Hypothetically, on a metal garage door, if the torsion spring breaks,
can you disengage the garage door from the garage door opener (track)
and open and close it?
Suppose there are 2 torsion springs and only one spring breaks, same
When it happened to me, I temporarily joined broken spring together with
small U bolt and rewound it to just open the door once to bring
cars outside. Then I closed the door down, called the service guy.
After watching him do it, now I can work on door problems myself.
On Mon, 26 Nov 2012 08:55:47 -0700, Tony Hwang wrote:
I've seen the youtube videos and web pages where they
actually weld the spring together temporarily and they
also use a u-shaped spring clamp.
Seems to me the u-shaped spring clamp is the easiest
for a homeowner to get the car out of the garage.
The only thing is that I winced when I saw the video
of the guy winding the temporarily repaired spring.
I kept thinking to myself "what if that spring clamp
So, its' probably slightly more dangerous to wind a
temporarily fixed spring - but it will work for sure.
Using U bolt is only one time deal to get the cars out of garage.
I have pair of winding bars I made of steel rod in 2 feet length.
I wear work gloves, safety goggles when I work on springs. Have done it
only couple times over the years. Springs last long time.
On Mon, 26 Nov 2012 18:39:24 -0700, Tony Hwang wrote:
There are at least THREE temporary repair options,
two of which were not initially obvious to me:
1. Use a grooved spring coupler to connect the two pieces
2. Clamp the two pieces together with a spring clamp
3. Use the shortened spring with the GDO disconnected
Here's a video where a supplier of the grooved spring
couplers (DMATools.com) shows how the moon-shaped
spring coupler is used to repair a broken torsion spring:
Here's a supplier of the cable clamps who also provides a
detailed DIY for how to temporarily repair broken torsion
Here's a video where they used a 'spring clamp' to
temporarily fix 3 3/8" and 6" torsion springs.
Personally, if I had to temporarily repair a garage
door torsion spring, I would probably disconnect the
garage door opener and remove the winding cone from
the broken end and insert it onto the long end.
Then I would manually open the garage door, with the
shorter spring counterbalancing 'most' of the weight,
but not all.
Since torsion springs are so inexpensive (less than
fifty bucks in most cases), I wouldn't bother with
either the grooved spring coupler or the U-shaped
spring clamp unless I happened to have them in the
The beauty of those two methods is that the spring
retains its strength - but the beauty of the shorter
spring method is that you don't need anything to
temporarily fix the torsion spring.
Of course, winding either a repaired torsion spring,
or winding a shorter (but old) torsion spring has its
dangers - so - when mine broke a couple of weeks ago,
I simply hefted the door open, and then left the garage
door down until the new spring arrived by UPS.
Installing the new torsion spring takes less time than
it took me to watch all the youtube videos! :)
On 4/4/2016 10:22 AM, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
Get some extra muscle!
If all else fails, you can isolate each individual panel
(beginning with the topmost) and raise each separately.
I.e., the opposite of when the door is assembled/installed.
Do *not* play with the torsion springs! You are likely
to lose a finger (or three).
Bullshit . With reasonable caution and the PROPER tools most handy men can
replace tham . One caveat - tension both sprinngs at the same time ,
alternating between them to avoid problems caused by the tension rod being
twisted by spring torque .
Agreed. I did mine when I installed this door but you do have to be
careful and have the right rods to crank them up (typically 1/2" cold
rolled steel). You can make up a nice set out of a 30-36" stick of
steel rod, cut in half. As you say, it is handy to have 2 sets, so you
can bring the springs up evenly. Do one turn on one, then go do a turn
on the other. Once I got a few turns on each I raised the door enough
to put an old bathroom scale under it and used that as a guide to how
close I was. It did take a little fine tuning to find the sweet spot,
where up force on the closed door was about as much as residual force
against trying to close the open door.
With reasonable caution and the PROPER tools most handy men can
fix their own computers, rebuild their own automobile engines,
blow their own glassware, rewire a home, dig out their own crawlspace,
fell their own trees, etc.
Yet, amazingly, few people do these things -- and few do so without
also injuring themselves (or damaging some collateral property)
You get slightly *less* than ONE mistake when tensioning a torsion
spring. Belatedly discover that you need to take a breather or
that one of the "sockets" for the tightening bars is a bit
buggered and you can't "press pause".
far less risk in changing your own motor oil -- yet amazing how few
folks will go to that "extreme"!
