Garage Door Auto Reverse

Originally Posted By: jwortham
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Had a discussion with a client today regarding auto-reverse on garage doors. (Pre-sales inspection for a friend of my wife.)


His stance was it didn't need to be installed because it was grandfathered in. House was built in 1991. The only data I could find says this was not required until 1993. Does that sound about right?

I explained to him that just because it wasn't required, doesn't make it not a good idea. And I have no intention of taking it out of the report. I was just trying to get my dates and facts right for future reference.

Thanks.


Originally Posted By: Blaine Wiley
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CPSC started requiring them on all door openers in Jan. 1993.


Originally Posted By: psabados
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Blaine is correct


http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/523.html

Here's a link with a little more detail.

Question is, how did you call it out in your report? As a defect or as a recommended safety upgrade

Paul


Originally Posted By: jwortham
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Recommended safety upgrade.


Originally Posted By: evandeven
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Since we are on the topic, after 10 years of owning my own company, it finally happened:


[ Image: http://www.nachi.org/bbsystem/usrimages/more/doorchain.jpg ]


It is the first one that ever broke while testing. You should see how I wrote it u icon_wink.gif icon_wink.gif p!



Eric Van De Ven


Owner/Inspector


Magnum Inspections Inc.


I get paid to be suspicious when there is nothing to be suspicious about!


www.magnuminspections.com

Originally Posted By: kmcmahon
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Did the homeowner try to come back at you to repair it?



Wisconsin Home Inspection, ABC Home Inspection LLC


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Originally Posted By: evandeven
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Quote:
Did the homeowner try to come back at you to repair it?

Not yet. I don't think they will because of the great detail I went into on how the chain broke. It also had a four panel wooden garage door that needs replacement so I don't expect much of a problem.


--
Eric Van De Ven
Owner/Inspector
Magnum Inspections Inc.
I get paid to be suspicious when there is nothing to be suspicious about!
www.magnuminspections.com

Originally Posted By: mpedeferri
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I need some help here. I did an inspection on a rental house that was going up for sale. The house had some issues, nothing that bad but the buyers decided to back out, mostly based on the inspection.


I got a call today from the agent saying I broke the garage door. I don't have too many details yet, I haven't seen it yet. I'll ge going out as soon as possible to look at it.

I test the "pressure" auto reverse by holding the door in the center. If the door puts too much pressure, too much being what I "feel", I let go and let it continue down. This door had a lot of pressure but it still did actually reverse. They are saying I broke the door. Myself, the clients and the selling agent were standing there when I did the test and no one noticed any problems.

Where should I stand on this? Lets say the door did break because of the test should I pay for the repairs, whatever they might be? Just wondering where you all stand on issuse like this.

Thanks,

Mark


Originally Posted By: dfrend
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First, go look at it. If they are accusing you, you have the right to see what they are saying you caused. Next, write a careful narrative on EVERYTHING you did, said, saw. Then based on your look at the damage, see if you believe it possibe you caused it. If they are saying it worked before, and doesn’t now, ask them for documentation of WHEN they tested it. If they cannot say that they ever tested it, how can they say it was not broke before?


If you belive you MAY have broke it, consider a settlement. If you do pay, give them an apology letter. This will speak volumes and may give them faith in you to send you future business.


--
Daniel R Frend
www.nachifoundation.org
The Home Inspector Store
www.homeinspectorstore.com

Originally Posted By: mpedeferri
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What path should I take if it did break during normal operation/testing it?


Originally Posted By: dfrend
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Personally, I would explain the test, and the pre-existing deficiencies and explain that it broke due to these deficiencies, not as result of my test directly. If they still argued, I would then ask for a detailed repair estimate from several companies. I would still not imply liability at any time.


Finally, I would agree to reasonable repairs with an explanation that I am not assuming liability.


--
Daniel R Frend
www.nachifoundation.org
The Home Inspector Store
www.homeinspectorstore.com

Originally Posted By: Todd Patrick
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Just a side note here, but realistically the easiest way to test these is the way you did grabbing the door in the middle with some force until it either reverses, or let it go, I was told not to test doors this way as it may damage them.


I believe the correct way to test is with a roll of paper towels. FWIW


Originally Posted By: rwashington
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Hey Mark,


In the future you may consider using a 2x4 standing up in the middle of the door. The resistance is enough to cause the reversal function to work.

As far as your situation if you noted in your report "at the time of the inspection it appears that the garage door safety reversal function works as intended" then you should be covered. If the issue is pushed further as it appears from your post then I would do the following.

I would try to reach a settlement and pay half the repair costs saying you were doing it out of goodwill just to "calm the waters". The reputation and word of mouth is the bigger picture. People want to see honesty, integrity, and humbleness.

Hope that helps.


--
Richard W Washington
www.rwhomeinspections.com

Originally Posted By: Todd Patrick
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Richard, if the auto reverse is not working what will happen to the door? icon_eek.gif


Originally Posted By: mpedeferri
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I spoke with the agent and he described a crack in the wood where the lift/lower mechanism attached. So it sounds like the force from the door cracked the wood. I am going to look at it tomorrow, hopefully I can fix the problem right then and there. If it is unfixable, well that’s another story. It is an old door so I can’t justify purchasing a new door but I would be willing to work with them.


I think I may stop testing them all together and just note it in the report.

Thanks for all the great help!!!

Mark


Originally Posted By: Blaine Wiley
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Tell them that if the door cracked or broke during the test that it failed the test and they could be sued if it injured a cat, dog or even worse a child. Don’t pay for, offer to pay for, fix or repair anything that fails during the normal course of testing. You were doing your job.


The agent will threaten you that if you don't pay you'll never get any inspections from his/her office again. BUNK. The seller will say they will sue you. Doubtful. Set your stance and hold your ground. You never want to be known as someone who gives refunds or pays for repairs.


Originally Posted By: rwashington
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Todd, nothing will happen to the door. By the time you realize that the saftety feature is not working you hit the button again. I would not be standing there under the door testing it’s resistance with my hands. Now the paper towel idea might work…



Richard W Washington


www.rwhomeinspections.com

Originally Posted By: kmcmahon
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I stand on the outside and use my forearms to test the resistance of the door opener…I’ve seen very few that pass the test fully as most need adjustment. none have broken, which is good.


I also ask the homeowner to move any vehicles out of the garage “just in case”.


icon_wink.gif



Wisconsin Home Inspection, ABC Home Inspection LLC


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Originally Posted By: Blaine Wiley
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Quote:
Contact Reverse

* Place a 2" x 4" board flat on the floor in the center of the garage doorway.
* Close door by using the wall button or transmitter
* If door fails to reverse on contact with the 2 x 4 see the CONTACT REVERSE section in your owners manual.


If you perform the test this way, and the door breaks, the dag blasted thing wasn't right and it failed during testing.

A while back I put an 8 inch piece of 2x4 in my tool bag and have been testing them this way ever since. None broken yet, and if they do, I will report that it failed while testing!!

If you test it with your arms, you aren't following the manufacturers instructions and you may be liable! ![icon_eek.gif](upload://yuxgmvDDEGIQPAyP9sRnK0D0CCY.gif)


Originally Posted By: jpeck
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Note, this is one of the keys in Blaine’s post, "If door fails to reverse on contact with the 2 x 4 … "



Jerry Peck


South Florida