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How Garage Doors Work

If you use your garage door twice a day — once when you leave in the morning and once when you return home — you are opening an closing your garage door a total of 1,460 times a year.

At that rate, the largest opening to your home is putting in a lot of work! Meaning you should probably be keeping an eye on it to make sure your garage door is properly maintained. The first step to that is understanding how garage doors work.

Step One: Make Sure the Area is Clear

Most modern and smart garage doors operate using a torsion spring system, assisted by an electric motor. Some garage doors also use something called an extension spring system, but these are far less common.

Torsion Spring System

Your garage door has many parts, but the torsion spring is the element that does the majority of the heavy lifting with the assistance of an electric motor.

Torsion springs are long, horizontal springs mounted above the opening of your garage door. At each end of the torsion tube is a drum. The drum attaches cables to the bottom corners for your garage door.

When your door closes, the springs wind tightly and store energy. When the door opens, the stored energy in the wound springs is released and helps lift the door open.

These springs take on weight and release a large amount of energy every time the door opens and closes. Keeping your springs in good condition and replacing them regularly is important to keep your door functioning.

For safety, make sure you have a safety cable installed through your springs. If the springs break while you are trying to operate your door, the door could fall and cause serious injury or property damage.

Extension Spring System

Extension springs are a lesser-used system that may still be found on older garage doors.

In this system, extension springs are mounted on both sides of the garage door, and they attach to the track supports with cables.

Extension springs systems require both springs to be equally balanced, which can be difficult if only one of the springs is replaced at a time. This unbalance also makes them more likely to break and cause damage or injury.

We recommend older homes that still use extension spring systems update their garage doors to the newer and safer torsion spring system.

Contact Smarr Garage Door for Repairs

A broken garage door can be a hassle and an inconvenience. The longer you wait to repair your garage door, the more problems that can arise. If you are having issues with your garage door in Columbia, MO that you aren’t sure how to repair on your own, contact Smarr Garage Doors today to schedule a repair with an expert technician.

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