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How to Open Your Garage Door Manually: A Step-by-Step Guide

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how to manually open garage door

As a homeowner in Houston, Texas, one of our cities where you rely heavily on your garage door to provide convenience and security, there may be times when its power goes out or the automatic opener malfunctions. When it does, being able to open your garage door manually is essential.

At Easy Garage Door Repair, we believe in providing our customers with knowledge. This kind of small issue isn’t going to stop us from guiding you through the process of opening your garage up by hand. And even if it takes some work, where there’s a will, there’s a way! It’s time for us all to match together in harmony.


Understanding the Basics

Before we begin the steps, it’s important to understand the parts of your garage door system. When the power goes out or the opener is malfunctioning, you must disconnect the trolley–a little carriage that rolls along with any movement in your door itself–from the opener to operate your door manually.

The Guide to Opening Your Garage Door Manually

Guide to Opening Your Garage Door Manually

Step 1: Safety First

Safety is always of utmost priority. Be sure to close and double-check that the garage door is fully down before attempting to lift it manually. If there is any gap under one side while still wired open, then when disengaged by hand, the door may crash downwards quickly enough to injure someone– children and pets are especially at risk here, in part because they often like hiding under garages while traffic goes past outside (since kids can’t see out so well). Also, ensure no one is near the door, especially children or pets.

Step 2: Find the Emergency Release Cord

The emergency release cord is a red rope or handle that hangs from the trolley. This is usually located near the top middle of your garage door tracks. The cord will disconnect itself to allow you to operate the door manually.

Step 3: Pull the Emergency Release Cord

Use some force and tug on the emergency release cord. This will disengage the trolley. A clicking sound will be audible when the cord has been pulled, signifying that the trolley is now separated from the opener.

Step 4: Lift the Garage Door

Now, with the trolley disengaged, you can lift the garage door manually. Stand in front of the door, firmly gripping its lower section with both hands and lift it. When using this method, the muscles in your legs are employed rather than the ones from your back to prevent any injury from occurring, which is important if we think about how often people underestimate such risks. If the door seems too heavy or moves with difficulty, there might be an issue with its springs, so it is best to consult a professional like Easy Garage Door Repair for help.

Step 5: Secure the Door in the Open Position

A good garage door should stay put, open wide once fully in its open position. For those that move when you let go use a clamp or locking pliers to generally hold it there. This will prevent any accidental closings while you’re working on things or moving your car into or out of the garage.

Step 6: Close the Garage Door Manually

When you are ready to close the garage door, release the clamp or locking pliers and lower the door in a slow and controlled manner. Once again, use your legs for most of the work to avoid straining your back. Ensure that the door is both completely closed and secure before leaving it unattended.

garage door manually

Reconnecting your Garage Door Opener

After the power is restored, or the opener issue is settled, you will need to reset the garage door opener. To do this, follow these steps.

  • Ensure that the door is fully closed.

The door must be in the closed position to reconnect the trolley with the opener.

  • Pull the emergency release cord.

To re-attach the trolley to the opener, pull the cord down and towards the door. You should hear a clicking sound, which indicates that the trolley is now back in its correct place.

Use your remote or wall switch to check your opener. The door should move smoothly along the tracks. If it does not, something is out of alignment, or there may be some other issue that requires professional attention.


Common Problems with Garage Door Openers to Address

Even after you have followed these steps, sometimes, you may encounter problems. Here are some common issues and how to deal with them:.

  • The door won’t lift.

If the door is so heavy to lift that you can hardly budge it, the springs may be broken or out of balance. Springs counteract the heaviness of the door so it’s possible to lift it yourself. But broken springs are dangerous and require professional repair.

  • The door doesn’t stay open.

If the door does not stay open, the springs may need adjustment. Once again, this is a task for a professional technician.

  • The opener doesn’t reconnect.

If the trolley fails to re-engage with your opener, check the alignment of the tracks and condition of the trolley. Sometimes it’s possible for trolleys to get stuck or to be off-track, preventing them from connecting properly.


When to Call In Professionals

While learning to open your garage door manually is useful, some situations require professional help. If any of the following problems arise, it’s time to contact a professional:

  • The door is extremely heavy or difficult to lift.
  • The springs are broken or show signs of wear.
  • The door doesn’t stay open or close securely.
  • The opener doesn’t function even after troubleshooting.

when to call professionals



Knowing how to open your garage door manually is a must for every homeowner in Houston, Texas. By following these steps, you will be prepared for any situation that comes up. However, always make safety your first consideration and, if there are any problems, don’t hesitate to call Easy Garage Door Repair. Our team of professionals is here to help you with all your garage door needs, making sure it functions safely and smoothly.


For more tips and professional help, contact Easy Garage Door Repair today, the trusted partner in keeping your garage door in excellent condition!