Let’s start with understanding that this is not a one-person job. I recommend that you get several estimates from professional repair companies before proceeding on your own. The steps to replacing a panel are simple but not easy.
- Remove items inside the garage (like cars and other garage contents) so that the door and its tracks can be accessed on the outer edges of the door. Obtain a couple of ladders to access the door springs.
- Release the spring tension on the door (this can be dangerous). Make sure that the springs are not broken. This would be the perfect time to replace them if damaged.
- Roll the panels ABOVE the one to be replaced higher in the tracks and secure them there. You will see where these upper panels must be separated from the panel to be replaced. Make sure these panels cannot move and fall out of the tracks.
- Remove the damaged panel from the tracks and take out the damaged panel. Check the tracks to ensure that they are in good condition. Repair/replace as needed. If the top panel must be replaced (where the opener attaches), you will need to install the opener connection on the new panel. If the bottom panel must be replaced (where the cables attach), you will need to install the cable connections on the bottom of that panel.
- Insert the new panel and rollers into the tracks, check for proper operation. Perform any re-installation described above.
- Disconnect the door opener trolley and manually lower the panels above to the top of the new panel. Reconnect all the panels vertically so that the opener will work. It’s only attached to the highest panel.
- CAREFULLY re-tension the spring tension. Most experts advise that cables and springs should not be touched by homeowners since these high-tension parts can be dangerous.
- Leaving the opener trolley disconnect open, manually open the door once spring tension is restored. The door should open easily by hand (e.g. if the electric power for the opener was lost) but should not “fly up” (oops, too tight).
- Reconnect the opener trolley so the opener can raise/lower the door and test for proper function.
- Discard the old door panel. You may have to cut it into pieces for disposal.
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