Doing it myself instead of paying someone with probably less knowledge and
damn sure cares less about my ass has enabled us to live a lifestyle
otherwise out of our reach . I figure if I can do it I should . About the
only thing I won't tackle is automatic transmissions .
Today a neighbor and I laid the Advantech flooring on our new 24 x 24 foot
kitchen ... by the end of the week I expect to be standing up some walls ,
next will be building the 6/12-3/12 scissor trusses , then on to decking the
And on and on , until ...
Isn't that the motivation behind *most* DIY'ers? My car hasn't seen a
shop in more than 10 years. SWMBO's last vehicle only saw a shop when
the timing belt had to be replaced.
One of the five 40+ ft trees on the property was felled commercially
(because a large bough passed *through* a neighbor's tree meaning that
tree, at the very least, would likely see damage if I tried to fell
it from below). None of the stumps for the four felled trees were
ground -- I dug them each out!
No one has ever touched any of my PC's in the 35 years I've been running
them. No one has fixed a piece of electronic kit that I owned *ever*.
The roof here has ~25 years on it. The neighbors' have all been replaced
in that time period.
We don't "buy on time", carry balances or pay late fees. We can live without
cellphones (though SWMBO has an "emergency phone" for those times when she
is out and runs into difficulties). We don't need to "pay for TV" -- or
other "entertainment services" (library can supply us with more media than
we've time to watch).
BUT, we *can* do these things. I'd be very reluctant of recommending to
capabilities) that they even APPROACH the "both springs broke", let alone
try to dick with them!
I've done two. And I'd do a third one before I'd replace a torsion spring on a garage door.
I'm not as young as I used to be, and the healing process takes a lot longer than it used to.
It's just more risk than I want, and the amount of money I'd save by doing it myself does not
IMO justify the risk.
I was working in my garage one day when I heard some yelling I
couldn't make out. It continued, so I investigated. A neighbor two
doors down had tried adjusting his torsion spring and dropped the
door. His index finger got squashed between the top 2 panels and was
still stuck there. I lifted the door with a wrecking bar and freed
him, then took him to the hospital - he was a nurse there. The broken
finger had to have the meat stitched back on.
OTOH, I've adjusted them using screwdrivers to crank them.
Of course, that's with the damn door closed.
I tend to operate on the premise that I can always get more
*money* (or, can choose to live without something for some period of
time to "make up for" money spent) -- but can't always get another hand,
foot, eye, etc. This is particularly true for things that can go
"very wrong" in an instant!
I think he did say thanks, but it's something any normal person would
do. But I didn't like that he insisted he be taken to the hospital
where he worked, which was at least a half hour farther than a number
of local hospitals. Understandable, I suppose, for insurance reasons.
Nor did I enjoy waiting at least 3 hours while he was treated.
It was a terrible day for him, just a bad day for me.
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher
a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, bu
ild a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooper
ate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, progr
am a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Special
ization is for insects.
That's my general experience with such things. The
folks who need help often put a lot of conditions.
And it's seldom fun or convenient for the helper.
Still, it shows and speaks well of you as a person.
Three hours seems blazingly fast! I've had two ER visits in the
past 20+ years, was "#1" coming out of triage -- yet spent 5 hours
there, in each case.
We've stopped acting as ambulance for folks. They can call 911 (or, I
can call FOR them). The ambulance is parked less than 2 miles up the
road and there are at least two hospitals within 3 miles of here.
OTOH, if I put someone in my (or their) vehicle, then I assume liability,
have to address traffic, lights/etc. ("officer, we're on our way to the
hospital -- which is why I ran the light -- and would have been there
by now had you not stopped us"), can not monitor the "patient" to see if
their condition is deteriorating, can not render aid (and still operate the
vehicle) if the "patient" takes a turn for the worse, etc.
The EMT's can be here in 5 or 6 minutes. My time is better served
observing the patient and taking direction from the 911 operator
(who is, undoubtedly, relaying my observations to the ambulance crew).
Some things really aren't worth "saving pennies". A friend was found dead
in her car on the side of the road cuz she opted to drive herself to the
hospital. A lot of good those savings did *her*, eh?
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