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Garage Door Cable Repair
If your garage door does not move or moves too quickly or slowly, it might be a sign that the cables need to be replaced. Stop using the garage door immediately, and do not attempt to repair it yourself. You can cause physical harm to yourself and others, waste precious time and money and damage your property. Because of how garage doors work and the danger of the high-tension spring, it’s a good idea to contact a repair expert to handle the problem.
How Garage Door Cables Work
Your garage door cables are attached to the bottom of the garage door on each side and then threaded through several pulleys. Then the cables are tensioned by being fastened to a drum on the torsion spring shaft. The drum winds up the cable when the garage door is opened or closed.
Garage door cables work in conjunction with the springs and other components of the garage door system. Garage doors are powered by strong springs that hold the tension necessary to lift and shut. The garage door cables help the door go up and down smoothly. When springs wear, and tear occurs over time, it creates a safety hazard as they can break.
Garage door springs that are broken often make a loud popping sound. Whenever a spring breaks, the garage door cable acts as a safeguard by allowing it to slide down rather than flying into the garage or even on the passersby. Thus, cables must remain in good working order for safety reasons.
Issues and Fixes For Broken Garage Door Cable
When it comes to garage door cables, you can figure out if they are broken by the following signs:
The bearings of your garage door cables can become defective due to excessive wear and tear. You can detect this by hearing a grinding or squawking sound. Look for visible signs of wear on the cables. A slight burning smell can also indicate a defective bearing.
An issue with garage door cables can be why your garage door alignment is off. Raising and lowering will be difficult when the door is not aligned. You may also hear a scrapping sound because the door hits other material when off track. Also, the garage door may wobble instead of opening and closing smoothly.
A loud bang coming from your garage door is never a good sign, and sometimes it can be hard to know where it came from. However, don’t overlook the possibility that one of the cables broke. The spring attached to the garage door cables is under extreme pressure, and if a problem occurs with them, a loud explosive sound will happen. Call a garage door specialist if you can not see an apparent cause of the sound. They are knowledgeable in detecting the problem quickly.
When garage door cables fall around the door, the tension is loose. It is a clear sign of malfunction. Check if they are still attached to the drums they wind around. Do not try to move your garage door if they have fallen off. You need to call a garage door repair professional.
Types of Garage Door Cables
There are two main types of garage door cables:
Torsion Spring Cables
Most garage doors are operated using torsion springs, with cables responsible for winding them up. The torsion spring cables can be found at the bottom corners of the garage door. The springs release stored energy by unwinding, which allows them to lift the garage door when opened. However, if the cables snap, the torsion springs won’t be able to unwind and open the door. While all garage door cables use springs to operate, torsion springs require torque to work.
Extension Spring Cables
Extension spring cables are your best option if you have a limited amount of headroom in your garage. Unlike torsion springs that use one or two large springs above the door opening, extension springs are located above the horizontal tracks on either side of the garage door. When the door is closed, the springs are under tension, and the cables are extended. When the door is opened, the tension in the springs is released, and the cables help to lift the door by contracting.
Extension spring cables are typically made of high-strength steel and are designed to withstand the garage door’s weight. Yet, extension cables are considered less safe than torsion cables because if a spring breaks, it can damage the pulley system causing serious damage.
Other Types of Garage Door Cables
Garage doors can also contain three other types of cables that allow your garage door to work. If any of these cables malfunctions, you may be unable to open your garage safely and quickly.
The lifting cable allows your garage door to open. The cable is also most likely to break if it experiences a lot of stress. Garage door lifting cables help power the axle, enabling your door to raise and lower itself. When the lifting cable breaks, you will find it challenging to use your garage door as usual.
Safety or retaining cable
Retaining or safety cables are used with extension spring cables. They are connected to every end of the door and go through each of the extension springs. If the spring breaks or fails, the garage door safety cable ensures the broken pieces stay where they are. Then, the garage door retaining cable becomes a backup device to ensure safety.
Emergency release cable
Probably you haven’t noticed, but every garage door comes with an emergency release cable. If the garage door motor breaks or power goes off, the emergency release cable will allow you to manually open your garage door.
In the absence of safety cables, a broken spring could fire off at high speed, causing harm to your garage and anyone that may be around at that moment. You are at risk of severe injury or even death without safety cables every time you use your garage door.
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