Knowing when and how to replace your garage door springs is a vital part of automatic garage door maintenance. Most garage doors will last around a decade with minimal maintenance. However, one of the first components to go is usually the springs. If left unchecked, the springs can fail and cause the door to crash. Fortunately, there are some easy ways to monitor your springs and keep your garage door operating smoothly and safely.
What are garage door springs?
Springs are responsible for making heavy garage doors light enough to lift. Essentially these springs absorb most of the stress involved in lifting the door. That makes it simple to open and close it multiple times a day across several years with relatively low maintenance.
General signs of spring wear
There are indicators that your springs are failing or completely broken. The first and most obvious sign you might have a spring problem is if your garage door does not open. However, that can be due to several issues. Consult your owner’s manual to ensure every other element is operable before scheduling an appointment with a professional.
Another way to check for general issues is to inspect your springs and hardware around the springs visibly. With the door closed, inspect the springs, mounting hardware, pulleys, cables, and rollers. Damage to any of these can stress the springs and increase the risk of failure.
You can also try manually opening the door. First, disengage the garage door from the trolley that runs it along the central rail. To do this, look for a red cord with a plastic knob hanging from the trolley. Pull the cord, and the lever will disengage. From here, make sure nothing is underneath the door and lift it manually. It should take little effort if your springs are in good working condition. In addition, the door should hold its position once you bring it all the way up. Otherwise, the springs may be wearing out.
Torsion and Extension Springs
You can diagnose and fix common spring problems more effectively if you know the two types of garage door springs. The most common for residential use are extension springs. These springs work by extending and contracting and are usually located on either side of the garage door. They can have clipped ends and be open-looped or double-looped.
Torsion springs are coils of metal that have been tightly wound to generate torque. Types of torsion springs include standard, steel rolling, early set, and torque master. It is easy to tell torsion from extension springs. The former will turn, while the latter will expand or contract with the opening and closing of your garage door.
Each spring also has different indicators that they may be failing. There are two ways to check the health of your torsion springs easily. First, with the door disengaged, bring it up to a fully open position. You could have a spring issue if it does not hold this position. You can also pull the door halfway up. Hold the door with your hand and gauge how heavy the door feels. Does it require a lot of strength to hold it up? That could be an indication of spring wear.
Extension springs show many of the same indicators as torsion springs. However, there are additional visible elements to look for in wearing extension springs. First, look to see if there are gaps between the spring’s coils. That signals the steel has given out. You can also check to see how well your garage is aligned. Improper alignment can indicate one spring has given out.
Titan Garage Doors NE is your one-stop shop for all your garage door needs in Omaha, NE. We offer a wide range of services, from repair and maintenance to installation and replacement. Our team is an expert in garage doors and is here to help you get the most out of your investment. Whether you are having trouble with a stuck garage door or need garage door spring replacement, we can help. We are dedicated to providing outstanding service and quality products, so you can be sure your garage door will be in good hands with us. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.