When most people think about spring break, they think about fun in the sun. However, that’s not always the case, especially when we’re talking about the garage door spring breaking. These can be quite dangerous to people and property.
When the spring breaks in the garage door, it can sound like a gun went off in your garage, and it’s sure to cause a bit of a panic if you are home when it happens. However, when you check out the garage, there’s a good chance you won’t see the problem at first. Often, people don’t notice until the next time they try to open their garage door. Then, the noises start, and the door doesn’t work right.
When you finally look up, you see that the lifting spring is now in two pieces, as in the picture below.
Why would the spring break like that? You might not have seen or heard some of the warning signs. Take some time to read the blog to learn more about why the spring might break.
Understanding Your Spring System
Before you can start to determine what goes wrong with the springs, you need some more information on what they are and how they are used. There are two types of garage door spring systems.
1. TORSION SPRING
Torsion springs sit inside of a steel tube over the door’s head, which is attached to the wall since all of the door’s weight is transferred to the anchor plate at the center of the door.
For those who do not have enough headroom, the plate could be at the end of the horizontal tracks instead. These are low headroom track systems or double horizontal track systems.
2. EXTENSION SPRING
Extension springs are on each side of the door and over the horizontal tracks. These springs will extend their coils and lift or lower the door, as needed. When installed, professionals will install safety cables.
These cables help to reduce the risk of the springs hitting something or someone in the garage if they break. They help to save from an expensive or dangerous situation.
The spring system is the counterweight for your door’s overall weight . If you have a door that has a deadweight of 135 lbs., the spring system needs to counterbalance this.
When the counterbalancing is correct, you can open the door with just one hand. The spring system helps with this.
The garage door should not feel as if it weighs any more than 10 lbs. when balanced properly. Even if you have an electric garage door opener, it should not weigh more than this since the opener is only supposed to take the place of manual effort. This is true even with an opener that can lift 200 lbs.
Something that you need to keep in mind for safety is that if the door can lift that much, it can press down with the same amount of force. Make sure no one is in the way of the door when it is closing.
What Do Lifting Springs Break?
Many things could cause a lifting spring to break. Below, we’ve collected the five biggest problems.
1. It Wears Down Over Time
Springs only tend to last about five to seven years. That’s true regardless of whether it is a torsion or extension spring. Many garage door makers offer 10,000-cycle spring systems. The cycles refer to one open and close of the door.
Those who use their garage two to four times a day will have about 1,500 cycles each year.
If you use your garage door more than five times a day, you may want to consider options for 20,000 to 25,000-cycle springs.
Defects could happen, although they tend to be rare. With extension springs, the ring at the end of the spring could break. With torsion springs, the culprit could be low-quality galvanizing, which could allow for rust .
3. Spring Calibration Gone Wrong
Sometimes, the wrong spring could be installed. This is also rare, but it could occur when working with a low-quality company. If the springs are not calibrated for the right weight, it could end up causing more stress and wear on the spring, the door, and the opener. Typically, the springs are calibrated to operate with a 5% variation. If the spring can lift a 100 lb. door, it can’t work well with a 150 lb. door.
4. The Environmental Factors
Many garages are cold and humid. Even when they have been insulated and heated, the springs will often be in locations near the exterior walls, which can still be chilly and damp .
Galvanization protection can only do so much. In some cases, the springs will still rust. Additionally, with cold weather under -130F (-250C), the coiled metal wire could dry out and then break.
5. Lack of Maintenance
Are you providing upkeep to your garage door, including the springs? You should consider the lubrication of metal parts that come into contact with other ones twice a year. Do this once in the winter as temperatures cruise below 320F (00C). You can then do it in the spring when nighttime temperatures rise above freezing.
Boost Your Spring System’s Lifespan Easily
Lubricate Once Each Year or when needed.
It’s easy, all you need to do is use a non-drip lithium base oil. Use a cloth or spray carefully and apply it completely around the coils.
Wipe off the excess and that’s all there is to it. Lubrication keeps the springs in better shape and can help to eliminate clinking noises in springs.
After few years the lubricant might pick up some dust, you can easily wipe it off and replace the lubricant.
Check with your garage door dealer to get the lubricants you’ll need.
Getting Some Help
You don’t have to take care of your garage door on your own. Work with Garaga specialist, as you can see below for a “ Garage Door Tune-up ” for the door before winter sets in.
Need an Expert to Get Your Garage Ready?
Why not contact us now?
· Orangeville: 519-942-1956
· Mississauga: 905-564-2640
We have a reputation as people who know garage doors and garage door openers better than the rest. We can provide you with advice and guidance to finding the right springs, and even the right door if you need a replacement. We’ll find what works for you and your budget and can even offer a quotation by email.