A garage door is a crucial part of your home, providing security and convenience. However, when a garage door spring breaks, it can be a major inconvenience. A broken spring makes it difficult or even impossible to open the door manually, leaving your car trapped inside or your garage inaccessible. In this article, we’ll guide you through the steps on how to safely raise a garage door with a broken spring until you can get it repaired.
Understanding the Garage Door Spring
Types of Garage Door Springs
Garage doors typically use one of two types of springs: torsion springs or extension springs. Torsion springs are located above the door, while extension springs are found on both sides of the door. These springs are responsible for counterbalancing the weight of the door, making it easier to open and close.
The Problem with a Broken Spring
When a garage door spring breaks, the door becomes imbalanced, and the weight is no longer evenly distributed. This makes it extremely difficult to open the door manually. Attempting to lift the door without proper knowledge and precautions can be dangerous, so it’s important to follow the steps below carefully.
Step-by-Step Guide: How to Raise a Garage Door With a Broken Spring
1. Safety First
Before attempting to raise a garage door with a broken spring, prioritize safety:
- Ensure that no one, especially children, is near the garage door while you work on it.
- Wear safety goggles and gloves to protect yourself from any debris or sharp edges.
- Disconnect the garage door opener from the power source to prevent accidental activation.
2. Release the Emergency Release Cord
Most garage door openers have an emergency release cord. This cord disengages the door from the opener, allowing you to manually open and close it. The cord is typically red and hangs from the opener rail. Pull the cord down and toward the door to release the door from the opener.
3. Locate the Broken Spring
Identify which spring is broken – either the torsion spring above the door or the extension spring on the sides. Keep in mind that if both springs are broken, the door may be exceptionally heavy and difficult to lift.
4. Use a Helper If Available
If possible, enlist the help of someone else to assist you in lifting the garage door. This can make the process safer and more manageable.
5. Lift the Door Gradually
Stand inside the garage, near the center of the door. Grasp the door’s handle (if it has one) or the bottom edge of the door. Lift the door gradually, using your legs and not your back to minimize the risk of injury. Be prepared for the door to be heavier than usual due to the broken spring.
6. Secure the Door in the Open Position
Once you’ve raised the door to your desired height, you’ll need to secure it in the open position. Use a sturdy object, such as a cinder block or a wooden brace, to prop the door up safely. Ensure that it is stable and won’t shift.
Dealing with a broken garage door spring can be challenging, but it’s essential to prioritize safety when attempting to raise the door manually. If you’re unsure about any step in the process or if you’re uncomfortable doing it yourself, it’s best to seek professional assistance. Garage door springs are under high tension and can be dangerous when mishandled. Once the door is safely secured in the open position, contact a reputable garage door repair service to assess the damage and replace the broken spring. Remember, your safety should always come first when dealing with garage door issues.