It's amazing what a little spring cleaning can do to restore your home's curb appeal, especially when it comes to your garage door. Steady dirt and grime buildup can easily detract from its appearance, making your home look older and more worn. Cleaning your garage door can be one of the first steps towards improving your home's appearance.
Although there's no hard rule on how often you should clean your garage door, it's usually good idea to have it cleaned on an annual basis. If you live in a naturally salt-laden climate (such as an ocean-side home) or an area where salt is constantly used on the roads, you may end up washing your garage door more often. Here's how you can effectively and safely clean your home's garage doors.
Cleaning Wooden Garage Doors
The safest way to clean your wooden garage door involves using a dry, soft cloth to wipe off loose dirt, dust and debris. For stubborn debris and stains, however, you'll need a soft-bristle brush or a non-abrasive cleaning pad. Mix a cup of detergent in a five-gallon bucket of warm water and scrub away any and all grime, dirt and dust found on the door. Avoid scrubbing too hard, since you don't want to scrub away the protective finish.
To treat mold or mildew, substitute the detergent for a cup of bleach and carefully scrub the area where the mold or mildew is present. Afterwards, scrub the door down using a mixture of vinegar, mild detergent and warm water and then hose the door to remove the residue. The vinegar will help kill any lingering mold growth and discourage future growth in the short term.
It's a good idea to clean your wooden garage door during warm, dry weather, as it'll help the door dry faster. Doing so will help prevent any reoccurrences of mold or mildew growth on the door.
Cleaning Steel and Aluminum Garage Doors
Many of the same cleaning methods used for wooden garage doors can also be used to clean doors made from steel or aluminum. If you have a pre-painted garage door, you can save some time and effort by using a pressure washer to quickly remove dirt, grime and debris. Simply use moderate levels of pressure to avoid damaging the door's finish. If your garage door has chipping or flaking paint, you might not want to pressure wash the door unless you're ready to repaint the door shortly afterwards.
As a final step, you can apply wax to the surface of your metal garage door in order to protect the finish against dirt and moisture. A high-quality car wax should work well for this task as long as you follow the instructions listed on the package.
Cleaning Garage Door Hardware
It wouldn't be fair if you gave the outside of the garage door all of your attention. In many cases, the hardware that helps move the garage door up and down can also use occasional cleaning. Carefully inspect the garage door tracks for signs of dirt and debris buildup and use a sturdy broom to occasionally sweep away trapped debris.
Don't forget to wipe away excess grime that builds up on the cables, hinges and springs with a soft microfiber cloth. In some cases, you may need to re-lubricate these components using white lithium grease, silicone spray grease or lightweight engine oil.
Now is also a good time to carefully inspect the cables, springs, rollers and other assorted garage door hardware for signs of wear and tear. Any worn, damaged or rusted components should be replaced as soon as possible by a trained garage door specialist. For more information on how to care for your garage door, visit this web-site.
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