Manage My Life

Why will my garage door only open a few inches then stop and go back down?

by Manage My Life Last activity date:
July 25th, 2007

I have a craftsman 1/2 HP garage door opener. Recently when I tried to open the garage door with my remote the door only went up a few inches, stopped and went back down. I tried to use the key pad and the button inside the garage, and the same thing happened. If I have the remote in hand and push the button to open, and then I help the door along by lifting up on the door, it will go up. The door will close just fine, but when I try to open it again, the same thing happens.

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Manage My Life
There a few things that might be making it hard for your opener to lift the door.

The most common is a problem with the door balance. Much of the door weight is held by the spring assembly, if those springs are not adjusted correctly then there may be too much weight for the opener to handle. If door weight exceeds a certain amount, the safety systems in the opener will stop opening and close the door again to prevent damage to the opener, the door, or anything that might be caught on the door.

If you release the door from the opener using the release cord (see image below) you should be able to lift the door to half open by hand and the door should stay at that point if you release it. If not, there is a problem with the door. There could be a bind or drag in the door mechanism or the springs may be damaged or need adjusting. I would recommend a professional address any concerns with the springs as the force involved is high and there is a lot of potential for a serious injury.

If the door seems okay, there may be a problem with the trolley or the opener itself. Try running the opener with the door still disconnected. If it moves all the way up now then the trolley should be okay.

Your Manage My home profile did not list what model opener you have, but if you check your owners manual you will find an adjustment for the "Up Force" which is the safety setting at which the opener stops trying to lift the door. On some of these models the setting is electronic and on some it is a screw mechanism. Check that adjuster is not damaged or the force is not out of adjustment. Follow procedures and cautions in the manual carefully as too high of a setting could do damage to your opener or the door or even lead to an injury.

You may want to check the links below for more information on testing and setting the door opener.
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by Manage My Life |
July 25th, 2007
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