Garage door roller replacement is one of the more common repair task we perform. Garage door rollers are designed to reduce friction as the door glides along the track. A defective roller can be noisy and have impact on the other garage door components. Rollers may not get the same attention that garage door springs do, but they probably should. If you’re in need of garage door repair, there’s a good chance rollers may be involved. Like springs, they can be upgraded for better performance and durability.
Garage Door Roller Types
There are a range of roller types that vary in construction, durability and cost. When a roller breaks, you may be looking at a complete garage door failure making the door inoperable. A broken roller will usually result in the garage door being off the track making it very hard to open or close. Here are the different types of rollers available on the market:
Standard Plastic Roller
Most new garage doors come with standard plastic rollers which is a plastic bushing on a steel stem with no ball bearings. These are a cheap mass produced component that are often used in new garage door systems to keep costs down. Over time, they get dirty and wear out faster than other roller types. You can expect 2-3 years out of these, which is usually less than the life of a garage door spring. So it’s important to keep an eye on these.
Steel Roller With Ball Bearings
A steel roller is an upgrade from the standard plastic roller. The ball bearings reduce friction and add to the overall weight rating of the roller. This in turn extends the life of the roller. The ball bearings should be lubricated as part of a routine maintenance plan and can last over 5 years. The number of ball bearings varies with more bearings making for a smoother, more durable component.
Nylon Roller With Ball Bearings
Upgrading from the steel roller, a nylon roller adds value by reducing the overall noise and have higher weight ratings. Nylon rollers typically come with 10-13 ball bearings making for a more durable component. These rollers are good for 10000 to 15000 garage door cycles which makes their lifespan similar to a standard garage door spring. Most garage door pros, including Sawtooth Garage Doors, recommend replacing garage door rollers whenever you replace the torsion springs with this type of roller unless your are upgrading to a heavy duty garage door system which would call for heavy duty sealed nylon roller described next.
Nylon Roller With Sealed Ball Bearings
A nylon roller with sealed ball bearings is the high end of garage door rollers. The nylon roller is durable and quiet and the sealed bearings means no dirt, moisture or other debris get into the bearings. These rollers are designed to last over 100000 cycles with a 100lb load so these are among the most durable roller available. They are the roller of choice for any heavy duty garage door system.
Garage Door Roller Repair
Most garage door experts recommend replacing your rollers whenever you replace your garage door springs, so it makes sense to replace the rollers with a component that will last as long as your springs. We recommend nylon rollers when using standard garage door springs though the sealed nylon roller is a great choice if you don’t want to worry about your rollers again. They cost more but will outlast any other roller type. If you are upgrading your garage door springs to a heavy duty type, then it makes sense to go with the sealed nylon roller, providing a quiet, durable garage door system.
If you have any questions regarding your rollers, torsion springs or garage door maintenance, our team is always ready to help, so don’t hesitate to contact us!