About Garage Door Repairs
Residential and Commercial Repairs
Did you know that even the smallest, lightest steel garage doors weigh around 100 pounds? There are still others that are even heavier, depending on the type of material and size. Garage doors need a counter balance system in order to make it operable by hand, or by an opener, which is where garage door springs come in. Springs provide the tension necessary to move such a heavy object as your garage door. The two types of springs commonly used in residential settings are torsion springs and extension springs.
Torsion springs are typically used in larger, heavier garage doors. Most two-car garage models will utilize this type of spring. You can find torsion springs on the wall above the opening, and it looks like a long metal coil. In general, people will hardly notice them until it breaks, making it very difficult or impossible to lift the door. Once it has broken, you will be able to see the separation in the coils. For this kind of repair, you will definitely need a professional. Because the counter balance system is under extreme amounts of tension, nobody other than an experienced professional should ever attempt to adjust or repair any of components related to the torsion springs. In addition, you can’t force the opener to pull too much weight, as it can damage the opener along with the top panel that the opener is attached to.
Extension springs can usually be found on garage doors for one-car garages. These are located near the ceiling, nearly parallel to the tracks, one on each side. What happens often is that the extension spring will relax and need replacing with a stronger, tighter spring, which is less troublesome than it actually breaking. As with torsion springs that need replacing, when this happens you will generally be able to see repeated gaps in the coils and you will at this point need to have them replaced or serviced. Extension systems are less expensive to install and maintain than torsion spring systems, but they are not as appropriate for installation on two car garages (and wider) because of the lack of balance there will be. Torsion spring systems use a shaft, drums and cables to provide equal lift on either side. Extension springs, on the other hand, are independent of each other and require appropriate tension to ensure proper operation. One of the advantages to having an extension spring system is the ease at which you can replace it. Most hardware stores will carry them, and, only for extension systems, this can be a do it yourself job for those who are mechanically inclined. However, you must still work very carefully, as the extension counter balance system is under great amounts of pressure, like the torsion springs, and can cause severe injuries, possibly fatal. If you do not have a strong background in mechanics, it will be in your best interest to have an expert work on your garage door repairs.