If your garage door lock or handle is broken, you will need to identify the correct replacement to ensure your door keeps working. Usually, you can just use the brand name to find the same handle and easily replace it, but often, with older doors, the branding has worn off, or the manufacturer no longer exists, and the handle is therefore obsolete.
In these situations, being able to correctly measure the garage door handle can help you to identify a suitable replacement and keep the door secure. Below we will explain the three main measurements to be taken, and what to do should a suitable replacement not be available.
Spigot, spindle length & type, and screw hole centres?
These are the four main categories you will see in the specification section for the handles we stock on our site.
The spindle is the rod which extends out of the handle into the garage. It turns when the handle is turned, and usually is connected to a cam, causing cables or a rod to be moved, allowing the door to be opened. The length of the spindle is based on the part that is exposed, and not any part of the spindle which may be inside the handle. Please measure your spindle in mm to ensure a more accurate measurement.
There are two types of spindle shape, square and diamond. People often get confused due to the similarity which both being a four-sided shape. You need to look at the spindle when the handle is in the closed position, and identify it then.
There are usually two spigots (sometimes four). They are small plugs that extend out of the back of each end of the handle and using screws, hold the handle securely in place. The spigots should be measured in mm again to help ensure an accurate measurement.
Finally, the screw hole centres. This is the distance from the centre of one screw hole to the centre of the other screw hole. The spigots usually hold the screws, and therefore it is the centre of the spigot hole to the other spigot hole. It is important to get the same size screw hole centre distance for the replacement handle, otherwise you will have to drill new holes in the door, which may be ruin the door’s appearance.
Unfortunately, sometimes there is just not a suitable replacement for the old handle/lock. Often, garage door companies will try to sell you an expensive new door, but this is not necessary. Below are some options available to you.
Garage door lock packs
We sell lock packs for canopy doors (when the door is open, 1/3 of the door hangs out as a canopy) and retractable doors (when the door is open, the whole door slides back into the garage). These lock packs include the external handle, internal handle, locking cables and latches. The instructions are on the site, so you can have a look in advance and decide if you feel confident about doing this repair. We also have a Locking Bar Pack, for those who prefer solid steel bars for locking their garages.
Additional garage door security
For those who feel uncomfortable with installing a locking pack, there is the option of a security lock instead.
The Garage Defender is a well-known brand of security lock which is secured to the concrete in front of the garage and prevents the door from swinging up and over, therefore keeping it shut. It is heavy duty and therefore acts as a deterrent as criminals know axel grinding it off is loud and time consuming.
For those wanting something more discrete, then garage door lock bolts can be installed at each side of the garage door. Bolts extend into the frame, keeping it securely shut.