Why Do Garage Door Springs Break?


Estimated read time: 4 minutes.

One thing that many homeowners find themselves wondering about is why does my garage door need its garage door springs replaced? In today’s day and age we see more and more things being treated more or less as disposable goods. Even many cars these days are manufactured in such a way that the first problem that arises in them makes them too costly to fix. A garage door however isn’t the same type of machine and so has parts that last longer and shorter than other parts. The garage door spring is one of those less lasting parts despite being one of the best engineered parts of your garage door opener system. This is because your garage door springs do pretty much all of the hard work related to you garage door opening and closing. In order to give you a better understanding of why your garage door spring broke in this article we will take a look at what sort of pressures are on your garage door springs that make them wear down. While these won’t help you fix the broken garage door spring that is keeping you from getting your car out of the garage right now it will help you understand why you are shelling out the money to get it fixed instead of buying an entirely new garage door opener system.

Your usual wear and tear is going to be the most common reason for a garage door torsion spring to fail at any given time. The torsion springs opening and closing your garage door at any given time are in fact under a lot of pressure and so are rated for a certain number of cycles. Your cheaper springs can be rated for around ten thousand cycles with a proper installation, while other more expensive springs can be rated for more than double that. This means that when looking at the cost of your garage door installation you may want to check out the quality of garage door springs that you are getting. For those who aren’t looking at garage door springs ratings very often here is a bit of a recap of the information you should be looking at. One cycle is an open and closure of your garage door, so essentially every cycle rating could be doubled if you wanted to think of things in terms of garage door movements. 

When you look at wear and tear you might be a bit disappointed that your garage door spring can’t last as long as some of the other machine parts in your life. However if you look at the details you will see things a tad clearer. We often don’t realize how often we use our garage door and how quickly we can go through these garage door cycles for one. If you look at the number of times you have opened and closed your garage door today and then factor in the idea that on weekends you might even exceed that amount you can see why these things can get a little tired. Then you need to think about just how much these things are doing every time that they lift your garage door. Your garage door springs are doing the majority of the lifting every time your garage door lifts and closes. Think about if you had to physically do that every time you needed to go out, you would certainly have a bit of wear and tear too.

Another reason that your garage door springs might fail is because of rust. Rust, if left unchecked, can wreak havoc on any sort of machinery and so is a culprit for a ton of costly repairs. Rust can eat away your springs and cause them to snap or break long before they are supposed to costing you more and becoming dangerous. Thankfully keeping rust at bay is pretty easy for most home owners to handle. All you need to do is remember to lube up your garage door springs every few months and you shouldn’t see any rust form. About once a season you should take the time to lube up your torsion springs in order to avoid rust. You should also take this time to look at other parts of your garage door and see if there is any damage that you can notice. You should also look to make sure there is any excess moisture in your garage which could lead to rust developing more quickly than expected.

Another culprit for broken garage door torsion springs is a cost saving measure that garage door installers can use. Installing one long spring instead of two shorter springs can save you a lot of money on installation but can cause an increase in tension on your spring, especially for heavier more substantial doors. This can cause the coils to have a much shorter lifespans than they are meant to have because of the added stress. 

Another reason your garage door torsion springs break seemingly more quickly than they should could be because your garage door is off balance.  In order to check this it is best to get in touch with a garage door professional as they will be able to do this much more quickly and safely than your average home owner could. Garage door springs can expand and contract differently as they grow older and are subject to different temperatures so it is important to check every so often to see if they are still working correctly in conjunction with one another.

The best way to ensure you don't have to replace your garage door’s torsion springs too quickly is to have quality springs installed in the first place and then have them maintained correctly  after their installation. In order to get this type of service it is important to know what constitutes a better garage door spring and what should be done in order to keep those springs in tip top shape. In short get longer lifespan springs if you can and make sure to keep them balanced and lubed up every so often.

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