These instructions were first posted in 2005, and they were updated in August of 2008. I have been frank about the hazards of garage door repairs and about my own accidents incurred while replacing torsion springs. For what it's worth, you might be surprised to know that I, too, have benefitted from producing these instructions. I have not had any garage door accidents since we first published these on the web in 2005. And, in as much as I have helped keep other DIY-ers out of the emergency room, I consider myself somewhat of a medical practitioner. http://m.youtube.com/e/Z_eZc-kh40c
Remove the clamps and pliers from the torsion tube and track, and lift the door about 3 ft. by hand. If the door springs are properly adjusted, the door should stay in place when you let go. If the door falls when you let go, add a quarter turn to each spring. Repeat if necessary. If the door continues to open on its own, release spring tension in quarter-turn increments until the door stays in place when you let go. Then reconnect the opener.
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After removing the old batteries, make sure the plus and minus signs line up with the plus and minus signs on the inside of the transmitter. Otherwise, the new battery won’t work in the transmitter, and it could give you a false sign that something else may be wrong. Once the battery is in place, test the transmitter, and if it works, replace the transmitter door.
I told several people that I planned on installing a garage door torsion spring after mine broke. ALL of them told me that it was too dangerous and a few feared for my life! Honestly it was one of the simplest home repairs I have ever done. That is thanks in large part to your very helpful installation video. Your videos on measuring springs etc. were also very helpful. All of the necessary details are there.
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The technician, Robert Helton, was very pleasant, helpful, and professional. He repaired the garage door opener expeditiously and explained why it hadn't worked properly. He also checked the chain mechanism and the door itself and showed me how to manually work the door should I need to do that in the future. I was very pleased with this repair work.
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• Extension springs: Garage door extension springs stretch to provide lifting power for the door. These springs are typically made of steel and mounted above the horizontal track of the garage door. A safety cable should run through your extension springs to prevent possible injuries or property damage. Extension springs are the most common type of garage door spring for residential use and can break after excessive usage.
6.4 Test the fit of the bar in the cone before loosening a set screw. Insert one end of your winding bar into one of the holes of the winding cone. Pull down on the bar slightly to make sure the set screws are tight. Position your ruler between the bar and the garage door. Move the bottom of the bar from side to side and measure the play. It should be less than an inch and a half. If it is over 2" either get someone else to change your springs or have someone make some bars that will properly fit the cones.
8.10 Double-check to make sure you have the correct wind on your new torsion spring. On the left side next to the winding cone the end of the spring wire should be pointing up if it is facing you. Notice, also, that the cone is red which usually designates right wind. Customers frequently call and explain that when they get about six turns on the springs they spin on the cones. This is due to installing the springs on the wrong sides of the center bracket.
5.1 With the cables still tight on the drums, mark the drums and torsion shaft at each end with a file or a marking pen. If at least one of the springs is still wound, don't touch the cable drums and don't grab the shaft. If the cable breaks, the drum could spin and the cable rip through muscle and bone. If the set screws aren't tight enough, the shaft could spin and cause injury.
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If your stuck garage door coincides with weather changes, you may need to adjust the pressure on the opener. Some openers have a force-adjustment mechanism that controls the force that's applied to operate the door. It's best to leave this adjustment to a garage door pro, as too much force may result in the door failing to stop when it should, posing a danger to people and objects in the door's path.
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9.9 Go to the other side of the garage door and insert the end of the cable into the drum. Rotate the drum until the cable is tight. Slide the drum against the bearing and push the shaft to the right. The marks should line up. If they don't, figure out why and correct the problem. It could be a stuck cable, the garage floor may have shifted, or the vertical angle that helps support the bearing plate may have loosened and shifted. Many garage doors have been installed with a gap between a drum and a bearing plate. The cable drums should always be flush against the race of the bearings.
When cleaning the photo eye, you should take care not to scratch or damage the eye since it’s made of glass, similar to that of a camera lens. The photo eye itself is pretty small, only a few centimeters in diameter, but it can get dirty rather easily. To clean it, you’ll need a soft cloth and a mild, streak-free cleaner. Gently wipe away any dirt or residue that has built up on the eye and be careful not to oversaturate as excessive wetness can cause dirt to stick to the eye more quickly.
10.1 It is now time to wind the new springs, but before doing so, I recommend marking the shaft just beyond the winding cone. This is a final step taken to assure that you have installed the springs on the correct sides of the center bracket. Torsion springs always grow in length when they are wound in the proper direction. If your spring does not get longer as you wind it, you are winding it the wrong direction probably because it is improperly installed. We recurrently get calls about springs coming loose from the cones at about 6 turns. If this happens, switch the springs.