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How to Quickly Replace Garage Door Rollers
If you hear a horrible grinding noise as your garage door shudders up the track when you open it, you should definitely look at replacing the rollers.
Plastic garage door rollers come standard with many new homes. They’re even installed by many aftermarket companies as a cost-saving measure. They’re only meant to last as long as your warranty and often fail soon after it’s expired.
Here’s what my plastic garage door rollers looked like after only one year.
Every time the door opened or closed, the side of the track would shave some of the roller off. Once it was thin enough, chunks started falling off, causing the wheel to bounce as it moved up and down the track.
It sounded like the door wouldn’t open anymore, so I decided to replace the rollers.
Replacing your worn out garage door rollers is one of the easiest (and cheapest) ways that you can upgrade your garage door.
Whether you have steel rollers that clang up and down the track or old plastic rollers that look like shredded cheese, for less than the price of dinner you can make your door feel better than new.
How Often Should Garage Door Rollers Be Replaced?
Depending on what material your rollers are made of, they could last a lifetime or as little as one year.
In general, as you move up from plastic to steel to nylon rollers, their lifespan is going to increase.
Plastic rollers will usually only last one to two years at most before needing to be replaced. Steel rollers are more durable and are often rated for between 10,000 to 12,000 cycles. That’s about eight years if you open and close the door four times every single day.
If you never want to have to worry about replacing your garage door rollers again, I recommend going with a nylon roller like the DURA-LIFT Ultra-Life MAX roller, which you’ll see me install a little later on.
They’ve got a sealed bearing to keep the dust and dirt out surrounding a heavy, 14-gauge steel stem for higher load ratings. They’re rated for a staggering 125,000 cycles. You’d need to open and close your garage door ten times every single day for over forty years to hit that!
Garage Door Rollers: Nylon vs Steel vs. Plastic
The first question you have to ask is what you want to gain from replacing your garage door rollers? Do you want durability? Noise reduction?
That decision is going to drive what kind of garage door rollers you should buy.
There are three materials that are commonly used for garage door rollers: plastic, steel and nylon.
Plastic rollers are found in some of the cheaper new construction builds or wherever the contractors wanted to save a bit of money. They’re normally black in color and have no need for lubrication. They’re only designed to be temporary until you get something more durable.
Steel rollers are much more durable and require regular lubrication. If well maintained, they’ll essentially last forever. There’s one other drawback: they’re loud. A steel roller running along a steel track is a recipe for a lot of noise.
Nylon rollers are almost never included with new construction, almost always being added after the fact. Occasionally, if you upgrade your garage door the installer will give you the option of adding nylon rollers. If you’re given that option, take it. Nylon garage door rollers are quieter than steel rollers and much more durable than plastic rollers.
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