If you own a garage, you know how important it is to have a properly functioning garage door. A garage door that doesn’t open or close properly can be frustrating and even dangerous. One of the most common issues with garage doors is the tension on the springs. Over time, the springs can lose tension or become unbalanced, causing the door to malfunction. Luckily, adjusting garage door springs is a relatively simple process that you can do yourself with the right tools and knowledge.
Before you begin adjusting your garage door springs, it’s important to understand the different types of springs that are commonly used in garage doors. Torsion springs are located above the door and are wound tightly to store energy when the door is closed. Extension springs are located on either side of the door and stretch when the door is opened. Both types of springs require different tools and techniques to adjust, so it’s important to know which type of spring your garage door has before you begin.
Table of Contents
- Understanding Garage Door Springs
- Tools Needed for Adjusting Garage Door Springs
- Adjusting Torsion Springs
- Adjusting Extension Springs
- How to Check Garage Door Spring Tension
- Which Way to Wind Garage Door Spring
- How Many Turns on a Garage Door Spring
- Garage Door Spring Tension Too High – FIXED
- How to Adjust Garage Door Springs: Key Learnings
Understanding Garage Door Springs
If you want to adjust your garage door springs, it’s important to understand the two main types of springs: torsion springs and extension springs. Knowing the difference between these two types of springs will help you determine which one is installed in your garage door and how to adjust it properly.
Torsion springs are the most common type of garage door springs. They are mounted horizontally above the garage door opening and are designed to counterbalance the weight of the door. Torsion springs come in different sizes and strengths, depending on the weight and size of the door. To adjust torsion springs, you will need to use winding bars and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.
Extension springs are mounted vertically on either side of the garage door opening. They are designed to stretch and contract as the door moves up and down. Extension springs come in different sizes and strengths, depending on the weight and size of the door. To adjust extension springs, you will need to release the tension and adjust the S-hook or pulley system, depending on the type of extension spring you have.
It’s important to note that garage door springs are under a lot of tension and can be dangerous to adjust if you’re not familiar with the process. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully, wear safety gear, and consider hiring a professional if you’re not comfortable performing the adjustment yourself.
Tools Needed for Adjusting Garage Door Springs
Adjusting garage door springs can be a dangerous task, so it’s important to have the right tools to do the job safely and effectively. Here are the tools you will need:
Winding bars are used to wind and unwind the tension on torsion springs. You will need two of them, and they should be 18 to 24 inches in length. Solid steel bars can be purchased at hardware stores.
You will need a pair of pliers to help you adjust the garage door springs. A pair of slip-joint pliers will work fine for this task.
Locking pliers, also known as Vise-Grips, are another essential tool for adjusting garage door springs. They will help you hold the torsion spring in place while you adjust it.
You will need a sturdy ladder to reach the garage door springs. Make sure the ladder is in good condition and placed on a level surface before climbing up.
When adjusting garage door springs, it’s important to protect your eyes from any debris that may fly up. Safety glasses or goggles are a must-have.
Leather gloves will protect your hands from any sharp edges or pinch points while adjusting the garage door springs. Make sure the gloves fit snugly and allow you to grip your tools easily.
Adjusting Torsion Springs
If your garage door is not opening or closing properly, it may be due to the tension of the torsion spring. Adjusting the torsion spring requires some knowledge and caution, but it can be done by following these steps:
Measuring the Spring
The first step in adjusting the torsion spring is to measure its length and diameter. This information will help you determine the correct amount of tension needed to balance the garage door. Use a tape measure to measure the length of the spring from one end to the other. Then, measure the diameter of the spring at its thickest point. Write down these measurements for future reference.
Releasing the Tension
Before adjusting the torsion spring, you need to release its tension. This can be done by using a winding bar to turn the spring in the opposite direction of its wind. Be sure to use a ladder and wear eye protection and leather gloves for safety. Insert the winding bar into one of the holes on the winding cone, and turn it slowly until the tension is released. Repeat this step on the other side of the spring.
Adjusting the Tension
Once the tension is released, you can adjust the torsion spring. Use a locking pliers to hold the torsion tube in place, and then loosen the set screws on the winding cone. Turn the cone in the direction that will increase the tension on the spring. Use your measurements to determine how many turns are needed to achieve the correct amount of tension. Then, tighten the set screws and remove the locking pliers.
Securing the Spring
After adjusting the tension, you need to secure the torsion spring in place. Use a winding bar to turn the spring in the direction of its wind until it is snug against the center bracket. Then, tighten the set screws on the winding cone. Repeat this step on the other side of the spring. Finally, test the garage door for proper balance and functionality.
Note: If you are not comfortable adjusting the torsion spring yourself, it is best to hire a professional. Replacement parts, such as lift cables and cable drums, may also need to be replaced during the adjustment process.
Adjusting Extension Springs
If you have an extension spring on your garage door, you may need to adjust it from time to time to keep your door functioning properly. Here are the steps to follow:
Measuring the Spring
Before you begin adjusting the spring tension, you need to measure the length and diameter of the spring. This will help you determine the correct replacement parts if needed. Use a tape measure to measure the length of the spring from end bracket to end bracket. Measure the diameter of the spring at its widest point.
Releasing the Tension
It is important to release the tension on the spring before attempting to adjust it. To do this, you will need winding bars, a ladder, and eye protection. Insert the winding bars into the winding cone of the spring and slowly unwind the spring tension. Make sure to keep a firm grip on the winding bars and wear leather gloves for protection.
