Most situations allow you to replace spring(s) without removing the assembly from the wall, if there is enough clearance in the surrounding garage structure at the ends of shafts. By unbolting the end bearing plates and removing the drums, you can run the springs down to the ends of the shaft to remove and replace the springs. This avoids the balancing act of holding a long, wobbly, heavy shaft while climbing up and down a ladder. This is how the professionals get the job done in a few minutes.
With over 300 independently moving parts, your garage door is a deceptively complex piece of equipment. To help prevent malfunctions and break-downs, it is a good idea to occasionally perform a garage door tune-up to keep all of these parts in good working order. A regular tune-up service by a Sears professional can prevent unexpected door problems and prolong the life of your existing equipment.
The salesman-disguised-as-technician trick: In this trick, you arrange for a service call to your home, perhaps paying a small fee up-front, and a neatly uniformed man arrives in a very technical-looking truck, carrying an impressive tool kit. He carefully examines your door, perhaps using some impressive testing devices to lend weight to his expertise. He then condemns your door as not worth repairing, and tells you, to his sincere regret, that you must have a new one. In fact, this technician is not a technician, but a salesman who only sells, and does not repair, doors. Even if he doesn't sell you, he is doing well just collecting fees for service calls that are no more than sales visits. He doesn't actually have to ever fix anything, and he may not even be capable of doing so himself. He's an expert at selling, which genuine technicians are not. In the worst case, when you refuse to buy a whole new door, he might refuse to follow up with a visit from an actual technician, either outright, or only with an unacceptable delay ("we're too busy to get a guy out until next week", when your car is trapped). If you find yourself closing in on this situation, then politely invite him to leave, and try someone else. That is your right, and in fact the only power you have to bargain in such circumstances. At that point, he may offer to promptly bring in his competent colleague, who will turn up lacking charm and looking awful, but might actually do the work, possibly at a fair price. If so, you will have beaten a legal variation of the classic illegal bait-and-switch (see below). The switch was attempted, but not required, which makes this legal. This is a hazard of any direct-sales situation. Because it rarely appears in everyday retail sales, it can surprise the unwary.
You must use springs that are matched to the weight of the door. You cannot compensate for the wrong size spring by adjusting the number of winding turns. If you do not know a proper spring size, then you or your spring supplier must calculate a proper size (see below) based on an accurate weight (within 5 pounds) of the door. So you must then in turn have an accurate weight.
By watching the chalk mark while winding, you can count the number of turns applied, and confirm the number later. My standard-size door (7 foot height) with 4-inch drums has a nominal wind of 7-1/4 or 7-1/2 turns, which leaves 1/4 or 1/2 turn at the top-of-travel to keep the lift cables under tension. After 7 turns on the first spring, I clamped down the set-screws, weighed the door again, and found a lift of about 100 pounds in reduced weight. As expected, this wasn't quite half of the full 238 pounds, nor would it leave any torsion at the top-of-travel, so I added an 8th turn. The door now weighed 122 pounds on one spring, which was ideal. After winding the other spring, the door lifted easily, with only a few pounds apparent weight. This confirmed that the spring choice was properly matched to the door design. I engaged the electric opener trolley, and adjusted the opener forces down to a safer level suitable for the new, improved balance. The door was now ready for return to service.
We’ve been reviewing the best garage door openers for more than half a decade. This year we chose the Chamberlain Premium as our top pick. It’s an efficient, reliable garage door opener, and it comes with a backup battery system that works in a power outage. This model also has a preinstalled timer that closes your garage door automatically so you don't have to worry about whether you left the garage door open.
As your Kentucky and Ohio garage door repair company, we offer a team of experienced and knowledgeable technicians who move with urgency to diagnose your issues of any garage door repair or service They’ll discuss your options, and then execute the option you’ve selected for your home. When you need the best in garage door service, installation and repair, choose AE Door & Window.
Although you can replace your garage door opener on your own, it’s more difficult than most DIY projects, so following the installation instructions is a must. If you’re not confident you can replace the opener on your own, you should consider hiring a professional, which further increases your costs. You can also expect to pay more if you’re replacing a garage door in addition to the opener.
Critical measurements: Torsion springs come a variety of standardized sizes, so you have to carefully measure the old springs to know what to order for proper replacements. Tables of standard sizes and designs are on the Web, such as here [www.industrialspring.com]. The four critical measurements (all in inches) are: (1) the wire thickness (which I'm measuring here with a dial caliper; you can also measure the length of a number of closely stacked turns with a ruler and divide by the number of turns in the stack, measuring 10 turns this way makes the math easy), (2) the inside diameter (not outside!) of the relaxed (not wound!) coil, (3) the overall length of the relaxed (not wound!) spring coils, not including the winding cones, and (4) the right- or left-hand winding of the spring. One must glibly quote those figures to the spring supplier, otherwise one's lack of expertise will be obvious, and one will not be worthy of buying the parts.
The electronics should also be inspected before or after investing in the cost of replacing the garage door panel to make sure your door will operate properly. The sensors prevent the door from closing on someone's foot or a pet. If they don't work, someone could be injured. Also check to make sure the door opener works, since you could otherwise be locked out of your garage.
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.
Sectional: Also known as a raised panel door, this door is the most common. It is made of several horizontal panels hinged together, fitted with wheels and mounted within a track. The biggest advantage of this door is it takes up relatively little space and easily controlled with a standard remote garage door opener for a nominal cost. Their moving parts are readily accessible which can keep repair costs low. The average cost for sectional door repairs is $128.
