If you are the proud owner of a double garage door, you’ve probably taken note of the steel, U-shaped bar (or bars) on the inside of the door. Say hello to your reinforcement struts. This important part of your garage door system supports your garage doors when you open them, while also reinforcing and protecting your doors from powerful winds.
Supporting Your Door
Your reinforcement strut bar is likely 2.25 inches wide. It tends to either be screwed into place with hinges or held in position by steel clips. This sturdy bar prevents your wide double door from bowing when it is open. Some types of garage doors are more likely to bow than others — depending on the material used, the specific width, and whether or not the door has been injected with polystyrene or polyurethane insulation. If your door is especially prone to bowing, you may want to use 3-4 reinforcement struts. If you do not currently have the right number of reinforcement struts in place, speak to a garage door specialist to make sure your door is secure. If you have a door that is more prone to bowing, hinges are recommended over steel clips.
Protecting Your Door From Wind
The other major function of reinforcement struts is just that: reinforcement, especially in the face of strong winds. The exact number of reinforcement struts you need for this purpose will vary based on a number of factors, including your climate.
If you live in a region that frequently experiences strong winds and/or hurricanes, there may be state and federal guidelines that govern the safe installation of your garage door and reinforcement struts. Schedule a consultation with a garage door professional if you feel your door may not be secure.
Two Notes About Safety
Reinforcement struts are extremely dangerous — or even deadly — if they are not properly installed. Do not attempt to install, repair, or replace reinforcement struts on your own. Always have this work done by an experienced professional. Anytime you make additions or changes to your garage door, your struts will need to be re-evaluated and the balance of your garage door must be adjusted. Along the same lines, it is important to note that reinforcement struts are not a toy. Children can be very seriously injured if they climb or play on the bar. If you have kids at home, make sure that they know this is off limits.