There are 2 different types of garage door springs. Torsion springs: (Torsion springs are tubular and attach to metal pole above door opening) Extension springs: (Extension springs are found on sides of door or run along sides on top of track. Solid one piece doors have springs attached to the hinges on either side of garage door. Anytime garage door springs break the spring has reached the end of its life. Torsion springs are rated by cycles. (Cycles: 1 cycle is equal to a garage door opening and closing one time.) Most torsion springs are rated between 1500 and 2000 cycles). Extension springs break for the same reasons. Garage doors within 2 miles of ocean coastline will rust much quicker than normal. Springs normally do not break for any other reasons.
All spring replacements should be done by a technician, for safety purposes.
Try not to open a garage door with broken springs. It just causes more damage to door or door opener. Springs are the most commonly replaced parts. Whenever I arrive for service calls the first thing I look for is broken springs. No matter how mechanically inclined you may be you should never attempt to unwind or replace springs yourself, EVER. There is usually a warning tag that hangs from spring bracket. It will read. Do not touch these springs. May cause serious bodily injury or DEATH. The easiest way to find out if your garage door springs have enough strength to open your door properly there is one easy way to test this and that is you should be able to open a sectional roll up garage door with two fingers if it is perfectly balanced then it should be able to be open very easily. If your garage door does not open easily with two fingers then it probably needs to have a little bit more tension on the springs. If you have too much tension on your door springs then the door opens very easily and will sometimes shoot up without you even touching the garage door this is what we call hot when the springs are too hot there is too much tension and it’s possible it can cause damage to the door. Also you should be able to open the garage door half way up and the door should stay put without opening or closing this is what we would call a perfect balance.
solid one piece garage door
If you have a solid one piece garage door that flips open then it is pretty much the same concept but you may not be able to lift a solid one piece door with two fingers so just keep in mind that the door should not shoot up and open by it’s self that would make the springs too much and it should not be too heavy to where you struggle to open it, And it does not stay open when you open it all the way up. If you have a sectional roll up garage door with torsion springs for extension springs then most likely if you need more tension you can just add more tension to the springs without replacing them. Now if your garage door does not have enough tension for the tension is low it also causes other problems like cables will jump off these cable drums because there is not enough tension on the springs to keep the cables tight so what happens is when the garage door is all the way up and not enough tension on the cables they on wind and will make the garage door not function at all even damage the track possibly or other parts of the garage door. So if you have A garage door opener then too much or not enough spring tension puts a lot of stress on the internal moving parts of your garage door opener because if it is too heavy then the garage door opener will straining to open it and if you have too much tension then the garage door opener will strain to close the door. Most all grades door openers use plastic drive gears so you can imagine how easily they can strip when operating with an unbalanced garage door. What kind of garage door you may have spring tension is absolutely the most important part of a properly functioning garage door.