Garage door springs play a crucial role in the operation of your garage door. They provide the necessary counterbalance to the weight of the door, making it easier to open and close manually or with the help of a garage door opener. There are two main types of garage door springs: torsion springs and extension springs.
Types of Garage Door Springs
1. Torsion Springs:
- Torsion springs are typically installed above the garage door, parallel to the top of the door opening.
- They are wound tightly and store energy when the door is closed. When the door is opened, the stored energy is released to help lift the door.
- Torsion springs are considered safer because they are enclosed in a metal tube, reducing the risk of injury if they break.
- They are commonly used in modern garage doors and are available in various sizes and strengths to match the door’s weight and size.
2. Extension Springs:
- Extension springs are installed on both sides of the door, usually near the horizontal tracks.
- They stretch and expand when the door is closed, and their stored energy helps lift the door when it’s opened.
- Extension springs are more exposed and can pose a higher risk of injury if they break, as they are not enclosed.
- They were more common in older garage doors, though some modern doors still use them.
Common Issues and Maintenance:
- Over time, garage door springs can weaken due to repeated use and exposure to elements. This can lead to issues like difficulty in opening the door or the door not staying open.
- Springs can break suddenly, causing the door to become unbalanced and difficult to operate. A loud “bang” sound may be heard when a spring breaks.
- Regular maintenance includes inspecting the springs for signs of wear, rust, or damage. Lubricating them with a silicone-based spray can help extend their lifespan.
- Springs should only be replaced by trained professionals due to the high tension they hold. Attempting to replace them without proper knowledge and tools can be extremely dangerous.
Signs of Spring Problems:
- Garage door feels heavy or difficult to lift manually.
- The door doesn’t stay open or falls too quickly when closing.
- A noticeable gap between the springs.
- A loud noise, like a gunshot, when the spring breaks.
If you suspect issues with your garage door springs, it’s recommended to contact a professional garage door technician. They have the expertise and tools needed to safely assess and address spring-related problems. Regular maintenance and inspections can help prevent unexpected spring failures and ensure your garage door operates smoothly and safely.