Garage Door Spring Replacement
Did you hear a loud bang? Will your garage door only open a few inches? You might be dealing with a broken spring! A broken garage door spring can be very inconvenient and frustrating. Unfortunately, at some point, your garage door spring will reach its life expectancy and will wear-out and snap.
What Not To Do…
If you experience a broken spring, do not attempt to lift the door manually or with the assistance of the electric opener. Without the aid of a proper spring, the door will become extremely heavy and difficult to lift manually. Attempting to lift the door by hand with a broken spring could cause you personal harm. Furthermore, attempting to open the broken door with the electric opener will likely cause further damage. Garage door openers are manufactured to lift doors only with the assistance of the garage door spring. If the spring is broken, continuing to use the opener will likely burn out the motor.
Garage Door Spring Dangers
Replacing broken garage door springs is not a DIY project! Springs should never be adjusted or replaced by individuals who are not properly trained and possess the proper tools. Spring replacements are dangerous because when installing the new springs, they are placed under extreme tension. Without the proper tools and training, the wrong size replacement spring or springs can cause damage to the garage door and opener. More importantly, without the proper tools and training, serious personal injury can occur.
Types of Garage Door Springs
There are several types of garage door spring systems including the most commonly used, extension springs and torsion springs.
Extension springs are mounted on both sides of the garage door alongside the track. Typically there is a safety cable that runs through the center of the spring to help prevent the extension spring from sailing around the garage when breaking. The extension springs attach to the track and through a series of pulleys and cables to the bottom bracket on the garage door located on the bottom section. The extension springs provide the energy needed to open the garage door while the cable and pulley system does the actual lifting. If any one of these components are damaged or not installed properly, the system will not function safely or properly.
Torsion springs are mounted horizontally on a bar just above the garage door opening. These spring(s) are mounted on a shaft which spans the entire width of the door. On either end of the shaft, there are drums. These drums are used to help wrap cables which are attached from the drum to the bottom section of the garage door. As the door moves to the open position, the cable wraps around the drum. As the door moves to the closed position, the cable unwraps to safely lower the door. Typically, when a torsion spring breaks, these cables will lose tension and pop off of the drums. Again, the spring provides the energy needed to open the door, while the cables, which are attached to the drums, do the actual lifting of the door. If any of these components are damaged or not installed properly, the system will not function safely or properly.
Less popular setups include the Wayne Dalton Torquemaster Spring System and the EZ-Set Torsion Spring System.
Expected Lifespan of Your Garage Door Spring
Garage door springs have a limited lifespan. This lifespan is measured in cycles, with the door going up and coming back down counting as one cycle. While there are various lifespan options, most common garage door springs come with a 10,000 cycle life expectancy. Your spring replacement frequency will be determined by your garage door usage. Below you can see the life expectancy of a 10,000 cycle spring determined by daily use:
- 2 times daily = about 14 years
- 4 times daily = about 7 years
- 6 times daily = about 5 years
- 8 times daily = about 3 years
Once the springs reached its life-cycle, it may break, effectively releasing all the tension and no longer assisting to balance the door. The spring has the most tension when the garage door is in the down position, and as a result this is the most likely position for the spring to break. That is not to say the spring could not fail while the door is in a raised position, which would result in door crashing down. This is why it is important to never walk under a garage door in motion. Replacing a garage door spring can be very dangerous, and we highly encourage you to contact your local garage door repair expert to handle this repair today. If you have a high cycle application, ask if extended use high cycle springs are available for your application.
Trust This Repair To The Experts
A spring replacement is one of the most common repairs required on a garage door. With so many different spring setups, wire sizes, lengths and more, it’s important a broken spring is repaired with the correct replacement. A trained professional will ensure your replacement spring balances the garage door weight properly, allowing the door to easily open and close manually or with the assistance of an electric opener.