A DIY Guide to Smooth Garage Door Cable Replacement

It is quite frustrating when your garage door isn’t working properly. After all, where would you park your vehicle if the door seems broken? Plus, what will happen to the stuff inside the garage if the door cannot be opened and closed properly?

It is imperative then to have the garage door fixed as soon as possible.

If you think that the problem lies with the garage door cable, then you may be considering doing the cable replacement yourself. Here’s a guide on how to replace the garage door cable on your own.

Different Cables For Different Garage Spring Systems

You need to know and understand the different garage spring systems and the cable that goes with each. Basically, there are two primary methods for safely maneuvering your garage door. These are torsion spring and extension spring cables.

Torsion spring

The most common way of opening a garage door is via the use of the torsion spring cable, which requires torque to work. This method works by storing energy via coiling. The springs are located against the wall above it.

The torsion spring then unleashes its stored energy when the door lifts and stores energy again when the door is being lowered.

Extension spring cables

As the name suggests, extension spring cables store their energy by extending the door back to the garage. The stored energy is released while the door is being lifted and is restored into the cables again when the doors are being extended when being lowered.

Tools You’ll Need

Garage door cable replacement is no walk-in-the-park and will require various tools. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Vice grips- a pair
  • A cordless drill or corded impact drivers
  • 9/16 deep socket
  • 7/26 or 10 mm socket wrench
  • Winding bars
  • A file or angle rider
  • Ladder
  • Safety glasses
  • Spring gauge
  • Impact adapter
  • A plastic bushing or metal rod bearing
  • The springs

A Step-By-Step Guide

Step 1: Check the spring

Find the spring and check out which one or what was broken.

Step 2: Measure

Locate the spring wire and measure it using the spring gauge. You need to count 20 oils to measure the spring wire size

Step 3: Buy the replacement for the spring wire

Buy the spring wire replacement if you still don’t have it. Make sure that you are using the same spring size as the one you are replacing.

Step 4: Remove the spring

Insert the winding bars into the winding cone to take out the tension spring. Check carefully to ensure that the winding bars are properly and fully inserted into the cone. Otherwise, you’ll be repeating several steps.

Step 5: Release tension

To release the spring, unscrew the setscrew. You will notice that the force of the spring is transferred completely to the winding bars.

Step 6: Loosen drum screws

Remove the 9/16 bolts connecting both the center plate and springs using your wrench, then remove the cable.

Using the socket and ratchet, take out the bottom screw from the jamb bracket.

Take out the bottom bracket to be followed by the cable.

Step 7: Step the new cable

Place the replacement cable into the bracket at the bottom. Find the drum at the top of the garage door, and thread it all the way up to the cable. Do this again on the other side of the door.

Locate the cable drum to insert the cable into its spot. Ensure that the cable is properly set into its slot and that nothing overlaps.

Start winding up the new cable into the drum slide before you move the drop to cover the bearing plate. Tighten by moving the screws counterclockwise. Do this for all screws but make sure not to over-tighten the screws.

Step 8: Increase the tension of the spring

Keep the rod in place by using the vice grip all while holding the new cable. This rod is the one that keeps the garage door in place on one side of the wall.

Do the same for the other side of the door. Then using the winding bars, start increasing the spring tension to 1/4. Be sure not to overwind the springs.

Step 9: Complete the replacement

Pull down the emergency release of the garage door to re-engage it, lifting the door until it clicks into its proper place. You can then start using the garage door again.

DIY or Professional Help

The spring of your garage door plays a crucial role as it balances the weight of the door. It is a workhorse that does most of the hard work of the garage door system. Springs are no ordinary tools since they are pre-rated for use for a number of times or cycles.

The steps outlined above illustrate the complexity of the spring placement process. One must be well-versed in the tools to be used, and parts of the garage door and skilled in adjusting and replacing springs.

Do-it-yourself may sound more practical, but unless you’ve replaced the spring of the garage doors several times already, then you may end up spending more money and time doing it on your own than hiring professionals.

In contrast, professionals have the tools, knowledge, and expertise to replace the garage door spring as quickly and effectively as possible. You don’t have to buy the tools you’ll need or spend hours trying to figure out the instructions on spring replacement. You only need to set an appointment. Consider calling a professional company today.