Screw Drive Garage Door Opener: How to Increase Torque

What You'll Need
Smaller thread rod
Torsion spring
Bigger motor

A screw drive garage door opener is a common sight in many of the different garages around the country. They are quiet, have a lot of lifting strength, and are moderately priced. Homeowners who come home from a long day at work are treated to a smooth opening garage door when they get there. There are times when homeowners want to change their garage door to one that is insulated, made of a heavier material, or is just a little bit wider. However, they do not want to change their screw drive garage door opener. Adjusting the torque on your screw drive garage door opener can be done in a few different ways. Some are pretty involved, while others will only take a few minutes. While these steps can be completed by a do it yourself homeowner, you may want to check with a serviceperson to make sure each project is completed correctly.

Step 1 - Set Power Parameters

One of the ways that you can easily increase the torque of your screw driver garage opener is to adjust the power rating on the motor itself. Some motors have limiters which can be increased or decreased depending on how much lifting force is needed. A screwdriver is need to turn the dial.

Step 2 - Install New Threaded Mechanism

Another way to increase the torque needed for raising heavier doors is to install a smaller threaded rod. This helps the engine generate more power as it does not need to turn a larger diameter rod. Disconnect the rod from the lifting mechanism on the door as well as the motor itself. Raise the new piece into position and reconnect. 

Step 3 - Install New Torsion Springs

One of the parts that gives the garage door more power is the torsion springs that counterbalance the weight of the door. Replacing this spring with a stronger one will help the door lift much heavier weights. When changing the torsion springs remember that they are under a great deal of force. You will want to work very slowly and carefully to make sure that injury does not occur. You can alleviate a lot of the force by raising the door and unhooking the spring then. 

Step 4 - Install Larger HP Motor

There are 3 different motors that are available for screw drive garage door openers. They are 1/4 HP, 1/2 HP, and 3/4 HP models. If you find that the smaller motor is not going to have enough torque to lift your garage door you can switch it with the larger model. Before you attempt this you will need to disconnect the power and the screw drive assembly. A few bolts hold the motor to the frame which are easily removed. When you purchase the new motor you will need some power adapters to run the screw drive assembly. 

Step 5 - Add Torque Converter

There are plenty of aftermarket products that are designed specifically to give your garage door opener more lifting power. These converters are installed between the motor and the screw drive assembly. They are a simple bolt on that do not require any electrical work.