Go Back  DVD Talk Forum > General Discussions > Other Talk
Reload this Page >

Garage Door Spring Broken!

Other Talk "Otterville" plus Religion/Politics

Garage Door Spring Broken!

Old 08-09-10, 12:38 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
kenbuzz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Bloomington, IN
Posts: 21,070
Likes: 0
Received 8 Likes on 7 Posts
Garage Door Spring Broken!

I've never heard of this happening to ANYONE before, but sometime yesterday afternoon the torsion spring on my garage door broke!



^not my garage, but the broken spring is exactly the same as in this photo.

We've got a two-car garage with a single, double-width door. I had opened/closed the door two or three times Sunday morning - I was doing yardwork in the front and needed access to the power outlets, had to drive to the hardware store to get some replacement trimmer string, etc - so when the family was piling into my car for a trip to the pool Sunday evening, I was surprised when the garage door opener only lifted the door about a foot before stopping.

It took me a while to figure out what happened. At first I thought maybe the heat in the garage had fried the opener, so I disconnected the door from the track and tried to manually open the door... holy moley, was I wrong. Even with my superhuman Otter strength I could barely budge the door. How in the heck did it get so heavy? It took me about 10 seconds to think it through before it dawned on me. Sure enough, the spring that acts as a counterweight had failed.

I was able to get the door open by letting the opener pull while I lifted from the bottom, then I had my wife back both cars out into the driveway while I "spotted" the door to ensure it didn't start rolling back down during the escape maneuver. Our cars spent the night sitting out in the elements.

The house was built in 2003, the garage and all the hardware is relatively new. Having been a homeowner for decades, and having grown up in a home with my family for decades before that, I have *never* heard nor seen of a torsion spring snapping. So when a barely 7-year-old unit fails, my gut instinct is to suspect that it was defective and that there's a warranty out there that needs to be invoked. I know what company installed the door and hardware, we're getting them out today/tomorrow to look things over.

Has anyone else ever heard of such a thing? It is really really common and I've just lived an uber-sheltered life, or it this as unusual as I feel it is?

Last edited by kenbuzz; 08-09-10 at 12:49 PM.
Old 08-09-10, 12:43 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Mole177's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Glendale, Ca
Posts: 4,376
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

the exact same thing happened to me.

had the garage company replace the T spring and lines (goes on the reels on the sides) and is now under lifetime waranty.

it was a pain getting opening the garage.
Old 08-09-10, 12:51 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Th0r S1mpson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 36,443
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Happened to my mom. Not common but not overly uncommon.

It also happened to her garage.
Old 08-09-10, 12:51 PM
  #4  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Dr. Henry Jones, Jr.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: My Car
Posts: 6,752
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Happened to me last year. Got it replaced and warranty'd.
Old 08-09-10, 12:53 PM
  #5  
Premium Member
 
The Cow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Grazing in a field somewhere...
Posts: 20,958
Received 5 Likes on 4 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Happened to my garage door about 5 years ago. Definitely not a 'do-it-yourself' fix job.

And I agree with Mole, the door was pretty hard to open at that point.
Old 08-09-10, 12:53 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Dr. Henry Jones, Jr.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: My Car
Posts: 6,752
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Also, our house was built in 2002, and at time of replacement the repair guy informed us that the construction company had used the cheapest everything on all parts of our garage.
Old 08-09-10, 12:55 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
kenbuzz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Bloomington, IN
Posts: 21,070
Likes: 0
Received 8 Likes on 7 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

^ what time of year did yours fail? I'm wondering if there's any relationship to excessive heat build-up in the garage for extended times and torsion spring failure.

Sure, our garage gets mighty hot during the summer, but usually we don't get prolonged heat spells where it gets near or into the 90s every single day. The daily heat up and nightly cool down cycle has been much more pronounced this summer than in years' past, which is the only other unusal thing I can come up with regarding our current situation. Like I mentioned above, I've been on this planet a pretty long time and this is completely foreign to me.
Old 08-09-10, 12:57 PM
  #8  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,763
Likes: 0
Received 4 Likes on 3 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Originally Posted by kenbuzz View Post
I've never heard of this happening to ANYONE before, but sometime yesterday afternoon the torsion spring on my garage door broke!
Evidently it has. We had a thread about this a while ago.
Old 08-09-10, 01:14 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Dr Mabuse's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: 75 clicks above the Do Lung bridge...
Posts: 18,950
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

It's common, happens all the time.

Do not delay in getting it fixed, serious damage/injury can result from that scenario.
Old 08-09-10, 01:19 PM
  #10  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
kenbuzz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Bloomington, IN
Posts: 21,070
Likes: 0
Received 8 Likes on 7 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Originally Posted by X View Post
Evidently it has. We had a thread about this a while ago.
Thanks! Very helpful! +1

Originally Posted by Dr Mabuse View Post
It's common, happens all the time.

Do not delay in getting it fixed, serious damage/injury can result from that scenario.
No worries there, the garage door guy is at the house now dealing with it.

Last edited by kenbuzz; 08-09-10 at 01:21 PM.
Old 08-09-10, 01:21 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Dr. Henry Jones, Jr.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: My Car
Posts: 6,752
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Originally Posted by kenbuzz View Post
^ what time of year did yours fail? I'm wondering if there's any relationship to excessive heat build-up in the garage for extended times and torsion spring failure.

