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Roll Up Doors and You

 •  3 min read



Cameron Wilson

About Author

Preventative maintenance is key for keeping your industrial space open for business

We all have them at our homes, but nowhere are roll-up doors more prevalent than at industrial facilities where you can often find rows and rows of them on commercial buildings.

While at home most of our interactions with our roll-up doors consists of pushing the button twice a day as we come and go from our houses. But in a commercial/industrial application, responsible use and maintenance of the roll-up doors is an important part of daily operations. It can also be a costly repair if not done properly, so here are some tips for getting the longest life out of the roll up doors at your properties.

  • Have them serviced regularly.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so they say, and roll-up doors are no exception. At least one time per year and preferably twice, it is necessary to have your doors serviced and lubricated by a licensed professional. They will test the tightness of the springs, insure normal operations of the doors, and lubricate all moving parts. Doing this frequently will keep the doors gliding smoothly on their tracks, and keep you out of trouble.

  • Another good idea is to train your staff on proper door operation.

Raising or lowering the doors too quickly can cause them to jump off their tracks, or even worse, bend one of the panels or break a wheel. You want to use slow, steady movements through the entire process of raising and lowering the door. Another often overlooked pitfall is raising the door too high. Many people don’t realize that you should not raise the door until it’s all the way retracted, as that can cause the wheels to pop out of the top of the track. Consider placing a strip of brightly-colored duct tape at the highest point to which the door should be raised – which should still be a foot or more below the “barrell” where the retracted door is rolled up.

  • The other big problem we see with roll up doors is damage by bumping into them with vehicles or equipment.

Most frequently, we see evidence of damage caused by forklifts, where the prongs have poked two identical holes clear through the lowest panel. This again can be easily avoided with some forethought and preparation. Consider putting down some brightly-colored duct tape on the ground in front of the roll-up door. ideally you should try to keep a “safe zone” of +/- 3 feet from any roll-up door, into which no vehicles or equipment should ever cross. Additionally, take some time to properly train your forklift operators, making sure they are well aware of the length of the prongs on their equipment.

While often overlooked, roll up-doors can be a VERY expensive component to fix or replace when they fail or are damaged. These few simple tips can extend the life of your doors indefinitely, and save thousands of dollars in repair costs during your lease.

 Cameron Wilson is director of brokerage and business development at Bradley Scott. He can be reached at (360) 479-6900 ext. 219.

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