08:57AM | 02/05/99
I've got a 16 X 6 1/2' heavy wooden garage door balanced by two torsion springs on a common torsion bar. One spring broke, I replaced it with an exact replacement from a professional garage door distributor. I torqued the new spring until the door raised and lowered with minimum effort and remains open in the "up" position. However in the closed position, one side of the door has about 1/2" clearance when the other side is touching the floor. I think I have an uneven distribution on the torsion springs. What is the proper method of properly balancing the springs when one is old and the other new? Do I remove torque from both and then tighten the same number of turns on both? If so, how do I test to make sure I have the proper torque needed to assist my Craftsman 1/2 HP garage door opener? Any additional hints are welcome.


12:24PM | 02/06/99
You may have to replace both springs since age will 'loosen' the tension of the metal. I had this situation a few years ago and the best solution was to replace both springs.


12:24PM | 02/06/99
You may have to replace both springs since age will 'loosen' the tension of the metal. I had this situation a few years ago and the best solution was to replace both springs.


06:31PM | 02/07/99
If both springs were new, you could simply paint a stripe across the length of each spring with paint when the springs were completely “un-torqued”. Then, as you torque each spring, you would see the stripe wind around as the spring twisted. By counting the spirals of the stripe, you could gauge the relative balance of each spring.

But since your springs are of different vintage, it probably wouldn’t work. I only mention this if you end up resorting to replacing the other spring.

Before going that route, try this. First, make a note on which side of the door is higher when closed. On the side that is, try loosening it by ¼ turn. Then, check for level when closed. Repeat until both sides are level. If you go too far, tighten 1/8 turn until level. Then, check to see if the garage operates properly. If not, the garage door will most likely be heavy and hard to open, so tighten both sides in ¼ turn increments until it feels the way you want it. Always tighten both sides, not just one.

If you end up again with one side higher than the other, then you will need to start the process over, and it may take a couple of times. If it does not work out, you may want to just replace the other spring.

Bear in mind, though, that these torsion springs are VEEY DANGEROUS. One slip, and you could loose a finger, an eye, or your life.

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