Sure, our garage gets mighty hot during the summer, but usually we don't get prolonged heat spells where it gets near or into the 90s every single day. The daily heat up and nightly cool down cycle has been much more pronounced this summer than in years' past, which is the only other unusal thing I can come up with regarding our current situation. Like I mentioned above, I've been on this planet a pretty long time and this is completely foreign to me.
Ours was last October or November.
Old 08-09-10, 01:21 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: MI
Posts: 25,061
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Yeah, it WILL happen; it is basically "expected maintainance." My garage door was put in in 1992 and I'm on my third springs. My garage door guy says a set of springs typically lasts about 10,000 door up/down cycles. Tip; Replace the non-broken one too. It will die soon, and replacing both at once is cheaper than two trips close together.

Don't do it yourself. If the spring gets away from you while it is being tensioned, it packs a lot of energy. You need to know EXACTLY what you're doing.
Old 08-09-10, 01:26 PM
  #13  
Premium Member
 
The Cow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Grazing in a field somewhere...
Posts: 20,958
Received 5 Likes on 4 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Does the garage door guy know anything about VMS Alarms? Had you had one, it might have alerted you right away to the situation!
Old 08-09-10, 01:33 PM
  #14  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Alexandria, VA
Posts: 2,864
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Mine broke earlier this year. Other than being a pain in the butt to get the door open to get our cars back out, it wasn't a huge deal. I think the replacement was something like $150 installed.
Old 08-09-10, 01:52 PM
  #15  
DVD Talk Legend
Thread Starter
 
kenbuzz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Bloomington, IN
Posts: 21,070
Likes: 0
Received 8 Likes on 7 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Originally Posted by OldDude View Post
Yeah, it WILL happen; it is basically "expected maintainance." My garage door was put in in 1992 and I'm on my third springs. My garage door guy says a set of springs typically lasts about 10,000 door up/down cycles. Tip; Replace the non-broken one too. It will die soon, and replacing both at once is cheaper than two trips close together.

Don't do it yourself. If the spring gets away from you while it is being tensioned, it packs a lot of energy. You need to know EXACTLY what you're doing.
To tell the truth, when I saw that the spring had broken I was frankly surprised it hadn't unwound violently, slicing my Impala in half length-wise while it did so.

The repair guy is replacing both springs. Wifey will call me later with the damages. I've asked her to ask about warranty.

I half expect when I come home tonight for the new spring to be over-tensioned somehow. So that when I press the garage remote button in my car, that sucker will fly up super fast, rip through the back wall of the garage and laundry room, and end up stuck through the back of the house. With a couple of 4x4's I could prop up the "top" of the door and have a nice little roof for the hot tub we have on our deck.

Last edited by kenbuzz; 08-09-10 at 01:57 PM.
Old 08-09-10, 03:08 PM
  #16  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Posts: 16,173
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

It happens. The house I grew up in had a very heavy double wide garage door and the spring (or maybe it was more than one spring, but it was only one door) actually broke on us a couple times in the 20 years I lived there. Once not violent, once violent, lucky no people/animals/cars were damaged when the violent one happened.
Old 08-09-10, 03:11 PM
  #17  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Cardsfan111's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Indiana
Posts: 17,294
Likes: 0
Received 14 Likes on 7 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Guess I'll chime in with another "happened to me" response. I figured it was a relatively common repair, at least from the standpoint of companies that work on overhead doors.
Old 08-09-10, 03:39 PM
  #18  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Mole177's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Glendale, Ca
Posts: 4,376
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Sure beats the old school style, where the springs are on the side of the door.
Old 08-09-10, 06:29 PM
  #19  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 7,638
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

You guys having trouble open/closing the door with broken spring, can't you disengage your opener and just do it the old fashioned way? Mine has cord you pull to disengage the electronic opener. Broken spring shouldn't matter because the only working parts are your arms and the rollers in the tracks. I had a spring break, went old style till it was fixed. What do you do if the power goes out?
Old 08-09-10, 07:31 PM
  #20  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 5,663
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

the spring provides all the counterweight. it doesn't matter if the power goes out. if the spring is broken the door weighs a ton and the opener (or you) can't open it easily.
Old 08-09-10, 07:49 PM
  #21  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: chicago
Posts: 3,103
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

3yrs ago the complete bar ripped out of my garage wall. i put it all back up by myself even though its very dangerous and i really had no clue what i was doing. i just read a guide online for how many turns each spring needed for the size of door. it took me a few tries but i fixed it and it works fine now.
Old 08-09-10, 07:54 PM
  #22  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Blaine, WA
Posts: 1,444
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

It's a fault in the design of the spring. You see, the spring has no hinge and it breaks down after extended use. Don't believe me, spend some time just opening and closing the garage door repeatedly.....it will break !
Old 08-09-10, 08:08 PM
  #23  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 7,638
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Originally Posted by asabase View Post
the spring provides all the counterweight. it doesn't matter if the power goes out. if the spring is broken the door weighs a ton and the opener (or you) can't open it easily.
I can just toss mine up with one hand.
Old 08-09-10, 08:19 PM
  #24  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: MI
Posts: 25,061
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Originally Posted by rw2516 View Post
I can just toss mine up with one hand.
Mine is a double-wide, and heavy gauge steel. It is pretty much at the limit of my capacity to lift. I can do it but it's no fun. A single wide, or a lighter material, like aluminum or fiberglass would be more manageable (or maybe you're a weight lifter).

My opener was misadjusted to open the door with spring broken (it shouldn't do that). When the 2nd spring broke, it stripped the teeth on the little carrier that runs on the jackscrew (the jackscrew was fine), so besides the two springs, the carrier had to be replaced (fortunately a cheap part)
Old 08-10-10, 05:57 AM
  #25  
DVD Talk Hall of Fame
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 7,638
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Re: Garage Door Spring Broken!

Wondering if mine might be different because it's an older house and the electric opener was added years later to existing door.

In 2nd grade I'd hold my bike with one hand, open the door with the other.

Last edited by rw2516; 08-10-10 at 06:08 AM.

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.