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Garage Doors - A short Tutorial on Garage doors Safety and Installation



Like a door expert witness, I will be called upon many times annually to evaluate garage door injuries. Garage doors come in many shapes and forms. Their functions range from basic security of your area to cosmetic concealment. Most doors can be broken down into a few basic styles or categories. Typical modern garage doors for residential applications are usually predominantly of the overhead sectional variety. That type of door comes in many configurations, materials, numbers of insulation, and a great deal of appearance possibilities. They are available as a prefabricated kit, or built like a custom design to complement the dacor of any building. Commercial warehouse type installations often dictate higher security requirements. Great for this security type of door is the "roll-up" style that resembles a roll top desk form of door. This door could be manufactured with a various materials that can be as strong because adjacent walls, making forced entry through this opening extremely tough. Other common commercial installations include lightweight aluminum single or sectional panel doors. These doors function more for closing off an already secured area than for assuring point security. Garage Door Service And Repairs And Installs

Before, the biggest concern with operating an overhead door was the potential risks linked to the springs used for balancing the door weight. Pre mid 1960's door installations typically relied upon a set of stretched (tensioned) springs to help the operation of the door pivoting hinges. These springs became loaded (tensioned) as the door was moved to the closed position. Unloading (releasing) with the stored spring energy occurred because the door was opened towards the horizontal overhead position. Just about the most dangerous aspects of these spring systems was any time a period of time, often without maintenance or inspection, the points of attachment of these springs would rust or become weak. This weakening in the springs or points of attachment would often lead to an inadvertent explosive failure flinging the broken spring components over the garage, embedding the spring or steel components in the garage walls, cars or any other items in the path of travel. Unfortunately, sometimes everyone was in the path of travel of these explosive occurrences. Because these springs failed, as an attempted safeguard, some manufacturers devised a "caging" system to the springs. These cages were retrofitted on the stretched springs so as to capture the parts that would release if a failure occurred. While these caging devices were helpful, they were not completely effective. Some of these spring devices are still used today. Whenever this problem exists or the quality of garage components are questionable, a certified professional service technician must be consulted.

In response to the inherently dangerous old style garage spring issues as above, a more moderen and safer system for opening the overhead garage door was created. The idea would have been to transfer the load or weight with the door via 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 on one side, while the entire spring is put around a horizontal pipe. This load balancing method is normally installed directly in the header of the garage opening. Using appropriate cables, connectors and pulleys, the load of the garage door is transferred in to the torsion spring system. The difference between the old style stretched spring along with the newer torsion spring could be the way that the spring energy is stored. Together with the old style stretched spring, the vitality is stored and released by pulling for the spring or giving back the spring to its un-stretched condition. Having a torsion type of spring, the power is imparted or removed by rotating the spring clockwise or counter clockwise based upon the direction of usage. With professional installation, the complete loading of the torsion spring is controlled through the garage installer, and is also determined by the weight and size of the garage door that it is operating. When this sort of torsion spring fails, it remains attached and intact towards the location on the horizontal control rod where it turned out mounted. I have not got word of or seen any torsion spring fly across a garage, creating injury from failed components just like the stretched older style garage doors springs. This is not to express that injuries haven't occurred with the torsion style spring. Setting up this type of spring is normally safe when left into a trained garage door installation professional. Severe and high injuries have occurred when untrained, unqualified individuals have attempted to install or service such a spring. In most installations, a warning tag is left attached close to the torsion spring in the event the garage door is installed. This tag warns of the danger associated with the stored energy on this spring, and alerts untrained individuals to not attempt any repair, adjustment in order to even touch the spring and associated hardware. If the label that should be attached with this spring becomes damaged, is removed or tampered with, it is important that a new warning label be reattached immediately to show the dangers of this spring tension

Garage doors can be operated manually (personally), as well as automatically (by power assisted motor). In the two cases, the proper operation with the garage door is determined by the right balancing of the garage door weight, springs and related component hardware. A computerized power assisted motor cannot overcome an improperly balanced door. The weight of all doors is normally deceptive. Simply because that a properly functioning door appears easy to open and close, many users do not realize the combined overall weight until springs fail to assist the door rolling around in its operation. In all cases, whatever the type of garage door, the complete system of hinges, track, hardware, and door opener work as a team. Problems with misalignment, shifting, or jamming can lead to problematic operation of an door. Counter forces imparted to a garage door, not engineered to the components, can lead to injury. Inappropriate maintenance or complete not enough maintenance has lead to severe bodily injuries. Forcing the operation of a garage door, when a number of components have become damaged or broken has lead to serious bodily injuries. In all cases, maintenance is a crucial and essential factor of proper operation coming from all door systems. Garage Door Service And Repairs And Installs

Not like an overhead type of garage door, be it sectional or single panel, rollup doors have a different type of operating system. When these doors are employed, they can be concealed in an overhead or under mounted trough. These doors operate similarly to a roll top desk door apart from how they are stored when they are not in the closed position. They normally coil as they are retracted, and require significant gear trains to scale back the effort required to move these doors around into position. Often the forces required to move these roll up doors require a reduction type of transmission that allows an extremely heavy door to get operated effortlessly. These doors may be chain driven either manually, or can be automated using electric motors. Retract doors require more frequent evaluation and servicing compared to a standard overhead garage doors. The tracks which can be mounted vertically on sides of the garage opening need maintenance and cleaning more often, and are often blocked by foreign obstructions or damaged by collision of some sort or other. These roll up doors tend to be held open by some type of ratcheting action. Proper balancing of the doors is often more vital than an overhead type of door, as the weight of such type of doors is normally much greater than an overhead door.