If you've found yourself (or your vehicle) stranded inside your garage after one of the automatic door's springs stops working, you may be wondering whether DIY repair is an option. While some well-muscled homeowners may be able to use the emergency release lever to manually pull the door up and down, many can find the heavy garage door too unwieldy to manage, while others may be concerned that a broken or bent spring will give way, flying across the garage in a flash of high-tension steel.
When is DIY garage door spring repair a viable option, and when should you leave this repair project to the professionals? Read on to learn more about some of the inherent dangers that can come from replacing your garage door spring on your own.
What Are Some Of The Dangers Of A Broken Garage Door Spring?
Although garage doors—even automatic ones hoisted up and down with a motor—can seem like fairly simple pieces of equipment, they have some hidden and sometimes unexpected dangers. These doors are powered in part by high-tension steel springs, which allow the automatic door pulleys to gently raise and lower the door thousands of times over the course of their lifespan without allowing it to crash to the ground.
When one of these springs begins to crack, rust, warp, or show other signs of disrepair, it could throw the whole door out of whack. Not only can a broken spring cause your door to come crashing down, bending it or sending it flying off its tracks, but the spring itself can dislodge from the door, potentially causing serious injury or even death to any person or animal that happens to be within its flight path when it gives way.
This means that any DIY attempts to remove and replace this spring can be risky if you're not properly trained and well-versed in the safety precautions you'll need to take. Keeping the new spring as tense and coiled as it needs to be to do its job may require some special tools, and, in most cases, paying a couple hundred dollars to ensure the job is done correctly (and safely) is your best bet.
Are There Any Situations In Which DIY Spring Replacement Is A Safe Option?
While repairing your own garage door spring or springs is generally a bad idea, there are a couple of situations in which you may need to remove or otherwise secure your old spring to make your garage a safer place while you wait for a repair team to arrive.
If you notice that the spring has already broken and is hanging down from your garage door, or if the spring is bulging, you may want to remove and secure any objects in its path. Getting your vehicle out of the way of a strained garage door spring should eliminate the risk that it will be in the path of fire once this spring gives way, while securing any entry and exit doors around this spring will prevent household members from putting themselves at risk.
Fortunately, garage door spring repair is a common enough problem that there are likely several businesses in your area that specialize in this type of repair. Scheduling a consultation shouldn't take long, and before you know it, your garage door will be back on track and ready to be placed back into heavy use. While some homeowners may be tempted to DIY when faced with the prospect of waiting months for a contractor to even take a look at their problem, this shouldn't be an issue in the garage door context. Contact a company like Raynor Door Company to learn more.