One could argue that you likely enter your home through the garage more frequently than the front door, effectively making the garage the main point of entry for your home. While manual garage doors are a thing of the past, homeowners now rely on garage door springs, garage door openers, motors and rollers to do the heavy lifting for them.
Garage doors are one of the heaviest appliances and take a great deal of power to raise and lower. Since the sheer weight of your garage door can put serious wear and tear on all of the parts, it is important that you stay knowledgeable about how to locate and properly maintain all the parts of your garage door. This will help prevent your garage door from going off its track, malfunctioning and possibly having to be replaced entirely.
One of the most central mechanisms and vital parts of any garage door is the torsion springs. As you can imagine, these springs are constantly under pressure, expanding and compressing, as they pull your garage door up and down. Knowing how to properly care for and maintain your garage door springs is critical to the longevity of your garage doors.
How to Locate Your Garage Door Springs
Now that you know how important garage door springs are, let’s explain what they look like and how to identify them. That way you can locate them when it is time to conduct your routine garage door maintenance.
- How to Spot a Garage Door Spring – Garage door torsion springs look like cylindrical metallic canisters that resemble a long coil. Most garage door springs are about two feet long, but never exceed four feet in length, and are almost always colored black. If you’re looking for a spring that isn’t currently mounted on a garage door, you should also know that these devices have a small circular opening on each side. This opening admits a thin rod, and it is 1/2 inch wide.
- Where to Find Your Garage Door Springs – You might be asking yourself, “Where are the garage door springs in my garage door?” There are two different types of garage door springs that appear in either of two places in your garage. Torsion springs, the most common, are fastened just above the garage door when it is in a closed position. The other is extension springs and are located on both sides of the garage door above the upper tracks.
Why Garage Door Springs Malfunction
Your garage door goes through significant strain every time it is willed up and down again. That is why it is so important to maintain all of the parts in your garage door so that it can work properly for years to come. Here are some common reasons your garage door may start to act strangely or malfunction. All of these are easily prevented by conducting regular home maintenance.
- Standard Wear & Tear – The most common reason garage doors malfunction is due to a broken torsion spring from yearly wear and tear. Garage door springs take the brunt of the heavy lifting, which leads to them degrading over time. If installed correctly, a garage door spring should last up to 10,000 cycles before it needs to be replaced. Kind of like a rubber band that has been stretched one too many times. They are bound to wear out, but you can take measures to help them last longer. There are some high-quality, extended-use garage door springs that are more durable and have a longer life expectancy.
- Poor Maintenance – Again, it comes down to maintenance. Aside from wear and tear, poor maintenance can cause your garage door springs to malfunction. When you properly tend to your torsion springs, it can extend their life. Overlooking and neglecting your garage door springs can lead to them breaking and possibly damaging your garage door.
- Rust Buildup – This is an inevitability as time goes on, especially in certain climates or homes located next to a body of saltwater. Regularly spraying your garage door springs with substances like WD-40 should keep the rust from building up and protect your garage door springs from the elements.
How to Maintain Your Garage Door Springs
Your garage door should absolutely be on the shortlist of quarterly or yearly home maintenance tasks. When it comes time to conduct maintenance on your garage door, you’ll need a few things to get the job done.
- What Tools You Will Need – You’ll need a sturdy ladder, a file used for metal grinding or hard surfaces, and a can of WD-40 or an anti-rust or mechanical lubricant product.
- Disconnect Garage Door Opener – Make sure there is no power running to your garage door opener. Refer to your manual to find out the easiest and safest way to unplug your garage door opener, remove the battery or turn it off. Again, referring to your manual, detach the garage door opener from the opening mechanism.
- Go in for a Closer Look – Time to bust out the ladder and sturdy it near the garage door opener’s shaft. You can spot it at the top of the garage door and there is a long bar that has springs wrapped around it, with brackets at either side. Inspect this bar to see that the shaft is rotating smoothly. If it isn’t, it may be best to call a professional garage door technician to properly fix this issue.
- Check Mounting Bracket – You will be able to find this bracket where the torsion springs are bolted together. Again check to see that the mounting bracket is secure and that the torsion shaft rotates with ease. If you notice any corrosion, grime or build-up, use a file to smooth it out.
- Lube Your Garage Door Springs – If you have done the above steps and everything seems in good working order, it is time to properly lubricate your garage door springs. This is something that you should try to do once or twice a year to keep your garage door running smoothly. Spray or apply lubricant to all moving parts, including the bearings. When you get to the point of lubricating the garage door springs, use caution. You’ll want to carefully lubricate the entire torsion spring except for the last inch before the winding bracket. DO NOT LUBRICATE THE WINDING BRACKET! This could cause the spring to unwind itself and could lead to a host of problems.
- Reattach The Garage Door Opener – Now that you have successfully checked all of the parts of lubricated them, it is time to reattach your garage door to the garage door opener and plug the motor back into the power source or replace the battery.
And there you have it! Knowing where your garage door springs are and how to properly maintain them is vital to keeping your garage door in great condition. This can reduce garage door spring repair costs and prevent your garage door from malfunctioning at inconvenient times.
Call Precision Garage Door Las Vegas for Garage Door Spring Replacement & Repair
Precision Garage Door Las Vegas is focused on customer satisfaction and only carries the very best garage door brands and garage door springs. We understand that poorly installed garage doors or garage door springs can mean putting homeowners at risk of injury or damages to their garage door. That’s why Precision Garage Door is committed to delivering quality garage door services to our loyal customers.
For assistance with a new garage door or if you’re looking to replace your old garage door, use our interactive Garage Door Designer or contact us directly at 702-637-2700 Our garage door installation experts can answer your questions or schedule a free in-home estimate.