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Old 12-11-2008, 04:41 PM   #1
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


1st - thanks for the Garage Door Opener recommendations.

Google DIY and Garage Door Opener and you get tons of hits explaining how it is a DIY project (but be careful with torsion springs). So I picked the GDO I wanted and went out to the garage during the light of day to make some measurements before I bought it. I figured it would take me 1/2 - 1 day to complete.

Step one: make sure I had enough clearance above the torsion spring to install the rail bracket.


There's only one problem - Where's the spring?!? If you look carefully you can see the small slot cut in the plywood where the cable goes up into the attic.

Step two: crawl into attic space and discover: extensive carpenter bee damage, dead birds and their poop, leaks in the roof, exposed electrical splices, and alot of insulation. Here's a good example of either some professionally negligent electrical work or some REALLY BAD DIY.



Hey, at least they insulated. After I removed a fair amount of insulation I found the torsion spring:


Do you suppose the insulation was lubricating the operation of the door?

So instead of wrapping up the remote for the garage door and giving it to my husband for Xmas I get to:

- remove part of the ceiling to install the only GDO that will work (Wayne-Dalton iDrive Torsion);

- break the news to my husband that not only does the garage need a new roof, but at minimum some major reinforcement of the joists;

- AND just for fun, I get to re-wire the whole damn thing because now I'm afraid the whole thing might burn down at any second.

I know very well that DIY comes at it's own risk - but this project has become a perfect example of how DIY projects will take three times as much time as you think and ten times more money.

CRAP.

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Last edited by Leah Frances; 12-11-2008 at 04:48 PM.
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Old 12-11-2008, 05:19 PM   #2
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


same thing working on ANY automotive problem.... it's always more work than you think, because the $%@%$@# is %$#%$# and the &*^&^$ thing is %$@$#!!
it never fails.....

DM

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Old 12-11-2008, 05:34 PM   #3
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


I agree. Garage doors should probably be left to the professionals. I had a 3-week ordeal of trying to install a new garage door. From my own mistakes (assuming my garage was standard and not measuring exactly) to just the vague instructions that are included. Unless you have done it before, just pay the extra $200 and have a professional install it.
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Old 12-11-2008, 05:42 PM   #4
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


i've done a few installs and repairs on them. most all were a pita, for sure.

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Old 12-11-2008, 05:55 PM   #5
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


Leah, sorry about your ordeal, but on a good note, thank goodness we have this place. For times when we need someone to help us out of the mess we find ourselves getting into when we start all these projects, but it is fun.
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Old 12-11-2008, 10:33 PM   #6
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


It is like having a small garden. What will you grow in your small garden? Potatoes are too cheap to be worth the effort, and so are 90% of vegetables. Grow something that is not available locally, like chard or heirloom tomatoes. Some things are simply not worth the effort for the savings. So it is with DIY home repairs. Choose to do things that are expensive because they require a lot of unskilled labor or art, not those things that require specialized and sophisticated technical knowledge or carry a high risk of injury.
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Old 12-14-2008, 02:04 AM   #7
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Garage Door Opener Saga- Why DIY does NOT mean so-easy-anyone-can-do-it


Well, look on the bright side, (As P.O'd as you must have been, I wouldn't say 'look on the bright side' if I was standing next to you after you found all that stuff, but since you don't know where I live, I feel safe . Just kidding.) at least you found all the other problems before your garage burned down or the roof caved in, possibly hurting someone. Sometimes these things happen for a reason (I wouldn't have said that right then either or you'd probably want to ).

By the way, you wrote all of that really well, like a play-by-play account of how crappy the day went for you. I couldn't see the pictures, but it's not hard to imagine what it must have looked like. I think it's something most DIYers can relate to - starting 1 project and ending up with several more because of that one. It's like you take one step forward and three steps back. Good luck with all of it.

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