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    How Do You Get A Garage Door Up When The Cable Is Broken

    One of the most cumbersome situations homeowners can face is a garage door that won’t open due to a broken cable. The cable is a crucial component that maintains tension and balance, ensuring smooth movement of the door. If it fails, lifting the door manually becomes a daunting task, necessitating immediate action to regain access to your garage.

    Understanding the Role of Cables in Garage Doors

    Garage door cables are an essential part of the counterbalance system used in garage doors. They generally serve two primary purposes:

    1. Torsion Springs System: Cables are attached to the bottom corners of the garage door and the torsion springs above the door. They assist in lifting and lowering the door.
    2. Extension Springs System: Cables ensure safety by preventing the extension springs from becoming projectiles in the event of breakage.

    The balance and tension created by these cables are crucial for the door’s proper functioning. Therefore, when a cable breaks, the door can become jammed, crooked, or even fall off the tracks, making it nearly impossible to lift.

    Manual Lifting Technique for a Garage Door with a Broken Cable

    Despite the challenge, you can still manually open your garage door. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

    Safety First

    Before you begin, gather the right tools—a pair of vise grips, gloves, and eye protection. Also, ensure no one, especially children, is near the door during this process.

    Step 1: Secure the Door

    Use the vise grips to clamp onto the track, below the lowest wheel, on the side of the door where the cable has broken. This action will prevent the door from crashing down.

    Step 2: Disconnect the Opener

    Most garage doors have a manual release cord—usually a red rope hanging from the center track. Pulling this cord disconnects the door from the garage door opener, enabling manual operation.

    Step 3: Lift the Door

    Stand with your feet braced against the door. Using a firm grip, lift the door evenly from both sides. It’s essential to keep your back straight and lift with your legs to avoid injury. If the door is too heavy, get help from another adult.

    Step 4: Secure the Door Open

    Once opened, ensure the door remains up by propping it with a tool or piece of wood, or by having someone hold it. Never assume the door will stay open on its own.

    Warning: This method is a temporary solution. It’s unsafe to leave a garage door hanging unsecured for an extended period, and you should avoid using the door until it’s professionally repaired.

    The Importance of Professional Repair

    While the above method might help in a pinch, a broken cable is a significant malfunction that requires professional garage door repair. Here’s why:

    • Risk of Injury: Garage doors are heavy. Mishandling can lead to severe, even fatal injuries.
    • Further Damage: Incorrect handling can worsen the issue, leading to more expensive repairs.
    • Tension Rebalance: Post cable replacement, the door’s tension needs expert rebalancing.
    • Warranty Preservation: DIY repairs can void your garage door warranty.

    Why Choose Us?

    Selecting our services guarantees professionalism, reliability, and high-quality work. Our service areas include:

    With us, you receive prompt, expert services ensuring your garage door is up and functioning in no time, minimizing the inconvenience caused by unforeseen malfunctions.


    How do I know if my garage door cable is broken?

    Identifying a broken cable is straightforward:

    • The door closes faster than usual.
    • The door is crooked in the track.
    • You hear a loud noise while operating the door.
    • The cable is visibly frayed or broken.

    Can I replace the garage door cable myself?

    While you might be tempted to embark on a DIY project, garage door cable replacement is best left to professionals. The door’s weight and spring tension make the task hazardous for non-professionals.

    How often should cables be replaced?

    Garage door cables endure a lot of wear and tear. Generally, it’s prudent to replace them every three to five years. However, factors such as usage frequency and physical damage might necessitate earlier replacement.

    What causes garage door cables to break?

    Cables can break due to several reasons, including:

    • Normal wear and tear
    • Rust or corrosion
    • Improper tension balance
    • Track misalignments causing undue friction

    Regular maintenance helps in early identification and rectification of these issues.


    A broken garage door cable doesn’t mean you’re stranded outside. With careful maneuvering, you can manually lift the door, but it’s a temporary fix. Professional intervention ensures not only the restoration of your garage door’s functionality but also the safety of your home.

    Don’t compromise your safety and convenience due to a broken cable. Contact us now for professional, reliable, and quick garage door repairs, so you’re never stuck outside again.

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    Robert Garcia

    Robert Garcia

    Servicing garage doors is my passion. Over the years I have noticed if I help clients know better about their doors functionality and my business beforehand, we can move forward solving issues and helping clients with more efficiency. In this blog I do just that - try to educate with all my accumulated knowledge. Hope you find this blog useful.