Troubleshooting a Garage Door That Won’t Stay Open Manually

When it comes to convenience and security, a functional garage door is a crucial component of your home. However, like any mechanical system, garage doors can encounter issues over time. One common problem that homeowners may face is a garage door that won’t stay open manually. This inconvenience can be frustrating, but fear not, as we will explore the possible causes and solutions in this article.

Garage Door Won'T Stay Open Manually

Understanding the Issue

Why Won’t Your Garage Door Stay Open Manually?

Before diving into the solutions, let’s understand why your garage door might refuse to stay open manually. This issue can be attributed to several factors, and pinpointing the exact cause is the first step toward resolving it.

  1. Broken Torsion Springs: Torsion springs are responsible for counterbalancing the weight of the garage door. If one of these springs breaks, it can make the door challenging to keep open manually.
  2. Misaligned or Damaged Tracks: Garage door tracks can become misaligned or damaged due to regular wear and tear. When this happens, the door may not remain in place when manually opened.
  3. Faulty Garage Door Opener: Sometimes, the problem isn’t with the door itself but with the opener. A malfunctioning opener can lead to issues with manual operation.
  4. Lack of Proper Lubrication: Insufficient lubrication in critical components can create friction, making it difficult to keep the door open.
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Now that we understand some of the potential causes, let’s explore how to troubleshoot and resolve the issue.

Troubleshooting Steps

1. Inspect the Torsion Springs

Torsion springs are under immense tension, and attempting to repair them without the right tools and knowledge can be dangerous. It’s best to call a professional to replace or repair broken torsion springs. Trying to do this yourself can lead to severe injuries.

2. Examine the Tracks

Check the tracks on both sides of the door for any misalignment or damage. If you notice issues, you can try to gently tap them back into place using a rubber mallet. Ensure the tracks are level and properly secured to the wall. For significant track damage, it’s advisable to consult a technician.

3. Test the Garage Door Opener

If your garage door has an automatic opener, try testing it. Sometimes, a malfunctioning opener can affect manual operation. If the opener is the problem, you may need to repair or replace it. Ensure that the safety sensors on the opener are aligned correctly as well.

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4. Lubricate Moving Parts

Proper lubrication is essential for smooth garage door operation. Lubricate all moving parts, such as hinges, rollers, and springs, with a silicone-based lubricant. This can significantly reduce friction and make it easier to keep the door open manually.

Preventive Maintenance

Keep Your Garage Door in Top Shape

Preventing issues is often easier and less costly than fixing them. Here are some preventive maintenance tips to ensure your garage door operates smoothly:

  • Regularly inspect and lubricate all moving parts.
  • Clean the tracks and remove debris that may cause misalignment.
  • Test the door’s balance by disconnecting the opener and lifting it manually. It should stay open about three or four feet above the ground.
  • Hire a professional for an annual garage door maintenance check.


A garage door that won’t stay open manually can be a frustrating problem, but with the right knowledge and maintenance, you can address the issue and avoid future troubles. Whether it’s a broken torsion spring, misaligned tracks, a faulty opener, or insufficient lubrication, there are steps you can take to resolve the problem. Remember, safety should always be a priority. For complex issues, don’t hesitate to contact a professional technician to ensure your garage door functions safely and efficiently. By following these guidelines and practicing preventive maintenance, you can enjoy the convenience and security of a smoothly operating garage door for years to come.

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