On average, a garage door torsion spring will last between 10 to 30 years, depending on the quality of the spring itself. However, if you don’t properly maintain your springs then they will often break much sooner than they should. One potential cause of a broken garage door spring is rust.
Over time, your spring can accrue rust and become corroded. Eventually, this causes the spring to crack and completely break. The best way to stop this from happening is by preventing rust build up in the first place. To do this, apply a light coating of white lithium grease or silicone spray to your spring a few times a year. You can also call a garage door repair company to perform quarterly tune-ups on the spring and other garage door parts.
What If There’s Already Rust on The Spring?
If you notice some rust buildup on your spring, then it is possible to clean it off. To do this, you can use WD-40* or a solvent that’s appropriate for garage door parts. Once you’ve applied the solvent, allow it to sit and penetrate through the rust. Before cleaning your spring, make sure to wear eye and hand protection. Your spring may be under significant tension and it is dangerous to tamper with. Make sure you never stick your hand into the spring itself. Once it’s soaked it, carefully scrub the rust using a wire brush or pad. Once clean, wipe off excess rust and solvent.
Be sure to apply lubricant to the spring once finished.
*WD-40 works well for cleaning and removing rust but should not be used a lubricant. If you leave a coating of WD-40 on your springs, they may end up damaged.
Corroded Garage Door Spring
If your garage door spring is significantly rusted, you may want to opt for a replacement instead. Springs with a lot of rust tend to have structural damage that will cause them to fail earlier than they should. In this situation, it’s often best just to replace the spring entirely.