People never think about their garage doors until it stops working, then they realize just how important the door is and how much they use it. You'll understand when you have to run through the rain from the car to the front door and then come through the house and unlock lift the garage door by hand in order to park inside. Or just as bad, much like 50 years ago, you have to raise the door to back your car out of the garage and then get out of the car to close and lock the door before you leave the house.
Reasons for Failures
There are several things which can go wrong and cause a garage door failure. Of course, there are the obvious problems which happen when a car accidentally hits the door, but other problems just arise over time as pieces of the system wear out or require maintenance. The simplest problem has to do with the laser safety feature at the bottom of the door. If the pointer gets bumped out of alignment or blocked by a pile of leaves it prevents the door from closing. The second most common problem is when the motor for the opener burns out. Far more rarely but on occasion the spring or even the cable can break and needs replacement.
Can You Fix It Yourself?
Generally speaking, a garage door specialist is needed for repairs. Even if you have a good aptitude for these things and can in fact replace the opener, are you sure you know which one to buy for the replacement? You need one which matches the weight of the door which can vary if you have a heavy wooden door with glass windows or a lightweight aluminum door. The same can be said of the spring and chain which have to be the right size and tensioned properly, so their replacement is best left to a professional who has the experience and the tools to the job efficiently.
Calling a Professional
When you do need to call a professional, it's not very different than hiring a contractor. You want a bid from an established expert who is well known in the community for their professionalism and ability to conduct the work on time and get it done right the first time rather than hiring someone who tries to figure it out as the work on the project.