Rick Hamill, Garage Door Technical Support Engineer at JD (UK) LTD, has a wealth of knowledge within the garage door industry. A joiner by trade in his early days, he has specialised in garage doors for 24 years, since 1997. He joined JD (UK) LTD in August 2020, providing installation assistance and technical support for Alutech sectional garage doors and garage doors operators. You’ll mostly find him out on the road assisting new and existing customers with support on their first installs and providing training for staff and customers alike. With his years of experience, there’s rarely a problem he can’t solve. “There’s always a solution,” says Rick. Here he shares some top tips and answers to frequently asked questions…
The initial survey can be the difference between a good install that runs smoothly or a problematic one. “Much like building a home, it all starts with great solid foundations, getting the basics right first.”
Make sure you take into account all obstacles on the side walls and ceiling such as electrical boxes, boilers, gas and water pipes, beams and pillars. “It’s not only about making sure the door fits within the opening at the front, but you also allow for the working of the door all the way back into the garage. You’d be surprised how many times people have caught out by this.”
Make sure there’s adequate and the correct power points for your automation system.
On installation, always measure the new door BEFORE you take out the old door to make sure it fits, double checking sizes and even the correct style and finish. A bit like the old saying, going back to my joinery days, “Check twice, cut once.”
For personnel doors, check the gradient of the floor level in the opening direction to make sure the bottom of the door doesn’t catch on the ground on opening. Depending on the height off the ground of the door being fitted and the level of the gradient, a false step or ramp threshold could be installed to overcome the issue.
One of the most common questions is: Why, when open, is one cable tight but the other is slack?
Check the horizontal track that goes back into the garage is square with the face of the garage door opening. Do this by using a tape measure and measure diagonally across, corner to corner. These measurements should be the same on each side. If the measurements are different, either move the tracks on the back bar over to the left or right to suit.
The panels should be level with the fascia. If the panels are not level, adjust by undoing the coupling on the spring bar and turn the winding bar slightly to lift the panels level and tighten the centre coupling back up.
If a mistake has been made with the height measurement, the panels can be cut down depending on the panel design and how much needs to be cut off. This can be done by taking off the top cap of the top panel, cut off what is required and replace the top cap. Whatever has been cut off the top panel must also be cut off the bottom of the frame legs. Depending on how much has been cut off, this may affect the tension in the cables on side sprung sectionals – adjust accordingly.
The same can be done with width. For a horizontal design, you need only cut down on one side but with a Georgian design, both sides must be cut down. Depending on how much, you can also cut some off the fascia and back bar. We have a full PDF manual available to help with this if required.
Should you need to cut down the horizontal tracks, be aware that some drive-through height may be lost when the door is open.
The operator boom/rail can also be cut down if necessary. First look at how the rail has been assembled. Undo the bolt and take out the holding bracket and pulley at the front end of the boom/rail. Undo the belt coupling. Cut the required amount off the boom/rail. Reassemble the front tension bolt/bracket/pulley. Cut off the excess from the belt and reassemble the belt coupling. Re-tension the front bolt and pulley.
Why does my door not seal correctly along the top seal?
The main reason for this is that installers forget or aren’t aware that the bottom rubber seal has a tear-away transit section in the rubber, this stops the rubber seal becoming deformed in transit.
Not removing this section makes the door sit a little high in the opening thus not allowing it to sit and seal in the correct manner.
What are the other 3 buttons for on the Levigato hand transmitter?
The extra buttons on a handset allow for more than one door to be operated from one handset, this includes the addition of an electric gate, lighting system and driveway lights etc. Additional receivers may be required.
Also, you can “Bespoke” set each button, such as:
Open, Stop, Close
The internal garage lights can be wired into the operator to come on when the garage door button is pressed to open. But bear in mind that, when adding internal garage lights to the operator, the lights will only stay on as long as the operator light. The timer on the operator light can be adjusted accordingly to how long the lights are required to be on.
Transmitter programming options are in the manual. “Because we all read the manual, don’t we? Ha, ha!” But if you don’t have a manual, request one from your supplier. These can usually be sent as a PDF on an email. If additional assistance is still required, call the Service Engineer at your supplier.