When a garage door malfunctions and refuses to open or close, it is not only highly inconvenient but can also be hazardous to you and your family. More often than not, the issue is caused by a single component: the springs. Garage door springs repair is one of the most common ways to fix a broken garage door.
Disclaimer: This information is provided merely for informational purposes, and is not intended to be understood as an official step-by-step guide, workbook, or approved safety manual of garage door repairs. Because of the danger inherent in garage door repair, all repairs should be performed by a professional. By continuing to read this article, individuals are agreeing that G&S Garage Doors is not to be held responsible for any repairs undertaken by any licensed or non-licensed individual following the information provided here.
WHAT IS A GARAGE DOOR SPRING?
Garage doors open and close using a system of springs to help them smoothly move up and down. The springs are not apart of the electrical mechanism that raises the door at the push of the button, rather they are a part of the mechanics of the doors itself.
There are two kinds of springs: torsion and extension springs. Extension springs are traditionally the most common type used in residential garages, though torsion springs are growing in favor since they are safer and tend to perform better long-term.
Extension springs are located above the tracks on the top left and top right of a garage door. These springs extend with applied force to provide the necessary counterbalance to help raise and lower the door. Extension springs should always be used with safety cables which help prevent the springs from becoming projectile objects in the case of a malfunction.
Torsion springs are located in the top and center of the garage door on the metal beam that runs parallel along the entire width of the door. This type of spring uses torque to create the tension needed to help raise and lower the door with the help of wire cables and a pulley system. Torsion springs have more sizes, lengths, and overall variety which make them more versatile for use in a more diverse market of garage doors.
HOW DO THE SPRINGS BREAK?
Factors such as general repeated usage over a long period of time as well as change in climate (the contrast from hot to cold weather) are what typically cause the gradual weakening of the metal in the springs, thus causing them to break and causing your garage door to stop functioning properly.
You will know when a garage door spring is broken by the increased heaviness of the door since spring is no longer providing the tension needed to lessens the interaction of door’s full weight with gravity.
When the springs are fully loaded and extended (stretched under full tension), the sound released when the springs break is sometimes akin to a gunshot. Another sign that a spring on your garage door is damaged is unusual sounds being made when it attempts to open or close.
If you think you have a broken garage door spring, be sure NOT to disconnect the door opener via the red release rope until the garage door is fully closed and touching the ground. Otherwise, disconnecting the door could cause its full weight to come crashing down and could cause more damage to the door, your garage, or nearby persons.
HOW CAN I REPAIR GARAGE DOOR SPRINGS?
If a garage door spring is damaged, it is often the case that the best course of action is to replace it with new springs rather than patch up the previous ones. You can save hundreds of dollars by buying the parts and changing the springs yourself, though it is very important to know what you are doing to avoid mistakes or personal injury.
A few tips when replacing a garage door spring:
(1) Don’t forget to unplug the motor before starting
(2) Wear safety goggles
(3) Measure the new and old springs to make sure the replacement is the right size
(4) Don’t ever attempt to unwind or wind a torsion spring with a screwdriver
Doing garage door spring repair yourself usually takes an average of half an hour depending on the type and number of springs. Watch this video for a complete tutorial on how to safely and efficiently replace the torsion springs on a garage door.
Whether you are going to fix the door yourself or call a professional, don’t hesitate to contact us at G&S Garage Doors with any questions you may have. We would love to answer your questions about garage door spring repair or any other garage door issues.