4 Things to Know About Garage Door Springs

The spring on your garage door is what allows you to open and close this large door with ease. Garage doors weigh hundreds of pounds and without a spring to mitigate this heavy weight, it would take some strength to pull it up and keep gravity from slamming it shut. Heavy-duty springs are the workhorse of a garage door system – knowing the basics about these springs can help you maintain your garage door and opening system. Here are four things you should know about your garage door spring.

  1. Torsion and extension springs. Garage doors either have torsion or extension springs. Most garage doors with an opening system have torsion springs that wind and recoil to release energy to move the door.
  2. Torsion springs wear out. The continuous winding of the torsion spring wears out the material over time. Eventually, the spring will break, often without warning. When this happens, the garage door will no longer be easy to open.
  3. Cycles for springs. You can gauge how soon a spring will wear out on the number of cycles (opening and closing). Most torsion springs will last about 20,000 cycles, so the more times per day you use it, the quicker it will need replacement.
  4. Replacement. You can wait until a spring breaks to replace it, but then you may be stuck until it can be replaced. Proactive replacement is best, but never attempt to do this yourself as it can be dangerous. Leave spring replacements to a garage door professional.

Garage door springs make life easier and require little maintenance to work day in and day out. Just perform annual service on your opening system and keep the system lubricated to reduce stress on your spring to make it last longer.

Posted on behalf of: 
Habpro Garage Doors
Dacula, GA 30019
770-985-3355

Does Your Garage Door Spring Need Replacing?

When was the last time your garage door spring was replaced? If you have owned a garage door with an automatic opener for more than five years and never replaced your spring, there is a good chance that it is due. Springs wear out and when they do, your garage door can be almost useless. Here is how to determine if it is time to have your spring replaced on your garage door before it breaks and leaves you without a working door.

Garage door springs are designed to perform a certain number of cycles. This number can change depending on the type of spring you have. If you have the make and model of spring, you can check with the manufacturer to find out the average number of cycles. However, most springs average about 10,000 cycles before they should be replaced. If you use your garage door every day, this means about seven years. If you tend to use it twice a day or more, that is over a 1,500-cycles per year, giving you about five years of use or less.

The problem with garage door springs is there is no good way to tell when the spring is about to break. And when it does break, you can have difficulty opening your garage door, or worse, the spring can break when you are using it. It is best to proactively have it replaced to avoid breaks when it is unexpected. Your local garage door service company can replace your spring and tune-up your garage door opener – this is not a DIY repair and should only be performed by a professional for your safety.

Posted on behalf of: 
Habpro Garage Doors
Dacula, GA 30019
770-985-3355

Is Your Garage Door Not Opening?

It’s frustrating to click your garage door opener, only to find that your garage door will not move. After several clicks, you realize that it’s just not going to budge. What do you do? Before pulling your hair out, you might choose to inspect your garage door for broken torsion springs. Broken torsion springs are often to blame for garage doors that just suddenly stop working.

Torsion Springs

Torsion Springs are part of your garage door’s counterbalancing system, which includes one to two springs tightly wound up around a steel shaft that has cable drums on each end. When your garage door is opening, the stored tension in the torsion springs actually lifts your door by turning the steel shaft, which turns the cable drums causing the cable to wrap around grooves in the cable drums. When your garage door is closing, these cables begin to unwrap from the steel drums, and the torsion springs are then wound up again to full tension.

Why Do Torsion Springs Break?

Most garage doors have torsion springs that can withstand between at least 15,000 cycles. That translates to about 3 to seven years. There are a number of factors that can cause your torsion springs to break sooner than expected. For example, the addition of glass, insulation, or several layers of paint to your garage door will increase its weight and shorten your torsion springs’ lifespan. 

Additionally, poor maintenance of your garage door as well as loose parts or tracks can cause torsion springs to break unnecessarily soon. Nevertheless, the primary cause of broken torsion springs is years of wear and tear.

