Fiberglass is one of the sturdiest garage doors present. But it doesn't mean that fiberglass garage doors are immune to dirt and grime. Cleaning will help maintain their quality, warranty, and functionality. But how do you clean them properly? We've researched the topic and here's the answer.
Fiberglass doors should be cleaned with soft soaps, preferably with no bleach added to the soap solution. You should also refrain from using abrasive cloth, sponges, or solvents. Refer to the steps below when you want to clean your fiberglass garage doors:
- Rinse the door with a regular water hose.
- Apply soap solution using a non-abrasive sponge.
- Rinse thoroughly using plain water and then dry using a cloth.
- Apply liquid wax to your fiberglass door immediately after cleaning.
- Check other parts of the doors while you clean.
We highlighted some dos and don'ts for each step to better understand the process of cleaning your garage door. Continue reading to learn more.
What is the best way to clean a garage door?
Your fiberglass garage door can last you a lifetime and more so if you clean it regularly. Cleaning it is not complicated nor does it require a specialized cleaning solution. It is recommended to clean it at least twice a year so that you don't accumulate deposits that stick to your door or get stuck in the mechanism or other moving parts. Time your first garage cleaning in spring and the second one during fall.
Follow these simple steps below for the best way to clean your fiberglass garage door:
1. Rinse the door with a regular water hose
It is advisable that before you dip yourself in washing it with soap and water, you first rinse it similarly to how you rinse your car before washing. This is to remove the dust and dirt before washing, so as not to spread them as you wipe through. It can also reduce the likelihood of minor scratches.
Using a pressurized hose is not recommended as this can damage your door. It can cause some slight indentation or warping, depending on the location of the impact. Although a slight indentation is not significant damage, it can potentially affect your warranty.
2. Apply soap solution using a non-abrasive sponge
Most garage doors get dirty due to dust exposure mixed with moisture, enabling itself to stick to the door on a semi-permanent nature. Thus you don't need strong soaps to dislodge them or a coarse sponge to remove them forcefully. That being said, soft soaps such as dishwashing soap, car washing soap, or detergents with less than 0.5% phosphate content may be used.
In a bucket, dilute one cup of your preferred soap in two gallons of water. Using a soft sponge or a lint-less washcloth, apply the soap solution to your fiberglass garage door in a circular motion. This is to increase coverage and the likelihood of grime removal from your door.
Depending on the amount of dirt and dust deposition, you can opt to repeat the previous step twice until your bubbles are transparent or not so dark in color. It is not advisable, however, to add bleach. You can use it to remove specific stains but adding it to the solution can potentially damage your door skin.
3. Rinse thoroughly using plain water and then dry using a cloth
Again, use the same hose that you have used earlier. Do not use the pressurized hose even if you put it at the lowest possible setting. You only need to remove the suds. Then using a dry, lint-less cloth, wipe dry the area that you have cleaned.
4. Apply liquid wax to your garage door immediately after cleaning
Applying liquid wax helps to ward off dust and grime. Automotive liquid wax is preferred as it is more convenient to use and is not sticky when applied. We recommend that you do this immediately since you need to use it on a clean, dry surface to get the desired effect.
5. Check other parts of the door while you clean
Check the moving parts including sensor, garage door opener, spring, and tracks. Make sure you also maintain these when you clean the surface of the fiberglass door. You can use this time to do a maintenance check so you won't encounter unexpected bog downs or improperly open garage doors. Also, make sure to check on the weatherstripping at the bottom of the door.
It is also wise to check if your garage door is balanced. Stand in front of your garage door and check its alignment as it opens and also if there seems to be some resistance while it opens.
By incorporating maintenance checks with cleaning, you can maintain your fiberglass garage door and catch potential problems at the same time, allowing you to intervene early.
How do I get rid of green mold on my garage door?
Green mold grows on surfaces that have constant exposure to moisture. Although they are not toxic, you shouldn't let them increase as they can trigger allergies. Molds release spores that can trigger hypersensitivity or asthma. You can take out the green mold yourself, but if it occupies a large area of the door and an evident spread to the inside of the garage has been noted, we would recommend that you consult with a professional cleaner.
It will not be much of a challenge for fiberglass garage doors to remove as they will not stick that much compared to porous materials like wood. Nonetheless, the cleaning materials you use to clean your garage doors will suffice if you want to remove green molds attached to your doors and wipe them clean using a soft sponge.
Other spray solutions that you can use when needed are the following:
- Diluted bleach spray – measure ¼ cup of home bleach and place in sprayer bottler together with 1 tablespoon dishwashing soap, then top with water. You can also use warm water or a tap.
- Vinegar water spray – transfer ¼ cup of distilled white vinegar into a spray bottle, then top with water.
You can use these two solutions alternately until you have confidently taken out the green mold, then finish off with a water rinse. Completely dry the surface afterward.
Another tip that you need to remember is that you need to sanitize the sponge used for you not to spread the spores. You can soak the sponge in water containing bleach. You can also opt to discard the sponge.
Regular cleaning will prevent the molds from coming back. Also, you need to ensure that any leaks or moisture sources should be adequately addressed. Make sure that your doors are also well sealed to lock moisture out. Boxes stored in the garage should be neatly organized on the shelves away from the floor.
How to clean the inside panels of the garage door?
Although the inside panels of the garage door will not be as dirty as the external panels, it would still be warranted that you also give it a good wash.
If you use your garage as a storage area, it may not be wise to hose down the internal panels. But you would still need to wipe it with a cloth soaked in the soap solution. Once you've completely covered the entire door with it, rinse with a towel soaked in water to remove the soap. Then finish off with a dry towel to remove the excess moisture in the internal panels.
Make sure to check the other parts. If you need to lubricate the tracks or remove rust from other metal parts, this will be a good time to do so.
How do you clean a white fiberglass garage door?
You don't need to follow complicated steps or use stronger detergents in cleaning your white fiberglass door. You can use the same cleaning materials that you use in cleaning dark-colored garage doors. The difference lies in if you see some stains—you might need to use diluted bleach or baking soda to take out the stains.
You would only apply this additional solution to areas where you spot the stains. You don't need to apply it to the whole door. Also, rub gently using a sponge so that you don't damage the protective layer. Also, make sure to cover with the wax.
Regular cleaning will ensure that your white garage door remains pristine. If you live in an area where moisture is high and dust level is high, then all the more you should make it a habit to clean your doors more often.
Cleaning your fiberglass garage door is one way to keep them in top condition and determine potential problems early. You can use the same cleaning materials you use to wash your car, including the automotive wax you apply to make your vehicle shiny and dust-repellant. You only need to follow simple steps, and no power tools required. Keep this a habit at least twice a year so that you're sure to make your garage door last and also further increase its curb appeal.