Smart garage door openers – safe or risky?  

If you’ve been worried about getting a smart garage door opener because you’re concerned they aren’t safe for your home, we’ve got some good news: they are indeed safe. In fact, having one may just help prevent your home and garage from a break in. LiftMaster garage door operator

One of the biggest reasons to trust smart garage door openers is because they use advanced encryption for data, so your privacy isn’t compromised. Still not convinced? Below are four more reasons why investing in a smart garage door opener may just keep the burglars at bay.

You’ll never lose your remote. With a smart garage door opener, you’ll always have access to your remote. That means there’s no risk of losing the remote and having it found by someone who might use it to enter your garage and steal your belongings.

Your smart garage door remote can be found on the MyQ app on your phone. So, as long as you don’t lose your phone, you won’t have to worry about anyone having access to your remote.

Your packages will be safe. We’re all ordering more online these days, which means package theft is on the rise. If you have a smart garage door opener by LiftMaster, you can open the garage door for the Amazon delivery person and close it securely after they’ve delivered the package. Additionally, if your garage door opener includes a security camera, you can watch the delivery person deliver the items in real time and keep an eye on the garage until you return.

You can keep track of visitors.  Smart garage doors log every time the garage door opens and closes. And you can be alerted whenever it happens. That means you can keep track of everyone who enters the garage. Some LiftMaster garage door openers also feature two-way audio to monitor visitors as well.

Your garage door will always be closed.  Have you ever driven to your destination only to wonder if you’ve closed the garage door? With a smart garage door opener, you can close your garage door from anywhere. In fact, if you drive off and forget to close the garage door, you can set up your app to receive a notice on your phone.

Ready for a smart garage door opener? Contact the team at Martin Door. We carry the full line of openers by LiftMaster and can help you choose the perfect one for your home.

Ask the expert: Why is my garage door opening on its own?

“Why does my garage door keep opening on its own?” It’s one of the most common questions we at Martin Door gets asked – but the answer isn’t always the same.

Truth is, there are several reasons why your garage door may open on its own – from a sensor issue to defective wiring. The good news is that we can often identify and repair the issue quickly.

Below are six reasons why your garage door may be opening on its own:

Sensory overload. One of the most common reasons why your garage door would open by itself is debris near or on the floor of your garage. That’s where the sensor – designed to stop the garage door from coming down in the event that someone or something is standing under it to avoid and accident – is located. If something is blocking the sensor, it will reverse the motion of the garage door.

Luckily, this is a very easy fix. Simply remove the items or debris away from the sensor and the garage door should open and close properly again.

The garage door opener. Of course, the culprit very well may be your garage door opener. First, check the remote and make sure every button is working properly and that they aren’t sticking. Then, check the wall mounted opener. If you notice any buttons sticking or dimming lights, it’s time to call us.

Circuit issues. If your electrical circuits have been damaged by thunderstorms or other negative weather patterns, or if there was a recent power outage in your area, your garage’s electric circuit may have been affected.

Identical codes. If you have an older garage door opener, your garage door may be opening on its own because positioning clips within the opener have been programmed to the same frequency or code as your neighbors.

If you suspect this is the problem, you’ll need to change the garage door opener’s code or have it reprogrammed. First, however, reach out to us to make sure your codes and frequencies were set up properly in the first place.

Defective control wiring. If you’ve checked your garage door’s remote, and there hasn’t been any adverse weather for a while, your garage door may be opening on its own because of faulty control wiring. This central wiring connects the motor unit on the garage ceiling to the wall mounted opener. Sometimes, this wiring can get damaged by mice or other animals or normal wear and tear.

To address this issue, contact us. We can test the control wiring and replace or repair it in the event that it has been damaged.

Safety sensor issues. If your safety sensors are misaligned, your garage door may open on its own. These sensors work together, but if one gets out of the proper alignment, the garage door will potentially open on its own when the sensor mechanism is triggered inadvertently.

Baffled by a garage door that opens on its own? Give the team at Martin Door a call. We’ve been helping residents in St. Charles solve this mystery for decades, and can help solve yours, too!

Selling your home? How to get your garage ready

If you’re getting ready to sell your home, don’t forget about your garage. Investing just a little time, elbow grease and money can increase the value of your home and help it sell faster. In fact, it’s been proven that a replacement garage door is one of the best — and easiest — ways to increase your ROI.

Before you jump into this seller’s market and put your house up for sale, take a look at our tips below on how to get your garage door ready.

Replace the garage door. If your garage door is older, or if doesn’t elevate the look of your home, consider buying a new one. Clopay has a myriad of different collections designed to complement a variety of homes. If yours is contemporary, take a look at their Avante and Modern Steel collections.

