How garage door springs work?

Did you know that an average garage door weighs almost 150 lbs.? But how can one lift or lower this heavy door so easily? It is all because of the garage door springs. These springs do the actual lifting and lowering of the door. Let’s take a look at how these springs work.


What is the role of the garage door springs?

Of all of the components, garage door springs are the most important. They carry the weight of the garage door. If these springs were absent, the heavy lifting of the garage door would never be possible. The tension in the springs is stored as mechanical energy. The energy stored in the springs help to lift or lower the door. Garage springs also maintain the balance of the door. They distribute the weight evenly throughout the door.

A garage door can have one or more spring. The heavier the door, the more springs are needed. But this number also depends on the type of spring used.


What are the two types of springs used for garage doors?

There are two types of springs- torsion and extension springs. Garage door torsion springs are fitted on top of the door on a horizontal torsion bar. They are responsible for holding the weight and maintaining the balance of the door. Garage door extension springs are attached to the track cable on the sides of the door through the cables. They use counterbalance pulleys running through spring anchor brackets to work against gravity.


Do torsion springs and extension springs differ?

First of all, the position or placement of these springs differ. Torsion springs are placed horizontally above the garage door. They are wound over-center bearing plates and connect to safety cables passing over cable drums at both ends. Extension springs are vertically placed on either side of the garage door.

Secondly, the mode of operation of these springs varies. The torsion springs wind and unwind to lift or lower the door. The extension springs extend and contract to do the same.

The third is the life expectancy of the spring. Torsion springs are robust and last longer than extension springs. The ends of the extension springs are fragile and break easily. Even if one extension spring breaks, both have to be replaced. They need frequent replacements too. Lastly, the number of springs needed depends on what type of spring you use. A lightweight door can work with one single torsion spring. But not with one single extension spring.

If you use the extension spring system, you must always have a pair of springs to balance the weight of the door. But since the torsion spring is fixed up along the horizontal track, even one will do for a light door. For heavier doors, you might need even 3 to 4 standard torsion springs. To avoid stress on the garage door opener. Professional technicians always suggest the use of torsion springs.


Basics of garage spring replacements

A broken spring is fatal to your door and life. Since the torsion spring holds the weight of the door, the door can crash down if it breaks. So, you cannot take chances with bad springs.

The average life of common torsion springs is five years. But the consistent lifting of the door causes it to wear and tear. Plus reduces its tension rating. So, if you have a weakened spring, you need to put in extra effort to lift the door. Avoid all this and call a garage door repair company at once.

Torsion spring replacement is not an easy task that you can do on your own. It is better to leave this to an experienced garage door technician to do the spring repair service.


How to know if the door has a broken spring?

If the door is noisy or tilts to one side or the other, then it is time for the spring or springs to be replaced. Also, check if the horizontal track is misaligned or the safety cables are hanging. Be it commercial or residential garages, use the correct springs like oil-tempered springs or galvanized springs. maintain them in good condition by doing periodic garage door spring repair.

Nor-Cal garage door knows how important spring garage door maintenace is to ensure the longevity of your door. Call us today to check your springs and maintenance your garage door.