The replacement springs in my case proved to be 0.2253 wire size, 2.0 inch (inside) diameter, and 24 inches long, in a pair of one left- and one right-hand winding. Actually, the old springs in these pictures were a slightly smaller size, but another similar door on this garage was better balanced by that size. Whoever installed the old springs didn't quite get the weight and size just right; it is not unusual to find a repair service installing a slightly off-balance spring size that happened to already be on the truck during the service call. My electric opener had no trouble handling the small imbalance. But since it is safer to reduce the electric operating force as much as possible through careful balancing, I chose the size that was working better on the other door. The Chamberlain brand electric openers (also sold by Sears) I have incorporate a plastic worm gear that tends to wear out after some years of use, requiring a disassembly and installation of a $20 repair kit; this wear is minimized by a properly balanced door.
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.
While a sudden issue is usually easily repaired, a consistent issue that has gone unaddressed for months or years will likely require a total replacement. The problem is that garage doors have a number of heavy, powerful moving parts. If the door is working as it is designed, it can open and close hundreds and hundreds of times without issues. However, if there is even a small issue in the lifting mechanism that repeatedly influences the movement of the door, you will soon find that the damage caused over those hundreds of lifts can’t be fixed.
Some of the best garage door openers offer special features like a backup power source or a timer that automatically closes the door behind you at a predetermined time. While the door openers we reviewed vary in terms of power, noise and efficiency, they are all effective in the all-important task of letting you come and go with the simple push of a button. Here are the criteria we used to rank the top garage door openers:
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The prior clamping of the set-screws tends to have pressed a dimple into the hollow shaft and to have distorted the shaft's roundness into an eccentric shape. While releasing the set-screws, I was careful to loosen them enough to let the cone swing around any such distortions. I was also careful to observe any binding of the old cones on the eccentricity or burring on the shaft. The fit of the cone on the shaft is supposed to be loose enough to avoid binding, but if it were to occur one would have to be careful not to assume the spring was unwound when in fact the cone was just stuck on the shaft. If I had a stuck cone that I could not unwind with a little extra force, then I would have called in a technician to deal with it. In the worst case, I suppose the spring must be deliberately broken with some hazard, thus releasing it for a forceful disassembly, and the shaft and some other parts replaced. But this is an unlikely situation and in this case was not necessary.
Spending your whole weekend setting up a new garage door opener is not on the top of most peoples list. This opener is easy to install for most levels of DIYers and it provides a quiet and reliable open and close. This has 3/4 HPc DC chain features and the powerhead can open 12" in a second. It has a wireless remote and Intellicode 2 security to prevent people from breaking into your home.
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.
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.
If you have a steel door, but want the look of a wood one, it is not necessary to change your entire garage door. Often, it may be possible to mimic the look of wood with skillful painting. Your local home improvement store may be able to provide good advice about the type of paint and brushes needed to mimic the look of wood for your particular door material.
Most garage door openers include a remote that lets you open and close the door from the comfort and safety of your car. Some garage door openers support Internet connectivity, either as an add-on or built in. This allows you to use an app that lets you open or close the garage door from your smartphone or tablet, and monitor your garage door's status (open or closed) from anywhere that you can connect to the net.
Next, the torsion shaft is reassembled with the new springs, the drums repositioned loosely on the shaft, this whole assembly slid back into the end bearings, and the drum set-screws tightened down. I tightened the set-screws about 1/2 or 3/4 of a turn after contact with the shaft, which provides a good grip, but does not distort the shaft. The drums can be set on their old positions, if they were correctly installed, which is snug up against the end bearings to remove any longitudinal play in the torsion shaft. Now the lift cable can be reattached to the drums, and a slight temporary torque applied to the shaft to keep the cable taut while the first spring is wound. This temporary torque is conveniently applied with a pair of locking pliers clamped on the shaft, positioned such that they hold the torque by pressing lightly against the wall above the door, before you start the spring winding, The locking pliers stay on the torsion shaft until you have finished the spring winding locked down the spring cone(s) with the setscrew(s), and removed the winding bars. Then you simply remove them with the release on the wrench handle. I feel that any job that doesn't require a trick manipulation with either locking pliers or duct tape (or in the ultimate case, both!) is just too boring. My trusty pliers look a trifle rusty ever since I used them to clamp something on my outdoor TV antenna "temporarily" and left them out in the weather for, oh, several years. The white stuff on the drum is paint overspray from the original painting of the garage interior.
Cable fail-safe redundancy: Based on the proper setting of the drums on the torsion shaft, the two lift cables divide the lifting force equally to keep the door level as it rises. This not only levels the door, but also provides a fail-safe mechanism. If one of the cables should fail, such as from breaking or losing its end attachment, the other cable will then carry the full weight of the door. This will pull the door up on one side with twice the normal force, while the other side falls from its now unsupported weight, tending to make the door bind in its tracks and jam. Although not foolproof, this is a safety feature of the design which keeps the door from falling catastrophically if a cable were to fail while the door was traveling. The jammed condition also prevents a lowered door from opening with the hazard of a single broken cable, further minimizing the chances of both cables failing. Since if one cable fails the other must sustain the full weight of the door, the cables and attachments are rated many times the normal working load of half the door weight. A proper safety inspection of the door should include a critical look at the cables and their attachments.
Here are the new replacement springs I ordered from a distributor, which I found using a Google search for "garage door supply" (search that phrase now). You certainly won't find these at Home Depot or Lowe's (although last I checked Lowe's does carry the less daunting extension spring replacements). I also have a list of some suppliers at the end of this page.
Smartphone Control: Many newer garage door openers allow you to connect the device to your home's Wi-Fi network, according to RW Garage Doors. You then can open and close the door through a smartphone app. In fact, many of these apps will give you an alert on the smartphone when the garage door is open for a certain period. Some opener models even can connect to your existing Smart Home system, incorporating all your appliances on one system.