Automatic openers are something that people rely on each day for the convenience and safety. It’s absolutely normal to live in a home and never lift its garage doors manually for a lifetime. Unbalanced garage doors, however, may cause wear and tear of the openers.
Due to increased reliance on garage door openers, unbalanced garage doors are very common today. The weight of the average garage is usually 15lbs and is counterbalanced by a spring. In the event that the wrong springs were installed or they weaken, the garage door opener is forced to lift heavier weight that it was initially designed for.
Despite the fact that they are designed to handle weight, they are not able to handle the entire weight of the garage door. Unbalanced garage doors will lead to premature stripped drive gears, carriages, sprockets and couplers on automatic garage door openers. Capacitors, pulleys, drive cables, motors and limit switches may also be affected if garage doors are unbalanced.
Properly installed garage doors should be able to stay in place even when lifted halfway. Children should also be able to lift them without the risk of getting hurt in the process. If the garage door has to be forced or cause you strain when opening it, then you should consider having it serviced by a professional.
Why garage doors become unbalanced
Unbalanced garage doors are as a result of various reasons including:
- Additional weight on the garage doors
- Adding insulation after installation of the garage door
- Old springs
- Installing the wrong springs on the garage door
- Broken spring on one door
Additional weight on garage doors
In the event that the garage door starts to sag horizontally, you may feel obligated to install reinforcement to straighten doors. In other occasions, you may mount a fluorescent light on the door to bring more light into the garage. While your intentions for adding weight to the garage door may be justified, the effects are not. The additional weight distorts the operation mechanism that was initially designed by the manufacturer, hence unbalanced garage doors.
Adding insulation after installation of garage doors
Many homeowners do not install insulation before installing garage doors. Ready to install DIY insulation kits are readily available in home centers. And while they may not weigh much, their combined weight can add considerable weight to the garage doors. The extra weight negatively impacts the garage door opener, and increases its rate of wear.
Like most things, age affects the effectiveness of garage door springs. The older they get, the weaker they become. This means that they lose some of their pulling power. If your springs show signs of old age, call a professional. He will either make a few adjustments to the springs that may improve their operating power or simply replace them if their life span has come to an end.
Installing the wrong springs on your garage doors
Depending on how much the garage door weighs, the size of springs used will vary in sizes and length. Sometimes, the wrong springs get installed if the technicians are careless. The problem easily goes unnoticed by homeowners because the door will open or close once they push a given button on the wall. On suspecting this, call a technician and have it checked to avoid wear of your garage door openers.
Broken spring on one door
Some garage doors are equipped with two torsion springs, one on each door. For some reason, one of these springs may end up broken. And while one spring may be enough to pull the weight of the garage door up and down, this may pose a danger. This is especially so when the emergency release rope is pulled causing the door to fall to the ground. Garage door spring repair is recommended if one spring is broken. More often than not, the technician will replace both springs to avoid inconvenience in future.
How can fix an unbalanced garage door?
The least you can do is to get started on relieving your garage doors of the heavy weight. If the door is still heavy, or you suspect underlying issues, call a qualified technician.
A reputable repair company such as Desert Sun Garage Door Service will assess the problem and fix it to protect your garage door openers from wear as a result of unbalanced doors.