Garage Doors – Steps for Adjusting Your Torsion Spring

Modern Wood Garage Door

Modern Wood Garage Door

Most garage doors offer what-so-called spring lift mechanism which functions to outset the weight of the door and let it smoothly and easily open and close. By and large, garage doors are available in various types and also styles which use two different kinds of springs, side-mounted extension spring and torsion spring,

if there is something wrong with the spring tension, it will have impact on the door that will open or close unevenly, improperly, or at the erroneous speed. As a result, you most likely can solve this problem by adjusting the springs.

However, when you especially have the torsion springs, it’s better for you to ask for services of a professional or expert. It is also applied for you who lack of proper tools and a mechanical background.


  • Know your torsion springs. 

Torsion springs are commonly applied to doors that are over 10 feet wide. This kind of mechanism is usually mounted above the door and will run along a metal shaft which is parallel with the top of the door.

In general, lighter and smaller doors most likely will only have a single torsion spring, whereas heavier and bigger doors may have two springs, with one situated on either side of the central plate.

Figure out the problems. 

Many problems can be caused by inappropriate spring tension. It will relate to how your garage door opens and closes with ease. Once you understand the problems, it’s going to be very useful for you in determining whether you need to adjust the spring or not in order to repair the door. Some problems that say your garage doors need spring adjustments are:

  • hard to open or close
  • open or close too quickly
  • do not close fully or properly
  • close unevenly and leave a gap.
Adjust Garage Door Spring

Adjust Garage Door Spring

Finding the solution. 

Depending on your problem, you can carry out the following :

  • Decrease the tension when the problems are the door isn’t fully close, hard to close, or opens too quickly.
  • Increase the tension when the problems are the door is hard to open or closes too quickly.
  • Adjust the tension on one side (or where the gap occurred) when your door is closing unevenly.
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Gather your tools. 

For this job, you’re going to assemble several basic tools and safety equipment. For safety equipment you will need such as gloves, safety glasses, and a hard hat. And for the other tools, prepare a sturdy ladder, a C-clamp, an adjustable wrench, and a marker or masking tape.

Particularly for adjusting torsion springs, two winding bars or solid steel rods are highly required. In more details, the rods or bars should have length of be 18 to 24 inches (45.7 to 61 cm). You can buy the solid steel bars at your local hardware stores.

In determining the size of the bar or rod, you have to measure the diameter of the holes in the winding cone (the collar that secures the spring to the metal shaft). The cones are mostly found in hole diameter of 1/2 inch.

It’s advisable for not trying to use any type of tool as a replacement for the winding bars or steel rods.

Adjusting Torsion Springs

Close the garage door. 

If you install an automatic garage door, you first need to unplug the opener. Because the garage door will be closed, this will mean that:

  • The springs will be under tension, which raises the risk of injury. If you aren’t confident enough in dealing with a spring under this much tension, it’s better to ask professional help.
  • You should provide adequate lighting in the garage to work with ease.
  • You need to have an alternative way out if anything else taken place.
  • Assemble all your tools inside the garage.

Keep the door secured. 

You can put a C-clamp or a pair of locking pliers on the track of the garage door just above the bottom roller. This is going to prevent the door from popping open. Locate

Situate the winding cone.

Started from the stationary center plate, see, find, and follow the spring out to where it ends. There, you will find a winding cone secured in place. The cone will have four holes evenly spaced around it, plus two set screws lock the spring in place on the center shaft.

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Modifying the tension on the spring can be performed by adjusting the winding cone, namely by inserting the winding bars into the holes and turning the cone in one direction or the other. loosen

Loosen the set screws. 

First, insert the winding cone or solid steel rod into the bottom hole on the winding collar, and then secure cone in place with the bar and loosen the screws.

Assess the shaft to check whether or not there are any flattened or depressed areas where the screws are meant to be placed. If so, be sure to replace the screws in these same flats when you complete adjusting to guarantee they are set more firmly.

Be ready to adjust the tension. 

Put the bars into two consecutive holes in the winding cone. Place yourself to the side of the bars so that your head and body are not in direct exposure when the spring unfortunately breaks. Always be prepared to move swiftly.

Adjust the tension. 

The bars must be fully inserted, and the cone should be rotated manually in 1/4 increments. To know a 1/4 turn, you can rotate the winding bars 90 degrees.

  • For a door that’s hard to open or closes to quickly, you can increase the tension by winding the cone up(or in the same direction when garage door cable goes through the pulley).
  • And for a door that isn’t fully close, hard to close, or opens to quickly, you can decrease the tension by winding the cone down (in the opposite direction from how the garage door cable passes through the pulley).

In the case you already know precisely how much you require to adjust your door, carry out all the steps and test the door. If you think it’s necessary, repeat on working in 1/4 turns, until you attain the right tension.

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Stretch the spring.

Secure the bottom-most winding bar in place and take out the second bar. Measure out 1/4 inch from the end of the winding cone (away from the center) and put a mark with a marker or piece of masking tape. With the bar still in the bottom hole, pull slightly up (toward the ceiling) on the bar and toward the center plate.

While you’re doing this, you need to continue holding the bar up and over and tap on it with the second bar. Tap it just below the winding cone. Tap it away from the center plate and toward the mark on the shaft. Tap the bar until you have extended the spring to reach the mark on the shaft.

Tighten the set screws. 

Once you’ve stretched the spring out 1/4 inch, grip it in place with the one bar and lock it in place on the shaft by tightening the set screws.

Remember to replace the screws into their flats when there were any on the shaft.

Repeat on the other side. 

For torsion spring mechanisms with two springs (one on either side of the center plate), you can repeat steps four to eight on the other spring. Torsion springs must be adjusted equally to ascertain balance.

Test your door. 

You can take away any clamps or pliers that are keeping the door in its place. Now it’s time to test the door to check if you have adjusted the tension enough. If not, repeat steps four to ten until you achieve the proper tension to solve the problem you’re dealing with.

Once your adjustments finished, for the case of automatic garage door, you may plug back the opener.

Lubricate the springs. 

One of the tips is that you should lubricate all springs, hinges, bearings, and metal rollers twice a year with a lithium- or silicone-based spray. It’s better for not using WD-40.

Before and After Torsion Replacement

Before and After Torsion Replacement



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