Trust me, I know what the problem is
I am not a scientist. The perfect proof of this fact is the way I just fixed my garage door. When winter cold hits California (less than 45 degrees), our garage door decides to stick. You hit the remote control, it raises 6 inches and then stops. You have to get out of your car, walk up to the door and give it a little push past that 6 inch mark. This is more annoying than having to get off the couch to change the TV channel.
I have been trying to fix this problem for several years… no kidding. I was convinced that the cold was contracting the metal tracks and squeezing the door wheels just enough to stop it. I tried bending the metal tracks out to loosen them up. I sprayed WD40, silicone and Tri-Flow bike chain oil into those tracks. Some of these fixes worked temporarily, but the door always ended up sticking again.
Yesterday was the end of my exasperation. I finally googled “My garage door sticks at 6 inches and I need to fix it before I go insane.” And what do you know, an answer popped up immediately. Some guy in Utah with the exact same problem wrote, “After you try lubricating the tracks with silicone spray, adjust the torque on the motor.”
You can adjust the motor?! I was so convinced the problem was the metal contracting in the cold I didn’t even think to check adjustments on the motor! A true scientist would have checked all moving parts of the mechanism and ruled things out one by one. I never even ruled the motor in! I used a screw driver to twist a tiny plastic knob a quarter turn and voila… the door goes up and down on its own now.
I am not a scientist, or an engineer… or even a decent handyman. In fact, I thought the problem was too small to even pay a handy man $50 to come look at it. I was stubbornly trying to fix my assumption of the real problem.
When is the last time you banged your head all the way through a wall before asking for help?