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Spring Cleaning Starts in the Garage

Spring is just around the corner!  This is my favorite time of year.  I enjoy getting out in the yard, planting vegetable seeds, and enjoying all the new flowers and blooms.  Many of us have been pent up all winter and are ready to clean and organize.  Your garage is a good place to start!

Here in Southern California we don’t have weather that would cause build up on the exterior of the garage door but it is not a bad idea to begin your garage cleaning with wiping down the outside of your garage door.  You can use a simple household cleaner, our technicians recommend Simple Green, to spray and wipe down the door.

Once the door is clean it is time to move inside the garage.  A good thing to do occasionally is to lubricate the hinges, springs, and bearings with a silicone based lubricant as recommended by the manufacturer.

Once your garage door is running smoothly again, the next step is to start organizing all the Christmas decorations, sports equipment, and camping gear that has somehow piled up along the walls and in the rafters.  Pull everything out and organize it by category.  While you have all the boxes out of the garage it would be a good idea to sweep out the corners and get rid of any cobwebs.  If you need to build shelving, now would be a good time to do that.  There are plenty of storage accessories available for purchase as well.  Have you thought about hanging the bikes?  Or how about hanging your gardening tools and cleaning supplies?  .

The garage is such a large part of our house and can be a very functional place as long as we keep it organized.

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Are you Prepared for a Power Outage? – LiftMaster Battery Backup

This weekend my fiance and I went to visit my parents who live in San Diego.  We arrived Friday evening.  Traffic had been pretty heavy so we were looking forward to relaxing and watching some TV with my mom.  As we were watching we had an unexpected power outage.  My dad works in the evening and was on his way home from work.  Our first thought, after we accessed some candles for light, was wondering how he was going to get in the garage without any power.  Thankfully we had an Entry Systems employee with us and he knew exactly what to do!  He disengaged the motor and lifted the door manually.  The first thing he said was, “Don’t you wish you had a battery backup for your motor?”

Unfortunately my parent’s house was not equipped with a battery backup to use in a time like this.  We saw this weekend how unexpectedly things can change and helpful it would have been to have that battery backup.  Make sure you are prepared for the next power outage by adding a LiftMaster battery backup to your garage door opener!

With a battery back-up on your operator you won't end up stuck in the next power outage.

With a battery back-up on your operator you won’t end up stuck in the next power outage.

The LiftMaster 8550 and 8500 both have battery back up capabilities. For more information about garage door openers, click here.

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The New Wood Door

The New Wood Door

When someone pulls up to your house often the first thing they see is your garage door.  Our garage doors are on display for neighbors, visitors, and all who pass by.  There are many different types of doors that can be installed on your house.  One type that has been popular for many years is the classic wood door.  Wood doors are very beautiful but they can require a bit more maintenance to keep them looking and performing in peak shape.  Wood doors must be refinished or painted every few years.  Humidity, rain, and heat can have adverse effects on a wood garage door.  Wood doors are not always well insulated and they are heavy, which means you will need an operator that can withstand lifting the weight repeatedly.

If you like the look of wood doors but are not interested in all the maintenance that comes along with them you can opt to go with Amarr woodgrain steel doors.  Steel doors do not require the same amount of maintenance as wood doors.  They are better at withstanding the elements and are not affected by humidity, rain, and heat the same way wood doors are.  Steel doors come in a variety of insulation options.  A well insulated steel garage door can keep your house cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.  Another benefit is that you will never need to re-stain or paint your steel door. It’s a guarantee with Amarr’s lifetime paint finish warranty.  Amarr doors are finished with a factory-applied, baked-on coating which will prevent the door from rusting and will keep the finish from chipping.  

Many customers call us asking if we will paint their existing garage doors to look like wood doors. We do not recommend this for two reasons. First of all, painting your existing door loses any paint warranty that comes with the manufacturer. Secondly, the price many painters charge to paint a realistic woodgrain on an existing garage door can be very close to, if not more expensive than, the cost of Entry Systems installing a brand new woodgrain door with a lifetime paint warranty.

There is a considerable price difference between steel and wood doors. With a lifetime warranty on the paint finish, Amarr woodgrain steel garage doors are an excellent choice.

Can you tell the difference?

         

 

Stop by our showroom to see if the Amarr woodgrain door is for you! We have a full size walnut color woodgrain door on display. We’re at 26941 Cabot Road, Suite 122 in Laguna Hills, CA

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Christmas Lights on Parade

A few nights ago some of the Entry Systems team went to a neighborhood in Brea, California that is completely decorated with lights, lawn decorations, and music for the Christmas holiday.  We parked our cars and walked in and out of the streets in awe of all the lights and festivities.  Being in the garage door business made us all a little more observant of the way people decorated their garage doors.  Here are just a few of our favorites:

If you’re in the area, you should stop by E Lambert Road and Sunflower Street in Brea, CA and check out the neighborhood lights.  It is a great way to get in the holiday spirit and celebrate Christmas.

Here at Entry Systems we want to wish you all a safe and Merry Christmas.  We hope you find time to celebrate with family and friends and that you find hope and peace this Christmas.  Merry Christmas!

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Yet another DIY project

Do it yourself projects are all the rage right now.  Personally I love doing projects and re-purposing things.   My mom and I used to do projects together when my sister and I were young and I still enjoy them, as the decorations on my walls will prove.  People are using all kinds of things to make something new and completely different.  Re-purposing a garage door, for example, can turn something that should be considered trash into something brand new and antique looking.

Here are some fun ideas of ways you can use that old garage door as something new:

1) Use your old steel door sections to make raised planters for your vegetable garden.  Spring is just a few months away which gives you just enough time to make them!

