Written By: Jim Allhiser
Copy written by Perfection Inspection Inc.
Who doesn’t remember the scene where Indiana Jones dives under the stone wall that is closing barely squeezing to safety!? Cinematic excitement at it’s finest and something that most children would love to recreate. Garage doors that are closing appear very similar to that scene and unfortunately not every child has cleared the door before it closed shut.
Garage doors are the largest and heaviest moving parts on our homes and can be very dangerous if ALL of the modern safety features are not installed properly. Several years ago the auto-reverse feature became standard. This feature reverses the closing door when the door meets a certain level of resistance. This safety feature is good however the pressure is still enough to hurt or even kill kids or pets.
The most recent advancement is the infrared beam safety feature. Straight out of a high security spy movies the little sensors reverse the door when the beam that shoots across the bottom of the door opening is broken. These infrared beams are great but even intelligent high tech safety features are of little use if they are not installed where they are intended.
Most manufactures state that the beam should be no higher than 6″ off the ground. The homes around Salem, Oregon that I inspect usually have foundation walls that extend up to around 9″ above the floor of the garage. Consequently I usually see the little beams installed around 10″ above the floor, after all it is much easier to attach to wood sill plate than have to drill and anchor into concrete!
Of course if that is still too much trouble there is always an option to just slap them together and secure them above the opener.
But that installation is really for those who are too smart to let kids or pets get in the way of the closing door…..
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