Your garage door might seem simple, but it relies on a hidden hero to operate smoothly: the spring! These powerful coils counterbalance the weight of your door, making it easy to open and close. But there’s more than one type of garage door spring, and choosing the right one can make a big difference. This blog from Emu Garage Doors will explore the two main types – torsion and extension springs – to help you pick the perfect fit for your home.

Understanding Garage Door Springs

Garage door springs are hidden heroes, keeping your door balanced and operating smoothly. Without them, opening and closing your garage door would be a real workout! But what happens if a spring breaks? A broken spring can make your door difficult or even impossible to lift, and it can also damage other parts of the system. That’s why choosing the right spring is important.

Torsion Springs

Torsion springs are the workhorses of the garage door world. Mounted above the opening on a metal shaft, they use a twisting force (like a giant Slinky!) to balance the weight of your door. Here’s why they might be the perfect fit for your garage:

  • Built to Last: Torsion springs are like marathon runners – they can keep going for a long time compared to extension springs.
  • Smooth Operator: Imagine a door that glides up and down effortlessly. That’s the magic of torsion springs! They provide a smooth, balanced operation for your garage door.
  • Safety First: Unlike extension springs, torsion springs are tucked away inside a metal shaft. This means if one breaks, there’s less chance of getting hurt by a flying spring.
  • Less Prone to Breakage: The design of torsion springs makes them tougher than extension springs. They’re less likely to break in the first place, saving you the hassle (and cost) of a replacement.

Of course, even champions have weaknesses:

  • Costlier Choice: Upfront, torsion springs can be a bit more expensive than extension springs. But think of it as an investment in a longer-lasting, safer system.
  • Space Cadet: Because they’re mounted on a shaft above the door, torsion springs need some extra space. If your garage is short on headroom, this might be a consideration.

Extension Springs

Extension springs are like workhorses on a tighter budget. They’re usually mounted on either side of your garage door, stretching out and pulling back in (like a giant rubber band!) to balance the weight of the door. Here’s why they might be an option for you:

  • Easy on the Wallet: Extension springs are typically cheaper than torsion springs. This can be a big plus if you’re looking to save some money upfront.
  • Swapping them Out (for Professionals): Trained technicians can usually replace extension springs a bit faster than torsion springs. This can mean less labor cost for you.

However, extension springs come with some downsides to keep in mind:

  • Not Built to Last: Think of them like sprinter runners – they do the job, but they won’t last as long as torsion springs.
  • Snap Happy: Because they’re under a lot of tension, extension springs are more likely to break than torsion springs. This can be a safety hazard and leave you with a useless garage door.
  • Uneven Wear and Tear: Over time, extension springs can stretch unevenly, causing your garage door to wear out faster on one side.
  • Safety First (Especially Not!) A broken extension spring can be dangerous because of the high tension it holds. It’s best to leave repairs to the professionals.

Identifying Your Spring Type

Which type of spring does your garage door have? Here’s a quick tip: Look at the location of the springs. Torsion springs are typically hidden above the door opening, while extension springs are visible on either side of the door. If you need clarification, feel free to contact Emu Garage Doors for professional identification and service.

Choosing the Right Spring

Here’s a quick recap: torsion springs offer superior safety, longevity, and smoother operation, while extension springs are more budget-friendly and easier to replace (for professionals). Because of their safety features and longer lifespan, torsion springs are generally the recommended choice for most homeowners. However, if you have a very light garage door or are on a tight budget, extension springs might be an option (with an understanding of the potential safety risks).

Garage door springs are under a lot of tension, and attempting to repair them yourself can be dangerous. Even a small mistake can lead to serious injury. Never attempt to repair a garage door spring yourself. Our trained technicians have the expertise and tools to safely replace your springs and get your garage door functioning properly again.
Choosing the right garage door spring is an important decision. By understanding the differences between torsion and extension springs, you can make an informed choice for your home. Remember, Emu Garage Doors is here to help with all your garage door spring needs, from repairs and replacements to expert advice. Contact us today for a free consultation or to schedule a service appointment! Emu Garage Doors is here to help with all your garage door spring needs, from repairs and replacements to expert advice. Call us at 02 9030 0686 or email us at info@emugaragedoors.com.au.