When it is raining outside all I want to do is cuddle up with a movie, some hot chocolate and a soft blanket. What I do not want to do is worry about whether or not my garage is flooding. However, last week during the El Nino storms in San Diego, I got quite a few calls from customers who had more water in their garages than they would have liked. The flooding and leaking added more stress on top of the traffic and landslides and whatever else the crazy weather brought. Sadly, when it is pouring down rain there is very little if anything that we can do to stop it. The time to secure your garage from water is before it starts to rain, not during. A quote that has always stuck with me from my high school days is Prior Preparation Prevents Poor Performance. This can definitely be applied to a garage door’s functionality. This is one of the many reasons that we suggest having a professional like The Garage Door Man inspect, adjust, and tune up your garage door every six months. Besides the normal wear and tear from constant use, changes in weather and temperature can drastically affect the function of your garage door. Many of the moving parts are made of steel and metal and can expand and contract due to temperature and amounts of moisture inside and outside the garage. This causes lubrication and adjustments to be necessary to keep everything moving smoothly.
This is also a great time to inspect all of the weatherstripping and t-seal on the bottom and around the garage door. Rodents, shrinkage, and age can all alter the size of the weather seal and compromise the seal formed to protect the interior of the garage. Sometimes, the bottom t-seal is in great condition but a little more protection is necessary. In this case a bottom threshold can be laid to create a tighter seal. The t-seal fits directly into the threshold rather than hitting just the concrete or asphalt below it. As before mentioned, a threshold needs to be installed before any rain comes since it is adhered to the ground and needs time to dry properly. In other cases the asphalt or concrete is just not level or even so a gap or space is inevitable. In this case a mason or a contractor needs to be contacted.
Other preventions that people can take before a large storm are focused on the areas surrounding the garage door. If the rain is hitting the door dead on, or the roof is dumping water directly in front of the door there might need to be some cleaning or installing of rain gutters to collect and re-direct the water. Sandbags could also be necessary if the garage is below ground level or at the end of a sloping driveway or walkway. The last tip is to store valuables off of the ground inside the garage. Shelving and hanging racks are extremely helpful if the space is available to ensure that things do not get wet in the case of any unforeseen water getting in. Nobody can control Mother Nature, but a little bit of preventive maintenance can dramatically mitigate your damages.