Replacing Garage Door Springs
The torsion spring is one of the most important parts of your garage door. Most garage doors have one or two of these to aid in lifting and lowering the door. While your door may seem fairly lightweight and easy to lift, this is just an illusion. In reality your garage door is being supported by the torsion springs, and would probably be impossible for you to lift without them. However, as these springs are supporting heavy weight and are under a great deal of stress and pressure, they will eventually snap.
What Is a Torsion Spring?
A torsion spring is a long, cylindrical spring attached to a metal shaft that runs above your garage door. The spring is a tightly wound steel wire that unwinds to raise the door and winds to lower it. Your garage door may have either one or two of these, depending on the model.
How Long Will My Spring Last?
The more you open and close your garage door, the shorter the springs will last. Some estimates put the life of a torsion spring at 5-7 years while others claim springs can last as much as 20 years. The weight and type of garage door you have, coupled with the frequency of use, will impact on the life span of the spring. Additionally, proper maintenance of your door can add to the life of the spring.
Torsion Spring Breakage
If the spring breaks you’ll see it separated into two pieces where the break occurred. The most common time for a garage door spring to snap is in the closed position when you are attempting to open the door. As this is the most strenuous movement for the spring, it’s likely to break and get jammed in the closed position, leaving your car either stuck in the garage or locked out.
Can I Replace the Springs Myself?
Because of the strength of the torsion spring, it is a dangerous mechanism that can cause severe injuries if not handled correctly. Additionally, replacing a spring is a complex project, and therefore it’s highly recommended that you hire a professional garage door installation expert instead of trying to replace the springs yourself.
Identifying the Problem
A garage door pro will be able to identify the exact nature of the problem. There are many reasons why a garage door can get stuck besides broken springs, including obstructions on the door’s track and misaligned electric eyes. Additionally, unrelated issues such as electrical malfunctions can cause garage doors to stop working and may require the expertise of an electrician.
Cost to Replace Garage Door Spring
The cost of replacing a garage door spring is typically between $150 and $200 per spring.
When dealing with garage doors, be sure to exercise caution. Never stand under a garage door while it’s opening or closing, as the spring can potentially snap and the heavy door will come crashing down.