With good looks, modest cost, and solid return on your investment, a new garage door is the Triple Crown of curb appeal projects. According to the “Remodeling Impact Report” from the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®, the national median cost of a garage door replacement project is $2,300 and recovers 87% of your investment if you sell your house — one of the highest percentage of recovered costs in the “Report.”
Wood doors range from midprice to very expensive, depending on whether they consist of a lightweight wooden frame filled with foam insulation and wrapped in a plywood or hardboard skin (the least expensive) or are true frame-and-panel doors made of durable mahogany, redwood, or cedar. Wood doors usually carry a short warranty, perhaps only one year.
There’s another reason new doors are superior to old ones: energy efficiency. Keep in mind, garage doors are large, and when they open, they let a lot of outside air into your home. While you may have significant insulation separating your garage from the rest of your home, eventually that temperature differential will start to influence your energy bills.
In 1992 the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission released new rules for automatic garage door openers. Anything manufactured after 1993 was required to include either an electric eye (a pair of sensors that detect an object obstructing the doorway) or a wall-mounted control button that users hold down in order to close the door entirely. Most manufacturers opted for the electric eye method, sometimes referred to as safety sensors.
Since 2015, we’ve tested a variety of devices such as smart locks, video doorbells, DIY home security systems, thermostats and more. We use these testing experiences to inform our evaluations of other equipment. As time and resources allow, we occasionally test new types of products, but there are still some circumstances where we’re unable to conduct in-house tests. When testing isn’t possible, we conduct thorough research using the same standards we apply to our in-house tests – this is the case with smart garage door openers. We’ve reviewed garage door openers since 2011.
If you are replacing an old garage door, the first step is to measure your garage opening to ensure you are choosing a door with the correct dimensions. Even if you feel confident that your door is a standard size, measuring first can help ensure that buying your door is an enjoyable and smooth process. View our installation guide to get the needed measurements for your door. If you find that you have an odd-sized garage door, use our QuickDraw tool to see how a specific model will look in your desired size. If you have a unique vision for your home's curb appeal, Clopay can also design custom garage doors to meet your specifications.
Two of the spring references specifically for the garage-door industry are the APCO Spring Manual by Bill Eichenberger, and the Torsion Spring Rate Book by Clarence Veigel; these give tables of spring sizes and torque constants. Spring engineering principles in general are described in the Handbook of Spring Design published by the Spring Manufacturer's Institute; the formulas allow you to calculate torque constants knowing only the geometry and the Young's modulus of the material. You can also find some brief spring information in standard references like Machinery's Handbook and Marks' Standard Handbook for Mechanical Engineers.
Those who benefit from this anti-competitive behavior have many excuses for it. They claim that the product is too dangerous and infrequently needed for the public to purchase directly. They say the job is hazardous and requires techniques and tools with which the amateur will rarely practice, which is true. They write me in anger saying I don't understand how expensive it is to put a truck on the road with a technician and parts and salary and benefits and insurance and advertising and every other common business expense. They say it will take the homeowner hours of effort to do this safely and correctly, while they can do it in a fraction of that time and at a price that isn't worth the effort to save. But should they set themselves up as the judge of what you can and cannot do? Of what is an economical use of your time? Imposing minimum order quantities or charging retail prices for small orders is legitimate; inquiring into the purchaser's background is not.
Insist on having any old parts returned to you, and have that noted on the written order before work begins. An honest and competent technician will not object to this. The evidence will establish whether you really needed the parts or not, and you can consult another opinion if you have any doubts. This tends to deter the parts-upsell scam, and protects you even if you know nothing about what you're buying while under the pressure of making a costly decision. If the old parts mysteriously "disappear", then you have reason to be suspicious.
Containment cables. When old extension springs break, the springs and cables become heavy whips that damage cars and even injure people. To solve the whipping problem, manufacturers now offer containment cables that run through the center of side-mounted extension springs. If you have extension springs and don’t plan to replace your door, make sure the springs have these containment cables, or have a professional install them.
Trading wire size for length, diameter, or cycle life: Now we are really going to save you some money, if you just recall your high school algebra class (and I don't mean that cute cheerleader who sat next to you). If you further understand the role of the 4th power of the spring wire size (letter d in the formulas above) in the numerator of the spring rate formula, and how to increase or decrease d to compensate for changes in length, diameter, and cycle life, then you're qualified for elite spring calculations. Matching springs is a matter of equating the 4th power of the proportion in wire size change to the proportion of change in the diameter or length or the product of both diameter and length. However, it is usually best to only increase wire size when substituting a spring, since this does not derate the cycle life. If you observe that the formula for bending stress is proportionate to the inverse 3rd power of the diameter, then physically a proportionate increase in wire size will result in a dramatic increase in cycle life of the 3rd power of that proportion. Trade-off example: Yawn with me while we ponder my original spring once more. Let's say I was in a fit of engineering mania, and wanted to replace my spring having a 0.2253 inch diameter wire (d = 0.2253) with a 0.262 wire version (d = 0.262). How much longer is the spring with equal torque rate, assuming we use the same coil diameter? The proportion of this change is 0.262/0.2253 = 1.163, and the 4th power of that is 1.83. This means the length must increase by a factor of 1.83 (again, not counting dead coils). Recalling that the length in Example 1 was 102 non-dead coils, the heavier wire spring must be about 1.83*102 = 187 coils, which when adding 5 dead coils and multiplying by the wire size to get the overall length, is (187+5)*0.262 = 50 inches, versus 24 inches in the original. So using this heavier wire more than doubles the length (and thus the mass and thus the cost). While the cost about doubles, the stress goes down by the inverse 3rd power of the wire size proportion, or 1/(1.163**3) = 0.64. Sress is favorably, non-linearly related to cycle lifetime (halving the stress more than doubles the lifetime), so this decreased stress should more than double the expected lifetime of the spring. While the up-front cost is more, the true cost of an amortized lifetime is much less. In short, per cycle it is cheaper. Ah, the wonders of engineering calculations! Conclusion: Observe that the stress formula (and thus the cycle lifetime) depends only on wire diameter (d) for equal torques. Thus the only way to improve cycle lifetime is to use heavier wire. For equal torques, heavier wire size, due to the exponents in the formulas, increases cycle lifetime much faster than it increases mass (and thus cost), physically speaking.
