How to Close Your Garage Door Manually (Complete Guide)

Learning how to close garage doors manually is one of the best things you can know since there are times when even automatic garage door openers can break. For example, if the electricity is out or any part is broken, you will need to manually close the garage door.

It’s a great idea to know how to do it, just in case you are dealing with problems. At the end of the day, it will help quite a lot if you have this skill, and in the end, the benefits can be great.

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Should you learn how to close the garage door manually if you have an automatic garage door opener?

The short answer is yes. The truth here is that automatic garage doors are known to help convert back and forth from powered lifting and lowering to manually lifting. The truth is that it will take a bit to get used to this process, but the benefits can indeed be second to none. That’s the right thing to keep in mind, and the benefits are extraordinary every time.

It might not be a skill you want to learn, because that’s why you invested in an automatic garage door opener. But the truth is that anything automatic won’t always work the way you want. Plus, if you end up without any power, you will be stuck with the car outside since you can’t open the garage door properly.

It’s definitely a very good idea to take your time and learn how to manually close the garage door. You will find it not only very efficient, but reliable and a great experience as a whole. That’s the thing that matters the most, after all, and you will have no problem using these newly acquired skills whenever you need them.

How does the automatic garage door opener work?

close garage door manually

There are different types of automatic garage door openers, and each one of them has its own pros and cons. However, they all tend to work the same way. They have a motor operator usually found in the middle of your garage. That ends up pulling the screw or belt drive and that opens the door. The motor is receiving electricity via the garage ceiling, and it also gets commands from the button found near the door.

Once the system is started, the motor will start pulling the belt up, and that will push or pull the curved door arm. Basically, the three drives are moved by the motor and it will lift the door. Belt and screw drives are newer and less noisy, but chain drives are less expensive.

Most of the garage door control comes from the torsion spring, which you can find horizontally. It’s mostly attached to the rollers by cables and the torsion springs are the ones that actually ensure that your door is not rolling up too fast. Otherwise, this can end up being extremely dangerous and problematic, which is definitely an issue to consider in a situation like this.

It’s possible to have not one, but two torsion springs if your garage door is wide. The heavier one is put right near the ceiling joists and that helps provide more stability. It’s important to have it there even if you have a newer automatic garage door.

What steps do you need to follow if you want to close the garage door manually?

We want to make it easy for you to learn how to close garage doors manually, and these ideas can help you a lot. They just make the process easier and more cohesive, and the benefits are indeed second to none if you manage everything adequately.

Thankfully, even automatic garage doors are set to be used manually in case there are issues. So you don’t have to worry, this is not an issue, and it becomes quite an incredible experience if you manage it accordingly in the long run.

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1. Find the location of the emergency pull

Usually, the emergency pull location is right near the motor operator. It’s at the center of the garage mostly. One thing to note is that if the door is closed, then the emergency pull is rather close to the door. It’s still close to the ceiling, and it has a red string with some rubber red pull so you can access it with it.

Most of the time this red string is attached to a hook that connects your curved door arm to the screw, belt drive, or chain. You want to use a ladder so you can reach it, as it can be a bit harder to do than usual.

When you do this, you do want to have adequate lighting, so a flashlight might be required. And as we mentioned above, a ladder will also help. As soon as you pull the red string, this starts the motor operator. It will detach the door arm and that means the garage door is able to be either lowered or lifted manually. It’s a clever idea and approach, and one that does convey a whole lot of great results in the end.

2. Yank the emergency pull down and then backward

Once you yank the emergency pull, that means you can disengage the hook connecting the drive to the curved arm door.

The main idea here is that you want to push it down and backward, as it helps separate the hook from the belt drive, screw, or chain. It might take a bit of trial and error, but the results can be great and it will surely convey amazing benefits.

3. It’s important to feel the pull disengage

You will notice that sometimes the first emergency pull yank will not actually separate the drive from your hook. It’s usually because grit and dust were connected to the item.

That being said, a second yank might be required, and you should be a good go-to. You don’t have to rush, just make sure that you yank again and it will be ready most of the time.

4. Grasp the lowest handle and pull the door down

You need to keep in mind that sometimes the door might not work properly, so using both your hands and even asking a friend for help can be a great idea. When the torsion spring is not broken, there will be some tension, but that will come off, which is great.

What you need to remember is that you should never try to force anything, if possible. In case the door is not moving properly, then the course of action is to use the emergency pull again.

If this still doesn’t work, you do want to work with an installer or someone specialized in this type of stuff. After all, garage doors are known to be very dangerous, so you must address the situation wisely, and the benefits can actually be very impressive in the end.

If the torsion spring breaks, you will hear a bang or a loud pop, depending on the situation. It’s important to never rush with this kind of stuff, as you can damage things beyond repair. That’s why addressing the problem wisely can be really important, but you want to have patience when you manually close garage doors.

Can you re-attach the emergency pull?

As soon as the electricity comes back, you can re-attach the emergency pull. You want to press the button found on the wall or use the remote. Many of the newer models will attach the emergency pull to the drive, and that can help bring in some rather impressive, unique features for you to explore.

Of course, if this doesn’t work, then you have to pull this manually. You must grasp the handle, then pull up. The motion will clip the hook to the drive, and you will hear a click confirming all of that. Just test the garage door and see if it’s all working correctly.

Is it possible to lock the garage door manually?

close garage door manually

Around the middle of the door, you can find a locking mechanism. The door should be down, and you can then pull the lever which locks the metal into notches.

One thing you have to realize is that manual locks tend to have a key release so you can unlock the door from the outside.

If you don’t have the key, then you can work with the door installers and they will be able to replace the locking mechanism or the key.


Is it possible to learn how to close the garage door manually? Absolutely, you can do that, even if it might take a bit of time to do it right. That being said, this is important to do, as it’s one of those things that can make a huge difference whenever your automatic garage door opener doesn’t work.

Sure, these are rare cases, but it never hurts to have such a skill. It’s just a very good idea to learn this, and the benefits can be really impressive, especially since you can still close the garage door and protect your home from any invaders!

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