Adjusting the Tension
Once the tension is released, you can adjust the tension on the spring. Use a crescent wrench or socket set to loosen the nuts and bolts on the end bracket. Move the bracket up or down to adjust the tension on the spring. Make sure to adjust both sides of the door evenly to avoid uneven wear on the lift cables and cable drums.
Securing the Spring
After you have adjusted the tension on the spring, secure it in place by tightening the nuts and bolts on the end bracket. Make sure the set screws are tight on the cable drums. Use a center bracket to support the spring and prevent it from sagging. Test the door to make sure it opens and closes smoothly.
Adjusting extension springs can be dangerous, so it is important to follow these steps carefully. If you are not comfortable doing this yourself, it is best to hire a professional. Remember to always wear eye protection and leather gloves when working with garage door springs.
How to Check Garage Door Spring Tension
If your garage door is not functioning properly, it might be due to the tension of the springs. Checking the tension of your garage door springs is an essential part of garage door maintenance. Here’s how to check garage door spring tension:
- Close the garage door and disconnect the automatic opener by pulling the emergency release cord.
- Lift the door manually to waist height and release it. The door should stay in place. If the door falls down or opens on its own, the springs are either too loose or too tight.
- Check the balance of the door by lifting it to chest height and releasing it. The door should stay in place. If it falls down or opens on its own, the springs need adjustment.
- Measure the length of the springs. If they are not the same length, they need to be replaced.
It is important to note that adjusting garage door springs can be dangerous and should only be done by a professional. If you are unsure about the tension of your garage door springs, it is best to call a professional garage door technician.
Which Way to Wind Garage Door Spring
When it comes to adjusting your garage door spring, it’s important to know which way to wind it. Garage door springs are under high tension and can be dangerous if not handled properly. It’s crucial to wind the spring in the correct direction to avoid causing damage or injury.
The direction in which you wind your garage door spring depends on the type of spring you have. There are two types of springs: torsion springs and extension springs. Torsion springs are located above the garage door, while extension springs are located on either side of the door.
If you have a torsion spring, you’ll need to determine the wind direction before winding it. Most torsion springs have a color-coded system on the cones at the end of the spring. The end on the right-hand wind is usually red, while the left-hand wind is black. This indicates the direction in which the spring should be wound.
If you have an extension spring, winding direction is not as important. The spring will either be coiled clockwise or counterclockwise, depending on the manufacturer. To determine the direction, look at the end of the spring where the loops are closest together. If the last coil is pointing up, the spring is wound clockwise. If the last coil is pointing down, the spring is wound counterclockwise.
It’s important to note that winding a garage door spring can be dangerous and should only be done by a trained professional. If you’re not experienced in garage door repair, it’s best to leave it to the experts. Attempting to adjust the spring yourself can result in serious injury or damage to your property.
How Many Turns on a Garage Door Spring
If you’re planning to adjust your garage door springs, you need to know how many turns to put on them. The number of turns depends on the height of your garage door. For an 8-foot door, you’ll need 8.75 full turns. For a 10-foot door, you’ll need 10.75 turns. Here’s a chart that shows the number of turns for different door heights:
|Door Height||Number of Turns|
It’s important to note that this rule applies to most residential garage doors. If you’re not sure about the number of turns for your specific door, consult the manufacturer’s instructions or hire a professional technician to help you.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the number of turns is for each spring. If your door has two springs, you’ll need to adjust both of them. You can keep track of the number of turns by drawing a chalk line on the springs.
Remember, adjusting garage door springs can be dangerous and should only be done by someone with experience and knowledge. If you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, don’t hesitate to call a professional.
Garage Door Spring Tension Too High – FIXED
If your garage door spring tension is too high, it can cause your garage door to slam shut or make loud noises when opening and closing. This can be a safety hazard and can damage your garage door opener over time. Here are some steps you can take to fix the problem:
- Disconnect the garage door opener: Before adjusting the tension on your garage door spring, make sure to disconnect the garage door opener to prevent any accidents or injuries.
- Measure the spring tension: Use a spring scale to measure the tension on your garage door spring. The ideal tension for most garage doors is between 10 and 12 pounds.
- Adjust the tension: If the tension on your garage door spring is too high, you can adjust it by loosening the winding cone with a winding bar and rotating it in the opposite direction of the spring’s wind. Tighten the set screws and test the tension again with the spring scale.
- Test the garage door: Once you’ve adjusted the tension on your garage door spring, test the garage door to make sure it opens and closes smoothly and quietly. If there are any issues, adjust the tension again until it’s just right.
Remember, adjusting the tension on your garage door spring can be dangerous and should only be done by a trained professional. If you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, contact a garage door repair company to assist you.
How to Adjust Garage Door Springs: Key Learnings
Adjusting garage door springs can be a challenging task, but it is essential to ensure the smooth operation of your garage door. Here are some key learnings to keep in mind when adjusting your garage door springs:
- Leave the door closed: Before adjusting your garage door springs, make sure the door is closed and disconnected from the opener. This will prevent any accidents or injuries.
- Determine the type of spring: There are two types of garage door springs: torsion springs and extension springs. Make sure you know which type you have before attempting to adjust them.
- Adjust the tension: If your garage door rises on its own, it means there is too much tension on the spring. If it lowers, the spring needs tightening. Use an adjustable wrench to loosen or tighten the nut on the backside of the bracket to adjust the tension.
- Be cautious: Garage door springs are under high tension and can cause serious injuries if mishandled. Always wear protective gear and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. If you are unsure about adjusting the springs, it is best to call a professional.