On a budget? Many of Clopay’s styles are very affordable. We especially love the Grand Harbor collection that features carriage house doors that you can customize.

Paint the walls and floor. If the walls and floor of your garage are dirty and stained, spend a day painting them. Read our article with tips on how to do this properly. Or, just remember to use the proper paint type on your walls and floors. And remember: painting the walls a light color will make the garage seem larger!

Remove the clutter. In fact, go ahead and remove anything in the garage you aren’t using. Either move the items to storage or resell them on a place like Facebook Marketplace or take to a thrift store. Buyers want to be able to envision their belongings in the space they’re considering buying. Help them by removing yours from the garage.

Clean. clean, clean. Consider renting a power washer or hiring someone to power wash your garage’s floors and exterior. And don’t forget about the driveway. Thoroughly wash it with soap and water and for stubborn stains, apply a baking soda paste.

Make it multipurpose. To attract potential buyers, consider making a section of the garage extra living space. From a home gym to a study, your garage just may be able to be used for something more than storing your car. Take a look at our ideas!

Your garage is an important part of your home. Don’t forget about it when you’re ready to sell it! Get it ready with a new garage door or garage door maintenance from Martin Door.

Four Ideas to Get Your Garage Ready for Spring

The weather is heating up just a bit and daffodils are starting to peek out of the ground. That can only mean one thing: spring is on the way.

This year, get your garage and garage door ready for the warmer months early so you have more time to enjoy the great outdoors with family and friends.

Below are four easy ways to get your garage ready for spring

Clean and Organize. Take a weekend day, go through your garage, and toss out anything you no longer need. This is also a great time to install shelving or cabinets to store items in the garage. You’ll also want to clean your garage thoroughly in early spring, as it can get pretty dirty with salt and dirt during the winter months.

Spring cleaning for your garage 

Consider a new garage door. Spring is all about new beginnings, making it a perfect time of the year invest in a new garage door. If your tastes lean clean and contemporary, take a look at Clopay’s Avante and Modern Steel Doors. Like traditional garage doors? Consider Clopay’s Carriage House style garage doors.

Add more living space. Why not make an area of your garage a space for more living? With the garage door open, you’ll have plenty of fresh air and room to socialize with friends while staying safe. Start by cleaning and possibly painting your garage walls or floors, then use your imagination to create living space. The garage is a great place for a home gym or playroom for the kids.

Add living space to your garage  

Schedule garage door maintenance. Garage door springs, pulleys and other parts need to be maintained by a garage door professional on a regular basis. Be sure to schedule spring garage door maintenance with Martin Door professional before spring gets underway.

5 Great Ideas for Remodeling Your Garage

Ready to remodel your home and get it ready for the warmer months ahead? Look no further than your garage, where even small updates can make a big difference.

Some garage remodeling projects – like painting your garage or adding new flooring – can be completed in a weekend. Others require a little more elbow grease but are more than worth the effort.

Below is our list of five remodeling projects that can transform your garage into something special.

Paint. One of the quickest and easiest ways to breathe new life into your garage is with a coat (or two) of paint. First, you’ll need to repair any areas of the walls where there are cracks and prime them.

Once you’re ready, choose a paint that’s mildew resistant or an interior latex paint. While oil-based paint can also be used, it will take longer to dry and has a strong odor and fumes, so you’ll need to wear a protective mask.

Install new flooring. There’s nothing wrong with the standard concrete garage floor, but over time, these floors can get stained from years and years of leaking car oil and antifreeze. That’s why painting the floor is a great idea.

First, clean the floor thoroughly to remove all the grit and grime. Then, prep the floor with a primer before applying epoxy. We recommend epoxy because it is stain resistant and makes cleaning the floors a breeze.

You could also cover your garage floor with interlocking foam tiles. This flooring can be found at your local hardware store and comes in a variety of styles and colors.

Add storage. It’s easy to de-clutter and transform your garage into a well-organized space that does as good of a job storing your tools and sports equipment as it does your car.

First, declutter the garage by getting rid of anything in it that you no longer need. Then, add pegboard, install a fold-up table to use for projects, and invest in storage solutions.

Check out IKEA for inexpensive yet durable cabinets designed for bedrooms, living rooms, and kitchens and use them in the garage instead. Shoe and closet organizers work great in the garage as well.

Lighten it up. Why not add a window or two to your garage to elevate it’s look, or invest in a replacement garage with windows? Most garage styles allow you to pick just where you want your garage’s windows to go – and offer you plenty of ways to customize them, so suit your garage and home perfectly.

