getting old and tired. Like me. But I'd rather keep it going until I can budget an entire door replacement.
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Old 02-16-10, 03:39 PM
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I would oil all the rollers and hinges. Use 3-in-oil or something like that. I just oiled all mine and I used bike chain oil I had on hand because the can has a spray straw so it made it easier to get in the roller pins. I just sprayed it in the ends and then ran the door a few times. It made it quite a bit quieter and smoother. At Lowes I saw they sell Genie brand oil in a can with a spray straw. It was $6 something a can. If your door has 2 horizontal springs inspect them and try to make sure they are about equal strength. If they are really old and one is stronger than the other you may need to replace both. I replaced both of mine recently because one broke. I bought new ones at Lowe's.

If you still have the problem you can increase the up force by using the adjustment on the door opener. Most have a screw you turn to adjust the up force and another for the down force. There are usually 2 more adjustments for up and down travel limits so make sure you adjust the up force adjustment. On mine the up/down force on the back, the travel limit are on the side. Good luck.
Old 02-18-10, 02:47 PM
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Try opening the door manually. If it is heavy the springs may need adjusting. If you have torsion springs(on a bar above the door when it's closed) Get a pro to do it. They can be very dangerous. If you're door lifts ok your gear may be about to go. Sometimes they act that way right before they go completely. Most of the gears go in winter. Like I say Craftsman gears are good for the economy.
Old 02-18-10, 03:04 PM
Tolyn Ironhand's Avatar
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If the above does not work you could increase the force. There should be an adjustment on the opener.

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