Many homeowners do not know the parts of a garage door or even notice them until there is a problem. The garage door spring is one of the most important parts when it comes to how a garage door functions. It is the spring that carries the whole weight of the door through tension that runs through cables. We advise that you do not open your garage door when the spring is broken either by hand or with the motor. If you attempt to remotely or manually open a garage door with a broken spring, you may risk causing damage to the door and your property, and worse, you may risk physical injury, as the doors weigh up to 100 lbs.
Why did the spring break
Wear and tear of the Garage door may cause the spring to break. The average lifetime of a spring is up to 10 years or 10,000 cycles (a door opening and closing equals to 1 cycle). If your door has two springs they should last around 15 years to 20 years, and the amount of cycles increases to 15,000 to 20,000 cycles.
REPLACING A GARAGE DOOR SPRING
If you are not professionally trained at installing garage doors and do not use proper tools, replacing a garage door spring can be very dangerous. A trained professional can find the correct size spring for your garage door, as the spring size depends on the weight and height of the garage door. Installing the incorrect spring size will cause the door spring to have improper tension. This will lead to the door being too heavy and/or the cables too loose which will cause damage to the garage door and/or the opener.
GARAGE DOOR SPRING TYPES
TORSION SPRING – torsion spring is the most common and durable type of spring used. This spring is mounted on top of the garage door and is placed on a shaft that runs a little wider than the width of the garage door. Compared to the extension springs, this spring stays easily balanced for longer periods. Extension springs- extensions springs are installed on top side of the door, right on top of the tracks. The extension spring works with cables that run through a pulley system that is attached to the spring. The springs extend when closing the door and retract when opening the door. The tension that spring has when it retracts is what carries the weight of the door. For safety purposes, there is a safety cable that runs through the middle of the spring in case that will prevent the spring to harm anyone in case it were to snap.
Torsion springs vs extension springs
I always recommend the torsion spring system over the extension springs. If you have the extension springs, I would suggest converting extension spring system into torsion spring system. The torsion system is easier to balance and adjust, and it is much safer. Torsion springs is the newest, more improved system in garage doors. In the torsion spring system, there is a shaft inside the top part of the garage door that mounts between two brackets.
These brackets are on top of the tracks at each end, and there is also a center bracket that holds the tube. The torsion spring mounts right next to the center bracket (either the left side or the right side). The drums are at each end of the tube inside the two brackets that are attached to the tracks. The cables are attached to the brackets that are installed to the bottom panel on each side of the door. These cables run from the bottom brackets, up to the drums, behind the rollers. They wind and unwind on the drums when you open and close the garage door. When installing the torsion spring system, we recommend installing two springs instead of one because this extends the lifetime of the springs. If one of the springs were to break, the other spring still carries some of the weight of the door, preventing it from crashing down to the ground. Small garage door that are only 8 foot or 9 foot only require one spring. Extension springs is an older garage door system.
The extension springs mount on each side of the garage door, one end to the punch angle usually where the end of the tracks mount on and the other to the track supports. The extension spring system has cables that run from the bottom bracket on the bottom panel to a pulley system. Extension spring system can be a challenge to balance. The extension spring system also has a safety cable that runs from the punch angle, through the middle of the spring, and then attaches to the track support. This is a safety feature; in case the spring breaks, it will not injure anyone or cause damage to your car.