Garage Door Openers: Cable Installation Steps

Through the years of heavy use, garage doors are susceptible to wear and tear. Many things can go wrong and it’s either going to be an easy fix or a difficult one. A difficult problem to solve on your own has to be those about tension springs.

Remember that working on your tension springs can be dangerous, especially if you do not have prior experience. You need to have the right tools and follow the correct steps in order to avoid the ER. Although doing it yourself will help you save money, always consider your expertise before setting out on this project. It might be more cost-effective and more convenient to have a professional do it for you.

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Before you start this DIY, gather your tools first. Have a ladder, tape measure, winding bars, clamps, wrench, and others. You might also want to wear eye protection and gloves to be safe. Always make your safety a priority in doing this project.

Purchase the correct replacement parts for your garage door. You might need to replace cables or brackets. So, inspect them for frays and rust. Ensure that you’re ordering the right sizes. To do this, you need to measure the wire diameter, determine the hand of the spring, and measure the length and inner diameter.

Measure the length and diameter of the springs that you currently have. Then, measure the height and width of your garage door. When you get a replacement spring, go for double-life springs that have more years of service and can last you longer.

Start the Project

Once you’ve got everything set, you can now start working on the installation process.

Clamp. Lock down the door to prevent the door from moving as you wind up the new springs. To do this, clamp C-clamps or locking pliers to the track above the rollers. Remember to unplug your garage door opener and yank the cord beforehand, as well.

Loosen and unwind the working spring. Insert a winding bar into the bottom of the winding cone of the working spring. Make sure that you hold the bar while you are loosening the screws. The springs will release tension and push with a powerful torque so hold on tightly. With a second winding bar, insert this to the hole and remove the bottom bar. Unwind the spring by a quarter of a turn at a time while leapfrogging with each turn.

Disconnect the springs and secure torsion tube. Remove the nuts and bolts from the spring cones. Slide the springs towards the brackets. Then, clamp the center bracket to keep the torsion tube in the bracket. Loosen the screws on both sides of the lift cable drums and disconnect the cables.

Install left spring and new center bearing plate. Slide the new spring onto the torsion tube with the cone facing the center bracket. Reinstall the cable drum and the torsion bar on the left part of the bearing bracket. After this, slide on the new center bearing plate. Install the right spring and push the bearing near the stationary cone. Reinstall the drum and connect both stationary cones to the bracket.

Replace rusted parts. Replace the bottom brackets, lift cables, and rollers. These are usually the common parts that get rusted. Snap the lift cable over the new bottom bracket. Insert the new roller and swap the cables and the brackets.

Cable work. Run the lift cables between the doorjamb and the rollers. Then, anchor your new cable in the cable slot. Tighten the drums by snapping locking pliers on the torsion tube. Rotate the drum to wind the cable into the grooves. Pull the cable tightly before tightening the screws. Repeat the same tightening procedure on the opposite side. You need to have equal tensions on both sides.

Wind it up. Slide the winding bar and wind towards the ceiling. Turn the spring a quarter turn at a time while leapfrogging the winding bars. Ensure that you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the total turns. After fully winding the spring, tap the winding bar to stretch the spring out before tightening the screws. Rotate the screws until they have contact with the torsion tube. Then, tighten the screws to half a turn.

Lubrication and testing. After everything’s all set, lubricate the spring with a garage door lubricant and wipe off the excess. Ensure that you test the door by lifting the door up to see if it stays in place. If it falls down, you might need to add a quarter of a turn.


About the author: This article was written by Kristy Jones on behalf of A Click Away Remotes.