In Case of Fire: How Garage Door Features Can Minimize Your Losses

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Unless you’re grilling a steak or trying to stay warm at a campsite, fire isn’t usually a welcome entity. If you own a commercial building, one accidental fire could destroy your assets. Keeping your merchandise, employees and valuable documents safe is a top priority. If you’re not familiar with fire prevention, following FEMA’s fire prevention tips is a great start. However, even if you’re careful, fires can happen. One way to reduce your losses in the event of a fire is to incorporate fire-resistant features into the structure of your building. Garage doors with flame-proof elements can slow the rate of a rapidly spreading fire; this gives people inside the structure time to escape injury and firefighters more time to get the blaze under control before extensive damage occurs.

Components That Make Your Garage Door a Fearless Firefighter

If you want fire protection, here are the features you should look for when choosing commercial doors:

•    Be sure that your garage door is rated by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) as a fire-resistant product. You can do this by checking the manufacturer’s specifications. Learn more about the UL fire-resistance rating system at their website.

•    Some commercial fire-rated doors are designed to close automatically when a fire or alarmed event occurs.

•    The Fire Minuteman is a UL-listed and FM-approved reset hoist for fire doors. It eliminates the need to release spring tension on fire drop and allows one person to reset the door from the floor. No special tools, ladders or specific training is required, so anyone can accomplish the task in an emergency.

•    The Fire Sentinel is a time-relay release device that provides added control over door closure.

The Overhead Door Company of Oregon Cares About Your Safety

When Portland, OR, business owners need garage door replacement, they turn to the company that’s been providing expert installation since 1929. Serving Portland’s residential and commercial clients, we deliver customized service that includes unmatched ongoing maintenance and cutting-edge security technology. To find a garage door that boasts the most reliable safety and fire-prevention features, visit our showroom or contact us for more information.

How to Check Garage Door Balance

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Ensuring smooth operation and preventing the need for garage door repair

An unbalanced garage door isn’t just a nuisance; it can actually be a danger to you and your family. If you’ve noticed the door behaving strangely, it’s a good idea to check for problems with balance.

What’s Up With Balance?

Normally, springs in your garage door called torsion springs maintain the tension necessary for the door to open and close at the right speed and to stay in place without drifting. An unbalanced door may operate too fast or with more force than it should, which may cause the door to come off its tracks—a potentially dangerous situation for anyone standing under it. At the same time, too little spring tension may cause the door to come crashing down from an open position.

A less extreme scenario is the problem of wear and tear. Over time, being off center can strip the gears of the opener, which can slowly damage it until one day your garage door will refuse to budge. Improper operation could also be a sign of rot or moisture damage if you have a wooden garage door, but usually it means that the torsion springs are starting to get old and wear out.

Making Sure Your Garage Door Is Balanced

If you suspect that your garage door is out of balance, follow these steps to check it:

• Open the door and pull the red emergency release to disconnect the operating arm from the opener.
• Lift the door by hand halfway and let go. If the door falls or lifts up on its own, there’s a problem with balance.
• Open the door all the way and let go. It should go up into its track, not down.
• Pull the door all the way down and make sure it stays down when you let go. Upward drifting is a sign of excess tension.
• Test for friction by opening and shutting the door a few times by hand.
• Remember to reengage the door opener when you’re finished.

Dealing With Garage Door Troubles

What do you do if you find that you garage door isn’t sitting quite the right way? Give us a call at the Overhead Door Company of Portland, OR. Proper garage door repair is important for the longevity of the door and its component parts, and there are many safety concerns involved when correcting an imbalance. Our professional staff knows how to address each one to get the job done right. Whether it’s a problem of old springs, loose rollers and brackets, or old parts in need of lubrication, we can get your garage door operating smoothly again in no time.

Pros and Cons of Commercial Glass Enclosure Doors

Show your customers what you have to offer with a door that showcases the best of your business

Think about the last time you walked by a store with an eye-catching glass door. Did the display make you stop and look or even go in and make a purchase despite not planning to buy anything? That’s exactly the kind of enticing impression that your own business should be making if you want to increase sales and draw in new customers. Adding a glass door can provide just that sort of marketing advantage, but before you upgrade, consider both the benefits and drawbacks of this design feature.

Benefits of Glass Doors

Upgrading to glass front doors for your business allows you to:

• Prominently place your best merchandise to attract passing customers
• Hang signs and banners to advertise current specials and promotions
• Create a custom design with a printed logo or window decals that may be changed from season to season
• Let in natural light to enhance the atmosphere of the store
• Increase security with keypad entry or other extra safety features

Glass doors are also highly customizable with many different opening styles, hardware options and tints available to complement the personality of your business.

Glass Door Drawbacks

Unfortunately, a big drawback of glass storefront doors is the same as one of the benefits: visibility. The prominent display of merchandise may draw thieves as well as legitimate customers, resulting in loss of profit and possible damage to your store. If your business is located outside, weather is another concern. Strong winds and precipitation such as hail can shatter glass and leave you with high repair or replacement bills.

