The Anatomy Of Garage Door Spring Failure


A complete garage door spring failure can come as a sudden and often noisy surprise. A broken torsion or extension spring can be a setback for anyone with a growing "to-do" list of home repairs, so here's a brief explanation of how and why garage door springs fail, as well as a few pointers on how to prevent failures in the future.

Age and Metal Fatigue

One of the most common causes of garage door spring failure involves ordinary wear and tear throughout the spring's working life. Throughout its life, the metal coil that makes up the garage door spring is constantly subjected to a wide variety of compression and contraction forces. Over time, these forces can slowly but surely fatigue the metal coil, creating weak spots that could eventually fail.

Most garage door springs are rated for 10,000 cycles or roughly 7 years of normal use. Pushing the springs past their life expectancy can easily lead to catastrophic failure due to underlying metal fatigue.

Rust Formation

The formation of rust on the garage door spring can also cause the spring to fail prematurely. The oxidation process that causes rusting can easily damage a garage door spring through a two-prong approach:

  • The oxidation process converts ordinary iron into iron oxide (Fe2O3), a reddish-brown compound that's the end result of iron's reaction with oxygen and moisture. This process eats away at the metal, leaving the spring thinner and weaker as a result.
  • As the rusty metal coil moves against its own self, the added friction can cause additional wear and tear to the garage door spring.

Garage door springs operating in relatively humid locales are most susceptible to rust formation. However, this issue can be prevented by keeping the springs well-lubricated.

Improper Installation

It's not out of the ordinary for a contractor to make mistakes or even cut corners when it comes to installing a garage door spring, especially if the contractor faces extraordinary time constraints. For instance, your contractor may decide to use a single garage door spring instead of building a proper dual-spring setup to save both time and money. However, this improper installation procedure and others like it can significantly reduce a spring's life expectancy, resulting in frequent warranty claims and repairs.

Poor Quality

At times, a garage door spring's unexpected failure can be the result of the spring itself being made from poorly chosen materials or being constructed under less-than-ideal conditions at the factory. Inexpensive garage door springs often suffer from quality issues that prevent them from being sold and used. However, there are plenty of examples that manage to escape quality control procedures. For the best longevity and reliability, it's a good idea to stick with the major, tried-and-true brands of garage door springs.

For more information about garage door springs and how to keep yours in good condition, talk to a professional at AAA Garage Door, Inc.


14 September 2016

Understanding Garage Door Installation And Repair

Hello, my name is Isaiah. Welcome to my site about garage door installation and repair. When you want to upgrade your home, the best way to accomplish that feat is by replacing your garage door. A new garage door greatly improves the curb appeal of your property in an instant. After picking your garage door, you must have it professionally installed to keep it working efficiently over the years. If your garage door malfunctions, a professional can help you repair the system to ensure it returns to full operation and that no one gets hurt while coming and going through the garage.