10.5 If the spring comes loose from the cone at about 6 turns, you are probably winding the spring backward because the springs are on the wrong sides. Switch the springs. Otherwise, after winding the torsion springs, you will need to stretch the springs and secure the winding cone. First, mark the shaft 1/4" beyond the winding cone with tape or with a file. We stretch the springs because the shaft floats horizontally between the flexible end bearing plates as the garage door operates. Although this may be as little as 1/4" the binding of the coils as the door closes often keeps the door from closing completely, especially when the springs and bearings are dry and need lubrication.
If the track is misaligned, but the door still moves, there are a few things you can do to attempt to remedy the issue on your own. You’ll know that it’s misaligned if you hear a rubbing noise when the garage door reaches a certain spot on the tracks each time it opens and closes. Sometimes the door may even slow down slightly when it hits this spot.
Once the springs break, quite a bit of tension is put on the door cables, and they will often break next. When these cables break, they will snap and forcibly fly out like a broken rubber band. Think about how much it hurts to be snapped by a broken rubber band, and then multiply it by a hundred to account for the size and weight of the garage door cables.
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.
Like any mechanical part, garage door springs deteriorate due to normal wear and tear. Over time, the steel that makes up the springs weakens until they eventually break. Under normal circumstances, garage door springs have a life expectancy of 10,000 cycles of opening and closing. This equates to five to seven years, but along the way, there may be signs of problems that can occur before the springs actually stop working.
In the home improvement world there's a common recommendation regarding garage door spring repair: always leave it to the pros. This is sound advice, but it's not as hard-and-fast as most sources claim. The fact is, a handy homeowner who's competent with tools and has a basic understanding of mechanical systems can replace either type of garage door spring. The procedures are pretty simple, but they involve many steps that must be done in the proper order, just like the pros do it. It's also critical that you get the proper size replacement spring. If you think you're up to the task, look at online tutorials by garage door pros to see what's involved. Helpful videos explain how to measure your old springs and order the correct replacement size as well as how to do the job from start to finish.
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Hiring a professional to handle garage door spring repair and replacement tends to be a much easier and safer option for homeowners. Removing or repairing garage springs can be a dangerous job, but professionals have the experience and equipment to do it safely and efficiently. Unless your springs only need a minor repair, such as lubrication or fixing a minor balance issue, be sure to call in a local garage door pro to do the job.
Although garage door springs can break during any season and at any time, they most commonly break during the winter. This has to do with the temperature change. When the temperature sinks below a specific threshold, the metal will contract. This means it’s extremely possible for your door springs to shrink slightly during the winter months. This is hard on the springs and makes them more likely to break.
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Luckily, there is a bit of science to questions of garage door repair and replacement. That’s why we’ve put together this guide on when to replace a garage door. We’ll prepare you to compare repair vs replacement garage door costs. We’ll discuss the ways in which repairs are the most affordable option while also exploring those moments when replacement will in the end provide you with more value added.
7.2 If the spring bracket is slotted, vise grip the bracket to secure the shaft in the bracket. This will keep the shaft from possibly falling out and causing injury or damaging the garage door or shaft. You can also secure the shaft with a cable tie. Remove the bushing from the cone and leave it on the shaft next to the center spring bracket. Often the bushing gets stuck in the cone and customers will call us about getting a new bushing until they discover it is still in the cone of the spring replaced earlier.
For a scholarly introduction to torsion springs and for more information on how to install them I recommend you visit Richard Kinch's page, "How I Replaced Deadly Garage Door Torsion Springs and Lived to Tell the Tale." Richard is a brilliant engineer who has provided a wealth of technical information on fixing torsion springs along with valuable advice regarding some of the schemes unscrupulous garage door companies use to rip people off.
6.8 Properly tightened screws will loosen with less than a turn. Once you loosen a set screw, keep at least one bar in the cone AT ALL TIMES until the spring is fully unwound. Many cones have been over-tightened. The spring may unwind 1/4 turn and not unwind any more until one of the set screws is loosened some more. You may need to completely remove the set screws. The shaft may be distorted and the cone still may not unwind at all.
In most cases, only one spring breaks or wears out at a time, and you can get away with replacing just the failed spring. But this is a little like replacing old car tires one at a time. You'll get the best performance if all the springs are new and have the same strength. Extension springs are replaced individually, making it more tempting to replace just one. With torsion springs, you have to disassemble everything to replace either spring, so it makes sense to swap out both springs during the repair.