What is a torsion spring?
Torsion springs are one of the greatest inventions that the garage door industry has ever experienced. Before torsion springs there were extension springs, these springs were on both sides of the garage door and balanced the weight of the door unevenly because they were not connected to each other. Torsion springs are installed on a torsion shaft which spans the width of the garage door, this allows the springs to lift the door evenly because the weight of the door is distributed evenly because of the torsion shaft.
Above is a garage door that was temporarily clamped, so it can continue to be used before the springs get replaced.
Pictured above are the replaced torsion springs for the first door pictured.
Is a torsion spring or extension spring better for my garage door?
Extension springs can be dangerous when they break because they can potentially go flying uncontrolled through the air. Torsion springs are much safer because the spring is wrapped around the shaft, this means that when they break they cannot go anywhere but on the shaft.
Pictured above is how you will identify if you have extension springs. As you can see, these could be dangerous if they break. If your doors springs look like the above, you should consider transitioning to torsion springs because someone could get seriously injured or your car could be damaged if they fly off.
How long do torsion springs last?
When springs are manufactured they are given a cycle rating, generally the cycle ratings start at 10,000 cycles. One cycle equals opening and closing your garage door one time, this means that if your spring is rated for 10,000 cycles you will be able to open and close the door 10,000 times before they are expected to break. So you can take the average number of times your garage door is opened and closed per day to estimate how long your springs will last. If you are constantly opening and closing your garage door you might want to consider upgrading your springs to a higher cycle rating. Higher cycle torsion springs are available as an option on most doors, and can go up to 100,000 cycles or more!
If one torsion spring breaks, should you replace the other spring(s) too?
We always recommend that you replace all springs on a door when one breaks, because all of the springs have the same cycle rating – when one spring breaks on a door, all of the springs on the door are at the end of their cycle life. It will save you more money in the end having a professional replace the springs all at once, rather than having multiple appointments.
If your garage door torsion springs need to be replaced. Click below to find your local RDA showroom, and we will get your garage door up and running again!