Rusty garage doors are not just an eye-sore but the one-way road to complete damage. It makes sense to say that the earlier you notice rust on the garage door, the better. This way, you will have the chance to treat the problem before it gets out of hand.
Of course, the million-dollar question is how to remove rust from the garage door. In spite of the reason why it got there, in the first place, you need to find a way to remove it. Because if you cannot do that, you need to start putting money on the side for a garage door replacement.
Well, there is bad and good news. Should we start with the bad news? If rust has taken over the garage door, there’s no use in trying to find remedies. It’s wiser to start looking for a new steel door. The good news? If rust hasn’t expanded and there are only a few specks here and there, the problem may be solved. Let’s see the how.
How to treat rusty garage doors
Wash the garage door
Even if you keep the garage door clean, you need to wash it well to remove the regular stains and dust. This helps you identify the real rusty spots, see their size, and define the extent of the problem. Of course, it will be much easier to treat the problem.
Use vinegar first
One of the most effective ways to treat rust is vinegar. White vinegar, to be exact. Rust reacts to vinegar and gets dissolved. And so, you need to apply vinegar on the rusty spots with a soft cloth.
See if baking soda is also needed
Stubborn rust won’t come off. If that’s the case with you, leave the white vinegar to the side and get some baking soda. By mixing baking soda and water, you create a paste that should be applied to the rusty garage door parts. Let it sit there for about 30 minutes.
Check if you need fillers
If rust has already caused some damage, you might see some small holes in the garage door. Use a filler, suitable for steel garage doors, to fill the hole. Once it is dry, sand the area. Depending on how many holes you had to fill and sand, you may find it important to sand the entire garage door.
Rewash the garage door
Whether you need to use a filler or not, the garage door must be washed again so that all residues will go away. That’s also the best way to see that all the rusty marks went away and the garage door is now ready for painting.
Paint the garage door
Check with your local garage door contractor about the paints. You need to be sure they are suitable for your metal garage door, ask if there’s a need for a primer, and also get a product that it’s rust-resistant. It’s best to paint the garage door when the weather is nice – and certainly, not windy. If this is a raised panel garage door or any other style with grooves and seams, it’s best to use a paint sprayer, instead of rollers and brushes that will likely leave drips.
Garage door rust – how to avoid it, why rust sets in
Garage doors get rusty when they are exposed to high moisture. It’s no wonder that garage doors in coastal areas or close to streets where salt is used to de-ice during winter can easily get rusty. The good news is that modern garage doors do not rust – at least, not easily.
That’s true for parts like the garage door tracks too.
But if the surface of stainless steel is somehow scratched, the material will still become susceptible to rusting. That’s to say that it takes great care to avoid rusting, in the first place. That’s also why washing the garage door once in a while is a good thing. When debris is removed, you have a better view of the garage door’s condition and it will be easier to spot rust. Get your tools out now to treat rust and don’t forget what you need to do in the future to keep the garage door rust-free.