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Photo: Charles Knowles (Shutterstock) Garage doors often get overlooked on our home maintenance lists unless and until they break. But keeping them running smoothly and preventing wear and tear can increase their lifespans and also make them quieter. To avoid costly repairs later, you should maintain your door now, including, at minimum, lubricating it about once every six months. How to clean and maintain your garage door Lubricating the parts of your garage door not only keeps them moving smoothly by minimizing metal on metal friction, it also protects them from rust. Keeping buildup from accumulating in the tracks or on the ball bearings of the rollers will also keep the door moving evenly and prevent sagging down the road. The rollers can jump the track if they’re not spinning easily, so making sure that doesn’t happen will save future you a big headache. Give it a good cleaning The first step to a successful lubrication is to thoroughly clean the door’s rollers, runners, and hinges. Vacuum out any dirt and dust and use a dry rag to wipe away any remaining debris, as any material that sticks to the door hardware between the lubricant and the surface of the hardware will prevent the lubricant from doing its job. As you’re cleaning, check the tightness of the nuts and bolts, inspect springs for rust, and make sure the chain is tight. If you encounter stubborn dirt, you can use an automotive brake cleaner to remove it, or give it […]