Loose, Damaged or Broken Garage Door Cables

Your garage door is a system made up of several moving parts.  Braided wire cables are an important component of a working garage door.  

When your garage door cable breaks, your door won’t open.  The garage door cable and springs work together to open and close the garage door. Over time, these cables can loosen, rust, or break completely.  You may also hear loud noises when the door is opening.  If you suspect a cable is broken, call an expert immediately before more damage occurs.

A properly maintained and adjusted garage door will prevent damage to the cables and extend the life of the cables.  The cables wrap around a metal drum attached to the torsion tube on both sides of the door at the top.  The cables attach to a bracket on the bottom of the door on each side. During the opening or closing process of the door, the cables will wrap or unwrap around the drums as the torsion spring rotates.  These cables are under high tension, a typical two car wide garage door can weigh up to 200 lbs – these cables bear that weight.

What do you do when a cable breaks?

If one of the cables breaks you will notice the door being uneven. Do not attempt to operate the door.  Opening the door with a broken cable can bend or break door panels, break an operator chain, or break hinges.  

If the broken cable is identified and addressed quickly, it can be a straight forward fix.  Any trained garage professional will be able to safely replace the broken cable and inspect for any other damage.

What can you do to prevent this?

You should regularly inspect your cables for any evidence of fraying, rust, or other damage.  Your garage door requires routine inspection and preventive maintenance.  An experienced professional can perform a tune-up and make you aware of any impending issues.  

Garage door cable repair can be dangerous if you are not properly trained in how garage doors operate and function. Do not attempt to repair by yourself. The Consumer Product Safety Commission CSPC Garage Door Deaths warns of deaths caused by DIY repair jobs. 

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