Torsion & Extension Garage Door Springs

Most homeowners give little thought to the type of garage door springs (torsion or extension) on their door. That is, until they break. Suddenly, you’re faced with all sorts of decisions. You’ve got to figure out who can fix the problem, what materials are best, and the differences between the types of springs available. Which one would be the safest in raising and lowering the garage door?

Selecting the right springs for your garage door is much more important than you realized. Homeowners who make this decision lightly can face damage to their property, injury to family members and even death and this is no exaggeration. The truth is that deaths have occurred due to improperly installed springs. This is why experienced professionals from a reputable garage door company should be the only ones repairing a broken or damaged garage door spring. There is too much at stake. To better inform you this article will discuss the most common types of springs.

In truth there is a wide range of different garage door springs, and many different sub-types. However there are two main categories of springs, extension and torsion.

Torsion or Extension Garage Door Springs

Extension Garage Door Springs

Extension springs are the most commonly used garage door springs on residential homes. You will find them on both sides of the garage door, above the upper tracks, running horizontally. For the door to open these springs must extend, which provides the counterbalancing force needed to support the weight of the door. As the force increases, either by hand or motor, the more it stretches and expands.

All garage door extension springs should come with safety cables. These cables can keep the extension spring from turning into a dangerous projectile if a bottom bracket, cable or spring breaks or somehow fails. Something like this can happen at any time, whenever the garage door is closed, open or moving. It is extremely important that safety cables be installed on all garage doors with extension springs for this reason.

Torsion Garage Door Springs

Extension springs stretch and expand, whereas torsion springs use torque in order to raise the door. They are installed above the opening of the garage and work by slowly twisting and coiling around the shaft when force is applied, either by hand or motor.

There is a wider selection of options that come with torsion springs, which include a variety of sizes and lengths. These variations are carefully calculated to fit the type of garage door, its height and width as well as track radius among other factors.

Which Type of Springs Are Best?

Still stuck with deciding between Torsion or Extension Garage Door Springs? Extension springs are usually priced lower than torsion springs and this is why most homes have them. However, it is important to understand that due to having more parts exposed, they do pose a higher risk.

On the other hand, torsion springs can support a heavier door, are more durable, and can last up to twice as long. Torsion springs provide greater balance overall, which makes the garage door open and close more easily. Having fewer exposed parts, they’re definitely safer. This is why torsion springs are usually more expensive.

If you are considering your options for new springs, don’t forget to think about the additional benefits that come with a torsion spring system, especially when it comes to safety. In terms of home improvement projects, replacing garage doors is among the top for highest return on investment. You can boost your ROI even more by selecting torsion garage door springs, which last a lot longer than extension springs.

Either way you go you’ve got to keep in mind that regardless of whether you use torsion or extension garage door springs, both use extreme amounts of tension while operating. To limit the risk of property damage or injury, we definitely recommend that you consult with a reputable garage door company before trying to repair or install the springs on your garage door yourself.