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10 Sep 2016
As a door expert witness, I'm called upon often times per year to evaluate garage door injuries. Garage doors come in many shapes and sizes. Their functions vary from basic security of a location to cosmetic concealment. Most doors can be broken on to a couple of basic styles or categories. Typical modern garage doors for residential applications are generally predominantly of the overhead sectional variety. That design of door will come in many configurations, materials, quantities of insulation, and a wide selection of appearance possibilities. They are available as a prefabricated kit, or built as a custom design to fit the decor of any building. Commercial warehouse type installations often dictate higher security requirements. A good choice with this security type of door could be the "roll-up" style that resembles a spin top desk type of door. This door can be manufactured with a number of materials that is often as strong as the adjacent walls, making forced entry through this opening very difficult. Other common commercial installations include light-weight aluminum single or sectional panel doors. These doors function more for closing off an already secured area than for assuring point security. electric garage doors for sale
Before, the greatest concern with operating an overhead garage door was the potential risks connected with the springs useful for balancing the entranceway weight. Pre mid 1960's garage door installations typically relied upon a pair of stretched (tensioned) springs to assist the operation of the garage door pivoting hinges. These springs became loaded (tensioned) as the entranceway was moved into the closed position. Unloading (releasing) of the stored spring energy occurred as the entranceway was opened to the horizontal overhead position. One of the most dangerous areas of these spring systems was that after a period of time, often without the maintenance or inspection, the points of attachment of the springs would rust or become weak. This weakening of the springs or points of attachment would often result in an inadvertent explosive failure flinging the broken spring components throughout the garage, embedding the spring or steel components into the garage walls, cars or other items in the road of travel. Unfortunately, sometimes individuals were in the road of travel of the explosive occurrences. As these springs failed, being an attempted safeguard, some manufacturers devised a "caging" system for the springs. These cages were retrofitted onto the stretched springs in an attempt to recapture the parts that would release if a failure occurred. While these caging devices were helpful, these were not completely effective. Some of these spring devices are still used today. Whenever this condition exists or the grade of garage components is questionable, a qualified professional service technician ought to be consulted. garage door repair spring
In response to the inherently dangerous traditional style garage spring issues as above, a more recent and safer system for opening the overhead garage door was created. The concept was to transfer the load or weight of the entranceway using a cable and pulley system to a vertical rod now built with a torsion (twisted) spring. This sort of spring is installed with specialty hardware and bolts to a fixed plate at one end, while the whole spring is installed around a horizontal pipe. This load balancing device is usually installed directly within the header of the garage opening. Using appropriate cables, connectors and pulleys, the weight of the garage door is transferred into the torsion spring system. The difference between the traditional style stretched spring and the newer torsion spring is the way that the spring energy is stored. With the traditional style stretched spring, the vitality is stored and released by pulling on the spring or returning the spring to its un-stretched condition. With a torsion type of spring, the vitality is imparted or removed by rotating the spring clockwise or counter clockwise dependant on the direction of usage. With professional installation, the whole loading of the torsion spring is controlled by the garage installer, and is decided by the weight and size of the garage door it is operating. When this sort of torsion spring fails, it remains attached and intact to the location on the horizontal control rod where it absolutely was mounted. I haven't heard about or seen any torsion spring fly across a garage, creating injury from failed components much like the stretched older style garage door springs. This is not to imply that injuries haven't occurred with the torsion style spring. The installation of this sort of spring is generally safe when left to an experienced garage door installation professional. Severe and serious injuries have occurred when untrained, unqualified individuals have attempted to install or service this sort of spring.


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