This is sort of an update to the previous "lessons learned" thread on
how to perform an amateur DIY torsion spring garage door repair yourself.
Ever since my first torsion spring repair a while back (which was rather
hellish simply because none of the upper flags and anchor plates were
well supported), out of curiosity, I now I peer & peek at all my friend's
garage doors, whenever I pass the threshold.
In doing so, today I noticed a frayed cable, so, I helped that
friend replace the worn cable, and, in the process of checking balance,
I realized the door was tremendously hefty & in need of re-torsioning:
Armed with a.h.r derived knowledge, I was able to assist my friend
by easily de-torsioning and then re-torsioning the spring the requisite
30 turns (adding a complete additional turn to what was already there!)
until the door was balanced so perfectly, a pinky could lift it up.
One unexpected problem we ran into was the tips of this squarish
spring steel plate in the GDO trolley somehow came loose, and
fell onto the floor:
An expected problem after replacing the cable was that one side
of the door was tilted on the floor by about 3/4 of an inch:
We weren't sure whether the vise grips went ABOVE the torsion bar
or BELOW the torsion bar, so, we opted for (unnecessary) redundancy:
In the end, we belatedly realized only the LOWER vise grip is
necessary when slipping the cable drum set bolts on the torsion rod:
And, another (seemingly obvious, at least after the fact) tidbit
we learned was that if you slip the cable drum by X (in this case
by a quarter of an inch), the door drops down by about 3X (in this
case, about 3/4 of an inch), by way of rule of thumb:
The result was the door is now perfectly flat against the floor:
In the end, we were able to perform the following, for both
single-spring garage doors, in about two hours, at a leisurely pace:
1. Replace both cables on one garage door
2. Re-tension one spring 30 turns from scratch to perfect balance
3. Level that one door so that it fit flat on the garage floor
4. Add a full turn of tension to the second garage door
5. Level that second garage door so that it fit flat on the floor
6. Lubricate & test as needed
BTW, besides both doors being egregiously "heavy" (both needed a
full turn to balance them!), we noticed the professional installers
prior really crimped down on the winding cone torsion rod set bolts!
a. A visual inspection may find anomalies like our frayed cable.
b. Checking balance may find evidence of a shoddy prior installation.
c. Replacing frayed cables may entail removing the bottom bracket.
d. Slipping cable drums appears to be at a 3:1 ratio for distance.
e. Vise grips go ABOVE for winding springs but BELOW for slipping drums.
f. Painting set bolt flats helps to visually prevent over torquing.
g. Glass panels are problematic when winding cones with 18" bars!
h. It's a LOT easier when the end plates are secure! <==== BIGGIE!
i. Something always breaks! (In this case, it was the GDO trolley).
BTW, does anyone have any experience with repairing that broken
GDO trolley flat spring? My friend is operating his GDO without it,
What does that flat spring do anyway?