What to Do When Your Garage Door Spring Breaks

When a garage door spring breaks, it can be a major inconvenience and a safety hazard. The spring is responsible for counterbalancing the weight of the door, so when it breaks, the door may become unstable and difficult to open or close. It's important to understand what happens when a garage door spring breaks and how to address the issue safely. When a garage door spring breaks, NEVER unhook the door opener while the door is open. There are circumstances where you may need to disconnect them, for example, during a power outage.

This is usually achieved by pulling on the red emergency release handle that hangs from the track. When spring comes, the entire system goes out of sync and the pulleys and cables can come loose and hang from the ceiling. If your garage door uses a two-spring system and one of the springs breaks, the other spring will continue to be under considerable stress. A malfunctioning spring can also cause the garage door to slam unexpectedly, so it's important that you never walk directly under the garage door. Here are some additional safety tips to keep in mind:

  • For a 9 x 7 foot door with a single row of windows weighing 135 pounds, it should be weighted so that a person can lift it with one hand.
  • Springs wear out within five to seven years and most doors are constructed with 10,000-cycle spring systems.
  • Manufacturers define a cycle as an opening and a closing.
  • Springs don't usually benefit from additional protection because they are installed close to damp and cold outside walls.
  • Temperatures below -130 F (-25 0C) can cause coils to become brittle and break.
  • Apply plenty of oil to the springs to reduce problems in cold environments.
The garage door is under a constant amount of tension and weight, and trying to replace the springs is extremely dangerous for a homeowner.

Depending on the weight of the door, the number of springs it has and the number of broken springs, the door may remain open. If you're looking for smoother motion and the ability to lift heavier doors, you're better off choosing the torsion spring option. It helps to transfer weight away from the door and to the anchor plate, which is attached to the center of the door. It's always possible that the manufacturer sent a defective product, and that's why the door broke. If the door sinks or falls, this could be a sign that the springs are starting to weaken and will need to be replaced soon.

Exceeding the nominal cycle of garage door springs can cause small cracks in the spring and reduce their lifespan. If you have problems with garage door springs in your area, contact your local garage door company for assistance. Most standard garage doors come with two springs; as you probably know, it's more efficient and cost-effective to replace both garage door springs at the same time, assuming they're the same age and have the same number of cycles (openings and closures). As homes continue to be built with attached garages, many homeowners use their garages as their main entryway into their homes which increases wear on their garage doors. Garage door problems are never convenient but many companies offer emergency garage door repair services. Until proper repairs and replacements can be made, it is best to lock both sides of your garage rail so that your garage remains relatively stable like a car lifted on a jack.

Knowing what happens when your garage door spring breaks can help you address any issues quickly and safely.

Edna Freemon
Edna Freemon

Wannabe beer fanatic. Unapologetic travel expert. Evil pop culture practitioner. Zombie enthusiast. Hipster-friendly organizer.

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