I learned how to reinstall garage door end bearings from a professional installer. This is a good do-it-yourself project. If you don’t consider yourself a DIYer, then by all means bring in a pro to do the work. You will need to replace the end bearing when you notice enough wear so that you can see space between the bearing housing and the race. Also, the bearing will be noisy, due to a lack of lubrication. This makes the bearings grind and pop, deforming the balls. At some point, the bearings will freeze up. Even if you can free them up with a little lubricant, the time has arrived to replace them.
End Bearing Plate Replacement
- Open the garage door with the opener. Unplug the opener.
- Remove the lag bolt that secures the top of the bearing plate to the header. Then remove the plate nuts and bolts.
- Lower the shaft end and bearing plate. Then raise the shaft end and rotate the plate ¼ turn to remove it.
- Install the new plate by lifting the shaft and loosely attaching the bottom bolts.
- Check the cable, and then secure the top of the plate. Make sure the plate is plumb and aligned properly.
- Tighten the lower fasteners.
- Lubricate either side of the bearing with a good car wax.
- Repeat the procedure for the other bearing plate.
- Verify both cables are properly seated on the drums. Disengage the door and close manually.
- Reengage the opener, plug in and test.
End Bearing Replacement
If the plate is in good shape and you just want to replace the bearings, you can follow these instructions instead. Before you get started, obtain a short cylinder – about 2.25 inches diameter and one inch long – from a local plumbing supply center. You will also need a 1.25 inch collar that has an outer edge or rim of at least two inches.
- Use a hammer to knock out the bearing centered over the fitting. Make sure that the wider section of the bearing outer ring is on the bottom of the plate.
- Turn over the end bearing plate and position the new bearing.
- Now, center the bearing and plate over the cylinder. Place the collar on top.
- Using the wide side of a hammer claw, hammer the bearing into the plate. As you hammer, make sure everything is aligned properly so that the bearing can slide into the bracket.