You could also install a skylight or even an overhead pendant light to really take your garage’s style to the next level.

Add living space. Your garage can do so much more than simply keep your cars safe. It can also double as a workout room, a study, or even an artist’s studio. The sky is really the limit.

Depending on how often you’ll use the extra room, you may want to take advantage of some of the above ideas, like adding new flooring or painting the walls. You could also replace the garage door with one that works great for living spaces, like Clopay’s Avante garage doors, for example.

Ready to get started? Martin Door carries great looking, high performing garage doors and other products that can take your garage space to the next level. Give us a call today.

New Year, New Garage: Five simple garage improvement ideas for 2021

Happy New Year! We hope it’s filled with time with friends and family, new adventures and lots of home improvement projects. If last year taught us anything, its that home is where the heart is. And if you’re going to be sprucing up your home this year, don’t forget about your garage.

Below are five very easy (yet important) new year’s resolutions for your garage. In honor of 2020, we decided to keep the list short, simple and stress-free.

Here’s our list of five simple things you can do in 2021 for your garage.

Replace your garage door. Installing new garage doors is one of the quickest and easiest ways to boost curb appeal and add value to your home. And it can even save you a little money down the road, as you won’t have to worry about garage door repairs.

We carry the full line of Clopay garage doors, and we’re confident we have the perfect one for your budget and your aesthetic.

Take a look at our residential garage doors. Then, when you’ve got a couple of garage door styles in mind, use the Design Your Door tool to “try it on.”

Schedule routine maintenance. This is one the most important things you can do for your garage door. Once a year garage door (and garage door opener) maintenance is a critical component to making your garage door last for years and years.

Our technicians have extensive experience and can thoroughly inspect and address any issues quickly, so your garage door continues to operate safely and properly. If it’s in need of a repair or replacement part, we’ll give you a thorough, accurate estimate and do the work promptly.

Organize your garage. There’s nothing wrong with storing items every which way in the garage. But  with a little organizing, especially with the addition of extra storage, you may find you have even more room available.

Clean it out. Set a date (when the weather warms up, of course), take a cue from Nike and “just do it.”

We suggest having a plan in place for what you’ll do with everything you don’t want before you clean, so make sure you have bags and boxes for the items you want to take to the thrift store and online accounts set up if you’re selling the items on sites like Facebook Marketplace or eBay.

Make it multipurpose. The coronavirus pandemic really changed the way we work. If you’re working from home now on a regular basis, consider adding an office area to the garage, or a workout or playroom. It’s easier than you may think – and can be done on a budget.

From all of us at Martin Door – Happy 2021! And remember: we’re here to help you with all your garage door needs.

Support local businesses this season

From the team at Martin Door:

This holiday season, we are incredibly grateful to be a part of a community that supports each other through and through. And in spirit of the holiday, we thought we’d update the article we shared in March, as local businesses still need our support.  

Here are five ways to support St. Charles businesses during the holidays:

Shop local. Make a list of all of your favorite local shops, then grab a cup of cocoa, sit down at the computer and start shopping! Not only can you do all your shopping in your PJs but might be able to get it all done in one day. Here is a fantastic article about shopping local while sheltering in place.

Order carry out or delivery from your favorite restaurants. The pandemic has hit St. Charles restaurants hard. Let’s show them support by ordering carry out and delivery as much as we can. This is also a great time to try out new restaurants you’ve been planning to visit and those that don’t normally deliver.

Hosting a small gathering this holiday season? Why not have it catered by a local restaurant?

Buy gift certificates. One day, in the very near future, we’re going to get back to a new normal. When that happens, we’ll be more than ready to visit our favorite businesses in person again. Purchasing gift cards is an investment in their future. It’s also cash for them now that you can redeem later, so it puts money in their pockets at a time when they need it the most.

Pay it forward. Have you heard about the massive pay it forward at the Dairy Queen drive-thru that made 900 people smile? Let’s keep it going! The next time you’re at a drive-thru or coffeeshop, make someone’s day and pay it forward. They’ll feel good — and you will, too.

Give to local charities. The coronavirus is still putting local nonprofits and charities to the task. This year, consider making a donation in someone’s honor for the holidays.  Or, make a homeless pet’s day by fostering during the holidays.

From all of us at Martin Door, we wish you a safe and wonderful holiday and new year!

The beauty and versatility of carriage house style garage doors

Carriage house style garage doors are very popular amongst homeowners for many reasons. Not only are they exceptionally versatile, but they’re also stylish. And since they’re made from a variety of materials that stand the test of time, they’re also extremely durable.

