Garage Doors – The Spring Lift Mechanisms
It is true that most of homeowners are extremely improbable aware or even consider how the mechanics of their garage doors. What you know is merely lift and raise your garage door as wished and expect they will do their role perfectly each time.
When the problem arises – your garage door stops functioning and requiring for investing a new one – there are suddenly a long list of options you need to consider. These can be ranged from different styles of garage door, different types of lifting mechanism to broad selection of operation.
To make sure that your garage door functions safely and easily, you likely have to choose what kind of spring lift mechanism. It is because springs are responsible for the safe and smooth movement of your garage door. Again, a problem arises when you decide for inexpensive spring replacement or try to do-it-yourself replacement with no required skills and tools. The effects can be the door crashing down on your property or even cause serious injuries to anyone trapped below.
Types of Garage Door Springs
Garage door springs outset the weight of the door and enable it to open and close with easiness. A problem with the spring tension may cause the door to open or close unequally, improperly, or at the wrong speed. For solving this problem you can adjust what-so-called the spring lifting mechanism.
By and large, garage doors are available in plenty different styles that employ two different types of springs, the two main categories of springs are extension and torsion.
It is better for you to first seeking for professional advice or experts related to garage door springs, more particularly if you are lack of proper tools, have no experience, or a mechanical background.
- Extension spring lift mechanism
As stated earlier, you need to determine what type of springs your garage door has before you can adjust the spring on your garage door. Extension spring or side-mounted springs are easier to adjust, while torsion springs are more dangerous to meddle with, so you would be better off calling an expert in this field.
Most commonly used by domestic garage doors, extension springs are practically attached to fairly above the upper horizontal tracks on either side of the door. They will expand or stretch to lift and open the door. In this operation, it use a counterbalancing force to supply support for the door’s weight. You will find that the force itself can be exerted manually or via an electric motor. Here, the bigger the force the wider the extension springs extend.
Also called as side-mounted extension springs, they run above and parallel to the door track, and they’ll have an attached pulley and cable. The cable, which holds the spring, attaches to hooks in the track hanger assembly. There will be two springs: one above each track on either side of the garage door (WikiHow).
In fact, in more details, extension springs need to be installed with safety cables. This will prevent the spring from flying out if the spring, cable or bracket break. A breakage or failure of one of these components can take place at any time. Some causes can be attributed whether the door is moving or static, or can be the consequence of a imperfect installation, worn-out part or impairment to the door or mechanism.
The operating process can be outlined as an extension spring counterbalance system comprises of a pair of stretched springs running parallel to the horizontal tracks. The springs elevate the door through a system of pulleys and counterbalance cables running from the bottom corner brackets through the pulleys. When the door is lifted, the springs contract, thus raising the door as the tension is discharge. As to material, these springs are typically made of 11 gauge galvanized steel, and the lengths of these springs are based on the height of the garage door in question. Their lifting weight capacity can best be known by the color that is painted on the ends of the springs.
It is true that extension springs are very broadly applied, and also are less expensive compared to their torsion spring counterparts. However it is significant to keep in mind that they are commonly featured with more exposed parts, that cause them more harmful and vulnerable to damage.
- Torsion spring lift mechanism
Rather than stretching like an extension spring, torsion springs generally use a twist or pivot torque to lift and lower garage doors. Some of their benefits are: able to support much more weight, and are usually more robust and durable. Moreover, they offer better balance so you can operate the door in easier way. And, unlike the extension springs, torsion springs have only fewer exposed parts, means they are generally safer. Of course, they are normally more costly options, and are available in a great variety of sizes and lengths to fit different types of door.
This type of mechanism is ordinarily applied to doors that are over 10 feet wide. Torsion springs will be mounted above the door and will run along a metal shaft that’s parallel with the upmost of the door. They are attached just above the garage door opening, and the spring will gradually rotate and coil around the shaft when the door is opened. They can be matched easily to manual or remote controlled garage doors.
Lighter and smaller doors may only have a single torsion spring, while larger and heavier doors may have two springs, with one located on either side of the central plate.
A torsion spring counterbalance system is featured with one or two tightly coiled up springs on a steel shaft with cable drums at both ends. The whole setup is mounted on the header wall above the garage door. It will have three supports: a center bearing plate with a steel or nylon bearing and two end bearing plates at both ends.
The springs themselves comprise of the steel wire with a stationary cone at one end and a winding cone at the other end. The static cone is attached to the center bearing plate. The twisting cone will be full of holes every 90 degrees for winding the springs and two set screws to bonded the springs to the shaft.
Steel counterbalance cables run from the roller brackets at the bottom corners of the door to a notch in the cable drums. When the door is elevated, the springs unroll and the stored tension raises the door by turning the shaft, thus turning the cable drums, wrapping the cables around the grooves on the cable drums. When the door is lowered, the cables unwrap from the drums and the springs are rewound to full tension.