Cables are an essential component of the garage door counterbalancing system, so if they become detached from the drums or pulleys, your door will not operate properly. When a cable comes off, it can be a major inconvenience. Thrown cables are caused by a variety of factors, including closing the door on an object, corrosion, broken springs, and improper tension.
The garage door cables transport energy from the garage door springs to the door. This is made possible by the pulleys and drums that these wires pass through, which apply the correct amount of tension to the lines every time you open your garage door. Springs are highly tense, and this force is transferred to cables and circular spools known as drums (torsion springs) or sheaves (extension springs). Because the force of the springs won’t provide any lifting force, broken or loose cables can render heavier garage doors unusable. Overhead doors with loose cables are frequently discovered shut or halfway through the swing, with a snarled tangle of cable around the drums.
Garage door repair technicians and homeowners are able to reset or replace the cables, but many fail to diagnose why the cables broke or came loose in the first place. This frequently leads to recurring cable issues that endanger the safety of both businesses and homeowners, as well as financial and time losses.
What causes the garage door cable to come off?
Garage door cables and springs are subject to a lot of stress, which is why it’s critical to first understand that garage door repairs can be quite dangerous. Unless you’re confident in your abilities (for example, if you’re a trained garage door expert), always leave these tasks to the professionals.
Here are the most common reasons for garage door cables coming off:
1. Incorrect drums and cables
When you use tiny cables on big doors, the wires will fray and break sooner. Taller doors require longer cables, so thicker drums are needed to keep the whole length of these cords.
2. Something has gotten in the pathway of the door.
Garage doors with automated reverse features and photo security eyes are designed to keep people or objects below them from being crushed by closing. If these safeguards fail, or if the door is older than it should be, it may strike a thing beneath it when closing.
This may also result in a cable on one side of the garage door coming loose, which will damage the lower sections of the garage door and whatever it collided with.
3. Improper installation
Garage door springs have to be properly tensioned for the size of the door they’re connected to. This is usually completed during installation. The cables can jump off or unwind from the drum (if the tension is too strong) or become deformed (if the tension is too weak).
4. The torsion spring has been damaged.
Torsion springs are typically found in garage doors. If one or more of these springs break, the cables will instantly lose tension and come free. The door will come crashing down if it was open when this happened.
This is one of the reasons why double torsion spring doors are thought to be safer than single torsion spring ones. If one of the torsion springs fails, the other will keep the garage door open long enough for rescue workers to arrive.
5. Frayed Cable Components
Fraying can be the reason for cables going off track. Fraying is caused by the cable components rubbing against a surface on the garage door repeatedly. When the cable threads begin to fray, it puts added strain on the remaining strands, allowing them to break.
Cables can scratch or scrape against the door’s edge, brackets, track, or plates. Check for signs of damage or friction on the cable and garage door. The bottom of the door is typically where cables break.
What To Do If Your Garage Door Cables Break
Both sides of most automatic garage doors are secured with cables. The goal of these cables is to send the energy from one or more garage door springs to the door, which allows it to be lowered and raised. If a cable breaks or comes out of a drum, your garage door will not operate properly and might even collapse.
So what should you do if one of your cables fails? Can you still operate a garage door with one or more damaged wires? Can you repair garage doors yourself, or do you need to call a licensed contractor in College Station? Read on to learn more.
Can I open a garage door with a broken cable?
It’s essential that you do not attempt to open a garage door with a damaged or loose cable. Putting tension on the remaining cables might cause them to break, causing the door to smash down on top of whatever or whoever is beneath it.
If the problem cable has stopped your door from being able to close, you should call for emergency garage door repair help and wait there until they arrive. If this isn’t an option because you can’t leave your home unattended, you’ll need to cut the remaining wire in order to shut the door.
If you choose to do so, make sure there are at least three or four other adults there who can hold the door and gently lower it to the ground once you’ve cut the cable.
How do you fix a garage door when the cable comes off?
A broken garage door cable can be a major problem. If the cable is completely broken, the door will not be able to move up and down. Even if the cable is only partially broken, it can cause the door to operate erratically, making it dangerous to use. In most cases, it is best to have a professional repair the broken cable. They will have the tools and experience necessary to do the job safely and correctly. However, if you are feeling particularly handy, you may be able to replace the broken cable yourself. Just be sure to follow all instructions carefully and take all safety precautions.
Step 1: Open the Garage Door and Clip the Cable
To begin with, open the garage door and fasten the cable to the track to keep it from swinging. You don’t want the door to be able to move.
Step 2: Attach the Vise Grips
To keep the garage doors from falling, secure the vise grips just below the bottom of the doors. Then, secure the vise grips to the outer end of the cable shaft and pull counterclockwise. This will relieve any shaft tension.
Pull the shaft just enough to make the cable lose. If you pull too hard, the cable will unwind and tangle.
3. Remove the cable loop and unwind the cable.
Remove the door cable from the garage door by sliding a flathead screwdriver behind the loop and pulling out the wire. Unwind the wire, remove the end of it from the pulley gear slot, and remove any slack in it.
Step 4: Connect the New Garage Door Cable
Remove the old cable from the package and replace it with a new one. One end is looped, while the other is straight. Make a 90-degree angle with a straight end. Insert the bent end into the groove on the pulley using a flathead screwdriver. Center the cable on top of the gear using a flathead screwdriver
Step 5: Wrap the Garage Door Cable
Wrap the garage door cable counterclockwise around the pulley until about 12 inches remain. Wipe the pulley and make sure it is clean. Overlap the loop end of the cable with the connector.
Step 6: Tighten the Shaft and Dismiss the Vise Grips
To finish the installation, tighten the shaft in a counterclockwise rotation. When doing so, make sure the garage door cable is housed within the pulley groove. Tighten until all of the slack is removed from the cable, then release the track’s vise grips.
Expert garage door cable repair service in College Station
Do you need emergency garage door experts who can arrive at your College Station home quickly and repair your garage door? Perhaps you’d want to know how much it would cost to replace your old garage door with a cutting-edge design.
We’re the local experts for all your garage door needs. Whatever your garage door-related requirements, don’t hesitate to contact BCS Overhead Door. We’re a College Station area expert in garage door repair, installation, and maintenance, so we can provide you with a full range of services. Contact us at (979) 218-9213.