Fixing Your Torsion Springs

Although homeowners can safely handle many types of garage door repairs, it is strongly recommended that you DO NOT attempt to replace your garage door’s torsion springs. As mentioned earlier, they are tightly wound up and thus under substantial pressure. Attempting to repair them yourself might result in serious bodily injury. 

There’s simply no safer and better solution to broken torsion springs than calling a professional garage door repair company.

 

The Purpose of Garage Door Springs

Many homeowners believe that their automatic garage door opener does all the heavy lifting when it comes to opening and closing the garage door.  Garage door openers are convenient and work hard opening and closing the garage door, but the garage door springs actually do most of the work lifting the weight of a garage door. 

Overhead garage doors can weigh hundreds of pounds and without garage door springs, they would be very difficult for most people to open.  They would also be dangerous to close because as the door closes, more of the door moves from the overhead horizontal position to the vertical position.  As a result, the person closing the door would bear more and more of the weight of the door until it became too heavy and came crashing down.

The garage door springs work by taking up the weight of the door as it closes.  There are two types of garage door springs.  Extension springs are installed parallel with the horizontal door tracks.  Extension springs extend as the door closes and contract as the door is opened.

Torsion springs are mounted parallel with the top of the door opening.  These types of springs coil up as the door closes and uncoil as it opens.  Both types of springs must be adjusted properly by a trained garage door technician in order for the garage door to open smoothly without jamming.  When properly adjusted, a garage door opened about half way will remain in that position when released.

Garage door springs experience metal fatigue and will eventually break after a few thousand opening and closing cycles.  When one spring breaks, both springs should be replaced so that equal opening tension is exerted on the door. Garage door spring replacement is a common garage door repair.  However, replacing garage door springs is very dangerous and garage door spring replacement should only be replaced or adjusted by a trained garage door contractor.

Why You Should Replace Both Garage Door Springs

Overhead garage doors use heavy duty steel springs to help make it easier to open and close the door.  Garage doors weigh hundreds of pounds, but with properly adjusted springs they easily opened by hand or a small opener.

As garage door springs extend and contract (or coil and uncoil for torsion type springs) they become fatigued.  Each cycle of opening and closing the door causes the spring to become slightly weaker and it will eventually break.  Garage door springs typically last for thousands of cycles so even if you use your garage door frequently, it will take years for a spring to break.

When a spring breaks, you will need to have it replaced by a good garage door repair service.  These springs are dangerous and this is not a job for the homeowner.  Garage doors usually have two springs – one attached to either side of the door.

Always replace the springs in pairs, even though only one spring is broken.  It is important that the door is lifted evenly and as garage door springs age, they become weaker.  Installing a strong new spring on a door with an old weak spring will cause uneven lifting and jamming of the door.

In addition, if one spring breaks the other is not far behind and it is less expensive to install both springs at the same time than it is to have the garage door technician make two trips to your home a few months apart.

Garage Door Springs

Most garage door problems occur slowly.  The door gets harder to open, it makes more noise than usual, or the opener seems to be straining more than it used to.  These kinds of problems are often caused by the door rollers and tracks wearing out, binding, or going out of adjustment.  Other times, these issues are a sign that the garage door opener is about due for a replacement.  Some careful lubrication and adjustment or replacing the opener will often get your garage door back on track. 

Either of these problems you can choose to take care of yourself or let a professional garage door service handle it.  However, there is one garage door repair that you never want to tackle on own – a broken or misadjusted spring.

Garage doors are much heavier than they seem.  That’s because large springs are used to assist with opening the door.  There are two types of garage door springs.  Torsion springs are coiled up over the head of the door, and tension springs extend along the top side rails of the door track. 

Both types of springs can break, making the door much more difficult to open.  If you think your garage door springs are broken or out of adjustment, do not attempt to fix it yourself.  Garage door springs are under very high tension and one wrong move can cause severe injuries or even death. 

Adjusting or replacing garage door springs one of those jobs you should leave to a professional garage door service.  The risk of injury or death is just too high.  If your garage door springs need to be repaired or replaced, do yourself a favor and call a garage door service professional.