Garage door cables are part of the torsion spring counterbalance system. The cables must meet industry standards for strength, flexibility, durability and safety. It’s important to get the right cable, the correct length and also ensure that the fittings are properly swaged. Typical specifications call for 7×19 aircraft wire rope with a 5 to 1 safety factory.
Even if cables aren’t broken, they should be replaced if any one of these conditions exist:
- Distortion includes kinked, crushed, bird caged and steel core protrusions between the outer strands.
- Heat damage.
- Evidence of mechanical damage.
- Improperly installed cable ends. For example, someone used a hammer and pounded the cable ends.
- Broken stand(s).
- Cable diameter is reduced by 5% or more.
Signs that there are cable problems include:
- The door is crooked.
- Shaking or squeaking during operation.
- The door has crashed to the floor.
- The door is stuck open or closed.
It is best to have a trained technician check the cables. Do not touch the cables and do not unscrew the cable attachments. Cables are under extreme tension from the torsion springs and can cause severe injury.