Credit: Garage Door Genius

How to Fix a Garage Door With Both Cables Off

Hello, DIY enthusiasts!

Today, we are going to tackle a common household problem that many of us face at one point or another – a garage door with both cables off. This issue can be frustrating and may seem daunting to fix, but with a little bit of know-how and some elbow grease, it’s entirely possible to do it yourself.

Garage doors operate with a system of cables, springs, and pulleys. The cables are crucial for the smooth and safe operation of the door. They help to lift and lower the door by connecting the door to the springs and the pulleys. However, with time and usage, these cables can become loose or even snap, causing the door to become inoperable.

Signs that your garage door cables are off

Before we dive into the steps to fix your garage door, let’s first understand the signs that indicate your garage door cables are off.

  1. The Door Won’t Open or Close Properly: This is the most obvious sign. If your garage door isn’t opening or closing as it should, it’s possible that one or both of the cables have come off.
  2. Loose Cables: If you notice that the cables on the sides of your garage door are hanging loose, they are likely off the pulleys.
  3. The Door is Slanted: If your garage door is hanging at an angle or it appears to be slanted, it’s a clear sign that one or both of the cables have come off.

Steps to Fix a Garage Door With Both Cables Off

Step 1: Gather Your Tools

Before you start, make sure you have all the necessary tools and equipment. You will need:

  • A pair of gloves
  • A ladder
  • A set of wrenches
  • A pair of locking pliers or C-clamps
  • A replacement cable if the old one is damaged

Step 2: Secure the Door

It is crucial to secure the garage door before you start working on it. Use the C-clamps or locking pliers to secure the door in place. If the door is stuck open, clamp the track just below the bottom roller. If it’s closed, you can skip this step.

Step 3: Loosen the Set Screws

Locate the set screws on the drum (the circular part at the top of the garage door where the cable is wound) and loosen them using a wrench.

Step 4: Remove the Old Cable

If the old cable is damaged or frayed, it’s best to replace it with a new one. Carefully unwind the old cable from the drum and remove it from the garage door.

Step 5: Install the New Cable

Thread the new cable through the pulley and then up to the drum. Make sure the cable is properly seated in the groove of the drum. While holding the cable tight, tighten the set screws on the drum.

Step 6: Adjust the Tension

The cable needs to be properly tensioned to ensure the smooth operation of the garage door. Adjust the tension by winding or unwinding the cable on the drum. Make sure that both sides have equal tension.

Step 7: Test the Door

Once the cables are properly installed and tensioned, remove the clamps or pliers and carefully test the door by opening and closing it. Make sure the door operates smoothly and doesn’t wobble or make any unusual noises.


Fixing a garage door with both cables off may seem intimidating, but with a little bit of patience and the right tools, it’s entirely possible to do it yourself. Just remember to always prioritize safety and if you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, don’t hesitate to call a professional like Good Guys Garage Door Repair OKC

Happy DIYing!

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