A garage door being one of the most used, and hardest working components in a home requires maintenance, and check ups every now and then. Opening and closing a garage door several times a day requires a considerable amount of force which eventually causes garage door components to undergo a general check up, leading most homeowners to realize that their garage door springs is the component that requires immediate replacement.
It’s extremely important to understand that a broken garage door spring is just flat-out dangerous once it is broken. This is because stress is placed upon a garage door spring once it is opened and closed causing an overused garage door spring to become a projectile that can either harm a homeowner’s property, or even threaten the life of anyone found in the vicinity if such an event occurs. It is obvious that this is something to be avoided at all cost and in order to accomplish this, we will talk about the different kinds of garage door springs available, and will tell you how to recognize one that requires an immediate replacement.
Kinds of Garage Door Springs
The 2 main kinds of Garage Door Springs are Torque Springs and Extension Springs. Each works in a specific way so a basic understanding of their mechanisms is necessary to determine if a garage door spring needs to be replaced or not.
Torsion Garage Door Springs
Torque Springs which are tightly wound coils of metal are the most common kind of Garage Door Springs. These generate the torque needed to lift a garage door once it is opened and they springs come in sets from one to four depending on the weight and size of the door. These springs require a lesser amount of parts and are more durable and less dangerous when compared to extension springs.
Torquemaster Torsion Spring: The safest garage door spring based on a two spring system. Springs are located inside of the shaft making safety optimal.
Steel Rolling Door Torsion Spring: Most often used in Commercial Construction, this kind of spring supports rolling doors and contains multiple springs inside the torsion barrel.
Standard Garage Door Torsion Springs: Normally found to be mounted above the garage door opening with a metal shaft across the middle which supports the spring. These are amongst the most affordable types of springs, often used in residential garage doors containing one spring only, while heavier doors require 2.
Early Set Torsion Spring: Often used in residential garage doors. This spring rests in the center of the torsion shaft.
Identify a Damaged Torsion Spring
So, how can someone identify if they’ll need to repair their torsion spring? There are two simple ways to help a homeowner identify the repair they’ll need. The first way is to deactivate the automatic door opener and lift the door manually. The door should automatically stay up with little, to no movement without it needing to be held up.
Another way to hold the door midway. Again the door should stay up on its own, but if it feels heavy, it means that the springs may be pretty close to breaking. A door that feels too light may have improperly sized springs installed.
Extension Garage Door Springs
Garage doors generally have 2 extension garage door springs attached to the garage door tracks that run across the ceiling on each side of the door. They expand and contract when the when a garage door is lowered or raised by a motor or by hand. These kind of springs are used with safety cables because these can be dangerous if they break. These springs are mainly used in residential garage doors because they are very affordable making them the most common type of garage door spring for residential use.
The three types of extension garage door springs are:
Open Looped: Very easy to change because of the looped wire it has at the end although a bit more expensive to replace.
Double Looped: Much stronger than an open looped string because it it contains 2 coils. Only a little more challenging to replace if it one breaks.
Clipped Ends: Less stress is placed on this kind of spring because it has clips on the end. This makes a Clipped Ends spring the most durable kind of extension garage door spring.
Identify a Damaged Extension Garage Door Spring
Extension springs often display the same signs of damage as torsion springs with some additional signs that show an extorsion spring has already failed. FIrst, check a spring for any gaps in the coils. Gaps show that the steel the springs are made from have given out, and the door will no longer receive the required tension to move the door.
Also check for signs of wear and tear on the springs, clips and loops. If these give out, the spring will not function any more. This will keep a door from closing or opening.
Finally, check to see if the left and right side of the garage door doesn’t appear to be appropriately aligned. This usually means that one of the springs have given out and the door wont be able to open or close.
Repair Your Garage Door ASAP!
Beware, replacing a broken garage door spring is not a “do it yourself issue”. The springs can be harmful to you or your loved ones if it is broken, and especially if one does not know what they are doing. Reach out to us for a service call that is refundable with a purchase of a new garage door spring.