In this article, we’ll tell you the difference between a safe door and one that’s unsafe. We’ll also give you the helpful tips you’re not likely to find in the manufacturer’s instructions to correctly, and safely, install a new garage door with a torsion spring and do-it-yourself tensioning. Installing a new, double garage door yourself will save you several hundred dollars and should take eight to 12 hours if you’re fairly handy. You can do most of the new garage door installation project yourself, but you should recruit help for removing the old door.
SNAP... bang... boom. That is the sound of a garage door torsion spring breaking. It can be a very loud noise that sounds like a firecracker or gunshot. Springs are rated for a certain number of cycles and are the first thing that will break in your garage door assembly. Broken springs are the #1 source of customer calls for garage door repair companies. If you have a broken spring, you should NEVER try to open the door, as it can be very dangerous. This repair should be left to a professional or someone with the right tools and skills.
9.16 If you cannot get the stationary cones to finger-tighten against the center bracket, we recommend installing washers between the winding cone that houses the bearing and the spring bracket. This is a common problem with torsion springs on older Windsor garage doors because their steel bearings are often wider and they extend beyond the stationary cone. Raynor garage doors also have wider bearings that fit properly in their 2 1/4" stationary cones, but washers may need to be installed if their bearings are installed in 1 3/4" or 2" stationary cones, or if some of their older bearings are installed in their newer cones that are installed on older brackets.
If your garage door is equipped with only one torsion spring, it will be much harder to get your door open. You will need to get 2-3 people to help lift the door up because the full weight can be anywhere from 150 to 300 pounds. We don’t recommend lifting the door when the spring break's due to the danger of it falling on someone. If you absolutely must get your garage door open, raw strength is what you need. When you get the door in the up position, use vise-grips or a c-clamp on the track below the bottom roller to hold the door in the up position.
Step 2: Check the tracks with a level to make sure they're properly aligned. Horizontal tracks should slant slightly down toward the back of the garage; with roll-up doors, the vertical sections of track should be exactly plumb. Both tracks must be at the same height on the garage walls. If the tracks are not properly aligned, loosen but do not remove the screws or bolts that hold the mounting brackets, and tap the tracks carefully into position. Recheck the tracks with the level to make sure they're in the right position; then tighten the screws or bolts at the mounting brackets.
Using your drill, add tension to the torsion spring. This system uses a single spring for a double door, but many manufacturers use two springs for a double door. The painted line on the spring acts as a gauge for the number of turns you put on the spring. To keep the bar from turning while you’re adding tension, attach a locking pliers to the bar on both ends of the spring. Apply lubricant for garage doors to the spring.

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Check your garage door rollers to see if they have come off their tracks. If no damage has been done, a tech should be able to easily place them back on. If the track has become bent, however, it must be repaired and possibly (depending on the amount of damage) replaced. Don’t operate your door if it's off track or your track is bent. Your door could become seriously damaged.

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Nate was very courteous and professional and called to let me know that he was about 30 minutes from my house. I had purchased a new Sears garage door opener, but when Nate arrived at my home, he inspected the existing unit and told me that it was still in good shape except for a worn out part. Nate procured the new part and brought it to my home this morning. The unit was repaired in about 10 minutes! The existing unit was just over five years old, so I'm glad I will get some more use out of it.
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.
Furthermore, newer doors come with more improved security features, helping to improve the way you protect your home and loved ones. While older doors are easy to break into, whether through breaking the lift mechanism or even using a universal garage door remote, new doors come with many redundant security features, which will go a long way in deterring even the most ingenious burglar.
If you are not sure if your door had the correct springs, we recommend that you weigh your door using an analog scale. From my own field experience I would estimate that at least 10% of the doors have the incorrect springs on them. In addition to this, most manufacturers spring their doors using a 20 pound window. We like to improve the garage door balance.
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.
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