Note the left winding cone with red spray paint. This shpritz of paint is applied to create fear and doubt in the mind of the do-it-yourselfer. Sometimes it is a color code for the wire size (using a DASMA standard, red indicating 0.2253 inch diameter wire). Sometimes it indicates the winding direction: red may indicate right-hand winding, but don't rely on that; do you own independent analysis. Sometimes it is a manufacturer's private code for another dimension than wire size. This color code is for the installer's information when the spring is new; I would not depend on interpreting the color code properly on an old spring, since one can't be certain of a correct interpretation without documentation from the original supplier.
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.
Your garage door is most likely the largest opening on your home, and as a result, it can affect your home’s energy efficiency. For homes in areas that experience colder winters or warmer summers, choosing an insulated door can save you money and improve the comfort of your home. Doors insulated with our Intellicore® insulation technology operate more quietly and are more durable. We also offer insulated glass window options that can help maintain energy efficiency and allow natural light into your garage. Visit our insulation guide to learn more about garage door insulation, or learn more about Intellicore® here.
Absolute Overhead Door Service was founded by Vince Heuser when he saw the need for a new garage door company that performed at a much higher standard than most companies in the local area. He understood and saw that the need for HONEST, knowledgeable, dependable, and friendly technicians was apparent and Absolute Overhead Door Service was then founded in 2007. With our extraordinary growth because of our outstanding service, we cover the entire Central Kentucky area including Louisville, Elizabethtown, Bardstown, and Southern Indiana. We have warehouses strategically located so our technicians can be on your job within two hours on most days with no extra charges anywhere or anytime in normal hours. No other local company provides the convenient service hours that we do, 8am-6pm Monday-Saturday and Emergency Service after 6pm, Monday thru Friday, and on Sunday’s. We guarantee same day service on calls by 1pm and still get most service calls up to 4pm the same day.
Some garage door openers are compatible with HomeLink, a remote control technology that's built into some automobiles. However, due to a technology change, many older HomeLink-equipped cars are not compatible with new HomeLink-enabled garage door openers without the purchase of an optional interface; you can also simply ignore your car's built in controls in favor of the remote control that comes with the opener, but that's a solution that seems to annoy owners.
Regardless of the material, you will likely need to perform some regular maintenance tasks. A garage door professional can examine common problem areas to ensure all are working as they should. Additionally, it is necessary to examine the integrity of the door itself, since your garage can be especially vulnerable to security issues if your door is not structurally sound.
The two set-screws in the winding cones have a 3/8-inch square head, which fits a 3/8-inch open-end wrench or 8-point socket, or a 7/16-inch 12-point socket or 12-point closed-end wrench. I carried an extra wrench in my pocket while winding, since I didn't want to be holding a wound spring that I couldn't set because I had dropped the wrench (although one could rest the winding rod against the door in this case while picking up a dropped tool).
These springs weighed in at just over 9 pounds each, including the winding cones. They are covered with a light film of oil, and at this point the job starts to get messy. The manufacturer has painted them with a "225B24" part number, which no doubt indicates the 0.2253 inch wire size, 24 inches long. Perhaps the "B" indicates the 2-inch inside diameter. Both the left- and right-hand springs have this same number on them.
A rolling code is a protocol used by garage door openers to keep your door safe and secure. When the radio signals from your remote control are broadcast to your garage door opener, it uses a specific code to communicate. Older models used the same code every time, making garage door openers vulnerable to burglars using a radio frequency identifier device.
I repeat my caution about the uncertainty of interpreting color codes. A professional installer reading this page emailed me to say that the red color indicates the springs are right-hand windings, not the DASMA color code for the wire size. But this photo shows both a right- and a left-hand spring, and both have the red paint on the cones and set-screws. I conclude it is prudent to make your own measurements and analysis. Do not rely on the colors on old installations. The only time I would respect them would be on new parts that carried documentation giving the code.
Sears garage repair technicians are fast, with same-day, emergency repairs available in most areas. We can replace garage door broken springs, rollers, cables, hinges, sensors and weather seals. We can also adjust garage door tracks and springs to make sure your door operates smoothly. Having problems with your garage door opener? We can repair or replace that too. Check out our line of Craftsman Garage Door Openers. Craftsman is America’s #1 brand of garage door openers! 1