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Stephen Cutler
Stephen Cutler, General Contractor
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 2062
Experience:  35 years of troubleshooting construction, remodel, component & material failures. What to do next
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My Wayne-Dalton I Drive garage door opener isnt/doesnt.

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My Wayne-Dalton I Drive garage door opener isn't/doesn't. When temperatures drop below 36 degrees it takes multiple attempts to open door. When it drops below 10 degrees (we are in Michigan) it may take 10-15 minutes of partial up and down cycles. Below 0 degrees, I open this double door manually.
This is caused by the metal shrinking and lubricants stiffening in cold. This demands greater force to operate. On the side, or behind the light lens cover, you will find force adjustment screw slots. One marked "up" & one marked "down". They have arrows above them indicating which direction to turn them to INCREASE force. Turn the up force 1/4 turn at a time, testing after each increase. More force than necessary can become a big problem if the up travel stop limit switch fails. The door will drive onto the rail stop bolt and hit the opener itself. Force detection is part of the safety system. Increase it as little as possible. Right now the cold is fooling the opener into thinking that the increase in resistance is someone or something trapped in the path of the door
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi, Your plan sounded excitingly simple so I rushed out to the garage and screw or screw slot on or around the light. My I Drive has a modular light so I then checked the entire outside of the motor assembly. The is a screw but it is called a "detent pin" (screw ). The manual says that I adjust that for a motor that slaps open or closed, or stays open or closed. Inside of the motor assembly is something called a "Potentiometer Gearscrew". Could that be what you're looking for?

Good Lord! Seems like Wayne-Dalton has decided to substitute their own propriatory part names for the industry standard names. I will need to pull up a copy of their online manual, for your opener, to "translate" their creative naming. Can you give me the serial number? I presume the Model number is "I Drive, or I Drive II, or I Drive III, so let me know which that is as well.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Stephen Cutler,

i drive for torquemaster, model # XXXXX


They refer to the force required to open the door as " counterbalance". The force adjustment is a "counterbalance system" (springs). Page III

Section V, R2 & page 17 section 12 describe adjusting spring tension (counterbalance). Page 17 section 11 describes securing the door PRIOR to tensioning.

1*888*827-*3667 is supposed to be "a walk you thru it" customer service number.

This opener is basically a boat lift- (motor + forward reverse switch).

Momentarily pressing the Up/Down button activates the door. If an
out-of-balance ( caused by unequal spring tension) condition causes the door to stop while opening or
reverses the door while closing, apply constant pressure to the
Up/Down button until the door is fully open or closed. This will allow
the opener to move the door in an out of balance condition, until the
problem is corrected (see Troubleshooting). The Up/Down button
(when unit is closed) can be activated by pressing flip cover.

Go through the monthly maintainance page 45 ( probably never done)

This affects resistive forces too. Item 4 addresses "contact / obstruction". This is a second name for the force detection system (springs). It refers to "qualified service person" because if they let you know you can do it, and you get hurt or killed, they can be sued. So they don't tell you to make the adjustment. BUT they actually did tell you how in the Install section.


The short of it all: If grease and tighten hardware are not enough, tighten the spring tension a few notches at a time until it works properly.

When this opener get to be 10-12 years old and continues to act up, I recommend replacing it with a Genie screw drive. It utilizes a circuit-board for force, travel, force detection, and jambed-door, motor-on, interrupt. All done with 2 fingers and a screwdriver. Easy & quiet!
HomeCheepo sells them for around $160. Sears carries them too, but those may be "manufactured for" Sears and using the Genie name. I would avoid Sears- their parts are often "discontinued".

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hello again Stephen,

I'm not near the door tonight so I can't challenge the springs til Tuesday afternoon. Is there some way to test equality of current spring tension? My Installation Instructions and owners manual booklet doesn't have the page numbers that you referred to. Would striking the door seals, to relieve pressure, be a better or different option? The door IS 10-12 years old and it works fine in warm weather.

As for the monthly maintenance, it isn't every month but 5-6 times per year I manually operate the door and I'm not sure how to feel "balance" or "unbalance" lifting a heavy 16', w/windows, door.

Here is the entire manual for the 3663-372:

To feel the balance, engage the emergency disconnect. With the door free from the opener, grasp the center with one hand and lift. the door should lift easily and stay in any position when you let go. Out of balance springs make the door track off to one side with one side higher than the other, causing it to jamb against the track. If the door does not open easily with one hand or does not track straight and rubs on the tracks, readjust the spring tensions.

If your door seals are stiff instead of pliable, or frozen to the door trims, yes- striking them will help break them loose. But that would likely shatter them if they are stiff & brittle. Greasing the trims and seals would prevent ice from binding them together.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Stephen, I don't know why but I expected to hear from you again. Genie? Really? I took the weatherstripping out of our equation (no pressure). On either end of my i drive torsion spring is a numbered wheel. The numbers weren't identical but I don't know if they have to/should be the same because a door guy (since moved on) set the door up originally and it works in warm weather. I don't know if they can be put on unaligned during installation. I used a wrench and tightened both wheels 6 full turns but the door is still heavy while reading 16 and 18 out of 20.


Dave xxxx

i drive owner

Unbalanced numbers indicate a weakened spring on the higher number. Springs do weaken with use. Go to 18 & 20. If that won't do it it is time to replace the springs. Unfortunately they do not retail parts to customers. Parts are through dealers. Springs run around $50 each before dealer markup. They may not allow you to do the swap due to liability in the event of your injury or death. So there will be a service charge in addition to the $100.00. Service calls run around $75. Do you want to spend $175+markup on an old Wayne-Dalton or $160 for a brand new Genie? Genie sells parts retail to the customer, and all ajustments are "2 finger + screwdriver". I installed my Genie in 3 hours by myself. The support brackets for the opener were already there from my Sears Hunk-O-Junk. It takes about 1 hour to rig the brackets which are included with the opener. So your looking at 4 hours of your time. I love my Genie and have NO regrets!

Stephen Cutler and other Home Improvement Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Stephen, Dave xxxx here. You provided info on repairing my i drive door opener. Two points: you mentioned an adjustment screw near the light to increase torsion(?). I found a screw under the tubular plastic motor housing that appears to perform that function.:) 2nd I received a page asking if I liked my service and a second one asking if I wished to tip you and I wished to answer yes to both but I was "denied access" so I'm not sure how to thank you and/or tip you other than through the Reply to Expert box.

I appreciate your sharing the difficulty of rewarding my efforts-especially the tip/bonus! I will notify the Site Moderators who deal with site navigation issues on OUR behalf (lol). Denied access sounds like the site may have been down at the time. I will click on my Answer button instead of my Info Button. That should give you a chance to rate. If the screw did the trick, great, but everything in the manual points to spring tensioning, with no mention of any other adjustments. All's well that end well!

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