To estimate the maximum physical force required to wind these springs, consider that they are balancing the weight of the door with a torque applied to a lift drum on each end of the torsion shaft. The lift drums have a 2-inch radius, which is the standard residential size, and corresponds conveniently to about a 1-foot circumference. If we pessimistically assume the 10-by-7-foot door has a weight of 350 pounds, this implies a torque of 350 pounds on a 2-inch radius, that is, 700 inch-pounds, or 58 foot-pounds. Each of the two springs should be exerting slightly less than half of the balancing torque, or 29 foot-pounds. Compare this to, say, the bolts in an automobile, which are typically torqued to values of about 50 foot-pounds, or tire lug nuts, which may be torqued to well over 100 foot-pounds.
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Weight and cost: The 24-inch-long spring has a calculated weight of 8.4 lbs, not counting the winding cones. At less than $1/lb wholesale, and $3/lb retail for fabricated steel products, this spring should sell for about $8 to $25 (2005 prices) each, depending on the market and source. Since a pair is required, the expected cost for a pair is $16 to $50.
Michael Davis replaced the tension springs and just about everything else that moves on both of my single car garage doors. I think I paid a premium price ($900) but I also believe I got the quality of service I paid for. Both doors are balanced and glide effortlessly and quietly along the tracks. Michael took the time to inspect and adjust every aspect of the garage door system including the opener (which I installed myself).read more
You can choose from three basic types of steel door: (1) steel only; (2) steel with insulation on the inside; and (3) steel on both sides with 1-3/8 to 2 in. of insulation. Other features that add to the cost are thicker insulation and windows, especially insulated windows. The do-it-yourself tensioning systems also add a little to the door’s cost. Be sure to specify exactly what you want.
Wood - Wood garage doors are sturdy and quite beautiful. However, if you live in a humid climate, your doors will be prone to rotting and splitting. If your wood is painted, you must also factor in the costs of painting as part of your regular maintenance routine. The cost of repairing the wood varies depending on the type. However, average cost to repair a wood panel is $190 to $215.
The "liability" angle: The flip side of "safety issue" is "liability". This is not used to directly sell you something; it is used to demean the cheaper alternative and prod you into buying a more expensive (and profitable) option. For example, you may be pressured into buying a whole new door, when you just need a new spring, by the salesman telling you he can't just replace the spring due to "liability" issues. Since product liability is a big burden on the garage door industry, and so many old doors (and especially automatic openers) are dangerous, this may be a genuine reason to accept a higher price.
Note that I am measuring a spring that is fully relaxed because it is broken!. The length of the relaxed, unbroken spring is the specification of interest. It is harder to measure unbroken springs on an intact door because the springs should not fully unwind, even at the top-of-travel. If you can't be certain of the spring diameter from indications on the cones, then you have to go through an unwinding procedure to relax them fully for measurement, or perhaps reckon the size from measuring the somewhat smaller diameter at the nearly unwound condition when the door is at its top-of-travel (although one should not attempt to raise a door with a broken spring).
Winding "up" starts out easy. It finishes at the proper number of turns, by which time you are pushing against the maximum torque. Count the turns of spring winding from when the springs are slack. To be sure you're winding the right direction, all you have to remember is that proper winding makes the spring smaller in diameter and longer in length as it twists "in". On the standard door (most common), this means you push the winding bars up to wind up the spring, which is an easily remembered rule. This is very apparent and should be verified during the first few easy turns. You can also think about the correct winding direction in mechanical terms, namely which way the reaction of the spring will torque the shaft and drums, which in turn will lift the cable. This should all make perfect sense before you attempt the manipulations.

You might genuinely need some extra parts when you thought you simply needed a broken spring replaced, and a good serviceman will perform a simple inspection to identify such parts. Nor is it unreasonable for a business to charge separately for a service call versus repair work actually performed. But the best protection for you as a buyer, being somewhat at the mercy of whomever you decide to bring on site, is to understand what is being done, and ask intelligently for a clear explanation or demonstration of why extra parts are required.

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