Over time, the springs on your garage door will wear out and need replacing. Replacing garage door springs may seem intimidating, but with the right tools and safety precautions, it can be done as a DIY project.This guide will walk you through everything you need to know to safely and successfully replace your garage door torsion springs or extension springs. We’ll cover the supplies you need, key safety tips, steps for removing old springs, proper installation of new springs, testing the balance, and adjustments.
- Have the right tools – winding bars, vise grips, ladder, clamps, safety cables, work gloves.
- Safety first – wear gloves, goggles, secure door, use caution on ladder.
- Measure old springs to get proper replacements.
- Follow manufacturer’s instructions for winding bars and spring turns.
- Balance door when done and test safety features.
How to Replace Torsion Springs
Torsion springs mount horizontally above the garage door to counterbalance the door’s weight. Here are the steps to replace them:
- Secure the Door First, with the garage door closed, clamp pieces of wood or locking pliers securely to the tracks on both sides to prevent the door from opening.
- Measure the Old Springs Measure the length and inside diameter of the old springs. This will help you order replacement springs.
- Insert Winding Bars Insert winding bars into the winding cone at the end of each spring. Secure them in the cones with tightening clamps.
- Loosen Set Screws Loosen the set screws at the base of the winding cones. This will allow the cones to slide up and down the shaft.
- Remove Old Springs Carefully remove the old springs by detaching them from the mounting brackets. Make sure your face and body are out of the way in case there is tension left in the springs.
- Install New Springs Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to install the new torsion springs on the spring shaft or tube.
- Attach Stationary Cones Attach the stationary winding cones at the other end of the springs. Tighten securely.
- Thread Cables Thread the lift cables over the cable drums in the center. Leave some slack in the cables.
- Wind Springs Refer to the spring manufacturer’s specifications for the number of turns to apply tension. Use the winding bars to tighten the springs, keeping count of the turns.
- Tighten Set Screws Tighten the set screws at the base of the winding cone to lock them in place. Repeat on other side.
- Lubricate Springs Apply garage door lubricant to the springs where the coils rub together. This reduces friction and wear.
- Balance the Door With the locking pliers removed, test operation and balance the door following the manufacturer’s instructions if needed.
How to Replace Extension Springs
Extension springs run vertically along the sides of the garage door. Here are the replacement steps:
- Check Spring Type Figure out if you have open-loop, double-loop, or clipped-end extension springs. This determines replacement parts.
- Purchase New Springs Buy new springs that match the type and size of the old ones. Make sure they have the same length, gauge, diameter, and cycle life.
- Detach Safety Cable Unsnap the safety containment cable running above the horizontal track.
- Unhook Spring Carefully unhook the old spring from the track hanger bracket above the door.
- Install New Spring Attach one end of the new spring to the track hanger using the hook. Lift the other end into place on the pulley.
- Reattach Safety Cable Reattach the safety cable to ensure the spring is contained if it breaks.
- Test Operation Raise and lower the door slowly to check balance and smooth operation. Adjust spring if needed.
Replacing worn garage door springs ensures your door continues opening and closing smoothly. With this guide showing you how to replace torsion and extension springs, as well as key safety steps, you can take on this job as a DIY weekend project. Properly maintaining your garage door is well worth the effort to preserve ease of access. Let us know in the comments if you have any other questions!
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it safe to replace garage door springs?
Replacing torsion and extension springs can be dangerous if attempted without the right tools and knowledge. Using proper precautions like securing the door, wearing gloves and goggles, and following installation procedures reduces the safety risks. Consider hiring a professional if you lack DIY experience.
Is it hard to replace garage door springs yourself?
The process requires mechanical skill and physical effort, but homeowners can replace their own springs with some patience and the manufacturer’s installation guide. The difficulty lies in disassembling the old springs and reassembling with the correct tension.
How often should garage door springs be replaced?
On average, garage door springs last 5-7 years with moderate daily use before needing replacement. in high traffic homes, springs may need replacement more frequently. Signs you need new springs include sagging, uneven door movement, or grinding noises.