Garage Door Spring FAQ

The springs on your garage door are a vital component for the opening and closing mechanism. Often, they are ignored until something goes wrong – and that something that goes wrong can be quite dramatic since springs tend to break with a loud noise. They also can cause damage when they break, since they are under high tension. The following guide will answer some of your questions about springs, so that you can avoid such a dramatic situation.

Are all garage door springs the same?

No, there are two main types of springs in use today. Torsion springs are located overhead inside the lift shaft. Extension springs are installed in the open, over the horizontal tracks. Generally, torsion springs are considered safer because they are inside the shaft, which means they cannot fly out and cause damage or injury if they break. Extension springs, on the other hand, are fully exposed. For safety reasons, these should be installed with a special cable harness over them that will prevent them from flying out and causing damage if they break.

How long do springs last?

This varies by manufacturer. Springs will be listed by how many cycles they last; for example, 10,000 cycles. A cycle is one full opening and closing. So, if you open and close your garage door an average of twice daily, a 10,000 cycle spring could last for more than 13 years.

Are there ways to prevent breakage?

Generally, springs are made to be as safe and durable as possible. If you live in an area with high humidity, you may want to invest in galvanized springs since these will resist rust and corrosion. It is also important to ensure that the springs chosen are rated to hold the actual weight of your specific garage door. You may also want to schedule annual garage door inspections with a technician so they can fix any problems early, before they lead to a spring breakage.

Do springs require any maintenance?

Maintenance should be approached cautiously since the high tension nature of them does make them a safety hazard. Generally, you want springs to remain clean and free of debris like dirt and leaves. Dusting them gently is usually sufficient. Springs should also be lubricated, which ensures they move smoothly and helps protect against corrosion. The manufacturer manual for the springs or garage door will have lubrication recommendations along with a door specific diagram with the lubrication points. This is a task you may want to to hire a technician to complete, though, due to the safety concerns. To find an expert technician near you, visit