While in the process of shopping for a garage door replacement or garage door repair in Orange County, you may hear about how important it is to keep your door’s springs in good working order. Alternatively, while looking into DIY projects for your Mission Viejo home, you might have seen a warning about how critical it is to leave garage door spring repair to a professional. If you want to understand your garage door, you’ll need to understand what springs do and why they’re so important to maintain. 

The vast majority of residential garages use either torsion springs or extension springs to open and close their overhead doors. Overhead, in this instance, refers to tracks that run along the garage’s ceiling and hold the door when it is open. Torsion and extension springs work by pulling up on the door, counteracting the force of gravity. This effectively makes the door weightless and means that your garage door only has to overcome the friction of the door sliding on its tracks. 

Torsion vs. Extension Springs

Extension springs are mounted on either side of the door’s track. When a door closes, these springs extend and store energy in their coils. Extension springs are not as popular as torsion springs because they are more difficult to lubricate and don’t offer the same smooth motion that torsion springs do. However, they are inexpensive and compact, which makes them perfect for smaller garages. 

Torsion springs are mounted above the garage door opening or at the back of the horizontal track. These springs do not extend or retract, but instead rotate, tightening or loosening their coils as they operate. Smaller doors will have one spring, while larger doors will use two. When properly balanced by a garage door service, torsion springs allow a door to operate smoothly and effectively.

How They Work

When a garage door is closed, torsion and extension springs are fully loaded with potential energy stored in their coils. As the door opens, the coils relax and can’t hold as much weight. At this point, however, the door is sliding onto the horizontal track which means the springs don’t need to hold as much weight. Doors are always designed so that the strength of the springs remains proportional to the changing vertical weight of the door. Because of the energy these springs store, it’s very important that you let a professional garage door service perform repairs on them. Without the proper tools and training, you can end up hurting yourself or damaging your home.

How to Get the Most From Your Springs

Like any mechanical component, springs have a finite lifespan. Torsion and extension springs will last for an average of 10,000 cycles, with a cycle being one opening and closing of your garage door. If all you do is open your garage door in the morning and evening for your daily commute, you can expect your springs to last for roughly 15 years. If you use your garage door frequently throughout the day, you may want to invest in extended-life torsion springs. Larger-than-standard torsion springs can last for up to 100,000 cycles. Regardless of how much you use your garage door, you’ll want to make sure that you keep the springs from rusting. By spraying a rust-inhibiting product like WD-40 roughly every three months, you can keep your springs from corroding and suffering an early failure.

If you need garage door spring repair in Mission Viejo, you can trust the professionals at All Right Garage Doors to get the job done. We’re the trusted source for garage door repair in Orange County, with a 5-star rating on Yelp and a 24/7 emergency repair service that can have your door fixed any time of the day, any day of the week. If you’d like to learn more about our garage door replacement and repair services, give us a call at (714) 726-2225.