Have a safe spring break
You might think your garage just needs a spring clean, not a new door spring, but there may be a serious hazard lurking in those dusty corners.
A consumer from Taranaki recently had a near miss when closing his automatic garage door. When the door was halfway closed one of the garage door springs snapped and flew across the garage.
These springs are under high tension and the force would be comparable to being hit by a sledgehammer. The spring hit and damaged the consumer’s car, but could have seriously injured him or his three children who were in the garage at the time.
The Ministry of Consumer Affairs is asking people to check that their garage doors springs are secured by a retaining cable. This simple measure will ensure that as the springs wear, they do not present a danger should the spring break.
Unless your ‘up-and-over’ garage door springs are secured by retaining cables, they could fly off and damage your car, your walls or yourself. Protect yourself from an unexpected missile by checking and securing the springs on your garage door.
How to check if your springs are safe
The problem affects both manual and automatic ‘up-and-over’ garage doors. If your door is old, or does not open smoothly, the springs maybe under extra pressure.
Go into your garage and check if the springs on your garage door have safety cables attached. If the spring breaks, the cable stops it from being able to ping across the room. If your door does not have these retainers, contact a garage door specialist to get safety cables fitted.
There is a voluntary standard for garage door springs (AS/NZS 4505) which recommends that a spring should last 10-15 years. Not all springs will comply with this standard. So if your garage door is more than five years old, you might want to get the spring changed and secured at the same time. The Ministry suggests getting your garage door checked for retaining straps, and then serviced every few years to avoid problems.