Homeowners have long been warned that torsion springs are extremely dangerous to work with and that replacing them must be left to a professional. But these claims are somewhat exaggerated. If you understand how they work, and you pay attention to what you're doing, you can replace them safely and surprisingly easily. Granted, they're a little spooky to work with at first (partly due to their reputation), but this is a good thing—you really don't want to forget that they're under tension. Thinking about every step — before you take it — is the key to staying safe.
If the door won’t move at all because of an alignment issue, then this problem isn’t one that you should try to tackle yourself. A garage door professional will have the necessary equipment needed to safely realign and repair your garage door. Additionally, if the track misalignment is beyond repair, a professional can install a new garage door track for you. https://youtube.com/v/Z_eZc-kh40c?version=3
Extension springs last 15,000 cycles. Every time the door goes up and down is one cycle. On average extension springs will last 7 to 12 years. For most people, you know you need to replace your extension springs because it snaps. Sometimes, however, when extension springs get older, they can lose their tension and the spring becomes elongated. This is rare but it does still happen. Basically, the coils are fatigued and when the door is up you can see gaps where the spring is not relaxing properly. When this happens, the spring is useless. It is best to replace the springs at this point rather than overworking the opener which will cause it to last a shorter life.
CAUTION! Replacing garage door torsion springs is dangerous because the springs are under tension. If you do not use the right tools and follow safe procedures, you could lose hands, limbs or even your life. You could also damage property. We want your business, but not at the expense of your well being. Doing the job right is your responsibility. If you have any doubts about your ability to safely change your springs, we recommend you hire a professional to repair your garage door. Safety First! Then work.
Opening the door yourself is recommended only during an emergency, as there is an increased risk of it getting stuck again-or worse yet, crashing down on top of you. Moving a wooden door could cause damage to the opener, or the top of a steel door might bend underneath the pressure. If you must open the door long enough to drive underneath it, you may want to prop up either side with some 2×4 pieces of lumber to provide added stability. You could also secure your door to its tracks using a pair of vise grips or a couple of c-clamps.
Both types of springs are _loaded_, or under tension, when the door is closed. This gives them stored energy to help lift the door as it's being opened. When the door is all the way up, the springs are relaxed, or relatively so—they still may be under some tension. The mechanical difference between extension and torsion springs is that extension springs are loaded by stretching, or elongating, while torsion springs are loaded by twisting, creating torque.
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"Springs get a lot of wear and tear because they handle the weight of the door," says Paul Cardone, owner of Garage Door Guru in Charlotte, North Carolina. "The type of spring you have depends on the type of door you have — the heavier the door, the more heavy duty the spring. They're full of tension and made of metal, so after so many cycles, they just snap and break."
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Once the lock switch has been activated, you can only control the garage door via the wall control unit. You may have forgotten to de-activate it after coming home from an extended period away, which is why the garage door seems to be stuck whenever you attempt to use your remote. Check to see if this is the case and simply unlock your remotes by pressing the lock switch again.
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Once you’ve decided it’s time to replace your garage door — whether the result of malfunctions or just seeking to modernize your home’s exteriors — you may be wondering how much a garage door replacement costs. While these numbers are often determined by several factors, including the materials and labor involved, on average, a garage door replacement can cost just over $1,000 but could range from about $300 to over $2,000.
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10.4 Raise the second bar 90 degrees and insert the first bar. This is "three." Continue winding. If the spring shortens in length, unwind the spring and switch sides - the springs are on backward. Otherwise, continue winding until you reach a count of "30." This is 7 1/2 turns, which is normal for most 7' doors. Longer life springs are wound the same number of turns. Newer steel doors with only one strut on top often need only 7 1/4 turns. On 8' doors count to 34. Each time you insert a bar into the winding cone, listen for the click to let you know the bar is in all the way. Not inserting the bar all the way could cause the cone to explode.
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Install the stiffening strut on top of the top section of steel doors with the section lying flat. Then install the opener bracket that replaces the center bracket between the top two sections. While you’re working on the sections, protect them from scratches by putting carpet scraps on top of your sawhorses. Now, slide the rollers into the roller brackets.
A standard double garage door is 7 ft. high by 16 ft. wide. Standard single doors are 7 ft. high by 8 or 9 ft. wide. Because the doors are so large, few home centers and only some garage door stores keep many doors in stock, so expect to order one instead of buying it off the shelf. Garage doors are available in wood, fiberglass and steel. Steel doors, like ours, are light, maintenance-free, affordable, readily available, and have an insulating value as high as R-19.
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Your springs may be broken. There are two different types of springs. If your garage door springs are located horizontally at the top of your garage door then it is called a torsion spring. You should check for a gap in between the springs to indicate if they are broken. If your springs are located at either side of your garage door, they are called extension springs. Look to see if a piece of them is hanging on the side of your garage door to indicate if those are broken. If your garage door springs are broken then replacing them is a dangerous process if you have never done it before so you should seek a professional to repair or replace them.
Eric Jonas has been writing in small-business advertising and local community newsletters since 1998. Prior to his writing career, he became a licensed level II gas technician and continues to work in the field, also authoring educational newsletters for others in the business. Jonas is currently a graduate student with a Bachelor of Arts in English and rhetoric from McMaster University.
Garage door springs come in two styles: torsion (see above), which mounts on the header above the door, and extension (Photo 1), which floats above the upper roller track. In the past, extension springs were safer to install but didn’t have containment cables running through the center of the spring. Without cable, these springs become dangerous, heavy whips when they break. They also tend to be noisier than torsion springs, and we recommend you use them only if you don’t have the 12 in. of headroom above the door that a torsion spring requires. https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=Z_eZc-kh40c