Todays’ carriage house garage doors are designed to evoke the carriage house doors of the past that were used for storing horse-drawn carriages. While they’re still made with the same craftmanship of yesteryear, they also feature everything you’d want in a modern garage door.

If you’re looking for a fully automated modern overhead garage door that evokes classic, rustic charm, consider a carriage house style door from Clopay. Learn more about their most popular carriage house models below.

The Coachman Collection

modern house with white garage door

One of Clopay’s most popular styles, Coachman garage doors look like wood but are made of four layers of insulated steel. They’re very low maintenance and are easy to customize. In fact, you can choose from about 1,000 style combinations and four factory finish paint colors.

Coachman garage doors look great on a wide variety of homes. Not only are they an ideal choice for traditional style homes, but they can enhance the curb appeal of more modern homes as well.

The Canyon Ridge Collection, Limited Edition & Ultra Grain Series  

canyon ridge wooden garage doors

Both Clopay’s Canyon Ridge Limited and Ultra Grain series are stunners. Both feature swing-out style carriage house style doors and are quiet and energy-efficient. The Limited Series also offers four-layer construction while the Ultra Grain Series features a whopping five.

Both of these garage door styles also offer Intellicore® insulation, fourteen base designs and are factory finished in medium or dark finishes. You can even customize them further with a field stain.

The Grand Harbor Collection

grand harbor white garage doors

These carriage house style doors are a great option for those on a budget. But just because they’re affordable it doesn’t mean you’ll be compromising on quality or style.

Not only are Clopay’s  Grand Harbor garage doors  beautiful, but they’re also extremely quiet, durable, and low maintenance. You can choose from two or three layers of insulation, and from six different designs with optional windows and decorative hardware.

The Reserve Collection 

reserve wooden garage door

When it comes to one-of-a-kind beauty you can’t get much better than Clopay’s Reserve Collection. These authentic handcrafted carriage house garage doors are made from gorgeous natural wood. You can choose from six carriage house designs and from three different types of wood. They also feature different panel and window designs and can be painted or stained.

Martin Door is proud to carry the dull line of carriage house garage doors by Clopay. Contact us to find out which style is perfect for your home.


Winter Maintenance for Your Garage Door & Opener

The last thing you want to deal with come wintertime is a garage door that won’t open and close. That’s why it’s important to make sure that your garage door & opener Is up to the challenge before the colder temps arrive.

From depleted batteries to a garage door that won’t open due to ice and snow, winter in St. Charles can be a challenging season for your garage door and opener. Before they start working overtime during winter, use our checklist below to make sure your garage door opener is up to the test.

Lubricate. One of the most important steps to making sure your garage door opener is ready for winter involves lubricating the garage door’s hinges, and rollers, and springs. This is critical so that the garage door & opener will operate smoothly. You can pick up a low temp spray lube at your neighborhood home improvement store.

Check the backup system. In the event of a winter storm, you’ll want to make sure your garage door opener back-up system is working properly. If it is, you’ll be able to open and close your garage door via the remote or touch pad even if the power goes out.

You’ll find details on how to test the back-up system in your garage door opener’s manual. For most, you can unplug the garage door opener from the outlet and test it to see if it still works with the remote.

Replace light bulbs. Not only should you replace the light bulbs in the garage before the cold weather sets in, you should go ahead and replace the garage door opener bulbs as well. Although most bulbs last about 10,000 hours, we recommend erring on the side of caution even if you think you’ve got a little ways to go before the bulbs stop working. You don’t want to be left in the dark in the garage on a cold winter night.

Replace the remote batteries. One of the quickest and easiest ways to get your garage door opener ready for winter is by replacing the batteries in the remote. Ideally, these should be replaced every two years or so, but bear in mind that cold weather will drain all batteries quicker.

A couple ways to tell if the batteries in the opener’s remote need to be replaced is by looking to see if a low battery light is on (if your model includes this feature) and by observing how quick the remote is to work. If it takes a few presses on the button to open the garage door, you probably need to replace the batteries.

Check the garage door. You’re going to want to make sure the garage door fits well in the frame and that there aren’t any gaps on the ground where snow and freezing water can get in. Should ice and snow get into the garage, particularly where it opens, it can cause the garage door to freeze shut and your garage door opener won’t work.

Be prepared. In the event that your garage door opener won’t work in the winter, be prepared. Have a broom and a shovel within easy access so you can clear snow and ice from the garage door. And for car safety during winter, have a pair of jumper cables or a power jump starter in your car, as well as a heavy blanket.

Still not sure if your garage door opener is ready for winter? Give the team at Martin Door a call. We can do a complete check so that it’s up to the test and ready for the colder months ahead.