2) Looking for a new dining room table?  How about using your old one piece garage door as a table top?  I guarantee none of your friends will have the same one!

3) Another idea is to use your one piece garage door as a headboard.  Refinish your old door,  mount it to the wall, and you have a headboard that will fit on any bed:

4) For some of us our yard is not easily accessible from our garage.  Keeping yard tools in the garage is very common but what if you had a tool shed in your backyard that made all those tools more easily accessible?  Use your old one piece garage door to make a customized shed for those tools.

5) The final idea I have to share is my personal favorite.  For some time I have wanted to have a greenhouse in my yard.  They are fairly expensive to buy so the idea of using garage doors is really exciting and much more cost effective!

When you order that new garage door you have been dreaming about be sure to consider saving the old one to use in a fun, new, DIY project!

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Rain, Rain, Go Away

We’ve had a good deal of rain lately here in Southern California.  Compared to the rest of the country it’s not very much, but we have been in a drought so when it rains for 2 days day we consider that to be a “good deal” of rain.  Personally, I like the change in the weather.  I was able to go home after work, light a fire, and enjoy a cozy evening with hot chocolate and Christmas tree lights.  I know the rain can cause many problems for people, though too.  One of those problems has to do with your garage door.

If your garage door is a roll-up, sectional door you have a type of springs called torsion springs.  These springs twist as your garage door closes, storing up energy, and then releasing energy and untwisting to open the door.  Without these springs your door is extremely heavy and almost impossible to lift.  Torsion springs don’t like the rain so when it rains they often break leaving your garage door stuck closed and your car trapped inside.  That’s when you frantically call Entry Systems to schedule a time for a technician to come out to fix it.

Most people don’t think twice about their garage door until it breaks. But the fact of the matter is that torsion springs only last about 10,000 cycles, or 5-8 years.  There are a few things you can do to help increase the life of your torsion springs, preventing extreme inconvenience and unexpected expenses.  We recommend having your garage door system serviced annually.  There are many parts that can wear out which can cause damage and unnecessary strain to your door and motor.  It is also important to keep your rollers, track, and springs well lubricated.  This will help your door open and close smoothly and quietly, and will prolong the life of your garage door and it’s operating system. Garage door maintenance can be dangerous so it may be best if you leave it up to the professionals.  We are happy to help and make sure you are able to get in and out of your garage and to work on time!

The torsion springs in your garage cause the door to open and close and can cause stress when broken.

The torsion springs in your garage cause the door to open and close and can cause stress when broken.

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Entry Systems to the Rescue

Entry Systems to the Rescue

When you have an Entry Systems technician show up at your house you might receive more than you are expecting.  Our technicians are very well trained in everything having to do with garage doors.  They are good guys who genuinely want to help our customers.  Sometimes the opportunity to help with something other than the garage door presents itself.  This story is an example of that.

Not long ago we received a call from a customer requesting service for their garage door.  We added her to the schedule and when the time came, we sent our technician out to see what was going on with her garage and how he could help.  As he was doing the adjustments, the customer’s husband came out to the garage to check on how things were proceeding.  While he was talking with our technician, he became faint and passed out on the garage floor.  His wife became hysterical and our technician immediately began to assess the situation and decide what he could do to help.  Not every one knows this, but this particular technician is a certified paramedic and worked as a reserve fire fighter before coming to work for Entry Systems.  He sat the man up in a chair and had the man’s wife call 9-1-1.  When the paramedics arrived they were impressed with our technician’s knowledge and how he handled the situation.  He never did tell them he is a certified paramedic.

At Entry Systems we take pride in our work.  We have highly trained technicians who love working with our customers.  You never know what kind of bonus you may receive when you have Entry Systems come to service your garage door or automated gate.

 

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Keeping Warm this Winter

As the winter months are approaching we are all beginning to think about how we are going to keep warm this winter.  We can look at the animal kingdom for some examples.  The polar bear survives frigid, arctic temperatures with an outside layer of fur that is only about 2 inches thick.  A Canada Goose can have between 20 and 25 thousand feathers.  Many of them are down feathers which are used to keep the bird warm by fluffing them up which creates a warm layer of air and feathers.  Marine mammals are equipped with a layer of blubber to keep their bodies warm in the cold ocean temperatures.

polar bear

It’s no surprise that fur, feathers, and blubber are not an efficient way for us to stay warm during the cold, winter months.  We light a fire, use a warm blanket, or even crank up the thermostat despite the large bill.  One way we often overlook is heat and cold transfer through the garage door.

Our garage doors are the largest moving objects in our homes.  Having an insulated garage door can regulate the transfer of hot and cold air.  There are many reasons this is important:

Samples of garage door insulation in our Laguna Hills showroom.  Stop by and check it out!

Samples of garage door insulation in our Laguna Hills showroom. Stop by and check it out!

1-If your garage is attached to your home, air from the garage can transfer from the garage to your living space very easily.

2-If your garage is a work area, having an insulated door will make it more comfortable working in the colder months.  An insulated door will also reduce unwanted noise from the street.

3- If you have a living space above the garage, temperature can easily travel through the garage ceiling, causing the room above to drastically change in temperature.  Keeping the garage within a smaller temperature window will help maintain the temperature of the room above.

4-An insulted door is more aesthetically pleasing than a non-insulated door because it adds a more finished look to your garage.  It is also quieter when opening and closing.

An insulated garage door can make a big difference in the comfort and efficiency of your home.  However you choose to keep warm this winter, we hope you enjoy the season with family and friends.

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