DIY Spring Repair is a Risky Job

DIY Spring Repair is a Risky Job

DIY Spring Repair is a Risky Job

There are many reasons why garage door springs or cables may snap/break, including:

  1. Aging/repeated use
  2. Lack of maintenance
  3. Objects striking the door
  4. Items jammed in the tracks
  5. Aggressive lifting/closing actions

If a garage door spring or cable has broken, the door is essentially out-of-service until the repair/replacement can be completed. Due to the inconvenience this situation can create, it stands to reason that it should be taken care of as soon as possible.

At this point, homeowners think they can take the do-it-yourself approach here, as they would for many other projects around the home. However, the DIY approach is not recommended and in fact highly discouraged due to potential safety risks/vulnerabilities for homeowners, their families and their property. Here’s why.

“My neighbor did it, I should be able to do it, too.”

The counterweight system, which is secured by the springs, is connected to the hinge at the bottom of the door, to the lifting cable and to the steel shaft housing the spring. The entire system is under extreme tension, equivalent to the total weight of the door. Trying to lift the bottom hinge that is solidly bolted to the door is like lifting anywhere from 125lb (single door) to 225lb (double door). If you also have a row of windows on your door, add about 5 to 15lb per window. One false move and you could end up injuring your face or hand.

“Only one of the two springs broke!”

Even if you think it’s only 50% of the weight of the door that’s being held, you should know that it’s still too much. The most important thing is your safety – especially avoiding any serious injury. In the end, you also have to properly balance the two springs in order to prevent your door from rebounding.

“My garage door opener will hold the door.”

The drive mechanism that pulls the door to lift or lower it wasn’t designed to hold that much weight. A garage door opener is simply a substitute for human action, as if you were to lift your door with one hand. A well-balanced door weighs between 8 and 10lb and the acceptable variance for proper balance is around 5% of the total weight of the door.

Do business only with licensed professionals.

Garage door spring repair requires experience and expertise. It is important to correctly calculate the total weight of your garage door, including any attached parts while also accounting for weight of the windows, if any.

 

If a broken garage spring or cable is causing an inconvenience for you and your family, you can rely on the technicians at RCS Carolina to be equipped with the tools and training to get your garage door back in working order.

Properly Winterize Your Garage Door

Properly Winterize Your Garage Door

Is your garage door ready for the quickly approaching winter season? It is important to remember that your garage door should be properly prepared for the colder weather to come. Winterizing your garage door only takes 30 minutes, but your comfort level will go up exponentially as a result. Here are some tips to get you started.

Remote Battery

Your garage door opener remote batteries are designed to only last one year. It is recommended that you keep a spare set of batteries on hand to avoid being forced out into the cold to manually open the door.

External Keypad

For added security, many homeowners now have an external keypad to open their garage door. Remember to check the 9-volt battery there as well in order to ensure that it has plenty of juice for the cold winter months ahead.

Inspect the Springs to your Garage Door

Before performing this important task, remember to disable your garage door opener. You do this by pulling on the emergency cord. You will then want to open the garage door manually. If you found this easy to do with one hand, then the springs are in great working order. If it was difficult to open, you will want to determine the cause. Do not try to fix this yourself; call us, so one of our technicians can come out to your house, find the problem and fix it properly.

Check out the Weather Stripping

You want to make sure the weather-stripping on the outside of your garage door frame is adequately functioning. If you see any damage, or the stripping itself has hardened because of heat exposure, you will want to replace it. Remember, if it is made of PVC, you will want to use a silicone based lubricant. While you’re at it, look at the weather-stripping on the bottom of the garage door as well. If it looks damaged, you should go ahead and replace it as well.

Don’t Forget to Lubricate the Metal Parts

You will want to give each of the metal parts of your door a proper lubrication prior to winter’s arrival. This includes the springs, track, and rollers.

To begin, take a dry cloth and remove any excess lubricant from past applications, in addition to any dust that might be present. A lubricant that is oil-based, such as 10W-30 motor oil, is recommended. Apply the lubricant sparingly, and wipe away any of the excess with a cloth. Avoid using products like WD-40. Those products are degreasers, and not lubricants, so they would not work well on your garage door.

Stay away from using grease, particularly on the tracks.

Inspect the Automatic Reversal System

There are two variations to this, the mechanical and photoelectric, so here are some general guidelines for each.

Mechanical – You will want to put a two-by-four at the threshold of the door. Go ahead and push the button to close the door. Once the door hits the wood, it should detect some resistance. At this point, it will reverse and open back up. If it fails to do this, you will want to look at the manual that came with your garage door to determine how to make the necessary adjustments.

Photoelectric – You will want to just put your foot in front of the beam while the door is closing. If the door does not stop and open back up, then the most likely problem is a misalignment between the two parts. If you can’t get this fixed, you can contact us as soon as possible.

 

Following these tips should help you avoid any major problems with your garage door during the winter months. If you just cannot find the time to complete the process, or you would like to have a professional take care of it for you, feel free to call us today!

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