Installation of glass doors can be on the tricky side. The doors must be placed properly so that they open without sticking or squeaking in all kinds of weather. Once they’re up, you’ll have to watch out for fingerprints and other dirt that can mar the glass and detract from the look of your store.

Glass door installation requires a professional eye and experience in working with the materials involved. After all, the whole point is to draw customers to your store with an attractive display. You want doors that will look great and operate smoothly for the life of your business. If you’re ready to upgrade to a glass storefront door, give the Overhead Door Company of Portland, OR, a call. We offer everything from residential garage door replacement to commercial services. Let us help your business give the kind of first impression that makes customers want to keep coming back.

Garage Doors: Wood vs. Steel

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Which door material will best suit your needs?

When you decide to buy a new garage door, it’s crucial to pick the right material for your home or business. Most garage door installers in Oregon offer several wood and steel options. The Chicago Tribune reports that steel has become very popular—only 1 out of 10 homeowners choose wood. Nonetheless, both materials have important pros and cons.


If you’re trying to conserve money, steel is probably the best choice. Basic wooden garage doors typically cost more than equivalent steel units. Also keep in mind that the total cost rises when you consider the extra maintenance that wood doors need.


Both materials can be vulnerable to certain types of deterioration, such as dents, rust and rot. You’ll need to stain a wooden garage door and perform other repairs more often than with steel. Portland’s damp climate puts wood at a disadvantage. Wood also offers less resistance to fire and hungry pests, such as ants or termites.

Some low-cost steel doors have thin panels that are prone to denting. Minor driving mistakes and wind-driven projectiles can mar these surfaces. Although a heavy-duty door costs and weighs more, it’s best to choose a thick, sturdy unit. Durability helps you save money in the long run—these doors last for decades with proper maintenance.


If a garage is connected to your home, you can cut heating and cooling expenses with an insulated door. Most steel units come with layers of built-in foam insulation. Wood panels usually don’t insulate rooms very well. However, this isn’t a significant concern for people with detached garages.


A lightweight door is easier to open, maintain and install. Like many steel products, metal garage doors weigh somewhat less than their wooden counterparts. This only becomes important when you plan to open and close them by hand. Garage door openers can lift either material without difficulty.


Attractive doors boost a property’s resale value and enhance your home or business’s appearance. Some homeowners prefer the look of wooden doors, especially if they own rustic buildings with wood siding. They’re popular in several upscale Portland neighborhoods. You can order wood doors in more styles and textures than steel units.

Aside from garage door material, it’s vital to choose a skilled contractor with quality products and installation. Every door is a wise investment when you benefit from Overhead Door Company of Portland’s long-term experience and commitment. We can help you choose the right doors to suit any building.

For a free quote on commercial or residential garage door installation in Portland, please contact us today.

The Need for Speed: Do You Need a Faster Garage Door Opener?

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Your garage door can affect your life in ways you can’t predict, especially if it’s reaching the end of its days. Garage doors that open too slowly, fail to respond, hesitate or torture you by bouncing repeatedly for no apparent reason can cause chaos in your carefully planned day. Here are a few instances when having a fast, reliable garage door is especially important.

The Need for Speed

• Speed is essential when you have to use the bathroom. It never fails: when you have a desperate need to relieve yourself, your garage door will not only become slower than turtles stampeding through peanut butter, it’ll choose this moment to perform in a bizarre, unexplainable manner or fail to perform at all. It’s not easy to open a garage door manually with your legs crossed.

• Sometimes you need to get inside because your neighbors are outside. We’ve all had at least one annoying neighbor who constantly accosts us after work, and talks about the love lives of everyone on the block, or shares every intimate detail of their doctor’s visit. If your garage door is fast enough, you don’t even have to make eye contact.

• Your dinner is in jeopardy. Perhaps leaving a souffle in the oven while you run errands isn’t the wisest household decision, but sometimes it just happens. If the cashier at the grocery store is as slow as your garage door, you’ll need to get back home and inside fast before your smoke alarm scares the neighbor who’ll never stop talking about it.

Live Life Faster: Get a Faster Garage Door Opener

No garage door will qualify for the Indy 500, but yours should allow you to get into your garage before you run out of gas. If you find yourself singing “Anticipation” every time you reach your driveway, maybe it’s time to say goodbye to your old garage door and get a fast, stylish new one. When you find the perfect door, check with your installer to be sure you’re getting the fastest possible garage door opener for your new door. Today’s technology offers quiet, powerful openers that operate smoothly and won’t cause you to miss the start of your favorite show.

Trust the Overhead Door Company of Portland to Get You Up to Speed

The best way to ensure that you always get into your Portland, OR, garage in time to save your pot roast or your dignity is to trust the company that’s been installing and servicing top-quality garage doors since 1929. We can equip your home with a fast, reliable and beautiful product that will give you years of great performance, and you’ll enjoy our expert service and maintenance for the life of your garage door. Visit us on the web, or contact us today for more information.