When it comes to the proper balance of the garage door, there are three things to consider:
- The garage door must be always well balanced in order to move, close, and open right.
- Testing the garage door balance doesn’t require expert skills. It’s a simple step-by-step task.
- But fixing a door, which is not balanced, is a different story. This task requires great garage door repair skills because it has to do with the springs.
So, let’s take things from scratch.
Why is it important to keep the garage door well balanced?
Let’s begin by saying that the door’s balance depends on the springs’ condition. One of the roles garage door springs have is to balance the door. That is before they lift it. That’s why they are tightened and adjusted. That’s also why the side mount springs split the sum of the door’s weight to the two sides. So, each one of the two extension springs has a power equal with the half of the whole door’s weight so that they will be able to counterbalance the door and lift it equally from both sides.
So, when one of the two springs is damaged or broken, the door won’t open straight. The same thing will happen when the garage door torsion spring is not well-adjusted. Hence, when we talk about the door’s balance, we actually mean that it is aligned and adjusted to move straight. If not, it won’t open and close well.
How to test the balance of garage doors
With the door shut, the garage door opener must be disconnected. Once this is done, you should lift the door manually up to the height of your chest. Then, you should release it. If the door is well-balanced, it will stay in place. And that’s because the springs are wound tightly to hold its weight. If it slowly moves downwards or upwards, it’s currently acceptable. But you should check the springs soon. On the other hand, if the door slams down or is lifted up with some force, the springs need immediate adjustment.
Garage door spring adjustment is a risky task
Adjusting either extension or torsion springs is not easy. And that’s because the springs along with their parts are tensed and so dangerous to your safety. And the repair work is not always straight forward since not all extension springs and not all torsion springs are one and the same. For torsion spring adjustment, for instance, you might need winding bars but some branded models might require an electric drill. And you need to know how much to tighten the springs. If you overdo it, the door will be lifted up.
As for the extension springs, they are connected to the pulleys and might also have safety cables. All these parts must be disconnected and then reattached to adjust the springs. And you might have to do it several times before the door is properly balanced.
Keep in mind that any garage door spring repair is dangerous. Due to their high tension, springs might snap and hurt you during the process of adjustment. And so it’s always recommended leaving such jobs to the pros.