Adding a new garage door provides a dramatic difference in your home’s appearance. When neighbors pass by, when guests pull up, or when you return from work, your house will have a distinct beauty that makes it a landmark of the neighborhood. The unique look you’ve always imagined — as well as the material, the finish, and the insulation can be found in our wide selection of garage doors.
First and foremost, a garage door, by design, contains springs designed to balance your door and make it easier to lift. Those springs are under incredible amounts of tension. If a spring breaks or is improperly released, it can cause incredible and potentially fatal injuries. Keep in mind, when working on a garage door spring, it is likely that your face and head will be close to it, meaning that your most sensitive area will be in the direct path of the released spring.
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.
Most electric garage door openers have two lights: one in front of the opener and one behind or sometimes they sit side by side. They should provide enough light for you to get into your home from your car. Generally, people don’t leave the garage light on when it’s not in use, so it’s nice to have a temporary light when you arrive home. The length of time the light stays on varies according to how it is programmed. In most instances, you don’t need more than a few minutes from the time you leave the car to when you enter your home.
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The optician's trick: The serviceman looks over your door with lots of scowling, chin-scratching, and tsk-tsking. You ask, "how much?" He replies with the fair price. If you don't flinch at that price, he says, "for the parts", while quoting a large additional cost for the labor. If you still don't flinch, he adds, "each," while pointing back and forth to your pair of springs. (I hope none of you service people are reading this!) I call this the "optician's trick" after the old vaudeville joke about lenses, frames, and left/right.
Removing winding cones from an old broken spring for reuse in a new spring: Springs without the winding cones installed are a little cheaper than with the cones. Twisting the old cones into a new spring is easy with a vise and pipe wrench, but it can be tricky removing old cones from a broken spring for reuse. To remove old cones, mount the cone in a vise such that the spring portion is free. Grab the last few turns of the spring in a pipe wrench, engaging the teeth of the wrench into the end of the spring wire. Turn the wrench against the end of the spring wire, releasing the end of the spring from its clamping onto the cone, as you twist the loosened spring off the cone. Another more certain if not brutal method is to use an angle grinder with a thin metal-cutting disk to cut through the loops of spring wire where the loops wrap around the cones, being careful not to nick the cone itself too much. You could also cut into the old spring loops with a just hacksaw and break off the loops with hand tools, but this will require a lot of effort.
If your garage door is opening slowly or making a lot of noise, the problem may not be your opener. So before you buy a new one, check for broken or wobbly rollers and brackets. But don’t replace the bottom roller bracket yourself—the cable attached to it is under extreme tension. You’ll need to call a pro. If you’re replacing the rollers, get nylon rollers. They operate quieter than steel rollers and cost only a few bucks more. Next, check the torsion spring (mounted on the header above the door opening) to see if it’s broken. When one breaks, you’ll see a gap in the coils. You’ll need a pro to replace a broken spring.