- Home Improvement
Simple Garage Door Spring Repairs You Can DIY
When your garage door breaks down due to an issue with a spring, instead of calling a garage door service in a panic, be aware of some of the small repairs and replacements that you can do yourself. A good place to start is to know what kind of a door you have.
If you have an overhead garage door, whether the roll up kind or the single-piece swing kind, it operates on spring tension. These doors will move on metal tracks set on the walls using a torsion spring or two for power.
While the high tension of torsion springs makes replacing them potentially dangerous if you are not careful, it is possible for mechanical-handed DIYers to replace their own springs following instructions. However, there are some easy spring repairs that are not so dangerous and can be easily carried out by anyone.
1. Replacing the Torsion Spring Cone
A torsion spring without a cone costs $10 less to install. Therefore, if you are replacing your springs, you can install the old cones in the springs yourself, with a little guidance. First, you will need to remove the cones from the old springs. A vise will come in handy for this.
At one end of the spring you will find the winding cone, and at the other, the stationary cone. Start with the latter. First, place the nuts and bolts from the spring anchor bracket on the cone. These will be used for support in a vise. Grip both nuts in the vise. Next, use a pipe wrench to hook the end of the spring wire and twist until the spring slides off the cone.
You can achieve this without a vise by placing the spring on the ground and positioning a bar between the bolts. Then, push down on the wrench while you pull up the winding bar. Repeat until the cone comes off.
Before you install new springs on the cones, clean off any oil on them.
For the installation, you don't need a vise. Place the spring and cone on the shaft. Begin by using your hand to turn each spring onto the cones. Next, pick up your pipe wrench. Grip the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh coils from each end with it.
Press the spring between the jaws of the wrench with your hands. Allow the other end of the wrench to rest on the door top. Pull down the cone with the winding bar. Keep reinserting the bar and pulling done the cone until it goes right through the spring.
It's important to note that most springs have dual threads. This means that the ends of the wires should fit into the right grooves in the cone. If you find that is easier said than done, you can gently tap the ends of the spring wire when inserted, to fit it into the spring.
Finally, grip the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh coils from each end with your wrench and pull down. Carefully twist each spring on the cones. If you find a resistance, you can loosen the anchor bolts a little.
2. How to Winding Springs
If you find that your ceilings are so low that the springs do not wind a full 90 degrees, you can rectify the problem yourself without having to call for help. Here are the simple steps to clear up space for your spring.
First, if you have an opener, you will need to disconnect the opener arm from the draw. Next, detach the top rollers, which is usually a system of a pair of nuts and bolts. Your rollers and roller carriers should be freed at this point.
Remove the rollers, but be careful that your top section doesn't fall and damage the hinges and door. Now, rotate the top section down gently and support it on a ladder. The top section bottom is still attached via hinges to the door, at this point.
You will now have enough space to wind the spring. When done, replace the top section, rollers and opener arm.
These are a few simple garage door spring DIY tips you can use to carry out small repairs. If you find your problem persists, there may be a more serious issue with your door. In such a case, contact your garage door service immediately for reasons of safety.