Garage door opener install dangerous?

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Old 12-22-16, 12:08 PM
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Garage door opener install dangerous?

Hi.

My friends freaked out when I said I was going to install GDO diy.
They said I can loose a finger.

But looking at videos, it seems I don't need to touch the spring at all..
(My house is 3 years old)

Is it true that it's dangerous to diy?

Thanks everyone,
My door seems to be tensioned alright and moving okay..
I just started unpacking and building

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Okay. So I started assembling GDO.
and the manual asks to have horizontal & vertical reinforcement brackets.

Do I need those? I get a sense that many people install without them.

Also, I'm not sure if the top part in the picture is the horizontal reinforcement bracket?
 

Last edited by chandler; 12-24-16 at 07:14 AM. Reason: too many posts on same subject
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  #2  
Old 12-22-16, 12:21 PM
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Generally an opener installation is pretty straight forward; just a matter of reading the directions as you go. The first thing though is to make sure that the springs are adjusted correctly; you should be able to raise and lower it by hand with relative ease, and it should be balanced, meaning that you should be able to let go of it and have it stay in that position. If you find that the springs do need to be adjusted, you will probably want to call a door company, in which case the opener installation would most likely be reasonable enough to have them do at the same time. The other thing that you want to look at is the door make and model, to make sure that the door is intended for an opener, or if an additional stiffener may be required. Some of the lesser priced doors are not strong enough to accept an opener as is, and can result in the failure of the door.
 
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Old 12-22-16, 12:28 PM
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No, not at all dangerous. Now, if you drop the opener on your head while lifting it in to position or fall off the ladder, well, then it is.

You are correct that if the door operates correctly w/o an opener installed, you don't need to mess with the spring. If the door is very hard to lift manually, or crashes down, or rolls up with great force, then yes, there is a spring issue.

I think the danger of working with torsion spring doors is greatly exaggerated anyway. Simple precautions like keeping your ladder off-set from the winding bars, wearing gloves, safety goggles, and even a hardhat, don't wear loose clothes, and have a helper if possible are really what you need.

I've taken down old and installed new doors probably 7-8 times. Only one had the springs that are put on loose and use a winding mechanism, not bars. I've still got my eyes and brain intact.
 
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Old 12-22-16, 12:31 PM
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Install/tighten/modify garage door torsion springs? Yep, that can be a dangerous job. Install a new operator? No more dangerous than any other job around the house with moving parts and slightly heavy objects you have to lift on a ladder.

In other words, take your time and be careful and you should be just fine but don't assume you'll be fine because it is still possible you could get hurt.
 
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Old 12-22-16, 12:37 PM
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I've still got my eyes and brain intact.
Are you sure about the latter part of that statement sorry, I just couldn't resist that snide remark could also be said about me
 
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Old 12-22-16, 09:30 PM
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Marksr, I meant not damaged due to some sort of trauma. Now how much damage I did through my own habits is still up for debate.
 
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Old 12-23-16, 10:11 AM
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And being a Sailor not much there to start with.....
 
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Old 12-23-16, 12:13 PM
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I actually went to the Marine recruiter first. They said I was over qualified. I could walk and chew gum at the same time.

Ok, enough hijacking for me...lol.
 
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Old 12-24-16, 07:13 AM
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The instructions won't "ask", as it will be a requirement. Where does it say they want the brackets to go? Across the top panel of the door is a horizontal reinforcement bracket, but I am not sure if that is what they are referring to or not.
 
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Old 12-24-16, 07:15 AM
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I have merged all the posts on this subject. Please stick to one thread for this operation. We have to jump too much to keep up.
 
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Old 12-24-16, 07:16 AM
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Some garage doors aren't stout enough without the added brackets. Yours is double skinned and insulated so it might not apply ..... but I don't know for sure
 
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Old 12-24-16, 07:26 AM
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You can see the diagram and comments at the very top of this link.
It says I need both horizontal and vertical reinforcement.

Installation


Exactly same as my manual. And there is also a sticker on my door, saying it needs brackets if operated by opener.


So I guess the top part in the picture is the horizontal reinforcement... Do you think I need to buy vertical one ?
 
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Old 12-24-16, 12:40 PM
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Yes, you need a vertical. Ideally, you would buy one from the manufacturer of the door. Do you know that? Look for stickers on sides, top and between panels. One of the visible warning stickers may also have a name. With that and a few measurements you can find the model number. The double sided doors are reinforced under the inner skin for the attachment screws of the bracket, but are not normally strong enough to handle an opener w/o a bracket. The lower part of the bracket will go under the center hinge, then you will need to loosen the upper strut (maybe remove it completely temporarily) and drill/screw the upper part of the bracket, the reattach the brace.

Good instructions by Clopay here...http://www.homedepot.com/catalog/pdf...1c7f7f9168.pdf
 
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Old 12-28-16, 08:49 AM
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Thanks a lot. Gunguy.
I got the vertical reinforcement.. and got stuck when looking for a way to attach a stud above the door for a head bracket to go on.

I punched a bunch of nails through, but it seems there is no stud nearby.

The support stud needs to be just above that center wood.
And looking at the white mud marks on the either side very far away each other( near the ends of the spring in the wide picture) . I'm assuming that's where studs are.. and useless for me to use.

Is there a way to do this? Should I remove the drywall and see inside ?

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Old 12-28-16, 08:58 AM
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Studs are typically spaced at 16" or 24" centers.

If I understand correctly, you could nail the new lumber to the top plate and a few studs. It's ok for the new lumber to be longer than you need.
 
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Old 12-28-16, 09:04 AM
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yeah, I know they should be within 24".. But I don't think they are above that door.. I punched a bunch of holes within that range..
I know I can have a long lumber.. but not like 8 feet apart if you look at the mud marks in the wide picture.. and there is no stud in the center above that wood even though there is mud mark. any suggestions or something I'm missing?
 
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Old 12-28-16, 09:14 AM
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If you get a 2x wide enough that it will go to the ceiling, you can then nail it to the top plate along with whatever studs you can find between the header and the ceiling.
 
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Old 12-28-16, 09:19 AM
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Yep I can attach the top part of a lumber to top plate near the ceiling. But there is no stud below or in any proximity. Can I toenail the bittom part of a lumber to that center woods top edge?
 
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Old 12-31-16, 03:02 PM
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The horizontal and vertical reinforcing the instructions talk about our to go on the "Door", not the wall! You can clearly see that by looking at the instructions. The reason is many doors are not designed for force to be put on that point in the door. That's why it was suggested that you determine who the manufacturer of the door was in contact them for information about reinforcing it for installation of an opener.
 
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