Adjusting a garage door spring is an essential maintenance task that ensures the smooth operation of your garage door. Over time, garage door springs can lose tension or become unbalanced, leading to issues such as difficulty in opening or closing the door. In this article, we will dive into the process of adjusting a garage door spring, providing you with the necessary steps and precautions to take.
Types of Garage Door Springs
Before we delve into the adjustment process, it’s important to understand the two main types of garage door springs: torsion springs and extension springs.
Torsion Springs: Torsion springs are located above the garage door and are attached to a metal rod. They work by twisting and storing energy when the door is closed, and then releasing that energy to help lift the door when it’s opened.
Extension Springs: Extension springs are typically found on either side of the garage door and stretch when the door is closed. They provide the necessary force to lift the door when it’s opened.
Before adjusting the garage door spring, gather the following materials:
1. Safety glasses and gloves: It’s crucial to protect your eyes and hands during the adjustment process.
2. Winding bars: These are specialized tools used to adjust torsion springs. Make sure to use the correct size for your specific spring.
3. C-clamps: C-clamps are used to secure the door in place and prevent it from moving during the adjustment.
4. Tape measure: This will help you measure the spring’s tension and ensure proper adjustment.
5. Adjustable wrench: You may need this tool to loosen or tighten bolts or screws during the adjustment process.
Adjusting Torsion Springs
1. Ensure safety: Put on your safety glasses and gloves before starting any work on the garage door spring.
2. Release tension: Use the winding bars to unwind the tension from the torsion spring. Insert the winding bars into the winding cone, and slowly turn the bars in the opposite direction of the spring’s windings. This will release the tension and make the adjustment easier.
3. Measure tension: Use a tape measure to determine the current tension of the spring. This will help you gauge the necessary adjustment.
4. Make adjustments: To increase tension, turn the winding bars in the direction of the spring’s windings. To decrease tension, turn the bars in the opposite direction. Make small adjustments and re-measure the tension until it reaches the desired level.
5. Test the door: Once you’ve made the necessary adjustments, test the door by opening and closing it several times to ensure smooth operation. If the door feels balanced and functions properly, you have successfully adjusted the torsion spring.
Adjusting Extension Springs
1. Secure the door: Use C-clamps to secure the garage door in place, preventing it from accidentally opening or closing during the adjustment process.
2. Release tension: Carefully disconnect the safety cables from the extension springs. Then, slowly and cautiously release the tension from the springs by manually stretching them until they are fully extended.
3. Make adjustments: To increase tension, move the hook of the extension spring closer to the door. To decrease tension, move the hook away from the door. Make small adjustments and ensure both sides of the door have equal tension.
4. Reconnect safety cables: Once you’ve made the necessary adjustments, reattach the safety cables to the extension springs.
5. Test the door: Remove the C-clamps and test the door by opening and closing it several times. Ensure that the door operates smoothly and remains balanced. If needed, make further adjustments until the desired balance is achieved.
Adjusting a garage door spring is a task that requires caution and precision. Whether you are dealing with torsion springs or extension springs, following the proper steps and using the right tools is crucial for a successful adjustment. Regularly inspecting and maintaining your garage door springs will help extend their lifespan and ensure the safe and efficient operation of your garage door.